Scheme of assessment

Find past papers and mark schemes, and specimen papers for new courses, on our website at aqa.org.uk/pastpapers

This specification is designed to be taken over two years.

This is a linear qualification. In order to achieve the award, students must complete all assessments at the end of the course and in the same series.

A-level exams and certification for this specification are available for the first time in May/June 2020 and then every May/June for the life of the specification.

All materials are available in English only.

Our A-level exams in Modern Hebrew (Listening, Reading, Writing) include questions that allow students to demonstrate their ability to:

  • draw together their knowledge, skills and understanding from across the full course of study
  • provide extended responses.

Aims

Courses based on this specification must encourage students to:

  • enhance their linguistic skills and promote and develop their capacity for critical thinking on the basis of their knowledge and understanding of the language, culture and society of the country where the language is spoken
  • develop control of the language system to convey meaning, using written skills, including an extended range of vocabulary, for both practical and intellectual purposes as increasingly confident, accurate and independent users of the language
  • develop their ability to interact effectively with users of the language in writing, including through online media
  • engage critically with intellectually stimulating texts, films and other materials in the original language, developing an appreciation of sophisticated and creative uses of the language and understanding them within their cultural and social context
  • develop knowledge about matters central to the society and culture, past and present, of the country where the language is spoken
  • foster their ability to learn other languages
  • equip themselves with transferable skills such as autonomy, resourcefulness, creativity, critical thinking, and linguistic, cultural and cognitive flexibility that will enable them to proceed to further study or employment
  • develop their capacity for critical and analytical thinking through the language of study
  • develop as independent researchers through the language of study.

Assessment objectives

Assessment objectives (AOs) are set by Ofqual and are the same across all A-level Modern Hebrew (Listening, Reading, Writing) specifications and all exam boards.

The exams will measure how students have achieved the following assessment objectives.

  • AO1 Understand and respond in writing to spoken language drawn from a variety of sources. 20%
  • AO2 Understand and respond in writing to written language drawn from a variety of sources. 30%
  • AO3 Manipulate the language accurately, in written form, using a range of lexis and structure. 30%
  • AO4 Show knowledge and understanding of, and respond critically and analytically to, different aspects of the culture and society of countries/communities where the language is spoken. 20%

    Across assessment objectives AO1 and AO2, no more than 10% of the total marks for the qualification may be used for responses in English, including translation into English.

Assessment objective weightings for A-level Modern Hebrew (Listening, Reading, Writing)

Assessment objectives (AOs) Component weightings (approx %) Overall weighting (approx %)
Paper 1 Paper 2 Paper 3
AO1     20 20
AO2 25   5 30
AO3 7.5 10 12.5 30
AO4 10 10   20
Overall weighting of components 42.5 20 37.5 100

Assessment weightings

The marks awarded on the papers will be scaled to meet the weighting of the components. Students’ final marks will be calculated by adding together the scaled marks for each component. Grade boundaries will be set using this total scaled mark. The scaling and total scaled marks are shown in the table below.

Component Maximum raw mark Scaling factor Maximum scaled mark
Paper 1: Reading, translation and writing (research project) 85 x2 170
Paper 2: Writing 80 x1 80
Paper 3: Listening, reading and writing 75 x2 150
Total scaled mark: 400

Paper 1: Reading and writing

Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes; total raw mark: 85

Reading and responding

Students will read four stimulus texts adapted from authentic sources, including online sources. Texts may include contemporary and historical material and may cover non-fiction and literary fiction and/or material based on literature. The content of the stimulus texts will be based on the themes and sub-themes in this specification, except in the case of literary texts where the content may fall outside of these themes and sub-themes.

Questions will target main points, gist and detail and will require either non-verbal responses or responses in Modern Hebrew. Questions will include the need to infer meaning and will include abstract material such as opinions, views, emotional reactions and personal experiences.

For one question students will need to summarise in Modern Hebrew what they have understood from the stimulus text they have read and marks will be awarded for the quality of Modern Hebrew used. Students must write in full sentences and use their own words as far as possible in this question.

Assessment

In questions requiring a summary, the marks for content (AO2) and language (AO3) are awarded independently. Long summaries will be marked for content (AO2) or language (AO3) until the first natural break (usually the end of a sentence or main clause) between 90 and 100 words. Short summaries are not subject to an automatic penalty but in practice are unlikely to include all the required content points and will therefore be self-penalising.

The AO2 mark is awarded for content points which contain the required information regardless of whether those points are expressed in the student’s own words, or are partly or wholly lifted from the text. However, no AO2 mark will be awarded for a content point where the student includes irrelevant material or copies inappropriately from the stimulus, eg by ‘lifting’ an element from the original which does not match the phrasing of the bullet point. Examples of this are in the specimen mark scheme. ‘Lifted’ language will not be eligible for credit when the AO3 mark is awarded.

