BTEC... If you fail an exam you won't get the qualification!Watch
By the start of 2016/2017 BTEC will introduce compulsory exams for certain modules for courses such as Business, IT, Forensic Science, Engineering and Construction.
They already introduced exams to construction and engineering but now they are putting the hammer down and trying to make BTEC's compete with A-levels on an even bigger scale, and from what I can tell from what our teacher told us they are trying to do it like degree programmes, where 30% of your final mark is coursework based and the rest 70% is exam based.
And yes, he told us that if you fail the exam, doesn't matter if your coursework is perfect, you'll fail! He said this is to make BTEC more prestigious and since it is a lot more based on hands on approach (vocational) they want it to make it harder since by statistics those who do BTEC are a lot more likely to go straight to work since they are more employable than their A-level counterparts and a lot of Universities aren't happy about that (well pretty obvious, if you find work you enjoy and BTEC fits why would you want to spend another 3 years doing a degree which if you wanted you could get later in life?). And BTEC's are seen as 'very easy' or 'light' subjects and do not require any outside research, when in truth they are a lot more like Uni courses whereas you get a few lessons and have to pull information and research for your assignments minus the exams.
So this really annoyed me, because you can't do any re-work anymore which is absolutely fair. If you were a lazy sod in the first year and didn't care why should you be given the unfair advantage to re-do everything from last year and get the best grade? But introducing exams just kills the whole point of BTEC. If I wanted exams I would of have done A levels.
Hopefully this is wrongful speculation, but our IT teacher is very reputable and is in close contact with the staff at Edexcel and knows his stuff. He basically said they want BTEC to be better than A-levels because nowadays all employers want is experience but to satisfy the Uni's you also have to show some ability to cope with 'stressful conditions'.
For those who have finished their BTEC's or will be finishing soon, good for you as this will make your BTEC even more prestigious. If you don't believe me just search around the Edexcel website and you'll see it's actually true.
I've already completed my BTEC qualification but I don't think there's much to worry about in regards to these external assessments and exams.