Qfqual has updated its briefing papers on the reforms to GCSE and A levels

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/your-qualification-our-regulation-gcse-as-and-a-level-reforms

Ofqual published, on 10 February 2017, new information about access arrangements for GCSEs and A levels:


On behalf of the Standards and Testing Agency (STA), which is responsible for the development and administration of the key stage 1 and key stage 2 national curriculum assessments:

They are hoping to get your input to help inform some of the guidance documents they produce which you are likely to have used. 

They are asking for informal feedback regarding the ‘Modified test administration guidance’ documents, which are designed for use alongside modified papers.

These documents can be viewed at the following links:

KS1 Modified test administration guidance

KS2 Modified test administration guidance

They would greatly appreciate any brief comments you may be able to provide about your experience of using the guidance documents. The feedback received will be used to inform future versions of the documents to make them as easy as possible for schools and other stakeholders to use.

If you have any comments you would like to contribute then please contact Jessica Mace at STA either by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on 020 7340 8200.      


Dr Heather Murdoch, and colleagues from the MSI unit at Victoria School, Birmingham, have many years of experience in developing curriculum approaches for children who are deafblind / multi-sensory impaired.  In 2009, Heather structured and formalised these ideas into a curriculum document, with a view to sharing them more widely.

The curriculum addresses the particular learning needs of pupils with MSI who are working at P levels 1-8 - in order to give them the awareness, experience, understanding and learning skills they need to access National Curriculum programmes of study successfully. The issue of pupil progression is dealt with clearly and in a practical way.

The Curriculum document, which is a free resource, is available via the Sense web site at https://www.sense.org.uk/content/msi-curriculum

You will need to register on the Sense website to download the curriculum document.

There have been several updates to the GCSE and A level reforms published 15th December 2015 which may be of interest:

1.   Link to a helpful summary of the GCSE and A level reforms: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/get-the-facts-gcse-and-a-level-reform

2.Link to the timetable for making changes. The timetable has been updated to reflect latest decisions on subjects to be reformed for first teaching in September 2017: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/timeline-of-changes-to-gcses-as-and-a-levels

3. Link to assessment objectives. Updated today to reflect revised objectives for some subjects: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/assessment-objectives-ancient-languages-geography-and-mfl

On 12th February 2015, the Department for Education announced that it has published revised content for GCSEs in citizenship studies, drama, food preparation and nutrition and religious studies and A levels in drama and theatre and religious studies. As announced in April 2014, these GCSEs and A levels will be first taught from 2016. In common with all reformed GCSEs and A levels, they will be high-quality, demanding and academically rigorous qualifications which better prepare students for the demands of further education and future employment.

The following documents have been published on gov.uk:

  • The new GCSE content for citizenship studies, drama, food preparation and nutrition and religious studies
  • The new AS and A level content for drama and theatre and religious studies
  • The Government’s joint response to both the consultation on citizenship studies, drama and food preparation and nutrition and the consultation on religious studies.
  • Assessment of the equalities impact of new subject content for citizenship studies, drama and food preparation and nutrition and a similar assessment of the equalities impactof new subject content for religious studies.

Ofqual is also confirming its decisions on how these new GCSEs and A levels should be assessed, including the proportion of non-exam assessment and the assessment objectives for each subject. Ofqual’s decisions for citizenship studies, drama and food preparation and nutritioncan be found on its website. Ofqual will publish finalised assessment objectives for religious studies in March.