Predicted grades are a key indicator of performance at any level of education. They can give students a goal, as well as a way to measure how they are progressing and whether they are on track to receive their ideal grades. However, understanding the process behind predicted grades is key to knowing what you can use them for.
Therefore, in this article, we will reveal the way that predicted grades are calculated at both GCSE and A-Level. This will help you to use these grades as an effective tool in your educational journey, as well as demystifying the process to make it less anxiety inducing.
Predicted grades are based on multiple factors gathered throughout your exam course. Any work you do could be used as evidence. However, the most important factors are mock exams and end of unit tests. Schools also use previous exams, such as SATs and GCSEs as an indicator of how you are likely to perform, comparing this with other students with similar performance in the past to make a prediction.
While this should have given you a short answer to your questions about predicted grade calculation, please read on for the full details, as well as information about why these grades are important.
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How are your predicted grades worked out?
Predicted grades are given by schools around the UK as a way of suggesting what students are likely to achieve in a set of exams. The most common time to get these grades is GCSE and A-Level, and they are used as an indicator when applying to sixth form or university to help decide if you get a place.
There is no national standard way to calculate predicted grades. They are based on several factors in different schools and can vary very widely. However, there are a few common factors.
Predicted grades are usually based on your performance in mocks and in-class assessment, as well as general experience your teacher has had of past students with similar performance have gone on to achieve. Any work you have done in the course of your exam years can be used as evidence in your predicted grade.
It is important to note that precited grades are a guess/prediction of what grades you will achieve. Many students go on to achieve higher grades then what they were predicted.
How are your GCSE predicted grades calculated?
GCSE predicted grades are typically given after you’ve completed your mock exams, usually around December time of Year 11. Students receive a prediction for each subject they will take, and all are usually made individually, however they are likely to all be in a similar range.
These grades are usually based on a combination of factors. SATs scores from Year 6 are usually taken into account, particularly for maths and English grades, as well as general performance in the subject throughout high school. Mock exams and end of topic tests will usually have the most weight in the process, as these show how you perform under exam conditions.
For more information on when GCSE predicted grades are calculated, please read this article from Think Student.
How are your A-Level predicted grades calculated?
A-Level predicted grades are typically given in October to January of Year 13. This is to allow students time to submit their UCAS applications, which require predicted grades. These grades may also be given after a final mock in the autumn term, which will help determine the finalised grade with a most recent performance.
A-Level predicted grades are worked out from a mixture of factors. These include your GCSE grades, as well as end of topic tests and mocks that have been part of your A-Level course.
Again, mocks will have the most impact on your grade. However, it is highly likely that you will achieve a higher grade than you achieve in your mocks, so they are not the only factor that is used.
For more information on UCAS predicted grades and when they are finalised, please read this article from Think Student.
Are predicted grades important?
Predicted grades are important as an indicator of progress, but they are not the final grade you will receive and can always be improved with hard work and diligence. Many students feel disappointed when receiving their predicted grades, particularly if they are lower than expected. However, this is normal, and does not mean you will do the same in your exams.
Remember, your predicted grades are just a prediction and nothing more. Nothing is set in stone, and with guidance from teachers many students achieve higher than what they are predicted.
For Year 13s predicted grades can be scarier, as they are a contributing factor to whether you get into university. However, most teachers are accommodating to a certain degree.
This means that you may be able to have an open conversation about what you are predicted and what your courses require to see if this is possible for you. Therefore, while predicted grades are important, there are always solutions to any issues that may arise from them.
For more help on what to do if your grades are lower than a university’s entry requirements, please check out this Think Student page.