For A level students who don’t agree with their grade, there are several options that are very clearly documented in the Post-results Services Section of the Exam Boards’ websites. They include a review of marking, clerical checks and access to scripts. This process is clear, well documented and easily accessible even to Private Candidates.
Unfortunately, there remains one group of students for whom the Post-results service is still frustrating and often unsatisfactory. These students are A level Private Candidates who have submitted Board Examined Coursework.
Any Private Candidate who is unhappy with their coursework mark and asks to see their marked script will usually be amazed to find that there is absolutely nothing on it. A few are returned with a separate sheet of examiners notes but this is by no means usual. The student and their tutor are therefore often left with no clue as to how the coursework mark was decided and, until this year, neither the entering centre, the learning provider or the exam board has been able to help. This year, however, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has announced that a student has the right to see how their exams were marked and that this is in addition to the normal appeals process. A call to the ICO revealed that for a nominal fee of around £10, a student should be able to ask their Exam Board to provide any relevant information relating to their exam grading. This should therefore include any notes that the moderators made when marking the coursework of a Private Candidate, providing they still exist.
It will be interesting to see if this does actually prove to be a useful additional service or if moderators’ notes remain a rarity.