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Detail of outcome
Conditions and requirements
We proposed that all reformed AS and A Level qualifications in history of art should comply with the subject content requirements published by the Department for Education, and with our assessment objectives.
Respondents all supported this proposal and, having reviewed our proposed Condition following consultation, we are satisfied that it is fit for purpose and consistent with our overall approach to reformed AS and A level qualifications. We have therefore decided to adopt the Condition unchanged.
We proposed to introduce guidance on the interpretation of our assessment objectives.
One respondent suggested that assessment objective AO1 (demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the contexts of art), should be split into two separate elements, one dealing with knowledge, and the other dealing with understanding. The same respondent also suggested that assessment objective AO2 (analyse and interpret artists’ work, demonstrating understanding of visual language) should also be separated into two distinct elements, one dealing with analysis, and one dealing with interpretation. They argued that splitting the assessment objectives into separate elements would allow for effective distribution of marks across the full attainment range, and would allow for the development of short answer questions.
We have considered the respondent’s comments, and we are of the view that the skills listed in assessment objectives AO1 and AO3 are separately assessable. We have therefore decided to make changes to the drafting of the guidance on assessment objectives to enable knowledge and understanding, and analysis and interpretation to be assessed both separately and in combination. We are however, of the view that additional clarification was necessary around our expectations for the assessment of knowledge and understanding. Having reviewed the subject content requirements, it is clear that whilst it may be possible, and in certain circumstances desirable, for knowledge to be assessed in isolation, we would normally expect knowledge and understanding to be assessed together in this subject. We have therefore decided to introduce some further guidance which makes this expectation clear, alongside a maximum limit of 10% of total marks to be allocated to rewarding demonstrating knowledge in isolation, which is to help ensure that the overall level of demand of assessments in this subject is maintained.
Detail of feedback received
There were five responses to the consultation – three from organisations, and two individual responses.
One respondent did not comment directly on our proposals, but instead provided general comments on the process for reform of GCSEs, AS and A levels. All respondents who commented on them were supportive of our proposals. One respondent suggested changes to our guidance on assessment objectives to enable the development of short response questions, and differentiation across the full range of attainment.
This consultation is about the rules and guidance we plan to put in place for new AS and A levels in history of art. These rules will apply to the new history of art AS and A levels that will be taught in schools in England from September 2017.
This consultation takes forward decisions made following our earlier consultation ‘Development of new GCSEs and A levels for teaching from 2017’, and is part of Ofqual’s work supporting the government’s changes to GCSEs, AS and A levels.