Getting to grips with A level assessment

Thursday 27th May 2021

On Wednesday 28 April 2021, sixteen teachers from across the county came together to attend an online Teacher Network meeting that focused on A level assessment. The network focus came about when a teacher emailed me to request advice and support for the marking of A level Mathematics so that her department could award consistent and fair centre assessed grades. The meeting was delivered by Pietro Tozzi, a much-respected teacher/trainer for 36 years who also has considerable experience with the 2017 specifications having assisted in the writing of A level schemes of work for one of the major exam boards.

The session began with Pietro highlighting the three assessment objectives and how they are weighted, and then outlining some common principles for marking A level examination papers. Initial consideration was given to the wording of questions which prohibit 'calculator only' solutions, with some exemplar questions giving the delegates an insight into how the different marks were awarded. Participants were then given the opportunity to assess some students’ work which prompted some really useful discussions. Seeing common errors made by students on recent examination papers enabled teachers to develop their knowledge and practice.

The network meeting proved to be hugely useful for all that attended, irrespective of which exam board they used. Everyone who attended also left with a vast array of resources that were very well-received. We received the following feedback on the Teacher Network meeting:

  • Thanks, so much Dave for your support and for the organisation. It was a brilliant session and the resources are great.
  • Great session!! Thank you so much!!
  • Thanks for last night David. I couldn’t attend unfortunately, but a member of my department did and was very enthusiastic about it.
  • Thank you for last night. Pietro’s session was valuable and the wealth of resources he provided us with is staggering.

Our next network meeting Solving And Modelling With Differential Equations will take place on Wednesday 16 June 2021. If you have any suggestions for future network meetings, or for general professional development, then please get in touch with your local Area Coordinator and let’s make it happen.

By Dave Tuhey

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