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which AS/A level Phil and ethics course to offer? - OCR?

Discussion in 'Religious Education' started by jessiejump, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. Hi all
    I know this has been a thread before ... so apologies. I did do a search but did not get much thrown up. I want to offer AS and A level Phil and Ethics in the sixth form for next academic 2012/13. I need to make a decision on a course. The students will have done the 2 Ethics units for Philsophy and Ethics GCSE OCR short course in Year 10 which was compulsary last year 2010/11. I need a course which will obviously be interesting (students will want to choose it) and will be accessible as our students are not the most academic candidates.I have looked at the OCR AS and A level spec and it is all exam. Is it better to have coursework for A level as well as exam? Any suggestions please as my last A level teaching experience was 13 years ago as a PGCSE student. Thanks in advance.[​IMG]
  2. lam


    Of course, different people would have personal preferences, but I've taught OCR and EDEXCEL and my preference is for EDEXCEL for the following reasons... (although I made the swap many years ago, so my comments may be a bit out of date now)

    1. I found OCR seemed to skim over too many topics whereas with EDEXCEL, they cover fewer topics but go into a lot more depth. I found with OCR, the students were just getting their heads around a topic when it was time to move on...

    2. I like the format of the question paper better with EDEXCEL. It is set out so that students can choose to drop a topic they don't get, so they don't have to revise everything for the exams... they know the topics that will come up, but not the actual questions.

    3. I have always found the marking of scripts to be fair and sound. There is an established team of markers and I have never had any complaints about the standards of marking... something I did use to complain about with OCR and still see complaints on here from other teachers.

    The main complaint I see others making about EDEXCEL is the synoptic paper, but once you've put in the groundwork it is actually quite easy.

    I can't comment on AQA or WJEC as I have never taught them.
  3. We've just made the switch from OCR to WJEC as we had concerns over content / marking / exam questions and there seemed to be quite a few unhappy people on here and on the OCR community message board.
    We've gone for the Contemporary Society and Ethics modules at AS and Ethics at A2 with either the Religious Experience or Life After Death option.
    Having recently had our A Level Open Evening, the course seemed very popular and the first set of numbers we have had, has us borderline on 2 classes and have overtaken subjects such as Maths.
  4. I am also doing WJEC - following on from OCR Phil and Ethics short course at GCSE (but doing both ethics units).

    I deliver this to all of our 6th formers as a compulsory course. I chose WJEC initially because I simply wanted a framework to develop a course around (having only been told that I was going to be teaching 6th form at the Thursday INSET before we start back properly on the MOnday!). As a change from the ethics that were studied at GCSE, I decided to do the Philosophy module which has gone down really well. Bearing in mind that students too didn't know that they would have to do compulsory RE, their attitude is really quite positive!

    I think we will do the Contemporary Society and Ethics module next year, because that can also fit towards Welsh Bacc studies.

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