KS4 Science

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Because GCSEs are now more demanding, the grade boundaries have been adjusted to reflect that. This means that even with a relatively modest score, a student can score a high grade. GCSE Science is taught either as triple science or double science. Each student will sit 6 exams ( 2 in each subject) regardless of which award they are sitting for. Maths is a strong component of these exams, accounting for around 20% of the marks on the combined science papers.

Foundation versus higher paper

In terms of grade outcome, the highest a child can achieve on the foundation paper 5 (B in old money) and the lowest a child can achieve in the higher paper is 3 (equivalent to D). Generally, if a child is predicted a 3 or a 4, then chances are they will be entered to sit the foundation paper (remember that 5 is the highest that can be achieved here).

Triple science versus double science

Triple science

With triple science, all three subjects (chemistry, physics and biology) are taught as separate subjects, students sit three separate exams and gain three GCSEs. More information can be found on each individual pages:

Double Science Award (also known as combined science)

When double science is taught, all three subjects (chemistry, physics and biology) are still taught but only two-thirds of the triple science content is covered and students gain two GSCE’s compared to the three in triple science. The grades are based on the student’s performance in all three subjects.

It is important that students understand which qualification they are attaining, as this can vary from being individual/ combined, double/ single award, and higher/ foundation.

Exam Dates

Paper 1 for all 3 subjects is usually in mid-May and paper 2 is usually in mid-June and each AQA paper is 1 hour 15 mins long for the double science paper (1 hour 10 mins for OCR and Edexcel), and 1 hour and 45 mins for the triple/single science paper.

Grading

The grading for the GCSE’s follows the 9-1 method. For more information on the grading please click on the following link:

The 9-1 grading system

In terms of grade outcome, the highest a child can achieve on the foundation paper 5 (B in old money) and the lowest a child can achieve in the higher paper is 3 (equivalent to D). Generally, if a child is predicted a 3 or a 4, then chances are they will be entered to sit the foundation paper (remember that 5 is the highest that can be achieved here).

Exam mark allocation

100% of the marks are based on these exams. Whilst children still have practicals in the science lab, the paper will incorporate their understanding from the practicals in the final exam papers.

This means that for double science, each paper is worth 16.67% of the overall marks.

For triple science, each paper will be worth 50% of the overall marks per subject.

How we can help

At Redbridge Tuition we teach all three science subjects: biology, chemistry and physics.

Our classes are structured in such a way that we will cover the whole specification (syllabus) over the time the student is studying for their GCSE’s. We will also go through exam practice and techniques, providing tips and tricks from our specialist tutors and teachers, giving the student the knowledge and confidence for each exam.

Our specialist tutors will help each student navigate through these 2 years to help achieve a solid result in the final exam.

Our students have consistently achieved 1 or 2 levels above their predicted grades, giving them a solid foundation to move forward.

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