Y11 Mock Exams
Purpose of Y11 Mock Exams
The Mock Exam period is exactly what its name states; it is a ‘mock’ opportunity to experience the full examination process. It is a dress rehearsal for the full performance in the summer. Students will be in a formal exam situation and move from subject to subject in a set examination period and feeling the highs, lows, tensions and reliefs that the process brings. We aim to get as close as practically possible to the real event, going so far as to hold a ‘mock results day’ whereby students will gather in the hall and collect their envelopes of results experiencing the anticipation that they will feel on the final results day.
However, it is not just about feelings; it is all about helping make sure students are on the path to success. This process helps to motivate students to start their revision early, research suggests that around 75% of students nationally describe themselves as ‘procrastinators’ with 50% feeling it hampers their progress. Further research suggests that starting revision early, in small chunks, has the biggest impact on examination achievement! The further away an event is, the less it impacts on student’s decisions. The Mock exams bring an opportunity to focus attention and effort earlier.
Some of the most often used revision strategies are not hugely effective. For example making flash cards is not effective unless then followed by using them to test yourself. Making the cards has very little impact. Cramming is not effective; spacing out revision to see what sticks is effective. The mock exams not only give the opportunity to try effective revision techniques, they also highlight the key areas of knowledge a student may need to focus on as well as the examination skills that require attention.
The Mock exam is not intended to be threatening or a judgement of ability. Students should see it as a useful way of improving their knowledge and memory as well as directing their future efforts. It is better to have any shocks in the mocks than in the final event!
An exam situation for some is associated pressure leading to nerves and sometimes sloppy mistakes whereas for others they may rise to the occasion of exams. The mock exams allow students to familiarise themselves with the process and know what to expect, this helps them figure out and practise what works best for them.
We believe that the mock exams are highly beneficial for students, helping them to start early, revise right, feel calm and be highly successful.
Mock GCSE Grades
Following the Mock exams students will be issued with a mock GCSE (or other course) grade. This grade is not solely based on the exam. The Mock GCSE grade will take into account a students’ proficiency in all aspect of their course, including controlled assessments or projects. As such, it is a holistic judgement of a students’ position at the current time.
Support for Students
Examination support for students has already begun and will continue throughout the year. Prior to the mock exams starting, students will be given guidance, opportunities and resources to prepare them during their normal lessons, assemblies and homework. If you would like to know more about simple, highly effective revision, please click here. Following the issue of the Mock results we will instigate a programme of 1-2-1 reviews, offering individualised support as well as further revision training additional support sessions, revision planning and schedule support and pre-exam booster sessions for the GCSEs proper this summer.
Expectations for the Exams
- Students should know where they are sitting; this information will be on the personalised timetables issued prior to the mock exams.
- In order for smooth running and a prompt start, students should arrive 10 minutes before the time stated on their timetables – This is crucial, particularly in the morning and may mean leaving registration/assembly by 8:50a.m.
- Students should be aware of the finish time as some exams may finish shortly after 3pm, this can impact on home transport.
- Bags must be left outside the hall.
- Mobile phones, smart watches or other electronic communication devices must not be brought into the exam room.
- Once students enter the exam room, they are in exam conditions which means no communication.
- Students must bring the equipment required for each exam, this is outlined on the letter that accompanies the exam timetable (there is an exam ‘shop’ available in the Registry office if students forget any equipment).
- All equipment must either be loose or in a clear pencil case/plastic bag.
- Students may bring water into the exam room, only in an unlabelled bottle.
- Students stay in the exam room for the full duration of the exam. During this time they must remain silent, including as they are released from the room. They should then collect their bags and leave the area swiftly so as not to disturb students entitled to extra time.