Qualifications Wales confirms 2023 qualifications grading approach

Qualifications Wales has confirmed the approach to grading that will be in place for the summer 2023 exam series.

The intention is for this year’s results to fall broadly midway between the 2019 and 2022 results.

This approach takes into account the disruption experienced by learners during the pandemic and the fact that AS qualifications and some GCSE units were awarded this year – using a different grading approach - and these will have an impact on next summer’s grading.

It signals the next step on the Welsh qualification system's journey back to pre-pandemic assessment arrangements, whilst also maintaining support for learners, schools and colleges with advance information and a supportive approach to grading.

Advance information is intended to support learners by giving an indication of the topics, themes, texts or other content that they can expect in their exams. Its main aim is to help learners focus their revision to support their preparation for exams and assessments.

Qualifications Wales believes that this is the fairest approach for learners this year. The current trajectory means that there will be a return to pre-pandemic standards in 2024.  

Philip Blaker, Chief Executive of Qualifications Wales said:

“After a challenging couple of years for the education system, everyone’s effort and support for learners means we are moving back towards pre-pandemic approaches.

As we continue on that journey, there will continue to be support into 2023 since we know the pandemic has had a long-term impact on learners.

Most qualifications are delivered over two years, which means that some learners have already experienced disruption as they prepare for qualifications that will be completed this year.

We continue to work closely with awarding bodies, other UK regulators, higher education institutions and other stakeholders to make sure that Welsh learners are not disadvantaged.

It remains our priority that the grades learners achieve support their progression on to the next stage of their learning or employment.”