The Student Room Group

How hard will they mark Further Maths this academic year?

So quite a few people missed their uni firms for 2022/2023 entry because they missed an A* in FM due to exam boards raising the grade boundary just so that they can compensate for letting too many people in during COVID years.

Are they going to do that for this year group (2023/2024)? Just want to know how difficult it's going to be than usual to get that A*.
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by soulthm
So quite a few people missed their uni firms for 2022/2023 entry because they missed an A* in FM due to exam boards raising the grade boundary just so that they can compensate for letting too many people in during COVID years.

Are they going to do that for this year group (2023/2024)? Just want to know how difficult it's going to be than usual to get that A*.

The grade boundaries in 2022 gave MORE A*s than 2019 ... it's nothing to do with what you say.

No-one in my school missed out. The grade boundaries will be back to the same proportion of A*s [roughly] as 2019 - it depends on how well people do as the grade boundaries arent set until all papers are marked.
Original post by Muttley79
The grade boundaries in 2022 gave MORE A*s than 2019 ... it's nothing to do with what you say.

No-one in my school missed out. The grade boundaries will be back to the same proportion of A*s [roughly] as 2019 - it depends on how well people do as the grade boundaries arent set until all papers are marked.


ok, so do these exam boards just says that we want only say 10000 students to get A* this year and then fudge the boundaries? why do they do that?
Original post by soulthm
ok, so do these exam boards just says that we want only say 10000 students to get A* this year and then fudge the boundaries? why do they do that?

It's criterion marked - the criteria for an A grade are laid down in the spec.

The % of grades stays roughly in same in 'normal' years. Nearly 41% of A*s were awarded this year, in 2019 it was 25% and is usually between 25% and 30%.
Original post by Muttley79
It's criterion marked - the criteria for an A grade are laid down in the spec.

The % of grades stays roughly in same in 'normal' years. Nearly 41% of A*s were awarded this year, in 2019 it was 25% and is usually between 25% and 30%.

So that means they are going to ramp it down further this year as 41% is still too high, above the usual 25% to 30% range which means it will be harder to get an A* next year compared to this year
Original post by soulthm
So quite a few people missed their uni firms for 2022/2023 entry because they missed an A* in FM due to exam boards raising the grade boundary just so that they can compensate for letting too many people in during COVID years.


The implication here is that there is some kind of cartel between the exam boards and unis, which is absolutely not the case. Unis have no control over how exam boards set grade boundaries, and exam boards pay no attention to uni entry criteria in setting the mark schemes.

The rise in people getting A* results in covid years was, I gather, due to TAG/CAGs, which were not issued by the exam boards. Unis then had to compensate themselves to guard against taking on too many students. The exam board had no influence in either process. This year was a return to normal teaching/examination processes, so should be more reflective of pre-COVID outcomes.

You can blame the government's abysmal response to COVID (specifically in the education sector here, but also in general) for so many getting high grades before, and thus unis becoming more strict with offers, not the exam boards.
Original post by artful_lounger
The implication here is that there is some kind of cartel between the exam boards and unis, which is absolutely not the case. Unis have no control over how exam boards set grade boundaries, and exam boards pay no attention to uni entry criteria in setting the mark schemes.

The rise in people getting A* results in covid years was, I gather, due to TAG/CAGs, which were not issued by the exam boards. Unis then had to compensate themselves to guard against taking on too many students. The exam board had no influence in either process. This year was a return to normal teaching/examination processes, so should be more reflective of pre-COVID outcomes.

You can blame the government's abysmal response to COVID (specifically in the education sector here, but also in general) for so many getting high grades before, and thus unis becoming more strict with offers, not the exam boards.


I don't agree with that. Uni offers from what I can tell have been standard offers dished out in previous years, so no change there. But what did change were the grade boundaries especially for FM. If you look at Edexcel I think, from memory, their 2019 grade boundary for an A* was around 219/300 but this year it was pushed right up to 247/300 which made it much harder. That was a result of exam boards "talking" to unis about what to do about the over population of their courses currently.
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by soulthm
I don't agree with that. Uni offers from what I can tell have been standard offers dished out in previous years, so no change there. But what did change were the grade boundaries especially for FM. If you look at Edexcel I think, from memory, their 2019 grade boundary for an A* was around 219/300 but this year it was pushed right up to 247/300 which made it much harder. That was a result of exam boards "talking" to unis about what to do about the over population of their courses currently.


But MORE people got A* so it was easier to get. The papers were easier than 2019 - I teach Edexcel. It was nothing to do with universities at all.
Original post by soulthm
I don't agree with that. Uni offers from what I can tell have been standard offers dished out in previous years, so no change there. But what did change were the grade boundaries especially for FM. If you look at Edexcel I think, from memory, their 2019 grade boundary for an A* was around 219/300 but this year it was pushed right up to 247/300 which made it much harder. That was a result of exam boards "talking" to unis about what to do about the over population of their courses currently.

You have absolutely no evidence to support your conclusion? It's not even really a logical argument, it's just a series of statements.

You have proposition A, "entry criteria have not changed recently" and proposition B "FM grade boundaries have gone up". You have done nothing to show that either A or B imply a new proposition C "this was a result of unis talking to unis".

Grade boundaries vary year on year, and grade inflation has long been acknowledge to be an issue. Also contrary to your assertion entry criteria haven't changed, they have been shifting for years due to grade inflation. The issue is that for many of the "top" unis, they are limited in what they can actually ask for due to already asking for the maximum or near maximum grades available. There is a ceiling on A-level offers, there is no A** grade after all...

In any case, don't let me stop you from wearing your tinfoil hat...
ok, let me ask my question another way: is the government and exam boards going to continue with their grade hammering this year so it gets back to 2019 levels?
Original post by soulthm
ok, let me ask my question another way: is the government and exam boards going to continue with their grade hammering this year so it gets back to 2019 levels?

They plan on making the proportions of people getting each grade the same as (or as close as possible to) in 2019.

People just did better this year in further maths than most other years (possibly due to the advance information), hence the higher grade boundaries.

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