Were students really expected to handwrite their GCSE coursework?

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Arran90
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When the concept of coursework for GCSE subjects was thought up in the early 1980s it was the norm for secondary school students to handwrite their homework. Very few students had a printer at home at the time and there weren't all that many with a mechanical typewriter either. Therefore the officials behind GCSE coursework most likely assumed that it would be handwritten. A home computer boom took place in the 1980s but kids overwhelmingly owned computers for games, not schoolwork, and printing out homework was seen as eccentric at its best or unacceptable by the school at its worst.

Fast forward to the 2000s and you would find almost every student producing their GCSE coursework assignments on a computer either at home or at school with only a small fraction choosing to handwrite it. With hindsight it could be argued that coursework and ICT went hand in glove with each other where students learned about Micro$oft Word in ICT then used it to produce coursework for other subjects. No longer was printing out schoolwork eccentric or unacceptable, it was being actively encouraged by the National Curriculum. I'm unsure whether the powers that be intended that ICT and coursework go hand in glove with each other or whether the ideology behind them was completely separate and parallel from each other.

Coursework has now been axed from many GCSE subjects but in its wake is a question - were students really expected to handwrite their GCSE coursework?
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Wōden
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Ah, you youngsters today have no idea how good you have it.

I don't know about other schools at the time, but I can remember as late as 06/07 most of us in my secondary school were still handwriting our coursework, including myself. No big deal, it was what we had been brought up with and we were used to it.
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gjd800
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I handwrote most of my GCSE coursework back in 2002/03.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Arran90)
When the concept of coursework for GCSE subjects was thought up in the early 1980s it was the norm for secondary school students to handwrite their homework. Very few students had a printer at home at the time and there weren't all that many with a mechanical typewriter either. Therefore the officials behind GCSE coursework most likely assumed that it would be handwritten. A home computer boom took place in the 1980s but kids overwhelmingly owned computers for games, not schoolwork, and printing out homework was seen as eccentric at its best or unacceptable by the school at its worst.

Fast forward to the 2000s and you would find almost every student producing their GCSE coursework assignments on a computer either at home or at school with only a small fraction choosing to handwrite it. With hindsight it could be argued that coursework and ICT went hand in glove with each other where students learned about Micro$oft Word in ICT then used it to produce coursework for other subjects. No longer was printing out schoolwork eccentric or unacceptable, it was being actively encouraged by the National Curriculum. I'm unsure whether the powers that be intended that ICT and coursework go hand in glove with each other or whether the ideology behind them was completely separate and parallel from each other.

Coursework has now been axed from many GCSE subjects but in its wake is a question - were students really expected to handwrite their GCSE coursework?

Is this your homework? Not seeing the point?

GCSEs came in 1986 and were first examined in 88. I dont believe printing out homework would have been unacceptable, ever, just unusual. I think thats when people had dot matrix printers and even then they were rare.

Not seeing what sense your middle paragraph makes? ICT helped people learn about ICT? Printed work was never unacceptable.
People got PCs and eventually could afford printers? So what?

Mystified by your final paragraph.Pupils were expected to submit work in the formats they deemed acceptable. Unless it was something like a dissertation or a project, then never had any problem submitting handwritten essays. Everyone will be doing exams this summer and most of those will be handwritten.
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lilGem
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I still remember handwriting coursework for some subjects like history, languages, both parts of english. For the longer pieces like geography and psychology it was typed up though. This was circa 2010
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Joinedup
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Yeah handwritten with hand drawn graphs and diagrams.

The problem with coursework now isn't that it's being typed... it's that it's being copied and pasted
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Good bloke
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(Original post by Arran90)
When the concept of coursework for GCSE subjects was thought up in the early 1980s it was the norm for secondary school students to handwrite their homework.
Your starting point is far too late. Pupils studying CSEs in the period 1965-1987 had coursework, and the most sophisticated piece of electronics in most homes at the start of that period was a monochrome television. Home computers and printers weren't even contemplated at that time. Of course it was handwritten.
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AspiringUnderdog
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(Original post by Arran90)
When the concept of coursework for GCSE subjects was thought up in the early 1980s it was the norm for secondary school students to handwrite their homework. Very few students had a printer at home at the time and there weren't all that many with a mechanical typewriter either. Therefore the officials behind GCSE coursework most likely assumed that it would be handwritten. A home computer boom took place in the 1980s but kids overwhelmingly owned computers for games, not schoolwork, and printing out homework was seen as eccentric at its best or unacceptable by the school at its worst.

Fast forward to the 2000s and you would find almost every student producing their GCSE coursework assignments on a computer either at home or at school with only a small fraction choosing to handwrite it. With hindsight it could be argued that coursework and ICT went hand in glove with each other where students learned about Micro$oft Word in ICT then used it to produce coursework for other subjects. No longer was printing out schoolwork eccentric or unacceptable, it was being actively encouraged by the National Curriculum. I'm unsure whether the powers that be intended that ICT and coursework go hand in glove with each other or whether the ideology behind them was completely separate and parallel from each other.

Coursework has now been axed from many GCSE subjects but in its wake is a question - were students really expected to handwrite their GCSE coursework?
um I had to handwrite some of my coursework two years ago what is this?
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Tiger Rag
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I had to handwrite some coursework I did for the OU in 2012.

