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Current GCSE

Posts: 7

Why are B671 and B673 still timetabled at the same time?  This is pointless as the board will not allow Year 10 entries. Highly unhelpful. Why have all papers been brought so far forward? Again - unhelpful and typically extreme - we used to be last now for some reason we have to be first. Why is there no joined up thinking here?  For small departments with one teacher the whole placement of GCSE and AS examinations is very unhelpful.


OCR Sociology and OCR Psychology
OCR Soc ...
Posts: 77

Hi Judy 


Thank you for your message about the 2017 timetables. 


The timing of exams is not selected by each individual exam board, instead each year the Awarding Bodies and the JCQ hold a meeting and together agree a Common Timetable for the next academic year.  Whilst care is taken to avoid certain subject combinations commonly chosen by candidates, and to keep subjects such as English and mathematics which have the largest entries as far from each other on the timetable as possible to try and prevent timetable clashes, inevitably when working with such a large number of subjects taken by thousands of students, the timetable may not always wholly please every student or teacher - which I can appreciate is the case for you as a small department. 


The dates for GCSE Sociology across the exam boards are Monday 15 May and Thursday 18 May 2017 and as our current specification has three components, the two one hour components do need to be timetabled at the same time.  The timing of the exams is very close to previous years, in fact last year the 2016 GCSE sociology examinations were on Monday 16 and Thursday 19 May so the exams are being held in the same week.  In terms of GCE, this year we have the new A Level components also scheduled into the timetable along with the new AS and legacy units.  The timings of the new AS components are the same as the legacy specification and the new A Level is not too far in timing from the legacy A Level units in previous years.  Although it is important to remember that exams can be at any point in the exam timetable - so we should be careful not to have an expectation that they will appear around the same time each year.


As I say, I do appreciate your frustration but hope at least this helps to explain the enormity of the task and how the timetables are collectively produced.


with best wishes



Helen Hemmings

OCR Subject Specialist