Provisional Summer 2018 exam entries for Wales: GCSEs, AS, A levels, Skills Challenge Certificate, and Level 1/Level 2 certificates

An annual report which presents provisional data on Summer GCSEs, AS, A levels, Skills Challenge Certificate, and Level 1/Level 2 Certificates Entries 2018 for Wales.

Release Date: Thursday 24 May, 2018
Period covered: Summer 2018
Next Update: May 2019 (Provisional)

Key Points

GCSEs

  • There were 290,640 GCSE entries for summer 2018. This is down by 13.0 per cent compared to GCSE entries for summer 2017.
  • Year 10 and Year 9 or below were the year groups with the largest proportional decrease in GCSE entries this summer compared to last year. These decreases were the main driver for the overall decrease in GCSE summer entries this year.
  • The decreases in Year 10 or below are likely to be a consequence of the Welsh Government announcement made in October 2017. The announcement means that first grades achieved during the 2017/18 school year by year 10 pupils or younger will be counted towards school performance measures.
  • Year 11 entries made up the majority of all GCSE entries for summer 2018 with 89.7 per cent of entries from Year 11 learners. This proportion has increased compared to 76.2 per cent last summer.
  • There are two phases of reformed GCSEs approved for use in Wales being awarded this summer. 209,445 (72.1 per cent) of the total summer 2018 entries were for these reformed qualifications.

AS level

  • There were 44,995 AS level entries for Wales for summer 2018, 8.1 per cent fewer than for summer 2017 (48,965 entries).
  • This continues the decreasing trend for AS level entries in Wales since summer 2015, with Ofqual reporting 57,030 entries in summer 2015, and 52,620 entries in summer 2016 in their Summer Exam Entries release last year.
  • Year 12 had the largest number of entries, with 34,170 entries in summer 2018.
  • All year groups saw a decrease in entries this summer compared to summer 2017.
  • 40,660 entries (90.4 per cent) of the total summer 2018 entries were for reformed qualifications approved for use in Wales.

A level

  • There were 33,640 A level entries for summer 2018, 5.3 per cent fewer than in summer 2017 (35,525 entries).
  • This continues the decreasing trend for A level entries in Wales since summer 2015, with Ofqual reporting 38,480 entries in summer 2015, and 37,640 entries in summer 2016 in their Summer Exam Entries release last year.
  • Year 13 entries have decreased by 5.7 per cent in summer 2018 (28,810 entries) compared to summer 2017 (30,545 entries).
  • Year 14 or above also saw a decrease of 5.9 per cent in entries compared to last year.
  • 22,690 entries (67.4 per cent) of the total summer 2018 entries were for reformed qualifications approved for use in Wales.

There are a number of factors that can influence why entries for year groups might change over time, for example changes to:

  • Population size;
  • entry behaviour e.g. when learners are entered for their GCSEs;
  • the number of qualifications of each type being taken on average;
  • the types of qualifications being taken in post-16.

As this release is based on counts of entries at qualification level it is not possible for us to quantify the impact of such factors. We have commented on factors in influencing changes in entries only where we are confident that these factors are likely to be associated with a change.

Note, the full release and corresponding data tables are available in the download box.

Contact

Statistician
Tel: 01633 373 275
Email: statistics@qualificationswales.org

Press
Tel: 01633 373 216
Email: comms@qualificationswales.org

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