From education to employment

Summer 2022 exam results- Ofqual factsheet

calculator and paper

Ofqual, the regulator of qualifications, examinations and assessments in England, is providing this factsheet to journalists ahead of exam results days later this month. It is background information, not for publication or quoting but can be used to inform reporting. If you want an on the record statement, please contact the Ofqual press office.

Key dates:

Thursday 18 August – A level, AS, T Level and vocational and technical level 3 qualification results
Thursday 25 August – GCSE and vocational and technical level 1 and 2 qualification results

Arrangements for this series

Exam and assessment arrangements this year took account of the disruption to students’ education caused by the pandemic.

GCSEs, AS and A levels:

These have been the first GCSE, AS and A level summer exams since 2019. Around 1.3 million students have taken GCSE, AS and A level exams this summer, sitting more than 2000 different papers. They generate 16 million scripts and exam boards will issue more than 6 million results.

Adaptations this year are shown in the diagram below:

Many of these are joint Ofqual/Department for Education decisions because the changes cover Ofqual’s responsibility for qualifications and grading, and DfE’s responsibility for the curriculum. More information is available in Ofqual’s rolling update.

Vocational and technical qualifications:

Around 5 million certificates will be issued to students who have taken qualifications other than GCSE, AS and A levels this year. 700,000 of those certificates will be for qualifications that are counted in school and college performance tables.

Awarding organisations were asked to consider adapting assessments to free up time to recover lost teaching and learning hours and to help assessments continue to take place. They had scope to decide on adaptations that were most appropriate to their qualifications. A range of adaptations were made, for example:

  • a reduced number of internal assessments, while still covering all required content
  • longer and more assessment windows, where appropriate
  • reduced number of work experience hours to ensure T Level industry placement requirements could be met
  • greater flexibility in invigilation


Results this year will look different to summer 2021 because the approach to assessment is different. Results are likely to be lower than they were in 2021, when grades were awarded by teacher assessment, but higher than they were in 2019, when summer exams last took place

Grade boundaries in each subject will likely be lower than when summer exams were last sat in 2019, but this might not always be the case. Grade boundaries change each year to reflect any differences in the demand of the question papers.

There is no quota for the number of students that can get a particular grade. Grade boundaries are set once assessments have been marked.

You can also read a letter to students from Ofqual’s Chief Regulator Dr Jo Saxton and UCAS’s Chief Executive, Clare Marchant.

Ofqual Analytics

Ofqual Analytics presents a series of interactive visualisations to allow users to explore data on qualifications in England. On results days Ofqual refresh existing interactive visualisations on GCSE and A level outcomes with the latest data on overall results in England and breakdowns by key characteristics, as described below:

A level analytics     (to be updated on 18 August with 2022 data)    GCSE analytics     (to be updated on 25 August with 2022 data)    
Overall results at each grade
Results by county
Variability in individual schools/colleges
Results for different types of school/college
Grade combinations for 9 to 1 qualifications– (only for GCSEs)

For the first time this year, we will also publish two new interactive visualisations, one on Technical Qualifications (TQs) within T levels, and one on a range of Performance Table Qualifications.

Ofqual also published in May 2022 provisional entry statistics, which give the number of provisional entries by age group and subject for GCSEs, AS and A levels in England for the summer 2022 exam series.

Related Articles