Guidance

Changes to GCSEs, AS and A levels that will affect each current school year group

Updated 1 December 2016

This document gives an overview of the changes that will happen to GCSEs, AS levels and A levels. Go to the heading for your child’s current year group (for the academic year that started in September 2016) to see what the changes will be for them.

1. Already implemented

1.1 September 2015

Students started studying new AS levels and A levels in:

  • art and design
  • biology
  • business
  • chemistry
  • computer science
  • economics
  • English language
  • English language and literature
  • English literature
  • history
  • physics
  • psychology
  • sociology

Students started studying new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • English language
  • English literature
  • maths

1.2 Summer 2016

Students had the opportunity to take new AS level exams in:

  • art and design
  • biology
  • business
  • chemistry
  • computer science
  • economics
  • English language
  • English language and literature
  • English literature
  • history
  • physics
  • psychology
  • sociology

2. Left school in summer 2016

2.1 Summer 2017

Last opportunity to resit exams for legacy AS and A levels in:

  • art and design
  • biology
  • business
  • chemistry
  • computer science
  • economics
  • English language
  • English language and literature
  • English literature
  • history
  • physics
  • psychology
  • sociology

3. Year 13

3.1 Summer 2017

Students will take exams for new AS and A levels in:

  • art and design
  • biology
  • business
  • chemistry
  • computer science
  • economics
  • English language
  • English language and literature
  • English literature
  • history
  • physics
  • psychology
  • sociology

3.2 Summer 2018

Last opportunity to resit exams for legacy AS and A levels in:

  • ancient languages
  • dance
  • drama and theatre
  • geography
  • modern foreign languages (French, German, Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • religious studies

4. Year 12

4.1 September 2016

As well as the subjects in sections 1 and 3, students will start studying new AS levels and A levels in:

  • ancient languages
  • dance
  • drama and theatre
  • geography
  • modern foreign languages (French, German, Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • religious studies

4.2 November 2016

Resits available for GCSEs (graded A* to G) in maths, English and English language.

4.3 Summer 2017

As well as the subjects in sections 1 and 3, students will have the opportunity to take AS level exams in:

  • ancient languages
  • dance
  • drama and theatre
  • geography
  • modern foreign languages (French, German, Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • religious studies

Final opportunity for students to resit exams for GCSEs (graded A* to G) in maths, English and English language.

4.4 Summer 2018

As well as the subjects in sections 1 and 3, students will take exams for new AS and A levels in:

  • ancient languages
  • dance
  • drama and theatre
  • geography
  • modern foreign languages (French, German, Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • religious studies

4.5 Summer 2019

Last opportunity to resit exams for legacy AS and A levels in:

  • accounting
  • ancient history
  • archaeology
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • electronics
  • environmental science
  • film studies
  • further maths
  • general studies
  • geology
  • government and politics
  • history of art
  • information and communications technology (ICT)
  • law
  • maths
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Chinese, Italian and Russian)
  • music technology
  • philosophy
  • statistics

5. Year 11

5.1 Summer 2017

Students will take exams for new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • English literature
  • English language
  • maths

5.2 September 2017

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3 and 4, students will start studying new AS and A levels in:

  • accounting
  • ancient history
  • archaeology
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • electronics
  • environmental science
  • film studies
  • further maths
  • geology
  • government and politics
  • history of art
  • law
  • maths
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Chinese, Italian and Russian)
  • music technology
  • philosophy
  • statistics

5.3 November 2017

First opportunity for students to resit exams for new GCSEs in English language and maths. Students will also be able to resit these subjects in summer 2018, and in November or summer of subsequent years.

5.4 Summer 2018

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3 and 4, students will have the opportunity to take AS level exams in:

  • accounting
  • ancient history
  • archaeology
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • electronics
  • environmental science
  • film studies
  • further maths
  • geology
  • government and politics
  • history of art
  • law
  • maths
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Chinese, Italian and Russian)
  • music technology
  • philosophy
  • statistics

5.5 Summer 2019

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3 and 4, students will take exams for new AS and A levels in:

  • accounting
  • ancient history
  • archaeology
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • electronics
  • environmental science
  • film studies
  • further maths
  • general studies
  • geology
  • government and politics
  • history of art
  • information and communications technology (ICT)
  • law
  • maths
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Chinese, Italian and Russian)
  • music technology
  • philosophy
  • statistics

6. Year 10

6.1 September 2016

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4 and 5, students will start studying new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • ancient languages
  • art and design
  • biology
  • chemistry
  • citizenship studies
  • computer science
  • dance
  • double science
  • drama
  • food preparation and nutrition
  • geography
  • history
  • modern foreign languages (French, German and Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • physics
  • religious studies

6.2 Summer 2018

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4 and 5, students will take exams for new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • ancient languages
  • art and design
  • biology
  • chemistry
  • citizenship studies
  • computer science
  • dance
  • double science
  • drama
  • food preparation and nutrition
  • geography
  • history
  • modern foreign languages (French, German and Spanish)
  • music
  • physical education
  • physics
  • religious studies

7. Year 9

7.1 September 2017

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6, students will start studying new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • ancient history
  • astronomy
  • business
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • economics
  • electronics
  • engineering
  • film studies
  • geology
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Modern Greek, Modern Hebrew, Polish, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu)
  • psychology
  • sociology
  • statistics

7.2 Summer 2019

As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6, students will take exams for new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:

  • ancient history
  • astronomy
  • business
  • classical civilisation
  • design and technology
  • economics
  • electronics
  • engineering
  • film studies
  • geology
  • media studies
  • modern foreign languages (Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Modern Greek, Modern Hebrew, Polish, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu)
  • psychology
  • sociology
  • statistics