General Teaching Council Northern Ireland

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Northern Ireland students score top marks yet again


15/08/2008 :: Northern Ireland :: The Irish News

A-level results in Northern Ireland are up again and remain comfortably ahead of Wales and England - largely due to a huge rise in the percentage of A grades.

Overall pupils in the north did better than everywhere else, girls did better than boys and more pupils got As.

Northern Ireland's A-level entries dropped slightly for the third consecutive year - by 2.6 per cent to 30,020.

Entries for AS-level exams, which count towards the final A-level grade, are also down this year.

This is being blamed both on falling pupil numbers and students no longer taking six or seven subjects.

At A-level this year 35.4 per cent were awarded at least one A grade compared to 33.2 per cent last year.

This was the largest single annual increase in the A grade since 2001/2002 when the percentage rose from 24.6 to 28.1.

Traditional subjects remained the most popular with Northern Ireland students with good performances recorded in mathematics, languages and sciences.

While girls again performed better than boys, the gap has decreased.

Anne Marie Duffy, director of qualifications with the north's exams board - the CCEA - said the amount of work involved in preparing for A-levels could not be underestimated.

"Students in Northern Ireland are to be congratulated for their exceptional performance this year and credit must be given to the teachers and parents who have supported them," she said.



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