Changes to A Levels

Changes to A levels and John of Gaunt’s Current Response

A Levels are changing over a three-year transition period that started in September 2015.  What this means is that currently some subjects are fully reformed (linear) and some are unreformed (non-linear).  From 2016 the following subjects that we deliver at John of Gaunt are linear: Business Studies, Art, Philosophy of RE, Physics, Psychology, Chemistry, History, Maths, Computer Science, PE, Spanish, English Language and Literature, English Literature, Sociology and Geography.

Previously the AS used to make up 50% of the full A level qualification, but in the linear A levels the AS is a stand-alone qualification.  In terms of university applications, an AS qualification that is completed in Year 12 but not continued to the full A level is worth a points value that is 40% of the full A level.  For example, a C grade at AS will give a student 12 points whereas a C grade at A level will give a student 32 points. More details can be found on the UCAS website.

Performance in these AS levels will be used to help inform predicted grades for A level that will be quoted in the UCAS application.

At The John of Gaunt School, it is our practice for the academic years 2015-16 and 2016-17, that all students sit the AS in the subjects they are taking whether they are linear or non-linear.  Most students take 4 courses in Year 12 and then 3 in Year 13.  The AS qualification remains a sound external indication as to suitability for studying the full A level course.

We will review our school’s response to the changes for 2017-18 entry.