The quality of GCSE marking has been assessed by Ofqual as it seeks to identify any areas of potential improvement.
According to the exams regulator, it is focusing on the area after noting a small rise in the number of enquiries relating to preliminary marks, with many people in teaching jobs saying standards are no longer high enough.
Technological improvements have resulted in a change to marking procedures over the past decade. The initial report highlights what is working well and what areas should be looked at more closely, with a more substantial study to be published in the summer.
For example, the practice of double-marking - where two examiners independently mark responses - is something Ofqual wants to examine, alongside the impact of different methods of standardisation on the quality of marking.
Ofqual's chief regulator Glenys Stacey thinks the report shows there has been "significant developments in marking in recent years". She pointed to the use of on-screen marking as a big positive, as it allows for "more frequent and flexible monitoring of examiners".
"I was heartened to see that our examiners, some 50,000, are overwhelmingly well educated teachers, experienced in their subject and in marking. They play their part in the public institution of awarding and we value and respect the contribution they make," she added.
Ms Stacey stated when it comes to rolling out improvements, the focus is going to be on the quality and structure of the questions, as well as the quality of marking schemes.
Malcolm Trobe, deputy general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, is pleased to see progress being made on this issue, but still thinks that more can be done.
He added people in teacher jobs have raised concerns about the current system - which sees professionals use the Enquiries After Results and appeals processes - and is happy procedures will be closely scrutinised.
Posted by Harriet McGowan