Why do people get bad grades at GCSE/A level? Watch

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Pro Crastination
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#61
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#61
(Original post by Jimbo1234)
Nope, they can't.
The reality is that most people are stupid. Why do you think the Sun newspaper is the best selling newspaper, and the Daily Mail the most visited news website?
You see, I think this is what is wrong with society and its attitudes towards intelligence. This assumption that people are, and always will be, cognitively 'slow', that there's no point working hard at school because of that 'fact', creates a self-fulfilling prophecy.

That's why it frustrates me that people are attacking people who agree with the OP argument by claiming that "not everyone is intelligent." Exams are not easy, getting these A*/A grades is not easy for the majority of those who do so; it is easy to become frustrated with that one person in your class that gets straight As without much apparent effort, but considering only them is discounting the others who have worked really hard. I do not consider myself to be spectacularly 'bright', I simply count myself lucky that I haven't been brought round to think that that understanding will prevent me from achieving - it just means that I have to work a little harder than some, and that's not the end of the world.
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Zoelle
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#62
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(Original post by Pro Crastination)
The existence of higher and foundation papers are a disgraceful example of this streaming of expectations. It's really not fair that people should be told they are incapable of achieving a B or an A grade, so they must sit an exam where such grades cannot even be obtained.
omg i agree so much with this, i think it should be turned into just one paper
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TheBigJosh
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#63
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#63
Some people just aren't intelligent

(Not me though, obviously)
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victoryrose
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#64
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I used to be a consistently A grade student - Now I'm on target for a C in A Level Biology because I did horribly in my practical coursework (lack of preparation, didn't really know what I was doing etc.) and even if I get 80% in the exams I'll only get a mid-low B. Sometimes it really just is issues like that. And ofc, mental health and other factors which have certainly affected my grades - at the beginning of this year I was on target for all As and am now more likely to come out with ABCC at best due to some pretty extreme conditions. I accept that cases like mine are the minority but there are probably still plenty of less "extreme" cases that lead to "bad grades" in spite of the person having worked hard.
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CuthbertTheSlug
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#65
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I was predicted As, Bs and Cs at GCSE, (I moved school and my first secondary school didn't pass on my SATs scores) but achieved As and A*s. I can see why people get lower grades due to statistics - if you are predicted a lower grade, you are normally in a lower set and therefore won't strive for more than your TMG.

The only reason I got good grades was because I did my homework and revised really hard! I also wanted to prove some of my teachers wrong (hehe)... determination is what makes an A/A* student really.
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CuthbertTheSlug
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#66
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However, we all have bad days. Hey, I got an E in my first physics exam - I was so shocked and scared of failure, I got an A* the second time round...
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Pro Crastination
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#67
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determination is what makes an A/A* student really.
This is exactly the point I have been making.
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lucissa
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#68
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Agree with this about GCSEs but seriously A Level French is awful. I won't get more than a C/B.

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applicant2014
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#69
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-Lack of interest/motivation
-bullying issues
-too high of expectation
-failing coping system
-mental or health problem
-intellectually impaired or having any other related disorders
-bad environment
-discouraging lecturers
-bad influence from peers etc

It's really simple to explain why people get bad grades at GCSEs/A-levels.
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Jimbo1234
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#70
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(Original post by Pro Crastination)
You see, I think this is what is wrong with society and its attitudes towards intelligence. This assumption that people are, and always will be, cognitively 'slow', that there's no point working hard at school because of that 'fact', creates a self-fulfilling prophecy.

That's why it frustrates me that people are attacking people who agree with the OP argument by claiming that "not everyone is intelligent." Exams are not easy, getting these A*/A grades is not easy for the majority of those who do so; it is easy to become frustrated with that one person in your class that gets straight As without much apparent effort, but considering only them is discounting the others who have worked really hard. I do not consider myself to be spectacularly 'bright', I simply count myself lucky that I haven't been brought round to think that that understanding will prevent me from achieving - it just means that I have to work a little harder than some, and that's not the end of the world.
Implying intelligence has nothing to do with nature or nurture, merely needs a happy spin on it? Pahahaha! This has made my morning!
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acciolucy
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#71
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(Original post by Amy is the best)
The vast majority of people become ensnared by other vices such as relationships, jobs and such and so 'revising' becomes the least of their priorities. Only those people who are truly devoted succeed or those people who's life is quite empty, for whatever reason, such that revision becomes the only reason for their existence.
I personally don't really something like a relationship or work excuses someone for being lazy/unorganised and not doing school work. Plenty of people in my sixth form are in relationships and/or work, but there are still people who do both and revise, and people who doing absolutely nothing afterschool/in frees, resultin in not so great grades.

Most people in my classes (bio Chem and maths) are realistically aiming for A/A* and everyone works or is in a relationship.

