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Moderator marking in Edexcel GCSE

Discussion in 'Drama and performing arts' started by aoconnor334, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. johnfield

    johnfield New commenter

    Yes I'm in the same boat as you folks - written work marks altered by between 3 and 6 for unit 2 and 1 and 3 for unit 1 (what's the point of moving a mark by 1!?) We've also had some horrible marks for our unit 3 work. A pretty average piece which - by my own admittance - wasn't terribly strong and I judged - on the basis of pervious years - to have gained the candidates C or D ish garnered an E and F and two Gs - marks like 20/80!! All I can say is that if the marks were right this year then they were completely wrong last year. I share the kind of impotent rage I'm seeing on here. It's the level of contempt in the moderator's report (going back to units 1 and 2) that I object to. Telling me that the work is generalised and not analytical is a frankly generalised and unanalytical remark. I feel like coming up with a centre's report to the moderator. Something along the lines of "The Moderator is reminded that the centre presents work in good faith and that criticsms would do well to be expressed within the context of appreciation. " How about it folks? Shall we all send our moderators a centre report!!?
  2. Hi, been teaching many years and never used these forums but am so shocked and upset over changed marks to unit one and two too! I compared the work with previous samples and this years sample has been harshly moderated! What on earth are edexcel expecting from GCSE students?! Other than paying huge amounts of money I am feeling like you...at a loss to what I can actually do to prevent this happening again?!

    Sorry this is no help or suggestions but I feel angry and let down for my students too!
  3. Can't believe I am reading about so many schools who have experienced what my school has! Our marks significantly lower for unit 1 and 2, having been fine in previous years. I am TOTALLY fed up with Edexcel - they seem to move the goal posts continuously and it's hard enough trying to work with the appallingly vague marking criteria in the first place! I'm thinking of trying out OCR...any thoughts?
  4. johnfield

    johnfield New commenter

    I'm looking into alternatives. Aside from the vagaries of marking I'm unhappy about 5000 words of coursework anyway. The problem is that so many of the alternatives have a written exam (WJEC, AQA, IGCSE). I'm toying with the idea of looking at the AQA Expressive Arts and writing a Drama course around it. Difficult situation though and not too many options
  5. I am utterly nonplussed and incensed by our moderator?s decision to downgrade some of our Unit 1 and Unit marks. I am an experienced teacher of over 18 years and have written a number of drama text books that are used extensively in schools both here and abroad including material for GCSE teaching. I have attended INSET and training and standardisation through the various changes and sylabus developments. We often use very similar schemes and work that each year are adjusted to reflect any changes following the moderators reports for the centre and the chief examiners report for the subject. I have taken part in and contribute to the recent online INSET Edexcel feedback events as well to make sure our teaching reflects and responds to the demands of the course.

    The marks this year simply do not reflect the ability/work and achievements of our students and their teachers and are so anomalous with previous results that the difference is utterly remarkable.

    We are appealing against the moderator at great cost and will feedback to the forum on the results of that appeal.

    Edexcel must take some responsibility now for clarity, consistency, fairness and parity of experience across all centres.
  6. hes


    Thank you all for the responses.

    My Head has been supportive and has agreed to a re-mark (approx £157 per Units 1 & 2; not sure for Unit 3?). I have just sent of Unit One as I feel we have a stronger case. I will let you know what the outcome is, although SLT & Exams Officer have warned me not to get my hopes up. However, it feels good to channel the impotent rage somewhere. Not least as our moderator report is at best bizarre and worst directly contradictory of the Principal Moderator's 2013 report. All the examples of best practice we have done. The examples that the report criticses are absent from our sample. I have no clue as to how anyone could think that an E grade is appropriate for the students on the tape.

    I love teaching the EdExcel GCSE and every other year it's served us well in terms of marks so I am loathed to jump ship. However, this year's results will certainly take some of the joy and confidence out of teaching the course.

