On Wednesday, 22nd March, a group of S5/6 pupils attended the fantastic Multilingual Debate at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh.
Heriot-Watt is the only university in Scotland to offer an undergraduate degree in both interpreting and translation. The Multilingual Debate is held every year to give interpreting students an insight into how it feels to simultaneously interpret in a conference, and to allow pupils from visiting high schools the chance to experience how such debates run. Student interpreters work in and out of English, Spanish, French, German, and Chinese. This really is a fascinating event to behold, especially for all those curious about how debates like these are held within international bodies, such as the UN, the EU, and even sporting bodies like the Olympic Committee and FIFA.
In addition to the logistics of running a debate in several languages, it is also important for our pupils to witness and participate in a democratic debate. As the organisers were keen to emphasise, it is only through reasoned, open debate where all views are taken into account that a democracy can function in a healthy way.
For anyone not able to attend, you can now also watch the stream online by logging in to the site below. Have a look – it’s an eye-opener! Multilingual Debate.
All Higher and National 5 pupils are now around 75% of the way through the course, and at this stage should be using past papers to improve exam technique and identify weak areas that need more intensive revision. Teachers will soon be issuing homework entirely from past papers – if they have not already.
The SQA website keeps papers on a rolling basis for the most recent five years. However the maths department have downloaded appropriate papers going back to 2001 along with the official marking schemes. We are very happy to copy on to a memory stick for any pupil who brings one in, and this is by far the most efficient way to collect all the resources in one fell swoop.
We have nagged and cajoled since before Christmas but most students forget. We would be very grateful if you could remind your son/daughter to bring in a memory stick if this is possible. We understand this might not be feasible for all families and we can make other arrangements where necessary.
National 5 Assessments Next Session
As we stated in the senior phase course-choice booklet, the SQA has been in the process of changing assessments at National 5 to allow for the removal of mandatory unit tests after this year’s exam diet. They published these changes yesterday and you can find full details for all subjects in this spreadsheet: Changes To Assessment In N5 Courses 2017 .
These changes supersede the information given in the senior phase course-choice booklet.