If people honestly can't cope with doing both they really need to improve their organisation skills and pull their finger out.
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Iman.Gov
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#72
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(Original post by Pro Crastination)
Here's a controversial thread concept that just popped into my head. I'm not sure I agree with it myself, but, admittedly, the thought has arisen in my mind on a couple of occasions in the past. I hope the TSR community will be split on this.

Opening argument:

I can understand when people can't quite make the A/A* grade because of a silly mistake or two during an exam, and slip to a B/A because of it. However, what I can't understand is how people can be content with, or even proclaim they "aspire to reach" a C grade, as if that's some sort of huge achievement.

What I have found with my A levels and GCSEs is that to score an A or above requires a decent amount of effort (more so in some subjects than others), but it is not anything harder than would be expected on a regular basis during one's working life. Why, then, do a good proportion of people simply excuse themselves by claiming they're "just not that clever" and settle for mediocre grades by putting minimal amounts of effort in?

"But some people want to have a life!" I suppose this would be the immediate counter. I'm not arguing that everyone should be aiming for 95+ UMS and practicing to ace their Oxbridge interview as soon as they hit secondary school. All I'm saying is that the vast majority of people are capable of scoring in range of AAA-ABB at A level (one can easily lead a healthy social life with these aspirations) the willingness is simply not there, however. That is what I find so alien.

So yeah, who would agree with that? Who would disagree?
I guess some people were capped by teachers to mediocre so meeting targets rather than succeeding to them must be how they save disappointment but so many people I know do try so hard and constantly get the C maybe the odd B so thats what they aspire to, as a way to cope
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Iman.Gov
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#73
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(Original post by bertstare)
Blaming teachers for poor GCSE performance is the saddest cop out argument you'll ever hear. A CGP textbook which is about 50 pages long is more than enough to get an A or A*, and I'm sure you don't need a teacher to read and memorise a CGP book
Or apply that knowledge and exam technique
Knowledge is not what seperates A*/A from B/C it is the exam technique that is harder to self teach and memorizing a CGP book does nothing for that.
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Iman.Gov
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#74
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(Original post by aspirinpharmacist)
-Health problems
-Family problems
-Lack of confidence
-Crippling exam anxiety
-Bullying
-Countless other things that can affect how someone studies.

I know a lot of people at school who worked just as hard as I did for exams, if not harder and got lower grades than me, I liked school and for the most part I liked studying and stuff made sense to me. I wasn't one of the cool kids and doing well at school was pretty much what I based my self-worth on, which isn't healthy, but it was basically my reason for studying :lol: If you're constantly being told you're 'not that academic' it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, you don't believe you're capable of getting higher grades so you don't engage as much.

Edit: Relating to something another poster said, when I say health problems I'm including mental health problems. That stuff can totally knock you out.
Thank you not many people realize that yes the difference between A*/A and C is studying but no one ever considers that people don't study because they can't at home their home life is too turbulent to get through a past paper or their health hinders them
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StrangeBanana
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#75
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(Original post by PsychadelicScarf)
I took twelve GCSE's, and came out with one B, seven C's and four D's. I'm proud of that, seeing as I had only just (literally a few weeks before the exams), found out I was dyslexic. Not massivly, but enough for it to have impacted. I don't understand things all that well, and become easily frustrated when I don't get them. I'm also terrible at coursework.
Don't blame your poor grades on dyslexia. If you got bad grades, it's because you didn't work hard enough.
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Pro Crastination
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#76
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(Original post by Jimbo1234)
Implying intelligence has nothing to do with nature or nurture, merely needs a happy spin on it? Pahahaha! This has made my morning!
Intelligence, to me, is a muscle you exercise and build up. I don't believe people have preordained limitations to their cognative abilities. Rather, their environment (as has been said), their mental and physical health (also has been said), and their degree of motivation, become determinants as to how much of this potential is fulfilled.

By age 16/18, are these factors fully engrained within the individual? (If so, you may have a justification for a belief in 'natural intelligence'.) I don't know, but I'd hope not.

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Old_Simon
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#77
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(Original post by Zoelle)
omg i agree so much with this, i think it should be turned into just one paper
So many educationalists are opposed to streaming of any kind - and by extension to Grammar Schools. Yet the Foundation exams are exactly that. A lower exam for people with lower capabilities. Doesn't make sense.
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historyandlanz
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#78
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PsychadelicScarf
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#79
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(Original post by buchanan700)
Sorry if I came across stand-offish by ranting, had to get it off my chest

It means "quoted for truth"
Haha, its all good

Ty
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PsychadelicScarf
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#80
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(Original post by tehforum)
ha

you found out you were dyslexic, aptly, a few weeks before your exams, so you use that as a whitewash excuse for your performance.
Wow. You really come across as an arrogant sod.

My mother always suspected it, but got told by my teachers that I didn't have it. She finally pushed for a test when I was in year 11, so if I was, I would be able to get the exam concessions.
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