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"I joined RIC in 2019 to resit my A levels. I remember the stress of not getting into university and trying to plan what to do next, and all I can say is that I am so relieved I made the decision I did. The teachers here are so different to any others from my previous schools, they are inspiring. It’s a whole different experience being taught by people who are so passionate about their subjects. I came to RIC with B C D grades in maths biology and chemistry, and left after only one year with A* A* A respectively. I am so grateful for the welcoming and safe environment the school provided me with, and I can say with completely confidence that it was solely due to the teachers and staff at RIC that I was able to do as well as I did, and I thank them for helping me to reach my full potential. I knew from reading the website myself before I joined that resit students at RIC often come out with a huge improvement but it seemed unbelievable that I could achieve the same. I can tell you honestly that this school has changed my life, not only academically, and I am only sorry to be leaving so soon." Daisy from Edenbridge joined RIC as an A level retake boarder in September 2019 and is off to study Medicine at Sheffield.

A level Retakes Autumn 2020 Sitting

This year has of course seen massive disruption to the A level examinations due to the coronavirus/ Covid 19. Examinations themselves have been cancelled and "calculated grades" will be awarded to students in August at results time.

It is likely that for different reasons some students will be unhappy with their calculated grades. Ofqual, the exams regulator, has ruled that if students or schools feel unhappy with the grades awarded this year the “best way for students to demonstrate their abilities will be to take exams in the autumn series”.

Rochester Independent College will be offering intensive revision and exam preparation for students who choose to take advantage of the autumn sitting to prove their potential. Students will be able to attend these revision courses whether they choose to sit their autumn exams at their previous school, or move to RIC as a fully enrolled student.

AS and A level exams will start on Monday 5 October and finish on Friday 23 October while GCSE exams will start on Monday 2 November and finish on Monday 23 November.

The deadlines for entry for AS and A-level will be 4 September.

We would not recommend retaking in October if a student has received very low calculated grades or centre assessment grades and is seeking grade As. A one year course in these circumstances is likely to be more credible and effective, particularly given the disruption to most students' year 13 study programmes, many will have been out of the classroom for six months. We will be happy to advise about the different resit options.

One Year A level Courses

Rochester Independent College will also be offering the usual one-year A level resit programme which may be more suitable for students who have a lot of ground to make up in their subjects and would benefit from comprehensive reteaching and even in some cases switching A level subjects.

What short revision courses is RIC offering this autumn for A levels?

A Level Revision Courses for the October exams – all subjects

  • 3 week intensive revision course
  • Boarding places are subject to availability
  • Commencing week of 14 September for the three weeks
  • Modelled on our successful and well-established Easter Revision Courses
  • 8 hours a week per subject made up of 4 x two hour lessons totalling 24 hours of tuition.
  • Students can study up to 3 subjects
  • All subjects offered but places may be restricted based on teacher availability
  • All courses to include exam practice and individual feedback on a formal mock, specific to your exam board
  • £900 per subject
  • Click here for the course brochure.

Intensive A level exam preparation and revision at RIC

• Very small classes, average 8

• Full College facilities including supervised single room boarding with evening study club and activity programme

• Tutors are the College’s own experienced permanent teachers with proven track records of exam success

• Initial assessment and discussion to ascertain areas requiring attention

• Essential examination skills taught and model answers demonstrated

• Shorter one or two module topic specific courses or individual tuition can be arranged

• Over 35 years’ experience teaching specialist intensive courses

What Do We Know About The Autumn A level Exam Sitting?

Ofqual announced the following decisions:

  • exam boards must make exams available in all GCSE, AS and A level subjects in the additional autumn series
  • exam boards must base results on students' performance in exams alone and not on any non-exam assessment, with the exception of art and design qualifications
  • exam boards must issue replacement certificates for the summer results if students request this
  • exam boards must adopt the normal arrangements for reviews of marking and appeals

So this means if students take an autumn exam, they can ask for a new certificate replacing the one for the summer results, if their autumn grade is higher.

Exam boards are able to scrap an autumn exam if there have been no entries by the closing date.

Ofqual has ruled that autumn exams must be of the same number in each subject and in the same format as the summer 2020 exams would have been if they'd gone ahead

Full details are here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/responsibility-for-autumn-gcse-as-and-a-level-exam-series/centre-responsibility-for-autumn-gcse-as-and-a-level-exam-series-guidance.

A level 2020 FAQs- Results and Resits

Will students and parents be informed of their predicted grades before calculated grades are issued?

No. This is forbidden.

Could the exam boards change the grades teachers predict?

Yes. There will be a moderation process where teacher predictions are liable to change. Grades will be standardised, taking account of the expected national outcomes for this year’s students, prior attainment of student cohorts and previous results of the school or college.

Can a student appeal a result?

There will be limited opportunity for appeals this summer, with students unhappy with their final grade(s) encouraged to take A level and GCSE examinations in the autumn if they do not feel the grades reflect their true potential.

Will UK universities accept the August results based on predicted/final grades?

Yes.

If a student takes A level examinations in the autumn can they still attend UK university next academic year?

If a student does not have a place at a university they wish to enter based on their grades published on 13 August, it is highly unlikely that they will be able to attend a UK university in 2020 based on the results of any exams taken in the autumn, given that it takes many weeks for results to be issued.

If a student wishes to apply to UK university using autumn 2020 exam results they should re-apply through UCAS (by 15 January 2021).

Some UK universities offer January entry and if the results of the autumn sitting are published before Christmas students could join these courses then but it is likely, that for the majority, a start in September 2021 is more likely.

Will universities treat me a resit student if I am not happy with my calculated grade and opt to take the autumn exams and reapply?

No. Early indications from universities is that you will not be penalised as a retake if you opt to take exams in the autumn sitting because you are unhappy with your calculated grade.

UCL for example say: "We are happy to consider applicants for 2021 entry should they wish to defer their assessment or are unhappy with the grades they are given in the summer examination result release. Applicants will be required to re-apply and will be considered in competition with other applicants for 2021. However, we will not consider sitting the examinations in the Autumn as re-takes and therefore applicants taking this route will not be disadvantaged in the application process."

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