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Edexcel AS and A2, thinking of switiching spec, any advice?

Discussion in 'Music' started by thom_g, Mar 11, 2010.

  1. <font size="3">Hello all, </font><font size="3">Having moved to Edexcel a while ago to try and open up A level music to musicians who found the AQA spec too tough, I have to say that after 2 years of the new Edexcel spec, im not sure we made the right choice. </font><font size="3">If one puts aside severely questionable marking decisions and an unwillingness to engage with the idea of a retake paper, does anybody else find this endless list of set works time consuming, excessive and of questionable worth? Especially as my A2 input this year has been cut to 2 hours, the analysis hours spent for the purposes of a couple of essays seems to be totally out of proportion at the expense of time spent at AS and A2 developing general listening and analysis skills. I am starting to long for the content thin AQA spec of old. Even if it was a real challenge for many students, I could focus on a broader range of history, skills and analysis rather than endlessly prescriptively covering content. </font><font size="3">Ironically, having looked at the new AQA spec, it seems to be balanced, accessible and forward looking (and not at the expense of breadth or quality). Is anyone teaching this spec who has any advice or opinions? Has anybody else ditched Edexcel in favour of one of the other boards? I don't like this Edexcel spec but would like advice before I go through the upheaval of changing again. </font>
  2. Hi,

    We are considering changing to the Welsh board from EdExcel - had enough of shoddy customer service from them. The Welsh board still send an examiner for the practical performance papers and when you ring them up you can actually speak to a music examiner rather than a machine ot a secretary! On top of this the other areas look excellent. I just wish WJEC did a Music Tech course as I would drop EdExcel Music Tech instantly if anyone else offered it.

  3. pauljoecoe

    pauljoecoe New commenter

    I switched back to AQA for the new specs after a couple of years of Edexcel.
    The new AQA spec is quite straight foward and not difficult.
    AS - 40% performing 5 mins solo 5 mins ensemble. Study a couple of movements form Mozart 40 and a general aural/listening exam. Oh and a pretty much composition. plus choose a are of study from british pop, musical theatre or baroque choral music. There are other options on the compsing side like bach chrale type stuff if you wish and there are options on t he performance side like studio recording and sequencing and 2nd instruments.
    The mark scheme for the performing is wonderful. If you do a very simple piece i.e. Grade 5 or below you only get 1 out of 6 for demand but still can score full marks in the other 3 areas so 25/30 is possible on a low difficulty piece. Play the system.

    A2 is pretty much the same. Only 30% for performing and the whole of Mahler 5 to get through. 3 diffrent areas of study - jazz, chamber or something else that escapes me at this moment. Performing is a 10 - 15 minute programme but doesn't need to be played all at once! Composing - well pretty much same as AS.

    So an easy to understand spec, not difficult to deliver. suits me!
  4. pauljoecoe

    pauljoecoe New commenter

    What rubbish typing Sorry!!!
  5. Come and join with other teachers of Edexcel A level music in our Facebook group, "edexcel music A level teachers" to share ideas, resources etc.
  6. Hoping it was a typo, but it's Mahler 4 not 5!

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