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IGCSE Child Development: General queries

Awareness of Opportunities for Further Developments

Consideration could be given to other areas of development which may be interesting to study. Alternatively, further aspects of the development already studied in the Child Study or the product for the Investigation may be explored in more detail. Any suggestions made for further developments in the work should be supported with reasons for the ideas put forward.

How many areas of development should be studied by the candidates?

It is usually better to focus on only one area of development for the Study as this is more accessible for all-ability candidates rather than trying to study all areas. This would mean that the area can be researched fully and observed thoroughly in the chosen child. Too many areas for study may result in very superficial work.

How much needs to be written for the Child Study and for the Practical Investigation?

The recommendation is for a piece of work of approximately 3,000 words in length for each of the pieces of coursework to ensure that all the criteria are met. Shorter work may not include all the required information and longer work could contain a lot of unnecessary information.

How should the work be arranged in the folders?

Candidates should use the headings indicated on the different sections of the mark sheet and arrange their work in the same order. Each section should have a clear title. This makes it easier for the candidate and the examiner to check that all areas have been covered according to the requirements. It is also easier to mark each section of the work if it is well-ordered and not muddled up.

Is it necessary for the candidates to produce their work on a computer?

No. Coursework can be presented in hand-written or word-processed format. Both are acceptable but it is important that the work is presented in a neat, legible and orderly manner according to all the assessment areas.

Identification of Strengths and Weaknesses

Practical problems in arranging visits and collecting and assembling the work could be discussed in detail, explaining how the problems were overcome. Particularly good sections of work could be discussed, indicating the better areas and explaining how the good results came about. Practical suggestions could be made for improvements or alternative ways of approaching the study in the sections where the work is weaker.

Do candidates need to include photographs of their chosen child?

No, it is not necessary to include photographs. If these are included then there should be a small number only and they should only be used if they are relevant to the child/area being studied and clearly support part of the text. They should not be included to simply make the coursework more attractive.

Care needs to be taken to preserve the confidentiality of the child and its family by not including surnames, addresses, etc. The parents of the child must always give permission for the use of photographs in the study.

Should candidates include work produced by the child?

It is possible to include work produced by the child but this is not essential. If it is included, only a small number of pieces should be presented in the work and only if they are relevant to the chosen area of study. The work should be clearly labelled explaining why it has been included and it should be referred to and interpreted within the text.

How many marks should be awarded for final presentation of the Child Study or the product for the Practical Investigation?

The mark scheme in the syllabus indicates how many marks should be allocated to each section. For example, in the section on Planning of the Study for the Child Study, one of the three allocated marks should be for the final presentation of the information in an acceptable report format. There are six marks available in the Application section of the Practical Investigation for the final product.

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