2014 National Curriculum

| More

Information, resources and links to support you in your planning for the 2014 national curriculum.


Introducing the national curriculum

What's changed
Advice from the GA

Resourcing the national curriculum

Key stage 1-2 (updated 26.03.15)
Key stage 3 (updated 08.07.14)


Assessing the national curriculum

Key stage 1-3

Comment on this page

Comments made by GA members appear instantly and don't require security words to be entered - make sure you're logged in! Guest comments will be sent to a moderator for approval.



Jen Guest

Does anyone know how progress will be reported without levels? I understand how progress against attainment targets could be monitored by teachers but will the government require some sort of summative assessment? How will this work with schools not teaching the new curriculum e.g. academies?

Milan Recknagel

Milan Recknagel GA Staff

Hi Jen

This is going to be quite a challenge for schools and I’m not sure how Ofsted will be able make comparative judgements nationally when schools ‘introduce their own approaches to formative assessment, to support pupil attainment and progression’. There are still issues to be resolved so I advise you to watch this space as the GA will be providing lots of ideas and support in the near future. I hope the following will help for now.

How can schools assess progress?

If definitions of standards and progression are destined to become local, rather than national, matters, then the Purpose of Study, Aims and introductory paragraphs for each key stage within the new curriculum provide good starting points for defining expectations by the end of each key stage. There is therefore an opportunity for schools to use their experience of assessment for learning to strike a healthy balance between advising students on progress and improvement and reaching summative statements about their overall attainment.

Assessment for Learning

Assessment for learning can be promoted through tried and tested practices in everyday geography lessons, such as:
• clarity about learning intentions and what success looks like
• opportunities for self- and peer-assessment, such as peer-reviewing work against the criteria for success, and identifying achievement and improvement
• improved feedback, focused on achievement and improvement
• modelling examples of work which exemplifies achievement and success
• opportunities for reflection, for example in lesson plenaries.

Effective Practice

More effective practice includes:
• focusing assessments on enquiry
• varying the range and focus of assessment over a key stage, e.g. group presentation, oral, poster, extended writing etc, but not attempting to devise level tests
• using AfL strategies in these periodic assessments to promote achievement, e.g. by sharing success criteria in advance, using self- and peer assessment, modelling examples of quality work
• using the results of assessment to agree a learning focus for improvements in pupils’ geography
• using the results of assessment to monitor and review curriculum and teaching, perhaps using the strands/aspects of performance to help identify strengths and areas for development
• being very cautious about overusing these assessments - about once a term seems about right - and being aware of the impact on the motivation of less successful learners
• ensuring these assessments supplement rather than supplant teachers’ judgements gained from their everyday work with pupils
• developing these assessments over a foundation of the AfL practices in everyday lessons outlined above, not as a replacement for them.

Removing levels without much thought to the task of setting up an appropriate system (beyond schools now have the power... etc) creates a difficult situation for schools needing to set up a replacement system. This applies to schools which are required to follow the National curriculum and those that are not, as all will need an effective system for monitoring progression. I’m not certain the Government will ask for some kind of summative assessment at KS3. That may well be left to KS4.


Cath Guest

Hi I am new to being a Geography co-ordinator in Primary School and am currently looking for examples of Schemes of Work based on the new curriculum. My school is still doing the QCA units at the mo. Please can you help?

John Hopkin

John Hopkin GA Member

Hi Jen
The government has set all schools free to set up their own systems - including academies, although there's a downside as it'll be more difficult to get a sense of national standards. The Assessment & Examinations group put on a session at the 2014 Annual Conference - you can find the Ppt and handout here: http://www.geography.org.uk/cpdevents/annualconference/
Hope they help


Steve Guest

Hi Jen,

DfE have also funded some development of post-level assessment:


It says these examples will be made available to download from the DfE...

Join the GA

For professional journals, huge discounts on publications and CPD and online access to member only resources.

Join now


  • Primary Geography
  • Teaching Geography
  • Geography

Free access to subscribers

  • Become a geography examiner
  • Nomadic School Tours
  • Cambridge International Examinations
Receive our email newsletters

Sign up to our email newsletter for all the latest news and updates throughout the year.