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Regulator looks at maths A-level last year to see if grade boundaries were too high

Students who took maths A-level last summer may get results changed as regulator probes whether grade boundaries were set too high

  • Grades for the reformed maths A-level were awarded for the first time last year 
  • A small group of 2,000 students handed results, compared to 91,895 in 2019 
  • Ofqual said it was looking at why grade boundaries were so different each year 

Students who sat a maths A-level last summer could see their results changed after England’s exam regulator announced it was looking at whether grade boundaries were set too high. 

Grades for the reformed A-level were awarded for the first time last year, with just a small group of 2,000 students handed results, compared to 91,895 in 2019. 

Leaked documents for this year’s exam showed that just 165 out of 300 marks were needed to achieve an A grade compared to 184 marks (61 per cent) last year. 

Grades for the reformed A-level were awarded for the first time last year, with just a small group of 2,000 students handed results, compared to 91,895 this year. Stock image  

Ofqual said it was examining the ‘significant shifts in exam boards grade boundaries’, which it called ‘unusual’. 

The regulator said it was confident the grades awarded this year were ‘sound’, so the investigation would instead focus on last year’s exams. 

Ofqual said: ‘We want to understand why the grade boundaries were so different between the two years.

‘We will investigate the full range of evidence from 2018 and 2019 that is now available.  

‘While the 2018 grade boundaries seemed appropriate at the time, given the difference between the 2018 and 2019 grade boundaries, we asked the exam boards to look again at last year’s awards before publishing this year’s results.

‘None of the exam boards believed there was compelling evidence to re-open its 2018 award.’

The regulator’s investigation was first reported by the Times Educational Supplement (TES).

Representatives of the exam boards have insisted there was no problem with last year’s results. 

Ofqual said: 'We want to understand why the grade boundaries were so different between the two years'

Ofqual said: ‘We want to understand why the grade boundaries were so different between the two years’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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