NEA / Coursework Guidelines | Oxford Open Learning

NEA/Coursework Guidelines and Rules

The way that The Oxford Open Learning Trust conducts NEA (coursework) for our students is summarised below.

  • For any subject which has an NEA component, that is; A level English Language, English Literature or History and GCSE English the entry for your examination should normally be made through The Trust. We will be your “entering centre“, but only for these subjects and not any others. We will make your exam entry, you will be an OOL internal candidate (not an external or private candidate) and the fees for this will be paid to Oxford Open Learning.  The alternative to this is to sit with Tutors and Exams who will be happy to deal with your NEA.
  • For any other subject, you will enter as a private candidate at your local exam centre, where you will be an external candidate. You cannot enter through us.
  • You will not sit your written exams for NEA subjects at our centre in Oxford, you will sit them at what is known as a “host centre which is local to you, using the “transfer of entry” procedure.
  • Your host centre will be a local school, college or private tutorial college that agrees to let you sit the written exam papers with them. You will pay them directly for this. The host will not need to make an exam entry for you or have anything to do with your coursework/NEA. You find a host centre in the same way as you would find a normal exam centre, using the guidelines and information for finding exam centres on this website.
  • Our Examinations Officer has spoken to a lot of the centres shown on our exam centre finder map and many have already agreed that they will be happy to be a “host” centre for our students.
  • If you have any special needs and require access arrangements it is essential that you let Oxford Open Learning know either when you apply to join the course or immediately afterwards. The process for getting special arrangements is long and if you leave it until close to the exam, it will probably be too late.
  • The NEA tasks are detailed within your course materials. Please read the Introduction and the relevant lessons in your folder carefully. You should discuss them with your course tutor as soon as possible after starting your course and definitely before mid November. You will need to establish your choice of topic, the rules that apply and the deadlines for submission.
  • Your NEA will be marked by your tutor following strict guide lines from AQA/JCQ about the way the work must be conducted, presented, authenticated and marked. Please be aware that the more help you get from your tutor the more strict their marking has to be to compensate. This is something that you need to be aware of and understand fully. You should make yourself familiar with the JCQ document; Information for Candidates; non-examination assessments. This is important please follow the link.
  • Your tutor will have a lot more information for you about the NEA part of your course and it is important that you discuss it fully with them.
  • Please go to the “NEA or Coursework” section of where you will find more information on this topic in the form of questions and answers.

Rules for Authenticating your NEA

If your subject has a written NEA assessment then there are strict rules that you and we must abide by to satisfy the Awarding Body and JCQ.

If you do not follow these rules then your tutor will not be able to authenticate and mark your coursework/NEA.

1. You must have regular contact with your tutor by telephone and email throughout your study time (If you do not speak to your tutor until you try to submit your NEA, the tutor will be unable to accept it).

2. You must complete at least 4 Tutor Marked Assignments, a plan and a draft essay before your tutor can consider authenticating your NEA. Submitting all of your TMAs together just before, or at the same time as your NEA will not be acceptable. Please be aware that 4 TMAs is the minimum requirement for authenticating your work, it is certainly not enough to secure a good exam grade.

3. Your tutor should supervise the planning of your NEA, see at least one plan and comment on a draft essay before you submit the final work. Be aware that we check for plagiarism.

4. Your NEA and the correctly signed form(s) must be with your tutor by the OOL deadline. This is the 31st March, it is not negotiable. Do not assume that you can work to AQA’s deadline, this will be too late.

5. When you have submitted your NEA you must be able to answer in-depth questions about your ideas, your sources and how you came to your conclusions. This has to be done by telephone/Skype and not just by email. We have to be assured that the work was produced by you and not plagiarised or written by someone else ( We and AQA have various methods of checking for plagiarism and they are used rigorously).

6. Your tutor may refuse to authenticate your NEA if you break any of these rules. In this case your work will be returned to you and AQA will be informed. We may refuse to provide any further tuition and the exam board may refuse to let you sit any other exams.

7. We will inform you when we have received your NEA and also of the mark you have been awarded.

8. If you have a problem with the mark that you receive, you will be able to question the assessment procedure before exam board moderation but you may not question the mark awarded. This is covered in detail in Oxford Open Learning’s Internal Appeals Procedure.

9. The AQA moderating process which takes place after the Trust’s marking may lead to changes in your mark and this is beyond our control.




NEA/Coursework Guidelines and Rules

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