    In this precarious time for Drama, with departments closing all over the country, with many centres seeing a reduction in uptake of the GCSE and also with the introduction of PRP, EdExcel would do well to better ensure their moderation is accurate, fair and consistent.
  7. I too have a supportive principal and we are going for an appeal against the Unit 2 marks. It means a re-moderation of the whole sample - a total cost of around £200 as I understand it. Another principal in the area has flagged up similar inexplicable results this year (I'm guessing those schools may well be represented on this forum somewhere) and it is good to feel that there are SLTs out there who respect their staff! The annoying thing is that to get both units re - moderated there's an up front cost of over £400 in our case and there's no guarantee they will move the marks and refund the cost. The time limits may also mean that even if they do change our unit 1 marks, there probably won't be time to go for unit 2 as well.

    It does feel as though some Drama departments are struggling on all fronts at a very difficult time. it would be somewhat ironic if the poor quality of exam board marking helped put a few more nails in our creative coffin...

    In the meantime, I really like the look of the WJEC course. Our students can handle the written exam and in fact, it looks by far the closest to the AQA A level course which we now do (yes, I gave up on Edexcel at A level a few years ago...)
  8. After a very frustrating time today attempting to sort out our re-moderation - I finally managed to get the bottom line. Briefly if you try to book the remoderation on line, you have to specify the unit - and then the different element of the unit - ie the written and the practical are treated as two seperate costs - pushing the cost to over £1000.

    Three different phone calls to various customer support staff including the post-results dept - could not assure me this was not the case.

    Finally got hold of the subject leader - who was helpful and has assured me each unit was not split.

    So - it will still cost over £500 for both units but after remarking the work and looking again at the DVDs - I simply cannot let this go without adjustment or explanation so that we are not in this same position again.

    Surely - it would make sense that if a school's marks were moderated significantly - a cross moderation should occur AT THAT stage.

    I have re-marked the essays sent in the sample and looked again at the practical work and am no closer to understanding the moderation - so over to Edexcel for clarification.
  9. resources4drama

    resources4drama New commenter

    Do you get clarification?

    When I requested a remark I simply got a sheet saying something like

    Cand 1 - Original Mark D - Revised Mark D

    Cand 3 - Original Mark D - Revised Mark D

    Cand 3 - Original Mark D - Revised Mark D

    There were no explanations.
  10. hes


    Clive, was this from a Unit 3 re-mark? I was rather hoping for the detailed feedback of Units 1&2 ArthurDent described - then at least I'd have some guidance on how to move improve next year...
  11. I am led to believe that the re-moderation comes with detailed feedback. It should for the eye watering price.
  12. resources4drama

    resources4drama New commenter

    Yes, it was.
  13. I just think the moderators reports aren't very helpful. (This isn't the moderators' fault; it's just the way they're designed by Edexcel.) Mine says I am in line with national standards and hasn't scaled us but makes a comment about standardisation. After emailing askedexcel I have been told that this refers to the 'inconsistency of marking across the two units'. I have no idea what this is referring to and I am so worried about my Y11s this year as I don't know what I need to do differently. My friend moderates for WJEC and the detailed feedback they get given is so helpful. If something is wrong it would be very useful to know what it is so that we can fix it! As I said, I haven't been scaled so far but I know how many people have been fine for 2 or 3 years and have then been scaled based on the same lessons and the same standard of marking. So happy to go to OCR with y10!
  14. Let me cover a few things in one post: mrlewis, if a moderator is going to give a moderated mark that is significantly different to the centre's, s/he will often talk through the centre and his/her concerns with their Team Leader who will give advice. I've moderated many centres in the past where I have made significant adjustments and I always talk to my team leader first to ensure that I'm not missing anything and am dealing fairly with the centre. Sometimes, these centres are then sent to the team leader to check as part of a mod's sample. Every subject in every board has systems in place to do this sort of thing.

    Yes, if you appeal Unit 1 and 2 you get a detailed report. All exam units only ever give you old mark and new mark with no explanation - it's the same in other subjects too. That's all the info I get when I appeal English exam papers.