In comprehension questions with no AO3 marks, where the natural answer to a question consists entirely or partly of words or phrases from the text, students may use that material without rephrasing it. Minor spelling errors which do not distort the meaning will be tolerated. However, the AO2 mark will not be awarded for a response in which the student includes irrelevant material or copies inappropriately from the stimulus, eg by ‘lifting’ an element from the original which does not match the phrasing of the question set. Examples of this are in the specimen mark scheme.

Translation from the target language

Students will translate a passage of at least 100 words from Modern Hebrew into English. The content will be based on the themes and sub-themes in this specification.

No dictionaries are allowed in this exam.

Writing (research project)

Students will read and respond in writing to an unseen question based on an unseen target language source on one of the research topics published in the specification. Students will be required to use information from the source linked to the knowledge gained from their individual research to produce an evaluative response to the question. All questions will be in Modern Hebrew and will require a critical and analytical response. Students will be advised to write approximately 300 words per essay. Everything that students write will be marked; there is no word limit. Students who write the recommended number of words will have access to the full range of marks.

No dictionaries or notes are allowed in this exam.

Students must carry out their own individual research, even if more than one student in the class has chosen the same research topic. The research sources for the project can be visual, audio or written but must include online sources.

Teachers may:

  • suggest sources of reference, including but not limited to websites, books and magazines
  • provide support/guidance on research techniques, including how best to manage the storing and assimilation of knowledge and information that has been researched
  • provide guidance on planning and timescales, including deadlines or milestones according to which research outcomes can be monitored and checked.

Teachers must not:

  • provide the student with material that they have designed specifically for the research project
  • download and give the student specific source materials or copied and pasted extracts
  • give feedback orally or in writing on any written notes or preparatory work produced by the student.

Paper 2: Writing

Duration: 2 hours; total raw mark: 80

Students will answer an essay question in Modern Hebrew for each of the two works they have studied (this can be a book and a film, or two books). Students will have a choice of question on each book/film. All questions will be in Modern Hebrew and will require a critical and analytical response.

Students will be advised to write approximately 300 words per essay. Everything that students write will be marked; there is no word limit. Students who write the recommended number of words will have access to the full range of marks.

No dictionaries are allowed in this exam.

Access to the books and films is not allowed in this exam.

Paper 3: Listening, reading and writing

Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes; total raw mark: 75

Listening and responding

Students will listen to spoken passages from a range of contexts and sources, covering different registers and types. The content of the passages will be based on the themes and sub-themes in this specification. Questions will target main points, gist and detail and will require either non-verbal responses or responses in Modern Hebrew. Questions will include the need to infer meaning and will include abstract material such as opinions, views, emotional reactions and personal experiences. For one question students will need to summarise in Modern Hebrew what they have understood from the passage they have heard and marks will be awarded for the quality of Modern Hebrew used. Students must write in full sentences and use their own words as far as possible in this question. In the remaining questions requiring a response in Modern Hebrew, students should give only the information required by the question. At least one passage will involve more than one speaker. Passages will be studio recorded and recordings provided to schools and colleges. Students will have individual control of the recording

Assessment

In questions requiring a summary, the marks for content (AO1) and language (AO3) are awarded independently. Long summaries will be marked for content (AO1) or language (AO3) until the first natural break (usually the end of a sentence or main clause) between 90 and 100 words. Short summaries are not subject to an automatic penalty but in practice are unlikely to include all the required content points and will therefore be self-penalising.

The AO1 mark is awarded for content points which contain the required information regardless of whether those points are expressed in the student’s own words, or are partly or wholly lifted from the recording. However, no AO1 mark will be awarded for a content point where the student includes irrelevant material or inappropriate information from the stimulus, eg by ‘lifting’ an element from the original which does not match the phrasing of the bullet point. Examples of this are in the specimen mark scheme. ‘Lifted’ language will not be eligible for credit when the AO3 mark is awarded.

In comprehension questions with no AO3 marks, where the natural answer to a question consists entirely or partly of words or phrases from the recording, students may use that material without rephrasing it. Minor spelling errors which do not distort the meaning will be tolerated. However, the AO1 mark will not be awarded for a response in which the student includes irrelevant material or inappropriate information from the stimulus, eg by ‘lifting’ an element from the original which does not match the phrasing of the question set. Examples of this are in the specimen mark scheme.

Translation into Modern Hebrew

Students will translate a passage of at least 100 words from English into Modern Hebrew. The content will be based on the themes and sub-themes in this specification and students will be provided with a supporting text in Modern Hebrew, giving them some of the vocabulary and structures which they will need for the translation.

