Ofqual reveals how exams and assessments in 2023 will look

Covid-19 related adaptions for VTQs will be scrapped

Covid-19 related adaptions for VTQs will be scrapped

10 May 2022, 12:32

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Assessment adaptations for vocational and technical qualifications that were implemented due to Covid-19 are to be scrapped next year, Ofqual has confirmed.

Exam adaptions allowing schools and colleges to choose which topics to teach in some GCSEs will also be canned in 2022/23, although spacing out exams again to limit potential disruption will be considered.

The exams watchdog has also not ruled out allowing exam aids and advance information in next year’s academic exams, pledging to “monitor the path and impact of the pandemic” before deciding.

However, an update published today by Ofqual stated the government wants “to return to the carefully designed and well-established pre-pandemic assessment arrangements as quickly as possible, given they are the best and fairest way of assessing what students know and can do”.

A series of adaptions were made to exams and assessments this year – the first to be sat since 2019 – to recognise the disruption caused by Covid.

In FE, awarding organisations decided which adaptations were appropriate for their qualifications in accordance with Ofqual’s vocational and technical qualifications contingency regulatory framework.

The regulator said some adaptations were in response to public health restrictions and given that public health restrictions are no longer in place, these adaptations “are no longer necessary for the academic year 2022 to 2023 onwards”.

Ofqual said today it will ask boards to look “carefully at the design” of the GCSE and A-level exam timetable for next year “to see if increase spacing between subjects” should “be retained”.

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