Welcome the new A-level, Cambridge

30th July 2010 at 01:00

Cambridge University's support for the current modular system of A-levels is clearly a rebuff for Michael Gove's plans to return to traditional-style examinations and comes just two weeks after similar support for the ASA2 from the head of Harrow School ("Gove's A-level reforms? We'll stick with modules, says Harrow head", July 9).

Yet the implied criticism of linear A-levels by Geoff Parks, the university's admissions director, also puts him at odds with the thinking behind the Cambridge Pre-U certificate, introduced and promoted as a more intellectually challenging alternative to the current A-level.

If Cambridge really is committed to admitting more students from state schools, it could go further and abolish its "B" list - subjects that Cambridge considers less demanding, but which are increasingly popular with a new generation of sixth-formers, particularly in comprehensive schools. I suspect, however, that Cambridge and Mr Gove will be at one on this.

Dr Martin Allen, Hanwell, London.

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