Multi-skill task

The multi-skill task will combine listening, reading and writing. A listening passage and written source will be set based on the themes and students will be required to listen to the passage, read the written source and then respond in writing to an unseen question. Students will be advised to write approximately 200 words per essay. Everything that students write will be marked; there is no word limit. Students who write the recommended number of words will have access to the full range of marks.

The written response will require reference to the information in both the listening and written source. The response will require analysis, evaluation, personal reaction and drawing a conclusion all of which require higher level skills.

Assessment criteria

Paper 1 Summary question: AO3

Mark AO3 quality of language marks in the reading summary task
5

The language produced is mainly accurate with only occasional minor errors. The student shows a consistently secure grasp of grammar and is able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

4

The language produced is generally accurate, but there are some minor errors. The student shows a generally good grasp of grammar and is often able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

3

The language produced is reasonably accurate, but there are a few serious errors. The student shows a reasonable grasp of grammar and is sometimes able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

2

The language produced contains many errors. The student shows some grasp of grammar and is occasionally able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

1

The language produced contains many errors of a basic nature. The student shows little grasp of grammar and is rarely able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 1 Research project: AO2

Mark AO2 descriptors
9–10

Very good evaluation of the research topic

The relevant information from the written source material has been fully understood. This information is consistently linked to research findings to form appropriate arguments and conclusions.

7–8

Good evaluation of the research topic

Most of the relevant information in the written source material has been clearly understood. This information is often linked to research findings to form appropriate arguments and conclusions.

5–6

Reasonable evaluation of the research topic

Some of the relevant information in the written source material has been understood. This information is sometimes linked to research findings to form appropriate arguments and conclusions.

3–4

Limited evaluation of the research topic

A limited amount of relevant information in the written source has been understood. This information is occasionally linked to research findings to form appropriate arguments and conclusions.

1–2

Very limited evaluation of the research topic

A very limited amount of the relevant information in the written source has been understood. This information is rarely if ever linked to research findings to form appropriate arguments and conclusions.

0 The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 1 Research project: AO3

Mark AO3 quality of language marks in the writing task
9–10

The language produced is mainly accurate with only occasional minor errors. The student shows a consistently secure grasp of grammar and is able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a wide range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

7–8

The language produced is generally accurate, but there are some minor errors. The student shows a generally good grasp of grammar and is often able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a good range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

5–6

The language produced is reasonably accurate, but there are a few serious errors. The student shows a reasonable grasp of grammar and is sometimes able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a reasonable range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

3–4

The language produced contains many errors. The student shows some grasp of grammar and is occasionally able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

1–2

The language produced contains many errors of a basic nature. The student shows little grasp of grammar and is rarely able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a very limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 1 Research project: AO4

Mark AO4 descriptors
17–20

Excellent critical and analytical response to the question set.

Excellent knowledge and understanding of the research topic covered in the essay. Students consistently select relevant information to support their arguments. They consistently use appropriate evidence to justify their conclusions, demonstrating an excellent evaluation of the research topic.

13–16

Good critical and analytical response to the question set.

Good knowledge and understanding of the research topic covered in the essay. Students often select relevant information to support their arguments. They often use appropriate evidence to justify their conclusions, demonstrating a good evaluation of the research topic.

9–12

Reasonable critical and analytical response to the question set.

Reasonable knowledge and understanding of the research topic covered in the essay. Students sometimes select relevant information to support their arguments. They sometimes use appropriate evidence to justify their conclusions, demonstrating a reasonable evaluation of the research topic.

5–8

Limited critical and analytical response to the question set.

Some knowledge and understanding of the research topic covered in the essay. Students occasionally select relevant information to support their arguments. They occasionally use appropriate evidence to justify their conclusions, demonstrating a limited evaluation of the research topic.

1–4

Very limited critical and analytical response to the question set.

A little knowledge and understanding of the research topic covered in the essay. Students rarely select relevant information to support their arguments. They rarely use appropriate evidence to justify their conclusions, demonstrating a very limited evaluation of the research topic.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 2: Writing

Essays on texts and films will be assessed according to the following assessment criteria.

AO3

Mark AO3 quality of language marks in the writing task
17–20

The language produced is mainly accurate with only occasional minor errors. The student shows a consistently secure grasp of grammar and is able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a wide range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

13–16

The language produced is generally accurate, but there are some minor errors. The student shows a generally good grasp of grammar and is often able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a good range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

9–12

The language produced is reasonably accurate, but there are a few serious errors. The student shows a reasonable grasp of grammar and is sometimes able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a reasonable range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

5–8 The language produced contains many errors. The student shows some grasp of grammar and is occasionally able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.
1–4 The language produced contains many errors of a basic nature. The student shows little grasp of grammar and is rarely able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a very limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.
0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

AO4

Mark AO4 descriptors
17–20

Excellent critical and analytical response to the question set.

