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Controlled Assessment 21C Science

Discussion in 'Science' started by 2Tony2, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. We are about to embark on two of these, within our centre. Practical Data Analysis for Core Science and the first Practical Investigation with our Physics separate scientists.
    Despite having a pretty experienced team the whole process is somewhat daunting. I would be interested to know how other centres are finding this, or whether it is generally being left for later in the course.
    OCR havent been particularly helpful in providing advice we have asked for, but I suppose we have only given them a few weeks to respond.
  2. We will be doing this with our Y11 next year - Phys, Chem & Bio seperate sciences. For Physics, it is being left to Y11 because they cover the relevant topic then. I imagine the Chem & Bio timing is based on the same criteria.
    In the past, we have always done our (resistance of a wire) coursework in Y10 - at the end of the P5 module so the topic is 'fresh' in their minds.
    We are debating using one of the investigations as a 'mock' for pupils and the staff, but, to be honest, I don't think there is the time available in the timetable to do 2 investigations properly, so it is likely we will just do the one in Y11.

  3. We do Gateway and have found OCR none too helpful. I get the impression you can "help" the students understand the mark scheme, you just can't tell them what to write. I think we will just end up cheating because the tasks are too hard, they are struggling with planning in tasks in class already. I am irritated about the topics that the coursework relates to because they all seem to be in year 11 - we need to be able to do coursework in year 10 to give us time in year 11. Grrr.
  4. Thanks for the responses. Our tasks look pretty demanding as well and getting an experimental set up which worked was pretty difficult for one of the data analysis tasks. However we didnt want the pupils to end up with 3 science controlled assessments in Y11, to add to the vast burden they already have with other subjects.
  5. How have you been getting on? I've just finished collating the marks for the planning on our first science controlled assessment: mean mark was 3.9, with a range from 1 to 7! This is a long way done on the old style.... I'm hoping that the students will get used to it and that we will have time to do another. Time is tight though...
  6. I would agree with the general spec requirements having been made more demanding. However, I think this is no bad thing - the previous one we found was often trivial and unstimulating (P1 scored highly on these criteria) . Some of our top end pupils were unchallenged and all of our pupils were bored.
    Having said that, some of the content now finds itself in odd places & we are having to swap the order of teaching around between units to ensure thay understand stuff properly.
    As far as the 'state & explain' questions are concerned, our pupils find this tricky too. If I remember rightly, these qs account for up to 20% or 25% of the marks in some papers so are likely to be a discriminating factor for the higher grades. I think they are good questions though -as long as they are marked by a subject specialist -since they should identify which pupils have understood the concepts being examined.
  7. At my school we are conducting controlled assessments in Core, Physics and Chemistry. Students are given a lot of guidance, with the markscheme broken down into student-speak and arranged to follow a provided structure in terms of how the work might be set out. Such was advised by OCR at the coursework meeting with them I attended last year. However, there is no doubt that students are struggling and even our A/A* students are seldom securing more than 50 of the 64 marks available for the investiagation. Some bright students are simply not doing themselves justice at all, particularly in the R and E strands (R especially.... eg there is no useful secondary evidence to be found on the web regarding Heat of Neutralisation that isn't at A level standard).
    The solution would be to give them more opportunities but obviously there is no time for this. The exemplars provided by OCR in how to attain close to top marks are way out of reachand impracticle.
    Do others of you have similar experience? What sort of marks do you think will be required for C and A grades?
  8. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I have a horrible feeling that there will be pressure from "on high" for grade boundaries to be quite high and pass rates to be low.
    I am in the middle of the chemistry neutralisation. the students are finding it hard. The high control bit is going to be very difficult, and it will take a long time.

  9. Hi Richard
    I have spoken to the principle moderator and her says it is not possible to give grade boudaries as the coursework has not gone through one cycle yet. He has said take the UMS and apply as a percentage.
    This gives A*=57.6, A=51.2, B=44.8, C=38.4, D=32.0, E=25.6, F=19.2, G=12.8
    These look high to me and I feel we may drop them slightly to give a working grade.
  10. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    My lot are doomed then. This is not news to me.
  11. We are also having serious difficulties- especially with the year 11 coursework.
    Our biggest problem seems to be finding relevant secondary data.......do pupils have to find this for themselves?? How would they do this??
    The mark scheme is worded so pupils need to 'collect' SEVERAL sources of secondary data- are they expected to analyse this data?? draw graphs?? not very clear and we can't find an exemplar to guide us.

    Any advice welcome!!
  12. Have you used the additional information produced by the OCR. It can be found here ... http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/gcse-twenty-first-century-science-suite-chemistry-a-j244-from-2011/It's on the Support Materials - Guide to controlled assessement PDFReading through this material I believe a lot of schools will be caught out with how the candidates need to reference (on page 11).
  13. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Seen this, but there are very few sources of secondary data, they're hard to find and do not relate to the experiment as my students did it.
  14. scilab

    scilab New commenter

    We've just done this too and had the same issues. No decent secondary data that the students can make sense of, and little or no help or guidance from OCR. Hated it. And now I'm marking out all and marks are not good at all.

    Sean - not sure about your figures - are those the equivalent raw marks needed for those grades? Approximately, given that no grade boundaries are available? If so our marks are not looking good
  15. Secondary data has been a huge issue for all except the osmosis one.
    Currently giving pupils who did badly at the potential divider a chance to do the lenses task and once again secondary data is pretty non existent.
    In addition, both of these physics tasks are basically using A level or AS level topics.
  16. Thanks for the link- really not sure how I couldn't find that. The exemplar student work and marking commentary are helpful, but I think our pupils will struggle to meet those criteria to a high level as finding easy to understand secondary data is very difficult!
  17. Is it actually possible for pupils to make a quantitative prediction for the lenses task?

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