Dr Kate Nickson
The Volatility of the 2020 A Level Results
The headlines about the volatility of the A Level results say it all. I am delighted for my students who have achieved their aspirations with one off to study Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge, two starting Medicine degrees and two beginning Veterinary Medicine courses. Two of these students came to me with E grades from their Year 12 exams. What an improvement! This came from careful targeting of their problem areas, with lots of topic specific exam question practice and consolidation work to target their problem areas. I am however, devastated by the instances of those who appear to have been victims of the statistical awarding of grades this year and did not get the grades that they so clearly deserved. I will be continuing to work with each of them to help them achieve their dreams by getting them exam ready.
Whilst we all know this has been an unprecedented year, there has to have been a better way to award grades. Going with teacher predictions was not the answer though, as this would have devalued results from previous years due to the extreme grade inflation that would have happened. Moving forwards, we have to hope that never again do we find ourselves in a situation where exams are cancelled and students do not get their opportunity to prove what themselves in the exam hall. As one of my students said, they would rather have got a grade lower but know that they actually achieved it.