What is the GCSE Mathematics Linked Pair Pilot? And what could it mean for my school?
The GCSE Linked pair pilot is being conducted in schools and settings across England and Wales from September 2010. The two qualifications will be:
GCSE methods in mathematics which focuses on mathematical reasoning and analysis, and
GCSE applications of mathematics which focuses on applications of mathematics in contexts that are relevant to the real world
Candidates need to be entered for BOTH qualifications
Around 250 schools are involved in the pilot which is being independently evaluated.
The qualification will run until June 2013 as a minimum, potentially until January 2017
Either (or both) qualifications can count as the mathematics component in school performance tables
These GCSEs are currently offered as unitised examinations – different exam boards have different structures for the units
There is new mathematical content in both of the qualifications eg Sets and Venn diagrams, finance, spreadsheets, tessellation, midpoint and intercept theorem, circles
The Applications qualification has all questions set in a mathematical context and has functional elements embedded.
There is new mathematical content in both of the qualifications eg Sets and Venn diagrams, finance, spreadsheets, tessellation, midpoint and intercept theorem, circles so you could look (on your own, or as a department) at the resources that specifically address these areas. For example, the NCETM Departmental Workshops:
These ‘Think pieces’ were commissioned for the Linked Pair Pilot:
Materials from Examination boards participating in the GCSE Mathematics Linked Pair Pilot:
WJEC (scroll down the page)
What would be the advantages for your pupils if they were studying for a linked pair of GCSEs in mathematics?
Would the new areas of content in these GCSEs give you an opportunity to develop pedagogy within your department as you consider how to teach these additional topics?
You could participate in the NCETM Linked Pair Pilot Forum and find out what is happening in the pilot schools.
Explore a piece of mathematics
You may want to think about some types of activities that would be useful when preparing to teach this pair of qualifications.
The pedagogy suggested by these activities may require some CPD – you might find these activities a useful starting point for this.
You could look at the NCETM departmental workshop How to get better at open tasks and complete some of the CPD activities within the workshop.
It has been said by some recently that ‘teachers learn best when they learn from each other’. If you know of another link to an activity or resource on the NCETM website that you think would be useful or appropriate for readers of this guidance, please use the comments box below to let us and them know of your idea.
We have many courses and networks available, search in our Professional Development Calendar
to find a suitable course or network.
“Activity by itself is not enough; it is the sense that is made of it that matters” (DRIVER, R. (1983) The Pupil as Scientist?, Milton Keynes, Open University Press.
For the things you have tried out for yourself in your own classroom to become useful pieces of professional learning, there is a need to capture them, reflect upon them and remark on them. The NCETM Personal Learning Space (PLS) allows you to do this.
Use My Learning Journal to collect your thoughts and reflections as well as to log actions; documents can be attached to your entries. You could do this now by visiting your own PLS.
Use My Favourites and Notes to take note of and organise interesting things you have found (like this page) and want to return to easily in future.
Use the Sharing and Contacts facility to share elements of your PLS with colleagues, selecting them from your own list of contacts
Use the “Request a reminder” function
Find out more details of these and other functions of the PLS.