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Tomlinson Report calls for a diploma system for 14-19 year old education

Mike Tomlinson’s eagerly awaited 14-19 year old Working Group Reform report is released

The 201 Page Tomlinson report was released today (18 Oct). The 14-19 year old Working Group Reform report was eagerly awaited and has been heralded as the biggest education shake up for over 60 years!

The report recommends a Diploma system for 14-19 year old education. It is suggested that a phased implementation be introduced starting in 2008, with the Diploma system in full operation by 2014/15.

Tomlinson, who is the former Chief Inspector of Schools, has proposed a Diploma system where students accumulate credits to enable them to progress from Level 1 to Level 4 of the Diploma system (Entry, Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced).

The report recommends that ‘Existing qualifications such as GCSEs, A levels, and NVQs cease to be free-standing qualifications in their own right but should evolve to become components of the new diplomas’.

The Foundation Diploma will be the equivalent of a NVQ Level 1 or GCSE grade D-G and Intermediate will be equivalent to a NVQ Level 2 or GCSE grade A-C. The Advanced Diploma will be equivalent to a level 3, A-level or AS level qualifications.

The report suggests 20 subject lines for learners. These subject lines will be ‘open’ to allow learners to study a mixture of subjects.

The QCA suggested subject lines are:

  1. Health, Public Services and Care Science and Mathematics
  2. Agriculture, Horticulture and Animal Care
  3. Engineering Manufacturing Technologies
  4. Construction, Planning and The Built Environment
  5. Information and Communication Technology
  6. Retail and Commercial Enterprise
  7. Leisure, Travel and Tourism
  8. Arts, Media and Publishing
  9. History, Philosophy and Theology
  10. Social Sciences
  11. Languages, Literature and Culture
  12. Education and Training
  13. Preparation For Life and Work
  14. Business, Administration and Law

The report suggests a move away from formal examinations and into an assessment model.

The report both preserves and enhances A-Levels as grades will be split into three, providing details of students marks.

This will allow enable universities to still select students by their grades.

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