gradenutter
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According to the evidence given by Dame Glenys Stacey at the Select Committee hearing on 2 September, exam grades are reliable to "one grade either way". So ABB really means "any grades from A*AA to BCC". What use is that? What action is Ofqual taking so that the summer 2021 grades are fully reliable and trustworthy, and that a certificate showing ABB really means ABB and nothing else?
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Theloniouss
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I'd be interested to see this evidence
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tinygirl96
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gradenutter
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(Original post by Theloniouss)
I'd be interested to see this evidence
Yes... thank you. The statement by Ofqual's boss, Dame Glenys Stacey, is her answer to question 1059 here: https://committees.parliament.uk/oralevidence/790/pdf/. The answer to question 997 is "interesting" too.

"Reliable to one grade either way" is in fact code for "On average, 1 exam grade in every 4 is wrong, and has been wrong for years" - which is about 1.5 million wrong grades every year.

The evidence for that is here https://rethinkingassessment.com/ret...e-exam-grades/, and also here https://www.hepi.ac.uk/2019/02/25/1-...the-good-news/, with everything going back to Ofqual's measurements of grade reliability published in Figure 12 here https://assets.publishing.service.go...FINAL64492.pdf.

"1 grade in 4 is wrong" is true, and based on Ofqual's own research. But not many people have read that research - why would they? - so very few people, especially students and teachers, know about it. And unless Ofqual do something to fix this, 1.5 million grades will be wrong in summer 2021 too...
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Tolgash
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It's always been like this. If they didn't change it when things were normal, what makes you think they'd change it for an exceptional exam series?

However, I am so glad that someone is finally bringing this to light.
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Theloniouss
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Grades are not always accurate, but universities can be lenient and might consider your UMS. I don't really think there's a solution to this other than students who need a grade working harder.
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gradenutter
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(Original post by Tolgash)
It's always been like this. If they didn't change it when things were normal, what makes you think they'd change it for an exceptional exam series?

However, I am so glad that someone is finally bringing this to light.
Hi Tolgash - Thank you. Yes, it has been like this for a long time. And in 2016, Ofqual deliberately took steps to cover it up, as explained here https://www.hepi.ac.uk/2020/08/08/we...orporate-plan/. But it is easy to fix - https://www.hepi.ac.uk/2019/07/16/st...do-you-prefer/

(Original post by Theloniouss)
Grades are not always accurate, but universities can be lenient and might consider your UMS. I don't really think there's a solution to this other than students who need a grade working harder.
Actually, the UMS score is unreliable too - and it's the unreliability in the UMS score that drives the unreliability in the grade. Working harder is, arguably, a good thing to do, but the "system" can still get you - especially for a subject like History where about half the awarded grades are wrong. There are easier, and more practical, ways to deliver reliable grades - here are 22 of them - https://www.hepi.ac.uk/2019/07/16/st...do-you-prefer/ - with some being better than others.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Theloniouss)
Grades are not always accurate, but universities can be lenient and might consider your UMS. I don't really think there's a solution to this other than students who need a grade working harder.
There is no UMS in the linear A levels - at least you can get grades reviewed which was not even available in the past.
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Theloniouss
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(Original post by gradenutter)
Actually, the UMS score is unreliable too - and it's the unreliability in the UMS score that drives the unreliability in the grade. Working harder is, arguably, a good thing to do, but the "system" can still get you - especially for a subject like History where about half the awarded grades are wrong. There are easier, and more practical, ways to deliver reliable grades - here are 22 of them - https://www.hepi.ac.uk/2019/07/16/st...do-you-prefer/ - with some being better than others.
Yes, but UMS is reliable to a lesser extent because of the greater range of possible values. A difference of 3 marks that amounts to one grade is a change of 14%, but 3 marks that amounts to 3 UMS is a change of closer to 1%. It makes the difference smaller.

