Year Nine Options 2017 – Information for Students

Welcome to the GCSE Options webpage for Year Nine Students 2016 – 2017.

You can use this page to help you to find out about the subjects available for you to study at Key Stage 4.

All students will study English, Maths, Science and core PE and one of History or Geography.

In order to achieve the new English Baccalaureate, you would need to study for GCSEs English Language, Maths, Science, a humanity subject (History or Geography) and a Modern Foreign Language.  Whilst we would encourage you to choose a MFL, the EBacc is not compulsory and you may choose to study a 3rd option instead of this.

After choosing a Modern Foreign Language you have 2 free choices; 3 if you decide not to study an MFL.  You should spend time thinking and talking to your teachers and family about which subjects are the best choices for you.  Choose subjects that you enjoy, believe you can succeed in, and think about whether a subject is important for your future.

As well as finding out about the content of subjects, you should find out how subjects are taught and assessed. There are 2 types of qualification at Key Stage 4, GCSE 9-1 and Technical Awards. GCSEs are assessed primarily through final examination. Technical Awards take a more practical approach and are assessed through coursework and/or controlled assessments alongside the external exam component. Technical Awards equate to GCSE grades as follows:

Distinction*      8

Distinction        7

Merit                  6

Pass                    5

The table shows the Year 10 curriculum, with the number of hours per fortnight spent studying each subject.

Y9 Options 2016 photo A

Options 1 and 2 will be populated with subjects once we have carried out a trial to ensure that as many of you as possible are able to study your chosen subjects.

The Latest Year Nine options form is available here: Year Nine Options Form 2017 V3

The information and presentations about individual subjects can be found on the school website here:

GCSE Reform

The Government are reforming GCSEs and there are new specifications for most subjects. The exam regulator, Ofqual, has decided that the new GCSE qualifications will:

  • be more demanding
  • be designed for a two-year period of study
  • be linear, so students will take all of their exams at the end of the course
  • have coursework or controlled assessment removed or reduced in the majority of GCSEs
  • have a new grading scale from 9 to 1. The comparison with the A* – G system can be seen in the table below.

Y9 Options 2016 photo BY9 Options 2016 photo C