Our response to the announcement about the Technical Baccalaureate

Monday 22 Apr 2013

Following the Government's announcement today about the new Technical Baccalaureate, Andrew Hall, Chief Executive of AQA, said:

"We welcome the Government's proposals for a new Technical Baccalaureate, which will encourage more students to develop their mathematical, research and writing skills alongside their vocational qualification, which is crucial for progression to highly-skilled jobs and higher education. In order for the TechBacc to really work, it is important to learn lessons from some of the equivalence issues that were experienced with quasi vocational qualifications post-16 and ensure that these vocational qualifications are high quality and really valued by employers.

"Encouraging more students to study maths post-16 is a really positive move and something that we support strongly, as further study of maths is essential for student progression. The inclusion of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) will also help students develop key skills for progression to university and to the world of work such as: research and presentation, project management, innovation and self-direction. We also know from our own EPQ that many universities really advocate it, as it bridges the higher education skills gap better than anything else.

"We look forward to hearing the fuller detail on maths provision. We have a range of level 3 maths qualifications, including AS-levels in mathematics and statistics and Free Standing Maths Qualifications (FSMQs), which many further and higher education providers value highly. Our FSMQs were developed with vocational qualifications in mind and have been supporting sixth form studies for many years. The units within FSMQs support high quality vocational education through:

  • Data analysis and hypothesis testing - helping to build the statistical skills so important in many careers
  • Decision maths – linking to Computing and IT
  • Dynamics - supporting engineering and construction
  • Mathematical principles for personal finance - underpinning careers in financial services as well as being essential for those with entrepreneurial aspirations.

"We look forward to developing these and adding further units so that the right mathematics offer is available for all vocational and academic courses, providing rich and appropriate maths study for all learners who choose not to take the A-level route in maths."