Has anyone ever had a successful GCSE re-mark?

(81 Posts)
Sparklegeek Thu 22-Aug-13 11:30:41

DS1 (Year 10) got his GCSE Science result this morning. His one A grade combined with 3 A* grades on the component subjects to give him an overall A sad He is absolutely devastated as he needed 360 UMS for an A* & got 359. (NB - he goes to a very high-achieving grammar so despite us insisting he has done fantastically he is gutted).

So the question is - is it worth going for a re-mark in the hope a different examiner would award that extra point he needs to hit the A* boundary? Obviously I realise he could lose points as well, but I'm assuming as he's at the very very top of the A grade boundary it wouldn't actually reduce his overall grade in that event.

But is it even worth doing? Should he just accept what he's got & leave it? And does anyone know if schools pay the fees or do the parents? (Not an issue - was just wondering).

I feel so bad that he feels like this when he should by rights be celebrating his A.

glaurung Thu 22-Aug-13 11:57:33

If you have a remark you have to pay (or in very rare cases, the school might), it's quite expensive (~£20/paper I think). If the mark changes as a result of the remark then you get a refund, if not you don't. In this case you would have to choose which paper to remark - if he felt the 'A' paper had gone better then that would be the obvious choice, but one mark on any of the papers would get him the A*, so if there was one of those he felt went really well and should have had a higher mark that might be worth considering. Be careful about getting 2 or more papers remarked at once though, I know someone who got an uplift on one paper matched with a decrease in another, so overall the mark stayed the same - they would have been better getting one marked straight away, then having the other done after the first remark came back if needed (that way they'd have had a better chance of an upgrade).

I've been told that about a quarter to a third of remarks result in a change, so enough change that it's quite tempting to try, but it's more likely that it will stay the same. Also, science isn't a very subjective subject, so arguably less chance.

Whether or not you go down this path is up to you. An A is still a really good grade, but if he might want to do a really competitve course later or will spend the rest of his life regreting it if not (this seems unlikely, however distraught he seems now, GCSEs do usually pale into insignificance later on) then it might be worth it.

mummytime Thu 22-Aug-13 12:03:25

My son had a remark last year for Geography, he was very close to the D/C borderline (needed 2 more marks I think). We signed the form which states you may go down as well as up, but didn't see that as a risk for us (E wouldn't be that much worse than D really). He increased by 10 or so marks and was a solid C.
We got the fee refunded.

Sparklegeek Thu 22-Aug-13 12:04:24

Thanks for your reply glaurung. I didn't realise the charge was per paper, I thought it was per subject, so that makes deciding which to have re-marked a bit tricky.

I have seen on the AQA website that you can pay to get the paper back. Do you know if this then excludes you from applying for a re-mark or can you decide based on the marking you can see against each question?

I have emailed the school so am going to see what they say too.

Sonnet Thu 22-Aug-13 12:07:35

hmm in this boat for Eng lit - 2 marks off an A

In mumsnet opinion is it worth it?

MrsWobble Thu 22-Aug-13 12:11:12

This brings back bad memories! We had 2 of dds English papers remarked because she was 2 and 3 marks off an A*. When the first one came back she had been marked down 14 marks and was only 2 marks off a B. I was a complete wreck waiting for the second one. She had been predicted As and was happy with them - we were just being greedy. Fortunately the second mark didn't go down and she kept her As.

Sparklegeek Thu 22-Aug-13 12:13:54

Oh God MrsWobble you have a very apt username!!

I can't believe I'm caught up in stressful decisions already & he doesn't even sit the rest til next summer!

glaurung Thu 22-Aug-13 12:37:20

You can get the paper back and sometimes this precludes having a remark and other times it doesn't (that may depend on the timing, or I'm not sure what, but always check first). It's a good idea if a teacher will look through it to see where extra marks may be gained, but it would be a VERY good teacher that would be able to spot a single extra mark to a good level of accuracy imo. I think this ploy works better to investigate unexpectedly low results, rather than before a speculative remark.

sonnet, dd was in exactly that situation in Eng Lit last year - a remark of one paper that was considerably lower than the others yielded the marks needed for an A. I do think English is more subjective than science, so more likely to be marked differently by someone else.

Needmoresleep Thu 22-Aug-13 12:40:40

Last year DS was one of the many with a lower than predicted Eng Lang result. As I had the forms we also requested a remark for another subject where he was disappointed to have received an A rather than A*.
We had taken this result as slightly swings and roundabouts as elsewhere he had managed an A* when expecting an A. Some some surprise then when his mark was increased by 20%, suggesting he had only dropped one mark in the whole examination. It did a lot for his confidence. Less for my confidence in the system.
No change on the Eng Lang, which would been more useful.

mummytime Thu 22-Aug-13 12:57:24

At my sons school the school as a whole requested all English Lit results be looked at, and everyone moved up one grade, I believe.

