(Original post by Tabath)
I'm trying to get some information because my sons school may have lost some of his chemistry and biology ISA.
My son told me at the end of year he had got 43/50 for his chemistry ISA and had done his biology but not his physics.
I have just been in touch with the school who told me he has done section one in his chemistry and got 17/20 and done section one in his biology and got a C but not done section 2.
Thy also confirmed he had not done his physics ISA.
I was under the impression that when you did the ISA you did section one then did section two straight after or the result would not be valid. Is this correct?
I also thought you could have 3 attempts at the ISA for each subject if you're doing separate sciences and the school submit your best one. Is this correct?
Also is there any time limit on how long ISAs are valid if you're doing AQA separate sciences? I'm only asking this as my daughter did combined triple sciences and the ISA for the particular exam had to be done within the same 12 month period.
Thanks for any help
Well firstly I would say don't take every word your son says at face value. As far as he is concerned, he may have done a paper for the ISA and that would be done.(The number of people in our triple science class who were shocked at having to do a second physics ISA paper was astounding, and this was after we'd already done 3 ISAs). Also, many schools do an ISA from a previous year as a practise so he could have done one of those and got 43/50 in that one. Teachers do not always tell students it is a practise as otherwise they may not try so he may not have been told it was a practise even if it was.
When you do section 2 is up to the teacher. Generally you would do section 1, then the practical element, then section 2 however some schools would be happy to leave that over the summer. Others, such as mine, said any ones which were started had to be finished as you would forget stuff over the summer. I'm 95% sure you are able to do section 1 before the summer, and section 2 after the summer so this should not be a problem. (I certainly know people who have done this, and a search on AQA's website does not bring up anything contrary to this).
It is correct that for separate sciences you can attempt 3 ISAs for each sub science and the best one is submitted, however schools do not have to do multiple ones, it is up to them to decide how many to do (obviously up to 3). Also, you cannot repeat the same ISA, but you must do the ones from the triple syllabus (I would assume that your son has already done/started the additional one as this one is generally considered easier so done first.) Because they are using the triple syllabus, he may have to wait a while before a second one can be done as he would need to learn the triple stuff so that he is capable of doing the ISA well.
I believe the time limit for the ISAs is as you say 12 months before they are submitted. Hence, as all coursework is submitted at the beginning of May, any ISAs must be done after this the previous year. Practise ones however can obviously be done before this as the exam board does not keep record of any practise ISAs done.
Hope this answers all your questions, if you have any more, then feel free to quote me and I'll try my best to answer them