Get ready for the A* at A Level

08 Feb 2010

 This summer sees the first awards of the new A* at A Level.

But, as I learned at the UCAS conference today, there is still confusion about how students achieve this new top grade. Indeed some are puzzled that it is possible for a candidate with an A* to have a lower overall uniform mark score than someone with only an A grade.

That's because there are two criteria that must be met to get the A*.

1. The student must get an A grade overall at both AS and A2 level. AND

2. The student must get 90% or more of the maximum uniform marks on the aggregate of the A2 units.

So a student who does exceptionally well at AS but not quite so well at A2 could miss out on the A*, whereas a student who just scrapes an A at AS but does exceptionally well at A2 would get the overall A* despite having lower overall marks.

I hope that's clear!

Also interesting to hear that UCAS says that some 6,000 university applicants this year had offers which included an A*. This is despite the fact that universities were advised not to use the A* for offers in the first year.


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