A level Predicted grades

UCAS predicted grades are an important part of the application process for higher education and apprenticeships. Calday Grange Grammar School provide UCAS predicted grades for all students in Year 13 to support these applications, so that universities are best able to assess students’ potential and suitability for their chosen courses.

How we generate predicted grades

We adopt a consistent and evidence-based approach to UCAS predicted grades, which ensures that predictions are both aspirational and achievable and a true reflection of each student’s ability and potential. Subject teachers determine the predicted grades for their students, as they know them best, and are able to draw upon a wealth of experience and professional judgement in making UCAS predictions. UCAS predicted grades will be based upon the student’s performance during Year 12. 

Teachers will consider assessment results throughout the school year and the end of Year 12 assessment in the summer term of Year 12, given that this will be the closest experience to the final exams. Subject teachers will predict grades that they feel are a true and honest reflection of the student’s performance in Year 12, their ability and potential. With that in mind, a student cannot be given UCAS predicted grades that are not supported by evidence of their performance in Year 12 and a student will not be predicted a grade where there is little or no evidence of their performance at that level. For example, a student who consistently achieves C grades in assessed work during Year 12 may be given a UCAS predicted grade of C, or indeed a B if they have an excellent attitude and commitment to learning and assessments results show improvement towards them achieving very close to a B grade. However, such a student would not be predicted an A grade, as the evidence would not support such a prediction. Therefore, whilst predicted grades can be optimistic, assuming high levels of commitment to learning, to support students in their applications, decisions will be rooted in the evidence of a student’s performance during Year 12. 

With this in mind, teachers and Heads of Department will not base predicted grades on a student’s or a parent’s wishes, what the student needs to get into a particular course, or on a student’s promises that they ‘will work harder next year’. While this affirmation is certainly admirable, it is the case that Year 13 students work harder than they did in Year 12, simply to maintain their grades due to the increased difficulty of final year content. We therefore expect that students set high standards for themselves from the start of Year 12 and address the feedback they receive from their teachers during the year to facilitate academic progress. A solid Year 12 performance will not only lead to predictions that leave the student with as wide a number of options as possible, but will provide the best platform for overall success.

Over-inflated predictions 

Sometimes students and parents may desire teachers to over predict UCAS predicted grades in order that a student may access a particular university course. However, we have a professional and moral obligation to ensure that all students have realistic expectations with regards to their abilities, whilst still remaining motivational and aspirational. 

There are a number of potential consequences of over-predicting A-Level grades, such as: 

  • Students find themselves without a university place when they receive their results, as they achieved what teachers originally predicted, but not the higher grades that were requested. 
  • Universities may raise their offer asking grades if a student is predicted at those higher grades. For example. A student may be asked to achieve a grade A* rather than a grade A simply because they have been predicted a grade A*. 
  • Future Calday students are affected, as the school’s reputation with UCAS and Universities for accurate predictions is diminished. 
  • Teachers are asked to go against their professional judgement and honest opinion, which is immoral and also unfair to them and other students who are given an accurate prediction that may be lower than they would like. 

Finalising of predicted grades and references 

Subject teachers provide comments for students’ UCAS references in the June/July of Year 12. UCAS Subject References are saved on the Unifrog platform by subject teachers and are used to write the UCAS School Reference for each student by the form tutor in September of Year 13. Students will be informed of their UCAS Predicted Grades at the end of September, so that they can make an informed decision about suitable university courses, apprenticeship and employment options. Early deadline students (Oxbridge, Medicine, Veterinary Science, Dentistry and music conservatoires) will have access to their predicted grades in July to allow them to meet the school deadline for their UCAS application of 16th September (School then process and send these applications to UCAS by the early deadline of 15th October).

UCAS Adjustment

Students should also be aware of a process called UCAS Adjustment. UCAS Adjustment is a process whereby students who have exceeded the conditions of their firm university choice can hold onto that choice on Results Day and contact other institutions and courses with higher grade requirements to see whether they could be accepted there. Of course, UCAS Adjustment is at the discretion of the universities and whether or not they have places still available in clearing for that particular course. 

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