Level 1 / Level 2 certificates were designed to provide an alternative to GCSEs.
The purpose is to provide a qualification of the same size and level as GCSE which does not require controlled assessment and which has a linear structure and assessment by terminal examination.
The curriculum and assessment arrangements of Level 1 / Level 2 Certificates were based on those of IGCSEs and international GCSEs.
In line with GCSEs the qualifications span both Levels 1 and 2 of the Qualifications Frameworks in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
From their introduction in 2011 until examination in 2017 Level 1 / Level 2 certificates were graded A* – G in line with GCSEs.
For examination in 2017 onwards WJEC has developed a Level 1 and 2 Certificate in Latin, graded 9 – 1.
For examination in 2017 onwards, Cambridge has developed Cambridge International Level 1 / Level 2 Certificates graded 9 – 1 in the following subjects:
- First language english
- English literature
Unlike GCSEs, there are no prescribed assessment arrangements for Level 1 / Level 2 certificates.
Ofqual requires them to meet only their general conditions which all qualifications have to meet.
Level 1 / Level 2 certificates are generally characterised by a terminal assessment at the end of two years, which can include oral, written or practical tasks.
Links to awarding organisations’ websites and specifications:
UCAS has published Global Qualification Information Profiles for the following international GCSE qualifications:
- Cambridge IGCSEs – http://www.cie.org.uk/programmes-and-qualifications/cambridge-secondary…
- Pearson Edexcel International GCSEs – http://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-internation…
Further information on Cambridge IGCSEs can be found at www.cie.org.uk/igcse
Further information on Pearson International GCSE can be found at http://qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-international-gcses-and-edexcel-certificates.html