Complaint: OCR GCSE History B (Germany Depth Study)
Posted 13 June 2012 - 12:11 PM
The attribution for this source read 'A poster published in Germany in 1919. It says, 'Bolshevism will drown the world in blood'.
The question the students had to answer was 'Why was this poster published in Germany in 1919?'
Most of our students were unable to answer this question simply because they didn't know that Bolshevism meant Communism, and I think it's unreasonable for the exam board to expect them to do so.
It is ofcourse reasonable to expect students to know what Communism was, and had the attribution made this link for them, they could have accessed the question.
As it was they had no other means of knowing this poster was referring to Communism, as there is no hammer and sickle or red flag in the source to use as clues and there is no indication in the attribution of who produced the source.
In short, much too difficult for GCSE and worthy of a complaint, I believe. Any thoughts or similar experiences?
Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:10 PM
It is absolutely reasonable to expect students to understand the term Communism but not Bolshevism in this context. Some of my students made some reasonable guesses that Bolshevism had something to do with Communism and wrote about the Spartacist threat as additional knowledge to explain the source. I am going to complain about the use of the term 'Bolshevism'. What always frustrates me about this paper is how it is a 'one size fits all' and is supposed to be accessible to all abilities, which it rarely is! Seriously considering moving to Edexcel. Will be making a decision based on Friday's Paper 2 which I am hoping will be much better than the January offering.
Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:40 PM
What worries me is that this seems to be a trend in recent OCR History exams. I'm not at the stage where I'd consider changing boards, but I'll be interested to see how OCR respond to our complaints.
Posted 13 June 2012 - 03:41 PM
Posted 13 June 2012 - 04:05 PM
Edited by paulparky, 13 June 2012 - 04:14 PM.
Posted 13 June 2012 - 06:46 PM
Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:37 PM
Posted 15 June 2012 - 01:26 PM
Posted 15 June 2012 - 04:12 PM
Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:56 PM
Posted 16 June 2012 - 08:09 PM
Posted 18 June 2012 - 08:06 PM
Posted 22 June 2012 - 11:51 AM
"The poster used in Source B was a reproduction of the original published in Germany in 1919. Given this context the examining team, when approving the Source, regarded the term 'Bolshevism' as one that candidates would be familiar with and therefore did not require a definition. However on reflection OCR regognises that it would have been more helpful to assume that not all candidates would be familiar with the term and dhould have defined bolshevism to avoid any confusion. This would also have been more consistent with the reference to Communism in the specification.'
The reply then goes on to say that there will be a review of responses to the question throughout the marking period and that all letters from centres will be tabled at the award meeting.
Edited by Martyn Ellis, 22 June 2012 - 11:51 AM.
Posted 22 June 2012 - 02:01 PM
"Had Churchill been a stable and equable man, he could never have inspired the nation. In 1940, when all the odds were against Britain, a leader of sober judgement might well have concluded we were finished. - Anthony Storr
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