Consultation outcome

Setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England: 2017 & 2018

This consultation has concluded

Download the full outcome

Decisions on setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England - part 2

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Equalities impact assessment: setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England – part 2

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Detail of outcome

We have decided that:

  1. The first award of all new GCSEs will be based primarily on statistical predictions with examiner judgement playing a secondary role. A modified approach, based on a wider range of information, will be used where needed because of the size and nature of the candidature.
  2. The grade standard established in the first award will be carried forward in the second and subsequent years.
  3. The same approach will be used for the first awards of grades 1 to 7 in all new GCSEs as has already been confirmed for new GCSEs in English language, English literature and maths. This approach uses key reference points between current (alphabetical) and new (numerical) grades to set grade standards in the new qualifications.
  4. The ‘tailored’ approach’ will be used to set standards for grades 8 and 9 in all new GCSEs in the first year they are awarded, including English language, English literature and maths.
  5. The standard established in the first award for grades 8 and 9 will be carried forward in the second and subsequent years.

Feedback received

Analysis of responses to our consultation on setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England – part 2

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Detail of feedback received

The majority of respondents agreed or strongly agreed with our proposals, which were:

  1. That the first award of new GCSEs will be based primarily on statistical predictions, with examiner judgement playing a secondary role. A modified approach based on a wider range of information and with less reliance on statistics will be used where appropriate.
  2. To the award of new GCSEs in the second and subsequent years: to carry forward the grade standard established in the first award.
  3. To adopt the same approach to the first award of grades 1 to 7 in all new GCSEs as that which we have confirmed will be adopted for new GCSEs in English language, English literature and maths.
  4. To adopt the ‘tailored approach’ to awarding grade 9 in subjects to be awarded from summer 2018.
  5. To also adopt the ‘tailored approach’ to awarding grade 9 in English language, English literature and maths from summer 2017.

Just under half of the respondents (49%) agreed or strongly agreed with our proposal to base the award of grade 9 in the second and subsequent years on the standard set in the first award. 30% disagreed with this proposal. The remaining 21% neither agreed nor disagreed.

Original consultation

Summary

Proposals on grade standards for GCSEs being awarded from 2018, and grades 8 and 9 in maths, English language and English literature from 2017.

This consultation ran from
to

Consultation description

We are seeking views on our proposals for setting grade standards for new GCSEs. This consultation follows on from our earlier consultation on ‘Setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England’.

In September 2014 we announced our decisions about the awarding of new GCSEs in English language, English literature and mathematics which will be first awarded in summer 2017.

We are now consulting on the approach to be taken in all other subjects. We are also consulting on a change to our previous decisions for English language, English literature and mathematics, about how grades 8 and 9 are set.

Our proposals are designed to protect students taking the new qualifications, particularly in the first year when teachers will be less familiar with the new content and how it is assessed. We want to minimise unexpected or unfair outcomes for students in the transition to the new GCSEs.

Documents

Setting the grade standards of new GCSEs in England – part 2

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Published 22 April 2016
Last updated 7 September 2016 + show all updates
  1. Published the decisions and analysis of responses.
  2. First published.