    Thirdly, and finally, the moderator only enters a moderated mark. S/he is NOT responsible for what happens to your marks/grades after that. Edexcel's computers make the actual adjustments to the centre's marks because, sometimes, a centre might just have one student whose marks the mod says are not right - that won't trigger centre wide adjustment but it is likely to lead to the mod writing about standardisation in the centre in the centre report.
  15. Thank you for your reply ArthurDent. I'm sure that there are various protocols in place to secure fair marking. As far as I can see there is no reference to centre standardisation in my mod report - maybe that is to come.

    Why does Edexcel not indicate the stages that have led to any adjustments? A computer adjustment across the board DOES seem to have happened to the centres that I have been in touch with - but maybe we are interpreting the data incorectly.

    More noteably and of the most concern to all of us is that the centres on this forum and ones I have spoken to are reporting a significant drop/adjustment for this year that runs directly against previous results, expectations and achievements - and against the run of results those students have achieved in other subjects.

    I would like to know statistically how many centres have been adjusted this year in both units by Edexcel. How that compares to previous years and more importantly detailed examplar material that supports the current marking and moderation standards. Maybe this is all to come in the Principal Subject Report.
  16. Has anyone had any success challenging unit 3 marks? Ours were awful but with cost etc I am not sure whether to contest them as I have heard a lot that they do not really change marks!
  17. I have just got my Unit 3 remarks back - NO CHANGE!
  18. I don't think any one of us has criticised the moderators or moderation process of Edexcel. I am sure that the moderators are experienced and well trained and that the process is very thorough and in line with the standards in other subjects. What I am saying, however, in spite of completing online feedback training from 2012, completing online moderation training, going through the spec frequently with a fine tooth comb, going through the guidance document again and again to double check things, making adjustments to schemes of work, using the exemplar material, using the text book, actioning suggestions from last years moderators report, meeting with teachers from others schools , organising workshops with experts and spending hours and hours with students, I still seem to have got it wrong. I, too, am experienced and thorough and yet my moderator's report makes me feel the opposite! I am going to go for a re- moderation of Unit 1 and 2 and a re mark for Unit 3 because I don't know what else to do. I don't know how else to let Edexcel know that somehow, somewhere there is a breakdown between what the board wants and what is happening in my classroom. I am hoping that if enough schools do the same, Edexcel will realise that something is not quite right and will find a way to make things clearer to teachers about what they want. I accept the fact that the marks probably won't change but I feel I owe it to my students as they are the real losers in this. They were a very strong cohort and the Drama results are the worst in this school and the worst ever in the history of Drama in the school. If there is something else I can do to let Edexcel know that I am not happy with the unfair moderation of Unit 1 and 2 and unfair marking of Unit 3, then could someone let me know.
  19. Millender - your post mirrors my experience exactly. We recieved our subject results booklet today for GCSE. Data analysis across the whole college. Each subject is examined and compared in detail. Our FFT D -aspirational - model residuals have been positive every year for the last 7 years - this year it is the mirror opposite. Our college subject residual has been positive for the last seven years and this year it is the complete opposite. The drop is so dramatic and so significant it has prompted me to really contest the conclusions of our moderator - and the due process that Edexcel is undertaking.

    If our coursework marking was seen to be so inaccuarte by the moderator - why were further samples - or the whole cohort not recalled to ensure an accurate moderation? ALL our work is marked and annotated fully when we send off our samples - it is part of our department moderation. All our profiles are written up fully for such an eventuality - so why not use this process?

    Our work has been sent off - the current cost seems to be around £840 - as each unit is broken down into two sections.

    I understand there is a further appeal process beyond the initial re-moderation.
  20. hes


    Does anyone know how long a remark of Unit 1/2 takes?

    I have my exam de-brief meeting with the Head & Governers rapidly approaching and obviously love the 'new & improved' marks (ahem) to show them...

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