Struggle to fit in science AS-levels

20th June 2003 at 01:00
Are we the only ones? Is it just us? We have just completed our third year of delivering AS science courses and in spite of our successes find it increasingly difficult to teach biology, chemistry, physics, and environmental science in the time available.

We have just over eight months to prepare them and squeeze in the coursework as well. That's a two-year A-level course in eight months!

The problem is, the exams start so early, in mid-May! And during the eight months of an AS course our students have to settle down in a new place, and mature, as well as assimilate a wealth of difficult information.

What our poor students need more than anything is time to learn. Why is it not possible to bring A2 exams forward to mid-May and move the AS exams back to June, leaving three or four more precious weeks for us to work with the AS students?

It surely wouldn't make much difference to the exam boards or Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, but it would make a big difference to young people.

The Science Faculty Palmer's College Chadwell Road Grays, Essex

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