Eduqas Psychology A-level

 Eduqas Psychology A-level
Posted: Wednesday, October 11, 2017 @ 09:32 AM
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Joined: 30 August 2010
Posts: 8

I've taught and examined AQA for many years, but am tutoring an Eduqas student for the first time this year. It seems to me that the specification is much less rigid and prescriptive than AQA's, and doesn't seem to have such an overwhelming amount of content. To be honest I've found the new AQA spec to be huge, shallow and rather boring, and I'm thinking of switching. Does anybody have any experience of the pros and cons of doing this? 

Thanks, Sarah.

Posted: Monday, October 16, 2017 @ 10:25 AM
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Joined: 14 March 2010
Posts: 650

I do not know about the pro's and con's of switching but I can certainly say that Eduqas are a good board to be with. They tend to be very supportive and they listen to their teachers/centres.

There is also a facebook group where they share resources - although that is not a place to criticise or ask difficult questions. Having said that AQA wouldnt allow a difficult question to even be voiced. You might need to do that in a more equitable and unbiased forum such as that here.

Personally I have never been able to get on with AQA. They are bolshi to say the least. I didnt find OCR much better..... They make too many mistakes with marking and papers in my view. I have found marking on Eduqas to be generally very consistent ( I taught WJEC from 2006 - same people) .

I generally find my classes engage with Eduqas. Its straightforward. I think all specs are content heavy now. Eduqas is no more or less.
I like Eduqas. It suits my teaching and my understanding of Psychology well - and I guess thats at least part of the battle. Its hard to teach something you cant engage with yourself.


Posted: Monday, October 16, 2017 @ 02:58 PM
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Joined: 1 November 2007
Posts: 2015

I don't teach Eduquas but swapped from OCR to Edexcel. I would say Edexcel is anything but shallow and seems to engage the students. I didn't go to AQA as it looked very prescriptive and too many terms students had to know. Edexcel also seems more straightforward for A level exams with yr 1 on paper 1 and yr 2 on paper 2. Paper 3 is synoptic. Students have to carry out 6 investigations over two years but we have a reasonable free range to select what the students can do. There is even scope to allow the students to design and carry out investigations.

Edexcel has an extremely supportive fb group (not the one run by Tutor2U though) and although small very helpful. What's not to like? It's been a struggle to understand board requirements for the extended answers but having gone through one set of A levels (and I marked one paper) things are a little clearer. Although there aren't many resources the textbooks are good and there is now a good revision guide. Also plenty of resources on here. The other issue is that students have to be able to calculate 4 stats tests and s.d. but mine didn't actually find this an issue even the ones who claimed they couldn't do maths.

Posted: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 06:57 AM
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Joined: 14 March 2010
Posts: 650

In the light of jenny's post I should add that Eduqas set two personal investigations ( defined in the spec appendix) for the A level. ( none in the AS).

They allow students to devise and carry out their own investigations based on the topic. In the first year there were a correlation on age and reaction times and an observation of food choices, this year they were an investigation of how setting affects perception and a correlation on IQ and some other factor of the students own choosing. They then ask questions about these in the exam paper. Their wording is that they assume the students have done these....... to be honest, this year I was not happy with that IQ one ( and the school certainly wouldnt have given permission for kids to go out and IQ their peer set, not to mention telling kids their IQ is around 115 when they are taking A levels and thought they were brighter than that for whatever reasons! I didnt want the stress counselling) and I did the data collecting myself from a Uni class I have.

I had similar feelings about the age one last year - OK most people do not care if you ask their age ( I personally do actually!) Its a bit insensitive.......but at least there are only two, they do not have to be written up ( the board provide a booklet which covers the main things they need to know and we discussed this in class fully) . Despite my misgivings about the set pieces my students actually did well on the questions set in the paper last year.

One of the things that turned me off edexcel ( I haven't taught it but thought it was a decent spec) was the 6 investigations. These things take a lot of time - time which I do not have actually. I dont know about anyone else. Beyond that it is a simple matter of choice. Edexcel and Eduqas are fairly equal on other things really.

Posted: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 09:10 AM
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Joined: 1 November 2007
Posts: 2015

Most investigations take 3/4 lessons including stats. Write up is always set as homework in standard format and the questions are based on this so "Give your hypothesis" or "describe how qualitative data was collected". As Holly said though go for what you think would suit you most. I like the investigations personally and coming from OCR was already use to generic, levelled mark schemes for two of OCR papers.