Record A Level Results - but are exams getting easier? Watch

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Icarus
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Just heard the headlines;

"Record A Level Results - but are exams getting easier?"

To say this statement annoys me is putting it politely.
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Seven Sevens
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Nope.
We are getting cleverer.
They just do not want to admit it.
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Leekey
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(Original post by Icarus)
Just heard the headlines;

"Record A Level Results - but are exams getting easier?"

To say this statement annoys me is putting it politely.

In my experience anyone who has an A-level automatically assumes that standards are slipping if ANYONE undert the age of 20 has one. I often wonder if the media would like a nation of uneducated people, although would they have anything left to write about??
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Icarus
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(Original post by Leekey)
In my experience anyone who has an A-level automatically assumes that standards are slipping if ANYONE undert the age of 20 has one. I often wonder if the media would like a nation of uneducated people, although would they have anything left to write about??
Exactly, it's so irritating when you work extremely hard for almost two years, get some top A Levels only to come home to the news that critics say it's easier. These critics are probably well respected in their field of work (er... to criticise) but I'm guessing they feel frightened of the potential of future students.
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Koloth
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We clearly need to bite back with our own witty and silly headlines. I'll start first:

"The News industry has grown - are standards of journalism slipping?"
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Seven Sevens
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I agree with the idea that we get higher grades overall due to retakes but retakes are essential.They show someones true potential.Its not fair to judge a persons understanding on one day.They may have had a bad day or a bad exam like P3 edexhell.Also, if someone fails miserably both times then the student cant complain.
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Seven Sevens
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(Original post by Koloth)
We clearly need to bite back with our own witty and silly headlines. I'll start first:

"The News industry has grown - are standards of journalism slipping?"

That is excellent
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Icarus
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(Original post by Seven Sevens)
I agree with the idea that we get higher grades overall due to retakes but retakes are essential.They show someones true potential.Its not fair to judge a persons understanding on one day.They may have had a bad day or a bad exam like P3 edexhell.Also, if someone fails miserably both times then the student cant complain.
If driving tests had no retakes, the roads would be much quieter!
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Seven Sevens
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(Original post by Icarus)
If driving tests had no retakes, the roads would be much quieter!
Good one.But I guess they would rather have more car pollution in the atmosphere than more students in Unis.
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Surfing Hamster
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The fact is, with the new AS levels, tutors are becoming more 'in tune' with just how to gain the maximum marks, and how to deliver lessons.

We also have tons of material available these days to help us revise for our subject - not only in the form of books and revision guides, but also online in forums such as these.

Combined with the fact that schools and colleges arrange more 'extra curricular' visits and so forth to supplement our learning, is it really surprising?! This means students are gaining a better understanding of their subjects and are able to perform better in them.

There's so many factors to take into consideration that I think the media's being very unfair to students regarding the whole situation.
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Icarus
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(Original post by Seven Sevens)
Good one.But I guess they would rather have more car pollution in the atmosphere than more students in Unis.
Hmmm... we should all run on mopeds and motorbikes...
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It'sPhil...
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Surely standards are slipping. This year there is something like a 97% pass rate. That is ridiculous - I don't wish failure on anyone but it defeats the point of grading to have exams where almost everyone passes. Also increasingly Universities are upping their entry requirements. Imperial used to ask for BBB for Computer swcience 15 years ago. Now they ask for AAA at least. Also the magic 'A' grade is becoming devalued in many subjects. Evidence of this is that many top Universities (not just Oxbridge) ask for STEP, AEA or Interview exams to be taken because of the range of abilities that can acheive an A.

I am annoyed, not because the media claims standards are slipping, but because in my view they are. My hard work is being devalued for the sake of Government targets.
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Seven Sevens
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Maybe they should introduce the A* Grade. I would have worked harder if I knew you could get that.
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Icarus
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(Original post by It'sPhil...)
Surely standards are slipping. This year there is something like a 97% pass rate. That is ridiculous - I don't wish failure on anyone but it defeats the point of grading to have exams where almost everyone passes. Also increasingly Universities are upping their entry requirements. Imperial used to ask for BBB for Computer swcience 15 years ago. Now they ask for AAA at least. Also the magic 'A' grade is becoming devalued in many subjects. Evidence of this is that many top Universities (not just Oxbridge) ask for STEP, AEA or Interview exams to be taken because of the range of abilities that can acheive an A.

I am annoyed, not because the media claims standards are slipping, but because in my view they are. My hard work is being devalued for the sake of Government targets.
They ask for AAB for BSc, AAA for masters I think. To be honest, some subjects are easier than others; even my previous Physics lecturer said that she found Physucs challenging, Maths okay and her other two subjects too easy. And that was 10-15 years ago.
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Seven Sevens
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Science subjects cant be getting easier with a whole load more to learn with new discoveries ect.I feel sorry for the science students of 1000 years time.
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Icarus
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(Original post by Seven Sevens)
Science subjects cant be getting easier with a whole load more to learn with new discoveries ect.I feel sorry for the science students of 1000 years time.
That's certainly true for Physics, where there was a whole chunk on ew discoveries (new being the past 100 years or so), but in other sciences, like A Level Computing (which to be honest barely qualifies, on name alone) the new stuff barely fills a few pages.
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(Original post by Seven Sevens)
Maybe they should introduce the A* Grade. I would have worked harder if I knew you could get that.
No, why do we have to constantly seperate very good from very very good. It is fine how it is.
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i don't think tests are easy unless u understand the structure of it or u r just generally good at the subj. for example, i get A* in my GCSE geography coursework and then a D in my test! A levels must be worse though!
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Xenon
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(Original post by Seven Sevens)
I agree with the idea that we get higher grades overall due to retakes but retakes are essential.They show someones true potential.Its not fair to judge a persons understanding on one day.They may have had a bad day or a bad exam like P3 edexhell.Also, if someone fails miserably both times then the student cant complain.
The bugging thing is for those who did the ROGUE P3 paper cannot retake that module, unless they delay going to uni. Around how many people in the country in 3 percent?
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Koloth
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(Original post by It'sPhil...)
Surely standards are slipping. This year there is something like a 97% pass rate. That is ridiculous - I don't wish failure on anyone but it defeats the point of grading to have exams where almost everyone passes. Also increasingly Universities are upping their entry requirements. Imperial used to ask for BBB for Computer swcience 15 years ago. Now they ask for AAA at least. Also the magic 'A' grade is becoming devalued in many subjects. Evidence of this is that many top Universities (not just Oxbridge) ask for STEP, AEA or Interview exams to be taken because of the range of abilities that can acheive an A.

I am annoyed, not because the media claims standards are slipping, but because in my view they are. My hard work is being devalued for the sake of Government targets.
I just wanted to point out one possible error in your argument. Universities upping their entry requirements do not necessarily mean standards are droping. The pass rate could be increasing due to other factors like teaching quality, resources, social attitudes, increased opputunitiesetc...
In any case, aren't univerisities going to boost their requirements if more people are achieveing the higher grades? They are still going to have a finite number of places available and there going to want the best of those applicants filling those places.
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