National 5 Graphic Communication
The National 5 Graphic Communication Course enables learners to develop skills in graphic communication techniques, including the use of equipment, graphics materials and software. Learners extend and apply knowledge and understanding of graphic communication standards, protocols and conventions, and develop an understanding of the impact of graphic communication technologies on our environment and society.
Updates and announcements
- October 2016 subject update (277 KB)
- May 2016 subject update (193 KB)
- October 2015 subject update (319 KB)
- August 2015 subject update (National 4 - National 5 - Higher) (90 KB) (94 KB)
- May 2015 subject update (191 KB)
- January 2015 subject update - Advanced Higher (391 KB)
- September 2014 Technologies subject update (157 KB)
- Special Edition Update June 2014 (152 KB)
- September 2013 update letter
Changes to assessment in the National 5 course from session 2017-18
Following the Deputy First Minister’s announcement that units and unit assessments will be removed from National 5 to Advanced Higher courses, we are strengthening the course assessment to ensure it covers the full content of the course.
The following summary provides a quick look at what is needed to strengthen the course assessment in your National 5 course. These changes will take effect from session 2017-18 onwards. More detailed information will be provided in the revised Course Specifications, which will be available by the end of April 2017.
Changes to coursework
The assignment will be externally assessed by SQA and as a result the nature and structure of the assignment will change. The marks awarded for the assignment will reduce from 60 marks to 40 marks and the assignment will be shortened and modified to reflect this.
The assignment will now be worth 33% of the course assessment.
The assignment will be shortened and modified to reflect the reduction in marks from 60 to 40 and the reduced contribution of the assignment to the overall course assessment.
Changes to exam
The question paper will be extended to include more questions and the number of available marks will increase from 60 marks to 80 marks. The duration of the exam will therefore also increase.
The exam will now be worth 67% of the course assessment.
Reasons for these changes
The question paper is being extended to ensure it samples a greater amount of course content, following the removal of units.
External assessment of the assignment will address workload issues for teachers and address issues relating to the reliability of marking.
The weighting (%) of the question paper and coursework has been adjusted to enhance the reliability of the course assessment.
This explains the overall structure of the Course, including its purpose and aims and information on the skills, knowledge and understanding that will be developed.
Course Assessment Specification
This explains the structure of the Course assessment; including the type and method of assessment. It also includes information on Course coverage.
These provide an outline of what each Unit will cover within the Course and detail the Outcomes and Assessment Standards.
Advice and guidance
Course and Unit Support Notes
These provide advice and guidance for teachers/lecturers on learning, teaching and assessment within the Course and its Units.
The following document contains the Course Support Notes and the Unit Support Notes for this Course. They can be printed together or separately.
Past Papers and Marking Instructions
Specimen Question Papers and Marking Instructions
These illustrate the standard, structure and requirements of the question papers learners will sit. These also include marking instructions.
- Graphic Communication Specimen Question Paper National 5
- September 2015
- Question Paper Brief - National 5 Graphic Communication
National Parent Forum Scotland have also produced their Revision in a Nutshell series to help learners to prepare for new National 5 examinations.
General assessment information provides instructions for the conduct of coursework, an overview of the assessment task, evidence to be gathered and general marking instructions.
Coursework assessment tasks provide the live assessment task, including marking instructions and instructions for candidates. Teachers/lecturers can access these confidential documents through their SQA Co-ordinator.
Unit Assessment Support
These documents contain details of Unit assessment task(s), show approaches to gathering evidence and how the evidence can be judged against the Outcomes and Assessment Standards. Teachers/lecturers can arrange access to these confidential documents through their SQA Co-ordinator.
Understanding Standards materials
We are publishing examples of candidate evidence with commentaries as part of our Understanding Standards programme. These materials are for teachers and lecturers to help them develop their understanding of the standards required for assessment. As these materials become available, they are being published in the following locations:
- Available from our secure website Materials relating to Unit assessment, internally assessed components of Course assessment, and externally assessed components of Course assessment which are subject to visiting assessment. Teachers and lecturers can arrange access to these materials through their SQA Co-ordinator.
- Available from our Understanding Standards website Materials relating to externally assessed components of Course assessment, with the exception of those subject to visiting assessment.
More information on our Understanding Standards programme, can be found on our Understanding Standards page.
Verification and Course Reports
- Graphic Communication Verification Key Messages
- 2014 National 5 Graphic Communication Course Report
- 2015 National 5 Graphic Communication Course Report
- Graphic Communication Verification Key Messages
- 2016 National 5 Graphic Communication Course Report
- Graphic Communications Verification Key Messages