Improving exam results

Noodley

Guest
Just been hearing that school exam results have improved year on year for the past 25 years....and also realised that I sat my exams 25 years ago.

I feel that by making an arse of things all those years ago that I have aided many children appear much better than they really are :tongue:
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
Bizarre, isn't it? At our son's school sports day recently everybody got a medal.
 

vernon

Harder than Ronnie Pickering
Location
Meanwood, Leeds
Don't worry folks, the government is on the case.

There are calls for exams to be made harder - can they live with the accompanying drop in success rates?

Competitive sport is to be re-introduced as part of the 2012 Olympic legacy - is there a budget to buy playing fields to replace those sold off to developers?
 

Danny

Legendary Member
Location
York
The OP reminds me of a conversation my partner and I recently had with our teenage soon. After we berated him for failing to take his revision sufficiently seriously, it suddenly occurred to him to ask us about our exam results.

After a few searching questions it became clear that we had both achieved what might be termed modest results, at which point our son exclaimed "so you are expecting me to work my arse off to redeem the reputation of this family".
 

threebikesmcginty

Corn Fed Hick...
Location
...on the slake
Danny said:
The OP reminds me of a conversation my partner and I recently had with our teenage soon. After we berated him for failing to take his revision sufficiently seriously, it suddenly occurred to him to ask us about our exam results.

After a few searching questions it became clear that we had both achieved what might be termed modest results, at which point our son exclaimed "so you are expecting me to work my arse off to redeem the reputation of this family".
;)

Hope mine don't ask me the same - my underachieving at that age had no limits. ;)
 

PaulB

Legendary Member
Location
Colne
I hope everyone is familiar with the scam launched by the charlatan 'pill pushers' who were going to oversee exam result improvements by informing us that fish oil made us smarter! A major - and expensive - study carried out by schools in Durham was promoted, publicised and extolled as they were issuing all GCSE candidates with several Cod Liver Oil tablets per day for several weeks in the run ups to the exams. It was actually costing the education authority more per day for these tablets than the daily school dinner rate! The published (but suppressed) results? The CLO tablet-taking group saw a DECLINE in performance at GCSE level! Not the expected (and predicted) increase, but a worsening of performance. Anyone who believes fish oil pills increase brain power is going to pay out for no benefit other than putting money in the pockets of those who are basically the heirs of the snake oil salesmen of yesteryear.
 

guitarpete247

Just about surviving
Location
Leicestershire
Some schools are going down the route of BTEC. As far as I can see these are not recognised by many employers and the ones I've seen being taught are simple box ticking and sheet filling. Kids can get the "Equivalent of 2 GCSE's" by copying from the board and working as a group using clozed exercise questions.
The school then says they have now got 95% A - C GCSE results and next year expect 99%. (The 1% being the student that didn't turn up;))
The BTEC I saw being taught was sports studies. It was far from being practical. The first aid section was an envelope of injuries and an envelope of possible treatment that they had to match up. That was it. They then stuck this down on a sheet and they had covered first aid. Copying the answer of the interactive white board. No thought, no work, no effort apart from sticking pre-cut labels out. If they could have got sticky backed labels for them they would have. Other tasks were of a similar level. Then after 6 weeks they had 2 GCSE's.
These were being taken by students who for 2 or 3 days were at college other wise they would have been excluded. I felt that they were given these simple menial tasks just to occupy them and then they get certificates that the hard working students had to work for 2 years to achieve.
 

mark barker

New Member
Location
Swindon, Wilts
The BTEC route is favoured amongst the newly formed Academy schools. They do have their advantages over GCSEs for some kids, and hopefully the authorities will start offering more vocational courses alongside the traditional subjects. At the last school I was teaching at my department (design & technology) lost over half the kids to a BTEC in "building studies". The kids that took the course were not academic, and the paperwork involved in GCSE put them off, but the practical nature of the BTEC and continuous assessment meant they were able to get stuck in and get half decent grades.
 

darkstar

New Member
Coincidently I got my year University module results today, 76% overall which i'm pretty happy with. I'm sure the usual talk will come into full force claiming things are easier, I've had it putting a damper on GCSE'S and A level results so i'm quite used to it.
 

montage

God Almighty
Location
Bethlehem
Some subjects have gotton easier, some just as hard/harder.

Geology for instance...the exam we sat, and recent past papers are a fair bit easier than 20 year old past papers.
Visa versa, some get harder as you go through the past papers.

I'm sure it has been fiddled so that what was a B 20 years ago would give you an A these days - but then the demand for higher results has increased to match this.
 

ASC1951

Guru
Location
Yorkshire
PaulB said:
Anyone who believes fish oil pills increase brain power is going to pay out for no benefit other than putting money in the pockets of those who are basically the heirs of the snake oil salesmen of yesteryear.
That goes for the whole vitamin and supplement industry. There is overwhelming evidence that - except for a few people on truly bizarre diets - supplements achieve nothing whatsoever except to increase the cost of your urine. That still doesn't stop even reputable companies like Boots from making a fortune out of them, nor credulous fools from buying them. Even credulous fools on here, as a browse through Health and Fitness will show you.
 

mark barker

New Member
Location
Swindon, Wilts
darkstar said:
Coincidently I got my year University module results today, 76% overall which i'm pretty happy with.
Well done!

darkstar said:
I'm sure the usual talk will come into full force claiming things are easier, I've had it putting a damper on GCSE'S and A level results so i'm quite used to it.
That really bugs me, the students and teaching staff work really hard to improve standards, and folks of a certain generation are quick to point the finger and say how easy exams are now...
 

PaulB

Legendary Member
Location
Colne
ASC1951 said:
That goes for the whole vitamin and supplement industry. There is overwhelming evidence that - except for a few people on truly bizarre diets - supplements achieve nothing whatsoever except to increase the cost of your urine. That still doesn't stop even reputable companies like Boots from making a fortune out of them, nor credulous fools from buying them. Even credulous fools on here, as a browse through Health and Fitness will show you.
Oh no, you are quite wrong in that. Well, when I say 'wrong' I mean 'not far from the truth'. Well, when I say 'not far from the truth' I actually mean 'you're as close to being absolutely correct, you would have passed the absolutely correct winning line before your rivals had crossed the start line'.

No offence: :ohmy:
 

vernon

Harder than Ronnie Pickering
Location
Meanwood, Leeds
mark barker said:
Well done!



That really bugs me, the students and teaching staff work really hard to improve standards, and folks of a certain generation are quick to point the finger and say how easy exams are now...
I am a teacher and I state emphatically that exams are easier now.

I still have past exam papers for chemistry, physics and mathematics going back to 1974.

There is very little knowledge being tested to get a grade C at GCSE

I find it troubling that I can do assist with my daughter's A/S chemistry, physics and maths without recourse to using her texts to mug up before assisting her. The challenging questions are notable by their absence.

I last taught A-level maths and chemistry twenty years ago and physics last troubled me in the classroom twelve years ago.

I enjoy the god like status conferred upon me by sixth formers in my current school who know me only as an ICT teacher yet can, at the drop of a hat, lead them through to solutions of their physical science and maths problems.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
vernon said:
I enjoy the god like status conferred upon me by sixth formers in my current school who know me only as an ICT teacher yet can, at the drop of a hat, lead them through to solutions of their physical science and maths problems.
That the UK is the laughing stock for maths teaching is not exactly something to be proud of.
 
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