Image: Sun

By stewartb:

I have now examined in some depth the SQA document ‘Technical Report – National Qualifications 2020 Awarding — Methodology Report’ (August 2020). I’m no expert but it seems to be very thorough. It also seems to be using principles and methods of standardisation in line with England and also those by the Labour-controlled government in Wales. (So class discrimination by Labour in Wales too?)

The biggest difference is (still) between the permissive (open to all) appeals process in Scotland and the more restricted one being used in England.

How many of those protesting – or stoking protest – have examined the SQA, Ofqual and Qualifications Wales documents in detail? I wonder.

Also, this research on GCSEs in England is very interesting.


The research looks at GCSE results from public sector schools. It examines the extent to which schools’ results change from one year to the next. It compares in graphical form the results for 2018 and 2019 and then compares using a similar plot the results for 2019 with teacher predictions for 2020.

The difference in the two plots is striking. There are far fewer schools reporting lower results in 2020 than 2019 (those plotted below the horizontal axis of the graphs). Lower-attaining schools in 2019 were more likely to report very large increases in the grade of results in 2020.

The researchers go on to ask: “But do we see much difference between different types of school? The table below would suggest, on average and for state-funded mainstream schools at least, not really.”

It concludes that lower attaining schools have tended to submit more optimistic results.