Computer Science teachers and their students are currently getting to grips with the new form of assessment that has been included as part of the move to the 9-1 GCSEs. The non-exam assessment (NEA) has been introduced amid growing anxiety and unease among teachers, who have to read a growing list of detailed and complex instructions about the procedures required. It's no wonder that there is a general feeling of unease. The exam boards have tried to be helpful but this has not allayed the fears of computer science teachers.
There is a lack of certainty about what they can share with their students, particularly in relation to the NEA Resource Bank. In addition, as this is a new course there is a dearth of materials to support teachers and provide students with examples of what other students have produced in previous years. Hopefully the NEA Support Pack goes some way towards supporting teachers.
At the end of the day teachers will need to priorities exam preparation over the NEA, as the exams will contribute 80% of their students final grade.
Russell Bryant, has taught Science, ICT and Computer Science both in the UK and in South America for over 20 years. This includes teaching GCSEs, A Levels, IB and IGCSEs. He has also worked as an online learning consultant in London, helping schools to develop an online learning strategy.