Pupils across the UK received their GCSE results today and overall, the number of top grades and ‘pass’ rates have dropped across a range of subjects.

This year the overall UK pass rate (A*-C or 9-4) has fallen from 66.9% to 66.3%, and the proportion of entries achieving top grades (A*-A or 9-7) have fallen to 20%.

Summary of reviewed GCSEs

  • Fewer pupils were awarded the top grade in reformed GCSEs than ever awarded the old A* grade – 3.5% of maths papers, 3.2% of English literature papers and 2.6% of English language papers achieved grade 9.
  • Maths pass rates (A*-C or 9-4) fell from 71.4% to 70.7% whilst English language pass rates rose from 69.7% in 2016 to 69.9% in 2017.
  • The proportion of entries achieving A*-A or 9-7 fell from 20.0% to 19.9% in maths and from 21.1% to 19.1% in English literature, whereas English language entries rose from 16.2% to 16.8%.
  • Across English language, English literature and maths, there were 51,257 grade 9s awarded
  • Entries in the reformed GCSE subjects of English language, English literature and maths all increased from last year
  • There have been record entries into geography GCSEs this year
  • Post-16 attainment for a standard pass in English has risen from 24.4% last year, to 31.1% in England

Source: Ofqual and Department for Education

Ofqual have announced that overall, GCSE outcomes remain stable after the introduction of more challenging papers.  Read their full analysis of this year’s results here. You can read the DfE’s analysis here.