On science A-levels, and not breaking out the champagne just yet.

A-level pass rate and A grades up” says the BBC, noting:

“Among the subjects showing increases were the sciences with entries for chemistry up 3.5%, biology up 2.7% and physics up 2.3%.”


But hang on. The Joint Council for Qualification‘s bizarrely-90s website (it has an entry tunnel?! Is this a reflection on the falling take-up of ICT courses?) links to this PDF, the press release. Which notes:

“With a record 827,737 grades published for A-level this year (805,657 in 2007) … ”

That’s a 2.7% increase in entries. So… are science entries actually up proportionately, or up overall, or …. what?

Sure enough, the Telegraph’s full tabulation of the data – which, incidentally, I can’t find at the JCQ’s site – reveals that science entries are fairly precisely static as a proportion of the total. They’re up, but only by about the same degree that entries are anyway.

This is a marked improvement over declining numbers, which we’ve seen through recent years. But it’s not really the increase in take-up we’re working towards.

Not yet.

1 thought on “On science A-levels, and not breaking out the champagne just yet.”

  1. ‘entry tunnel’ – didn’t know it was called that.
    Hadn’t given them an awful lot of thought admittedly but, come to think of it, they’ve always SLIGHTLY annoyed me. There must have been some point to them I suppose.

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