Examiners ‘rehashed old questions in A-level test paper’

The Telegraph is reporting that examiners rehashed a four-year-old test paper and posed an impossible multiple choice question as part of a series of test blunders to hit schoolchildren this summer…

Ofqual, the exams watchdog, found thousands of pupils in England were affected by errors in GCSEs, A-levels and other qualifications in 2014.

In a major report, the regulator insisted blunders were “managed appropriately” by examiners but insisted the overall quality of marking was “not yet good enough”…

The disclosure was made in a wide-ranging report into marking in this summer’s exams.

It follows an outcry from head teachers this year who have complained over a substantial dip in marking quality.

Errors in tests included:

• An AS chemistry exam – set by the OCR board – which featured a series of identical questions from the 2010 version of the same paper, which may “unfairly advantage some students” who used the old paper for practice;

• An International Baccalaureate exam in Chinese that presented sixth-formers with four answers in a multiple choice question that were all incorrect;

• An AS-level in music technology set by the Pearson exam board in which students were asked to listen to a CD in mono – and answer questions about the use of music in stereo;

• An International Baccalaureate Latin test that quizzed pupils on a text that did not feature as part of the exam syllabus…

Ofqual also raised concerns over marking errors. It insisted most centred around “data processing” mistakes relating to the use of online marking systems…

Ofqual said the mistakes “affect students’ results and they also affect public confidence in the results issued”…

More at: Examiners ‘rehashed old questions in A-level test paper’


Errors can never be completely eradicated, but some of these seem to imply the papers or marking schemes weren’t even checked. How can that be so with so much at stake? Can’t help but feel those responsible should be named and shamed – it might at least mean they take a bit more trouble next time. You?


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  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Apart from write reports and point fingers what is the purpose of Ofqual and Glenys Stacey? Never any “good” news!

  2. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Apart from writing reports and pointing fingers what is the purpose of Ofqual and Glenys Stacey? Never any “good” news!

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