GCSE Controlled Assessment Policy


It is a requirement of the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) that all examination centres have a policy for controlled assessment in place from the autumn term of 2010.

Controlled assessment is the form of internal assessment that has largely replaced GCSE coursework. It encourages an integrated approach to teaching, learning and assessment. It is intended to enable teachers to authenticate and confirm that students have carried out the assessment tasks set in accordance with awarding body specifications.

Controlled assessment applies different levels of control (Low, Medium or High) at each stage of the assessment process: task setting, task taking and task marking. In some subjects, the awarding body will mark work. For most subjects, however, work will be marked by the centre and moderated by the awarding body.

This policy lists the responsibilities of the relevant staff in terms of organising, administering and overseeing controlled assessment.

1. Senior Leadership Team

Accountable for the safe and secure conduct of controlled assessments. Ensure assessments comply with the JCQ guidelines and awarding bodies’ subject specific instructions.

In the summer term prior to Key Sage 4, begin co-ordinating with Subject leaders to schedule controlled assessments. (It is advisable that controlled assessments be spread throughout the academic Years of Key Stage 4 or as appropriate for GCSE courses studied in other Years).

Map overall resource management requirements for the year. As part of this resolve:

  • clashes/ problems over the timing or operation of controlled assessments;
  • issues arising from the need for particular facilities (rooms, IT networks, time out of school, etc.

Ensure that all staff involved have a calendar of events.

Create, publish and update an internal appeals policy for controlled assessments. (Annex A)

2. Subject Leaders

Understand and comply with the general guidelines contained in the JCQ publication Instructions for conducting controlled assessments.

Decide on the awarding body and specification for a particular GCSE.

Ensure that at least 40% of overall assessment (controlled and/or external assessment) is taken in the exam series in which the qualification is certificated, to satisfy the terminal assessment requirement in accordance with the awarding body specification.

Standardise internally the marking of all teachers involved in assessing an internally assessed component.

Ensure that individual teachers understand their responsibilities with regard to controlled assessment.

Ensure that individual teachers understand the requirements of the awarding body’s specification and are familiar with the relevant teachers’ notes, and any other subject specific instructions.

Where appropriate, develop new assessment tasks or contextualize sample awarding body assessment tasks to meet local circumstances, in line with awarding body specifications and control requirements.

Supply to the examinations office details of all unit codes for controlled assessments.

Obtain confidential materials/tasks set by awarding bodies in sufficient time to prepare for the assessment(s) and ensure that such materials are stored securely at all times.

3. Teaching staff

Understand and comply with the general guidelines contained in the JCQ publication Instructions for conducting controlled assessments.

Understand and comply with the awarding body specification for conducting controlled assessments, including any subject-specific instructions, teachers’ notes or additional information on the awarding body’s website.

Supervise assessments (at the specified level of control). Undertake the tasks required under the regulations, only permitting assistance to students as the specifications allow.

Ensure that students and supervising teacher(s) sign authentication forms on completion of an assessment.

Mark internally assessed components using the mark schemes provided by the awarding body. Via the subject leader, submit marks through the exams office to the awarding body when required, keeping a record of the marks awarded.

Retain candidates’ work securely between assessment sessions (if more than one).

Post-completion, retain candidates’ work securely until the closing date for enquiries about results. In the event that an enquiry is submitted, retain candidates’ work securely until the outcome of the enquiry and any subsequent appeal has been conveyed to the centre.

Ask the special educational needs coordinator (SENCO) for any assistance required for the administration and management of access arrangements.

4. Examinations Officer

Enter students for individual units, whether assessed by controlled assessment, external examination or on-screen test, before the awarding bodies’ deadlines for final entries.

Collaborate with SENCO and ensure that applications are made for access arrangements for eligible students.

Enter students’ ‘cash-in codes’ for the terminal examination series.

Where confidential materials are received directly by the examinations office, to be responsible for the receipt, safe storage and safe transmission whether in hard copy or CD/DVD format.

Receive/download and distribute marksheets for teaching staff to use, and collect and submit completed marksheets to awarding bodies before deadlines.

On those few occasions when controlled assessment tasks cannot be conducted in the classroom, arrange suitable accommodation where controlled assessment can be undertaken, at the direction of the senior leadership team.

5. Special Educational Needs Coordinator

Ensure identification and testing of those students who may be eligible for access arrangements.

Collaborate with examinations officer to ensure that appropriate access arrangements are made for eligible students.

Work with teaching staff to ensure that requirements for support staff are met.