Knowledge of the text or film is consistently accurate and detailed. Opinions, views and conclusions are consistently supported by relevant and appropriate evidence from the text or film. The essay demonstrates excellent evaluation of the issues, themes and the cultural and social contexts of the text or film studied.

13–16

Good critical and analytical response to the question set.

Knowledge of the text or film is usually accurate and detailed. Opinions, views and conclusions are usually supported by relevant and appropriate evidence from the text or film. The essay demonstrates good evaluation of the issues, themes and the cultural and social contexts of the text or film studied.

9–12

Reasonable critical and analytical response to the question set.

Knowledge of the text or film is sometimes accurate and detailed. Opinions, views and conclusions are sometimes supported by relevant and appropriate evidence from the text or film. The essay demonstrates reasonable evaluation of the issues, themes and the cultural and social contexts of the text or film studied

5–8

Limited critical and analytical response to the question set.

Some knowledge of the text or film is demonstrated. Opinions, views and conclusions are occasionally supported by relevant and appropriate evidence from the text or film. The essay demonstrates limited evaluation of the issues, themes and the cultural and social contexts of the text or film studied.

1–4

Very limited critical and analytical response to the question set.

A little knowledge of the text or film is demonstrated. Opinions, views and conclusions are rarely supported by relevant and appropriate evidence from the text or film. The essay demonstrates very limited evaluation of the issues, themes and the cultural and social contexts of the text or film studied.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 3: Listening, Reading and Writing

Paper 3 Summary question: AO3

Mark AO3 quality of language marks in the listening summary task
5

The language produced is mainly accurate with only occasional minor errors. The student shows a consistently secure grasp of grammar and is able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

4

The language produced is generally accurate, but there are some minor errors. The student shows a generally good grasp of grammar and is often able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

3

The language produced is reasonably accurate, but there are a few serious errors. The student shows a reasonable grasp of grammar and is sometimes able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

2

The language produced contains many errors. The student shows some grasp of grammar and is occasionally able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

1

The language produced contains many errors of a basic nature. The student shows little grasp of grammar and is rarely able to manipulate complex language accurately where required by the task.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 3 Multi-skill task: AO1

Mark AO1 descriptors
9–10

Very good evaluation of the source

The relevant information from the spoken source material has been fully understood. Arguments/views are very effectively summarised and there is extensive evidence of drawing appropriate conclusions.

7–8

Good evaluation of the source

Most of the relevant information in the spoken source material has been clearly understood. Arguments/views are effectively summarised and there is frequent evidence of drawing appropriate conclusions.

5–6

Reasonable evaluation of the source

Some of the relevant information in the spoken source material has been understood. There is some evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

3–4

Limited evaluation of the source

A limited amount of relevant information in the spoken source has been understood. There is limited evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

1–2

Very limited evaluation of the source

A very limited amount of the relevant information in the spoken source has been understood. There is rarely evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

0 The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 3 Multi-skill task: AO2

Mark AO2 descriptors
9–10

Very good evaluation of the source

The relevant information from the written source material has been fully understood. Arguments/views are very effectively summarised and there is extensive evidence of drawing appropriate conclusions

7–8

Good evaluation of the source

Most of the relevant information in the written source material has been clearly understood. Arguments/views are effectively summarised and there is frequent evidence of drawing appropriate conclusions.

5–6

Reasonable evaluation of the source

Some of the relevant information in the written source material has been understood. There is some evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

3–4

Limited evaluation of the source

A limited amount of relevant information in the written source has been understood. There is limited evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

1–2

Very limited evaluation of the source

A very limited amount of the relevant information in the written source has been understood. There is rarely evidence of summarising arguments/views and of drawing appropriate conclusions.

0 The student produces nothing worthy of credit.

Paper 3 Multi-skill task: AO3

Mark AO3 quality of language marks in the writing task
9–10

The language produced is mainly accurate with only occasional minor errors. The student shows a consistently secure grasp of grammar and is able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a wide range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

7–8

The language produced is generally accurate, but there are some minor errors. The student shows a generally good grasp of grammar and is often able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a good range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

5–6

The language produced is reasonably accurate, but there are a few serious errors. The student shows a reasonable grasp of grammar and is sometimes able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a reasonable range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

3–4

The language produced contains many errors. The student shows some grasp of grammar and is occasionally able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

1–2

The language produced contains many errors of a basic nature. The student shows little grasp of grammar and is rarely able to manipulate complex language accurately. The student uses a very limited range of vocabulary appropriate to the context and the task.

0

The student produces nothing worthy of credit.