Its a pity English Language was such a political hot potato.

Sonnet Thu 22-Aug-13 14:30:48

OMG Mrs Wobble - yoiu have really worried me now!!

Millais Thu 22-Aug-13 14:34:25

We had the fee refunded when ds's grade went up. If it is right at the top of the boundary it is reasonably safe (you'd hope!) Yes we did it last year and ds had been 2 marks off- the school also supported it

andadietcoke Thu 22-Aug-13 14:44:45

One of the first things DH did this morning was go through his set's marks to see whether it was worth remarking any of them. The school pays if it's borderline C/D. Any of them that were within 1 or 2 marks he said it was probably worth looking at. The teacher should be able to tell you which paper needs to be remarked - DH has a breakdown of exactly where his kids scored right down to the question level; they should be able to give you this information without you getting the paper back, and then you can decide what to get remarked.

Sparklegeek Thu 22-Aug-13 14:56:36

Eeeek I am definitely getting the vibe here that we should go for the re-mark. But Mrs Wobble's post has put The Fear into me!

DietCoke that has amazed me re the school getting a breakdown right down to question level as I used to be an Exams Officer (left 12 years ago mind!) & we never got that sort of a breakdown on the marks.

It is really tricky to decide whether to go for a re-mark on his lowest scored paper (which he found the hardest) or to try & gain one more mark on his already A* graded papers confused

I need to speak to the school. Have emailed them but no reply. After that I need wine.

andadietcoke Thu 22-Aug-13 15:05:35

sparkle I guess it might depend on the exam board - this was AQA's website, but I was amazed too - there were a couple of questions answered really badly by the year and he could go in and see exactly which kids had scored what on that particular question - guess it helps them see if a specific area has been poorly taught. They can also compare the scores to those of similar centres, as well as all candidates.

My ds2 is one mark off an A, when he went into pick up his papers the science teacher told him he was sending it back for a re-mark. That was it, ds2 just said 'thanks' and didn't ask anything else.

Will wait and see what happens.

Theas18 Thu 22-Aug-13 15:10:50

ds had history and English lit re marked last year as they were only just under the a*. the school paid as part of a test bunch to see if they'd go for a wh ole year re Mark.

both ds grades went up a lot but over all it wasn't enough to send them all off.

mysteryfairy Thu 22-Aug-13 15:12:33

If he's in y10 can't he just resit the module he has less well on next year? Is it just core science that he's done and will he be going on to do the additional modules next year? If so it seems a bit pointless to be stressing at this stage?

Sparklegeek Thu 22-Aug-13 15:15:26

No mysteryfairy as from this year they're not allowed to re-sit modules otherwise that's exactly what he'd be doing! Bloody exam boards chopping & changing the goalposts.

ITCouldBeWorse Thu 22-Aug-13 15:22:28

If closer that two marks, def worth a remark. If school supports, they may even pay.

Our remarks run atabout a third submitted. More for maths(weirdly)

I repeat this phrase very often. Early entry is seldom in the best interests of the child.

We had DS1s Eng Lit remarked last year. It cost about £20. He was one mark off a n A* so we figured it worth the risk as a reduction in UMS was unlikely to take it down to a B.
It went up to A* (smile).

canutesauntie Thu 22-Aug-13 15:49:01

I'm confused too. DS did ok overall, I'm really pleased with his maths etc but he got a D in English Language. He has focused on this rather than the good results which is rather sad.
I've rung school to talk about applying for a re-mark (as everything indicated a C) but there is no reply so far despite leaving several messages. I'm not impressed that there is no one available on results day -DS wouldnt stay there this morning, just wanted to go home so had no chance to catch a teacher then.
Does anyone know how soon you have to request a remark? Otherwise he will have to resit in the Autumn and we dont know yet if 6th form college will take him without the English pass!
Gah, thought I'd be able to relax after today......I bloody hate Michael Gove and his grade boundary tinkering.

urbancupcake Thu 22-Aug-13 16:01:19

My neighbor's son got a C in Maths and was two marks away from a B which he needs, I believe for the topics he wants to study in 6th form. My gut reaction is that Maths is either wrong or right and so not worth submitting for a re-mark, do you agree? Or is it always just worth giving it a go?

andadietcoke Thu 22-Aug-13 16:07:45

urbancupcake think a PP mentioned maths remarks and said they got a fair few remarked successfully so it might be worth a go?

canutesauntie re the school not replying. We had this last year. They seemed to open for an hour to dish out results and then clear off to finish the rest of the holidays. No one answered phone or e mail until term started.

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