Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    So my 6th form years haven't been that great, and my grades in August are likely to reflect that. My AS grades were terrible and I put too much on my plate this year.

    For a while I've been planning on taking my A-levels independently over the next few years while (hopefully) working.

    I'm planning on taking Maths, Chemistry and Physics over the course of 2017 and 2018.

    With the institution that I plan on doing them with, I will do Maths on the old spec and Chem/Phys on the new spec.

    Now the dilemma is practicals. As far as I'm concerned, I do not have to do any ISAs or coursework for these courses. I believe I have to do assignments, which don't require me to do a practical. I think they send you a disk or a book containing details/videos of any practicals on which the assignments are based, so I don't have to do them myself (being a private candidate I obviously don't have the equipment at home).

    Here are the links to the courses: https://www.nec.ac.uk/courses/physics-a-level-new

    And

    https://www.nec.ac.uk/courses/chemistry-a-level-new

    In the Exams and Assessments section, it says these two things:

    1) "The A level exam is written, with no practical element. Having said this, throughout the exam you will be expected to use your understanding of practical theory to answer questions. You will have gained this knowledge through the core practicals within your course."

    This is fine, for the price of the course I believe they include, as I said, details/videos of the practicals so that you don't need to do them yourself.

    2) "For some university programmes, like medicine, you will need to demonstrate practical skills as well as knowledge. In addition to the A level, you will be able to gain a practical endorsement to show this. This practical endorsement does not form part of the full A level, but is an additional grade that you can achieve."

    Now I don't plan on doing medicine. I hope to go into engineering. Most engineering courses I've looked at only ask for the base grades, and no practical endorsement. And so I will not be doing the practical endorsement.

    So what do the assignments entail, and am I right in thinking that I won't need to do practical work myself personally, just observe it, to obtain the grade?

    Thanks.
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    My understanding is that undertaking the practicals is an obligatory part of the course even though they don't affect your grade. However, NEC are a reputable organisation so they may know better.
    •  Official Rep
    Offline

    7
    ReputationRep:
     Official Rep
    Hi,

    The assignments are like your homework really and allow your tutor a chance to provide feedback throughout the course. If you do not need the practical endorsement you will not need to carry out any practical work in a lab, you will just need to know the theory for the exams. You will mostly be using videos to gain this knowledge but there are a few that you can complete at home if you wish.

    You can call us on 0800 389 2839 if you want to talk anything through.

    James
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by National Extension College)
    Hi,

    The assignments are like your homework really and allow your tutor a chance to provide feedback throughout the course. If you do not need the practical endorsement you will not need to carry out any practical work in a lab, you will just need to know the theory for the exams. You will mostly be using videos to gain this knowledge but there are a few that you can complete at home if you wish.

    You can call us on 0800 389 2839 if you want to talk anything through.

    James
    Brilliant, thanks! I hope to enrol in late August for my first course.
    •  Official Rep
    Offline

    7
    ReputationRep:
     Official Rep
    (Original post by willotherwisedie)
    Brilliant, thanks! I hope to enrol in late August for my first course.
    Great! Let us know if you need anything else.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    I think most of universities expect a "pass" in practical endorsement and they state "failed" is deemed as unsuccessful application regardless of your grade. (I found this info on university of website)
    So... double check the requirement of the university you wish to study.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Brexit voters: Do you stand by your vote?
    Help with your A-levels

    All the essentials

    The adventure begins mug

    Student life: what to expect

    What it's really like going to uni

    Rosette

    Essay expert

    Learn to write like a pro with our ultimate essay guide.

    Uni match

    Uni match

    Our tool will help you find the perfect course for you

    Study planner

    Create a study plan

    Get your head around what you need to do and when with the study planner tool.

    Study planner

    Resources by subject

    Everything from mind maps to class notes.

    Hands typing

    Degrees without fees

    Discover more about degree-level apprenticeships.

    A student doing homework

    Study tips from A* students

    Students who got top grades in their A-levels share their secrets

    Study help links and info

    Can you help? Study help unanswered threadsRules and posting guidelines

    Sponsored content:

    HEAR

    HEAR

    Find out how a Higher Education Achievement Report can help you prove your achievements.

    Groups associated with this forum:

    View associated groups
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Write a reply...
    Reply
    Hide
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.