Suggested approach to Eduqas NEA September 2017

I have just returned from our 7th North Yorkshire computing Teachers Support Group.  Several colleagues commented during the day that they are going to teach the NEA differently as a result of the meeting, and I think it is important to share with other teachers to write a useful summary here.   You will need to join the TSG, details here, with an index to access the significant resources which include a Student version of NEA Mark bands (3-levels), comprehensive slides to explain to students the requirements of the mark scheme, and differentiated mark schemes to provide feedback on practice NEAs.  All of these are in the folder NEA Student and moderation resources CSH.

Overall, we concluded that if you (and your students) do not have a working knowledge of the Mark Bands, you run the risk of significant sections being missed out, and missing marks as a result.   Also, weaker students who may struggle with some parts ofthe coding, could make up significant marks with the report.  Here are the slides from the TSG showing the various references to the Mark Scheme:

Requirements such as authentication, validation and testing for Unit, Integration and Functional testing could go unnoticed if you are not prepared.

Here is a suggested pathway for your students to practice the two SAM NEAS, “Names for Numbers”, and “Rafting Cymru”.

There is a requirement for authentication embedded within the Mark scheme, and therefore I suggest the students have done a suitable exemplar prior to either of the NEAs.

I then set the “Names for Numbers” for my students. If they needed help, I directed them towards Differentiated help for NEA02 – “Names for Numbers” TSG which gives them 3 different levels to aim for, matched to the mark scheme.


I then gave them the Candidate Marking Grid student version L1-2 or L2-3.  These come from the Shared Student version of NEA Mark Scheme 123 which is available online and links to the NEA Example slides for Mark Scheme 123.

The Marking Grid student version has space for their own comments as you show them the example slides.  They then get an opportunity to improve their work. They hand in using Showbie, and I provide teacher feedback using the differentiated Mark schemes.

I think it’s vital that the students think carefully about the time taken to do each of the sections of the NEA. I therefore gave out Review of time spent – blank and asked them to think about how much time they had spent on each part. I then displayed Review of time spent – with marks and got them to consider how much time they should spend on each section when they see how any marks there are allocated out of 80. I have also calculated the exact percentage time Review of time spent – percentage time TSG marks which can also be shown to them. At the beginning of the live NEA I expect them to write a quick plan of the expected time spent on each section, and to review this as part of their refinement log.

At this stage I propose to differentiate.  Some of my students are going to struggle with the coding for Names for Numbers and the report writing.  I therefore going to give them extra time to do a really good job on this, including the authentication and the writing to files.  The more able will be expected to apply what they have learnt to “Rafting Cymru”.  This is where I am up to at the moment.

We also revised the 8 page Eduqas NEA (Component 3) Briefing Sheet which is in the folder NEA generic materials for use before and during LIVE NEA.