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Exam marking errors causing pupils to lose out on uni places

23/02/2011 Joanna
Hundreds of A-level grades had to be revised after an inquiry into marking errors by the exams board AQA uncovered a range of serious blunders.

Releasing the findings of its investigation, the examinations regulator Ofqual has revealed that, in all, 146 A-level, 289 AS-level and 187 GCSE grades had to be revised due to an error with the board's computerised marking system.

Notably, the technical glitch meant that 13 A-level students missed out on their first choice university, with two of these ultimately failing to land even a back-up place through clearing.

Publishing its report, Ofqual chief executive Isabel Nisbet noted that even when the technical issue was picked up on, steps were not immediately taken to remedy the situation or inform the university admissions service Ucas of possible issues.

"Factors that contributed to the marking error included limited piloting of the new on-screen marking system, a lack of effective risk assessments and deficiencies in the role and training of examiners on the new system," she concluded.

Just recently, the Royal Academy called for a shake-up of the A-level system in order to boost the number of students opting to take a science at university.

Posted by Tim ColmanADNFCR-2164-ID-800423149-ADNFCR
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