As for GCSE - I handwrote maths coursework. Food tech and History coursework were both typed.
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Mesopotamian.
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Everyone at my school had to hand write our final coursework. I didn't even know you could submit typed coursework and now this thread is making me re-evaluate my life :lolwut:
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DJKL
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You ain't seen nothing yet, try university in the early 1980s, except for dissertations, where you paid someone to type it, everything else was handwritten, and not just once.

For say a 2,500 word essay you wrote your notes (from your reading), referenced by hand as you wrote them, then structured essay in a first draft, with lots of arrows, insertions, deletions. You then likely got a pair of scissors, cut paragraphs, reordered them, stuck them onto sheets leaving gaps for add on bits, extra points, linking parts. Depending on state of this monster you then either tried to do a straight rewrite into final form or more often did a second better rough draft

You went through this for sense, grammar, punctuation, spelling and referencing (At Edinburgh re English Lit the marking scheme had deductions re mistakes re all of these) and then wrote it all out very neatly.

On the plus side we for say English Lit in second year only had one essay a term plus one or two practical criticism shorter pieces each term and a short 1000 word topic intro for tutorials every fourth week (only 4 of us in the tutorial group), of course you would have similar re other second year subjects, in my case History and Economics, though the Economics pieces tended to be much shorter.

Hate to say most of us also had no calculators at school in the 1970s.
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DJKL
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(Original post by Good bloke)
Your starting point is far too late. Pupils studying CSEs in the period 1965-1987 had coursework, and the most sophisticated piece of electronics in most homes at the start of that period was a monochrome television. Home computers and printers weren't even contemplated at that time. Of course it was handwritten.
By the last couple of years the odd family might have had Amstrad's PCW package but you would have been pretty affluent to afford one.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amstrad_PCW
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PQ
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:mad:
Just took some photos of my- level physics notes and TSR won’t let me upload them
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lizolove
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(Original post by Arran90)
When the concept of coursework for GCSE subjects was thought up in the early 1980s it was the norm for secondary school students to handwrite their homework. Very few students had a printer at home at the time and there weren't all that many with a mechanical typewriter either. Therefore the officials behind GCSE coursework most likely assumed that it would be handwritten. A home computer boom took place in the 1980s but kids overwhelmingly owned computers for games, not schoolwork, and printing out homework was seen as eccentric at its best or unacceptable by the school at its worst.

Fast forward to the 2000s and you would find almost every student producing their GCSE coursework assignments on a computer either at home or at school with only a small fraction choosing to handwrite it. With hindsight it could be argued that coursework and ICT went hand in glove with each other where students learned about Micro$oft Word in ICT then used it to produce coursework for other subjects. No longer was printing out schoolwork eccentric or unacceptable, it was being actively encouraged by the National Curriculum. I'm unsure whether the powers that be intended that ICT and coursework go hand in glove with each other or whether the ideology behind them was completely separate and parallel from each other.

Coursework has now been axed from many GCSE subjects but in its wake is a question - were students really expected to handwrite their GCSE coursework?
I was doing my GCSEs about 8 years ago (I feel old) and we handwrote.
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DrawTheLine
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I hand-wrote my English Language GCSE coursework in 2014-15. Typing it wasn't an option.
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by DrawTheLine)
I hand-wrote my English Language GCSE coursework in 2014-15. Typing it wasn't an option.
same OP makes it sound like dinosaurs did lol
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emilynxlan
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All of my history coursework had to be handwritten, and I'm a current GCSE student. Tbh I find it better than typing as typing gets boring after a while.
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Joinedup
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(Original post by DJKL)
By the last couple of years the odd family might have had Amstrad's PCW package but you would have been pretty affluent to afford one.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amstrad_PCW
Yeah you could actually have done some work on that. apart from the printer it had floppy disks with a rudimentary file system on them.

Home computer + printer would have been OK for writing a short letter or something... but if you're going to spread some writing over several days you want something that'll let you save your work.

even so the PCW word processor didn't do auto backups - you had to remember to save as you went.
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Arran90
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(Original post by 999tigger)
Not seeing what sense your middle paragraph makes? ICT helped people learn about ICT? Printed work was never unacceptable.
People got PCs and eventually could afford printers? So what?
There was inertia and resistance amongst teachers to accepting printed out homework assignments in the 1980s and early 1990s. Before schools started teaching ICT it was not uncommon to find schools vehemently against using computers for word processing and office applications. It was only after 1995 when Windows 95 was released that computers with word processors became mainstream at home.

Mystified by your final paragraph.Pupils were expected to submit work in the formats they deemed acceptable. Unless it was something like a dissertation or a project, then never had any problem submitting handwritten essays. Everyone will be doing exams this summer and most of those will be handwritten.
It's meant to be thought provoking.
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PQ
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(Original post by Arran90)
There was inertia and resistance amongst teachers to accepting printed out homework assignments in the 1980s and early 1990s. Before schools started teaching ICT it was not uncommon to find schools vehemently against using computers for word processing and office applications. It was only after 1995 when Windows 95 was released that computers with word processors became mainstream at home.



It's meant to be thought provoking.
It was much later than that.
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