AQA Student Advisory Group hold first meeting

Friday 14 Feb 2020

The young people chosen for AQA’s Student Advisory Group held their first official meeting on Wednesday (12 February 2020) at our Manchester office.

The students, who have completed AQA’s GCSE exams and are working towards A-level qualifications, gathered to set out the group’s goals for the coming year.

They attended a presentation by AQA’s Head of Assessment Design, Ben Stafford, about the exam paper process and had a constructive discussion about accessibility and inclusion for exams. They also provided feedback on some new poster designs about exam rules, which will be displayed in exam rooms across the country this summer.

AQA’s Student Advisory Group, which was launched at parliamentary reception last month, was created to give young people a voice in the exam system – something no other exam board has ever done before. Their purpose is to advise AQA’s board of trustees on all things exam-related to help shape the future of exams for young people.

Chair of the group, Ellen Blacker, said:

“The first meeting was brilliant and a really useful introduction to AQA. It gave us an insight into how exams are designed and the opportunity to further discuss our role and expectations.

As well as sharing our views on exam experiences, it was great for us to engage properly as a group after the launch. We believe passionately that we can help shape the future of exams to completely reflect the diversity of young people, from academic ability, to social background, to those who have made the UK their home.”

Ben Stafford, AQA Head of Assessment Design, added:

“This was a great opportunity to hear first-hand the view of the Student Advisory Group, and listen to perspectives that challenged our thinking.

The voice of students is often overlooked in the assessment creation process, and the feedback from the group will be shared with those responsible for developing future papers.”

The Student Advisory Group's next meeting will be at our DRS office in Milton Keynes in June.

Student Advisory Group’s first official meeting at AQA’s Manchester office