Entry requirements - any data?

 Entry requirements - any data?
Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2018 @ 08:13 AM
avatar
Joined: 2 January 2011
Posts: 26

We've been asked to consider whether we want more specific entry requirements for studying A-level Psychology beyond the general 6th form entry criteria. Does anyone have any *data* that indicates which GCSE subjects best predict A-level performance for the new spec? (appreciate that this will only be one cohort so far).

Thanks

Paul

Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2018 @ 10:28 AM
avatar
Joined: 1 November 2007
Posts: 2109

Not recent but I did some in house analysis a few years ago with my colleague and it seems that the most influential grade was English, students with A/B grades did better (in terms of value added scores) regardless of their Maths and Science grades.. I was concerned about maths in the new spec but this really hasn't been an issue, even with students who had to re-sit GCSE last year and the science grades don't seem to make a difference, in fact students who use to do applied science actually performed above expectations probably because they did more application of science.

We think English is the key because students need to be able to express themselves well in order to access higher levels, especially with the new specifications. I also find students who articulate well verbally also tend to do better.

Hope this helps

Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2018 @ 10:36 AM
avatar
Joined: 13 January 2009
Posts: 2122

No specific data to back this up, but we ask for English, Maths and Science at 4/5, was 5, but Maths results were so poor across the school we settled for a 4. English 5 is necessary to access questions and extending writing, Science 5 in particular Biology to access science components of the course (biological psychology etc.) and Maths because of the increased maths requirement in the reformed A level.

Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2018 @ 10:53 AM
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 19

Hi, This blog might be helpful: https://educationblog.oup.com/secondary/psychology/profiling-the-prospective-psychology-student Alison


Posted: Thursday, May 10, 2018 @ 07:55 AM
avatar
Joined: 2 January 2011
Posts: 26

Thanks, everyone, for your input. Alison - I read that blog just before I posted on here! Deb, Jenny - your views mostly echo what I've believed intuitively but wanted to see if the stats actually bore that out - our deputy head is giving us the opportunity to pitch for stronger entry requirements to try to improve results but is most likely going to be sold with some convincing numbers.

I've started doing some (admittedly very basic) analysis of data and so far there is no clear cut pattern emerging! Students with strong Science grades (esp. Biology) generally tend to do well... except I've got a small group of high-flying y13 students who are all aiming at A/A* for me but got C's in Biology, though they all also have high grades in History/Geography/English instead. I read on a related blog that students with strong Humanities skills may struggle in year 1 but get better in year 2 as the demand for synopticity and extended lines of argument gets stronger so there might be something in that (but, again, not across all students). Does seem that those who didn't do triple science at GCSE (a relative minority at our school, but possibly proportionally over-represented in our Psyc cohort) tend to be our weakest students. Maths isn't a particularly useful indicator at my school as nearly all of them get A/A* at GCSE but this doesn't necessarily reflect any natural mathematical ability! High English Lang grades seem to be reasonably indicative but again not conclusively as a few strong students with weak English
grades. So not quite sure what I'm going to take to my deputy head yet!

Thanks
Paul

Posted: Tuesday, May 15, 2018 @ 06:06 PM
avatar
Joined: 15 January 2008
Posts: 34

No data but I am asking for a 6 in science this year to reflect that it is a science and they have to be able to understand some very difficult scientific elements and research methods. This also keeps my numbers down to 27 in a class...

Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2018 @ 11:26 AM
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 38

I ask for A+-C in maths, English and science. Other students are usually too weak

Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2018 @ 02:01 PM
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 8

This is only really my gut feeling but I'd agree that English is most important. As a marker it makes such a difference to what you award if students can write well - clarity, logical chains, making and supporting arguments and so on....