Those solutions are not terribly unreasonable, but the article doesn't talk about their characteristics wrt anything but making grades more accurate. None of them are really more practical, though?
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Theloniouss
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(Original post by Muttley79)
There is no UMS in the linear A levels - at least you can get grades reviewed which was not even available in the past.
UMS meaning your actual mark (that might not be the right word but that's what it says when you get your results).
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gradenutter
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(Original post by Theloniouss)
Yes, but UMS is reliable to a lesser extent because of the greater range of possible values. A difference of 3 marks that amounts to one grade is a change of 14%, but 3 marks that amounts to 3 UMS is a change of closer to 1%. It makes the difference smaller.

Those solutions are not terribly unreasonable, but the article doesn't talk about their characteristics wrt anything but making grades more accurate. None of them are really more practical, though?
The issue with the UMS is not the UMS itself, but the likelihood that you would get a (quite different) UMS had your script been marked by a different examiner. And it's the difference between the UMS's attributable to different examiners that is the fundamental cause of the unreliability of the grades on your certificate.

Right now, grades are very unreliable - about 1 in 4 is wrong. So making grades more reliable is, I believe, fundamentally a 'good thing'. And yes, many of them are very practical and easy to implement, especially any of numbers 10 to 22.
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Tolgash
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(Original post by gradenutter)
The issue with the UMS is not the UMS itself, but the likelihood that you would get a (quite different) UMS had your script been marked by a different examiner. And it's the difference between the UMS's attributable to different examiners that is the fundamental cause of the unreliability of the grades on your certificate.
I believe reviews of marking are a little different to the old appeals process: now, a senior examiner simply checks if the mark scheme has been applied correctly before any changes rather than marking the piece from scratch. Thus, if an answer was rightfully placed in level three of the mark scheme, but it was in the middle, and the pupil merely needed an extra mark (taking it to the top of the level), they wouldn't receive it as the mark scheme was applied correctly. Before, another examiner could have easily given the pupil an extra mark to increase their grade. It's tougher these days.
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gradenutter
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(Original post by Tolgash)
I believe reviews of marking are a little different to the old appeals process: now, a senior examiner simply checks if the mark scheme has been applied correctly before any changes rather than marking the piece from scratch. Thus, if an answer was rightfully placed in level three of the mark scheme, but it was in the middle, and the pupil merely needed an extra mark (taking it to the top of the level), they wouldn't receive it as the mark scheme was applied correctly. Before, another examiner could have easily given the pupil an extra mark to increase their grade. It's tougher these days.
Toglash - thank you, you are absolutely right. Since 2016, the grounds for appeal - and for a re-mark - have been very much narrowed, and made more technical. Ofqual made it harder to appeal - or, too borrow your word, "tougher". Much tougher.
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gradenutter
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(Original post by gradenutter)
Toglash - thank you, you are absolutely right. Since 2016, the grounds for appeal - and for a re-mark - have been very much narrowed, and made more technical. Ofqual made it harder to appeal - or, too borrow your word, "tougher". Much tougher.
oops...my apologies... I meant Tolgash of course!
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Compost
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(Original post by gradenutter)
Toglash - thank you, you are absolutely right. Since 2016, the grounds for appeal - and for a re-mark - have been very much narrowed, and made more technical. Ofqual made it harder to appeal - or, too borrow your word, "tougher". Much tougher.
In theory that's true, but in practice I've seen just as many grades change under reviews of marking post-2016 as prior to that, (Appeals are something else and very rare).
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Compost
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(Original post by Theloniouss)
UMS meaning your actual mark (that might not be the right word but that's what it says when you get your results).
UMS has not existed for the majority of subjects in the UK since 2017 (A levels) and 2018 (GCSEs) and now does not exist at all. They are just marks.
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Tolgash
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(Original post by Compost)
UMS has not existed for the majority of subjects in the UK since 2017 (A levels) and 2018 (GCSEs) and now does not exist at all. They are just marks.
They also haven't existed for many subjects since 2016 at AS Level. They feel outmoded at this point.
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