# Talk

(108 Posts)
LibraryBook Wed 11-Sep-13 14:19:32

Just trying to understand how different teachers/schools arrive at predicted UCAS grades for A2, to put on the UCAS form?

I'd be grateful for any explanations.

hatsybatsy Wed 11-Sep-13 15:10:17

am not a teacher... but when my grade predictions were done it was based on my mock exams - with homework and term time tests taken into account if there was any doubt.

Wed 11-Sep-13 16:01:13

AS results I would have thought?

LibraryBook Wed 11-Sep-13 17:30:59

The universities see the AS grades in any case, so what is the point of having a separate predicted grade if it's the same as the AS grade?

And what happens if they are reducing subjects from 5 to 4 or from 4 to 3 at A2?

I had hoped it would be a little more scientific than just the achieved grade at AS.

Wed 11-Sep-13 17:36:18

We generally predict the grade achieved at AS or a grade above. We look at how close they were to the next grafe boundary - if over half way they go up. Then we look at each individual case and adjust accordingly.

Wed 11-Sep-13 18:31:26

AS doesn't have an A* grade so perhaps that involves some mathematical juggling?

Blissx Wed 11-Sep-13 19:49:51

As a teacher, they are based on their AS results, individual circumstances, current work ethic and professional judgement. Last year, my school was spot on with the predictions bar 1.2% of cases so we're generally pretty good at it!

LibraryBook Wed 11-Sep-13 21:24:26

Blissx - 'professional judgment' is a bit vague, no?

Kez100 Wed 11-Sep-13 21:49:51

Professional judgement is a darn sight less vauge than some statistical model which creates an average!

There are only 7 A level grades. Knowing the student and having some AS scores to hand - I'd say professional judgement to pick the grade from those 7 would be most accurate and not in any way vague. It's judgement not sticking a pin in a list.

BeenFluffy Wed 11-Sep-13 23:13:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

prettydaisies Wed 11-Sep-13 23:19:19

All DD has said is that, in her school, you will be predicted an A* if you get over 90% in your AS exams.

Professional judgement. Or a multifactorial analysis if you prefer...

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 08:28:48

Yes, of course knowing the student might help.

But some schools use basic Alis which is just an average GCSE score.

DS is very happy with his predictions. But a couple of his friends are dropping from 4 to 3 subjects and the teachers are predicting the same grade they acheived in AS. Seems bonkers to me.

tiggytape Thu 12-Sep-13 08:43:39

It depends - maybe they are working less well now than this time last year, maybe the teachers know the step up to A2 will incorporate more areas that these students are weaker at, maybe the AS grade they achieved was only just scraped and any improvement will still leave them inside the same grade boundaries?

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 08:52:39

BeckAndCall Thu 12-Sep-13 09:59:16

At my DDs school, it is entries on AS results, we are told. We were told in a way that made me think there are no exceptions BUT I have no idea if they ever do make exceptions.

As much as anything, the school's reputation is on the line and they wouldn't want to be seen as deliberately overestimating. And they're pretty close to right most of the time, so far as I know.

noblegiraffe Thu 12-Sep-13 10:03:40

In maths we would certainly not predict higher than AS due to dropping a subject, because the A-level modules are harder than the AS ones so it often evens out. Students sometimes go up or down a grade so we look carefully at how they are doing in Y13, planned resits etc.

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 10:17:40

Predicted grades are 50% accurate, roughly.

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 10:20:28

But the universities can already see the applicants AS grade, I think the predicted grade should be a little optimistic. So as to encourage the student to fulfill potential rather than plumping for safety. That's also why students should make an aspirationsl choice of university (or more than one) on the UCAS form.

hatsybatsy Thu 12-Sep-13 10:41:43

surely that would waste everyone's time? If a kid is predicted AAA, then he will get university offers accordingly. If the prediction was 'optimistic' and he only gets BBB then he has no university place.

The predictions are meant to be realistic - not sure where your 50% accurate stat comes from?

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 11:27:34

hatsybatsy - but the student might get AAB or even ABB and the AAA offer could easily let them in anyway. This happens A LOT. My son's old independent school predicts a grade up from that achieved at AS (except A* which is discretionary). No wonder independent schools get their kids' bums on seats at the better universities.

Plus, it seems unreasonable not to believe in the capacity for your students to improve and to understand the power of incentive (of having a good university place offer, dangling in front of you).

noblegiraffe Thu 12-Sep-13 11:35:29

This says that 41.7% of grades were overpredicted. Meaning that believing in a student's capacity to improve or dangling a university place in front of them isn't working, rather is actually causing stress and worry to up to 2 in 5 students who don't get their predicted grades and are possibly thrown into clearing.

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 11:43:46

noblegiraffe - don't be dramatic, that's why we have a firm conditional and insurance conditional place.

LibraryBook Thu 12-Sep-13 11:46:56

51.7% of all predictions were accurate, 41.7% of all predictions were over-predicted by at least one grade, and only 6.6% of all predicted grades were under-predicted.
 Just under 90% of grades were accurately predicted to within one grade.
 A grades were predicted most accurately with 63.8% of A grades having been
accurately predicted.
 C grades were the least accurately predicted with only 39.4% accurately predicted.

noblegiraffe Thu 12-Sep-13 12:03:01

Actually, it's not 2 in 5 students, is it? It's 2 in 5 exam results. Given that students sit 3+ exams each, that means that more students are affected.

So no, I can't support your suggestion of more teachers overestimating predicted grades.

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