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Future Voices: Coursework versus exams - which is better?

PUBLISHED: 11:00 31 March 2017

Students taking an exam. Picture: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Students taking an exam. Picture: Niall Carson/PA Wire

I’m sure we will never all come to an agreement on this issue, but it will still be debated every year.

With subject courses changing like the sun along with their exam styles, which one is actually better?

I don’t think anybody can dispute the positives that come with coursework, as well as the benefits of end of year examinations. Finding the balance between the two is the problem, and I think the balance is currently tipped too far in favour of exams.

I can safely say that I would not have passed certain subjects at GCSE level without coursework, but again in some subjects coursework may have brought me down a grade.

And for others, well it seems there is a bit of a gender divide, as girls have done better in coursework in the past, and boys better in end of year exams.

I don’t think that end of year exams should be completely abandoned, as coursework doesn’t suit everyone.

I do think that the government should introduce more coursework into the system again, because exams are now becoming memory tests, instead of skill tests.

We should take the pressure off students to remember every single thing they’ve been taught over their last two years in education, and instead let them show off certain topics in greater detail.

This is surely the best option.

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