Introduction to Higher and Advanced Higher
Courses in Cantonese and Mandarin
7th May 2009
Radisson Hotel, Glasgow
Janet Brown
Chief Executive SQA
Jim McDonald
Qualifications Manager
NQ Languages
Aims of the Event
 To familiarise delegates with structure and
delivery of Courses
 To explore approaches to assessment of
 To build on experience/knowledge of
delivery of Courses at Access 3,
Intermediate 1 & 2
Outline of the Event
 Background
 Presentation
 Workshop
Melany Lu Lin
Principal Assessor
Intermediate 1 & 2
Head of Chinese,
Eton College
Developments Since May 08
 Students undertaking and completing National
Courses at Access 3, Intermediate 1 & 2
 Practitioners engaging with delivery of the
Courses and sharing experience
 Practitioner experience will inform and enrich
today’s workshop tasks
Overview of the National Course
A Course Award ( A/B/C/D) is made on the
basis of successful completion of both:
 Unit Assessments (internal assessment
conducted and marked by teacher/lecturer)
 Course Assessment (the final external exam)
Introduction to Higher
Four skills are assessed in both Unit (internal)
and Course (external) assessment:
 Speaking
 Listening
 Reading
 Writing
Higher Courses on the Scottish Credit and
Qualifications Framework
National Course
Advanced Higher
Intermediate 2
Intermediate 1
Access 3
Introduction to Higher
Two Units are assessed at this level:
 Mandatory Language Unit (80 hours)
 Optional Unit:
- Extended Reading and Viewing*
- Language in Work*
*Candidates choose one of these Units (40 hours)
Units: Internal Assessment
Language Unit:
 Reading : One text of 500-600 characters. Approx. 40
 Listening: One dialogue of approx. 3 minutes, assessed
in approx. 30 mins.
 Questions for both assesments in English
Units: Internal Assessment (cont.)
Optional Unit: Extended Reading and Viewing
 Writing: One essay of approx. 120-200
characters, on one aspect of the text(s) studied
Optional Unit : Language in Work
 Writing: Two letters of 120–200 characters and
one message of 60-100 characters
Internal Unit Assessment: National
Assessment Bank (NAB)
 NAB assessment items will be available for the
Language Unit and the Optional Units
 The NABs indicate the standard of assessments
required at this level
 NABs can be downloaded by SQA coordinators
Speaking Assessment
 Speaking assessed by the centre
 Assessment guidance included in NABs
 This Speaking Assessment also meets the speaking
requirement of the external examination (dual
 The assessment consists of a presentation, and then a
follow-up discussion
 Assessment results are subject to
Verification by SQA
External Examination
Paper I : Reading and Directed Writing
 1 text of 650-800 characters
 Questions in English
 Word list provided
 Dictionary : yes
Directed Writing
 Task based on a scenario given in English
OVERALL TIME FOR PAPER : 2hrs. 10 mins.
External Examination
Paper II : Listening and Short Essay
 One dialogue of approx. 4.5 minutes
 Dialogue heard twice
 Questions in English
 Dictionary : yes
Short Essay:
 Personal Response essay in Chinese, 150-200
 Related to Listening topic
 Dictionary : yes
OVERALL TIME FOR PAPER : 1hr. 20 mins.
 All candidates for NQ Courses (including Access 3)
must be entered by a SQA Approved Centre
 Centres wishing to seek Approval should contact SQA
Customer Contact Centre at
 Centres which have sought and obtained Approval for
Access 3/Intermediate 1/2 will have automatic Approval
to deliver Higher and Advanced Higher
Workshop Activities
 Activity 1 – Familiarisation with Units
 Activity 2 – Specimen Question Paper and
construction of external examination
For more information visit
Jim McDonald
Any Questions?

Introduction to Access 3 Courses in Cantonese and Mandarin