Explaining the new GCSE grading system
In past years GCSE grades were awarded through letters – with an A* being the highest GCSE grade and a G the lowest. The grade that was usually accepted by Colleges for progression to the next level of qualification was a C, although some courses – especially A level courses – would require students to obtain a B or higher.
The new grading system
The new system of GCSE grades uses numbers – ranging from 1 (the lowest) to 9 (the highest). The new grading system will start to be used to report GCSE results from summer 2017. In the summer GCSE examination of 2017 only English (Language and Literature) and Mathematics will be reported as numbers – whilst all other GCSE subjects will be reported as grades. This of course means that for these students internal examinations and reports will carry these number grades for these subjects during the students’ three years in KS4.
What happens beyond summer 2017?
In examinations after 2017 GCSE results in all subjects will be reported as number grades. Other qualifications – such as BTEC and Cambridge Nationals – will continue to be reported as Pass, Merit and Distinction (or Distinction*) at either Level 1 or Level 2. Level 2 remains the standard required for progress onto a course at College at a higher level than GCSE.
What grade is equivalent to the old GCSE grade C?
The old GCSE grades and new number grades can be broadly compared – although exact comparisons may depend on the subject. As a rough guide a low C grade is equivalent to a 4, whilst a middle or upper C grade is equivalent to a 5.
This may mean that Colleges may require students to have at least a grade 5 to progress to the next level of qualification after GCSE.
Post Results Service
Following the release of results Awarding Bodies offer a Post Result Service – Review of Results (RoRs).
If a student feels they have not achieved as well as expected in a particular subject, on results day Senior Members of staff will be available to discuss this and outline what the options are. Please be aware that there may be a charge for this service and we must have signed consent for us to carry out any RoRs. The Awarding Bodies have strict deadlines and will not except any after this fixed date - currently the 20th September for the summer series of exams.
It must be noted that if a Review of Marking is carried out then marks can be lowered, stay the same or increased which can result in a grade change higher or lower than originally released.
Full details can be discussed with Senior Members of staff or the Examination Officer.
Internal Appeals Policy