2019 sees big changes for students sitting GCSE and IGCSE exams worldwide. Many results have been graded using the new grading structure of 9-1, introduced last year, instead of A*-G. These include maths, English languages and sciences. Not only has the grading format changed, but the way students achieve their results has changed too – resulting in less coursework, and a much stronger focus on written examinations.
This is the second year that most Thailand schools have had I/GCSE examinations graded using both the A*-G or 9 to 1 grading systems.
In total, over 700,000 students in the UK and overseas will have sat the new tougher examinations. Over 5 million GCSE and IGCSE exams are awarded using the 9–1 grading scale worldwide, including in the UK, making it the most used and recognised grading scale for GCSE and IGCSE globally.
There has been some considerable controversy over the change to the GCSE framework. Some headteachers have said that lower-attaining students have been demoralised, with 554 respondents to a survey by the Association of School and College Leaders in England saying that the new exams, which cover a wider syllabus, were harder.
According to the UK’s Department of Education, “the new GCSE’s have been reformed to cover more challenging content to ensure students are prepared for the world of work and further study”.
Schools in Thailand work with two main IGCSE examination boards, Cambridge and Pearson Edexcel, which have adopted the 9-1 grading scale to award some International GCSE qualifications across South East Asia. Last year, only English and Mathematics International GCSEs were awarded using the new 9-1 grading scale. This year’s Pearson Edexcel International GCSE results have seen the scale being applied to all other subjects as well, and Cambridge to many of its subjects.
A statement from Pearson reports:" “By using this method of grading, it is ensured that the grading meets the same standards as Ofqual (The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation) set in the UK for GCSE, so students can successfully progress to qualifications such as GCE A level, International A level and on to university”.
For more information about IGCSEs, click here.
For students who have received their GCSE and IGCSE results this summer, they are the pathway to future studies post-16 and beyond. Many universities and colleges look at GCSE and IGCSE results as an indicator of previous academic achievement, together with predicted grades as A Level or IBDP.
Given the new, 'higher' standards, the results of Thailand students, detailed below, are all the more impressive. We will continue to add to this table as schools provide further data.
|School||No.of students||Exams sat||% A*/9-8||% A*-A/9-7||% A*-C/9-4||% students achieving 5 A*-C/9-4 (inc maths and English)||Highest number of grades achieved by an individual student|
|Anglo Singapore International School (Campus 64)||209||80%||100%||9 A*|
|Ascot International School|
|Bangkok International Preparatory School (Sukhumvit 77)||50%|
|Bangkok Patana School||60%||96%|
|BCIS Phuket (IGCSE from 2021)|
|Bloomsbury International School Hatyai|
|Brighton College Bangkok||83%||100%||100%|
|British International School Krabi|
|British International School Phuket|
|Bromsgrove International School Thailand|
|Cambridge College, Thailand|
|Charter International School|
|Crescent International School, Bangkok|
|Garden International School, Bangkok|
|Garden International School, Eastern Seaboard, Ban Chang||45%||90%||90%|
|Harrow International School Bangkok||67%||97%||12 A*|
|Heathfield International School, Bangkok|
|Hua Hin International School (IGCSE from 2019)|
|International Pioneers School|
|International School of Samui|
|Kajonkiet International School Phuket|
|King’s College International School Bangkok (Opens 2020)|
|Krabi International School|
|Lanna International School Thailand (Early Years and Secondary)|
|Modern International School Bangkok||34||94%||9 A*|
|Mooltripakdee International School|
|NIVA International School|
|Norwich International School|
|PanyaDee, The British International School of Samui|
|RBIS Rasami British International School||95%|
|Regents International School Pattaya|
|Rugby School Thailand|
|Shrewsbury International School Bangkok (Riverside)||41%||70%||98%|
|Singapore International School of Bangkok (Pracha Uthit)|
|St Andrews International School (Green Valley)||39%||88%|
|St Andrews International School (Sukhumvit 107)|
|St Andrews International School Bangkok (Srivikorn)|
|St Mark's International School Bangkok||31%||62%||96%|
|St Stephen’s International School, Bangkok|
|St Stephen’s International School, Khao Yai|
|Tara Pattana International School|
|The Regent's International School, Bangkok|
|Traill International School|
Anglo Singapore International School celebrated a 100% pass rate in all subjects for IGCSE . The cohort of 209 Secondary 4 students achieved 80% A*-A grade and 95% A*-B at IGCSE. Top performing students included Jirada Sornjai (Jijy) 9A*, Ariya Kosavisutte (Pink) 8A*1A and Supasate Laoworapong (Laota) 8A*.
Bangkok Patana School has yet to report its full set of IGCSE results, but so far we know that 60% of grades were A*-A, over 80% were B (grade 6 or above), and 96% were A*-C(9-4).
Bangkok International Preparatory School (Sukhumvit 77) has only reported limited results that 50% of its students achieved A*-A.
Three years since its launch in Thailand and Brighton College Bangkok has received its first IGCSE results, with its first group of Year 11 pupils producing 100% A*-B grades and 83% of grades A*-A.
Head of prep and seniorsSchool, Vanessa Robitaille, said: “We are thrilled and excited to receive our first IGCSE results. Our pupils have done extremely well and thoroughly deserve this success following their hard work and dedication. Many thanks to all of our teachers, as well, who have taught our pupils throughout Years 10 and 11, unlocking their potential and enabling them to be so successful.”
Students at Garden International School once again out-performed global averages with 45% achieving grades A*-A, compared to 20% in the UK, and 90% securing A*-C grades, compared to 67% in the UK. 90% of students gained five of more IGCSEs at grades A*-C.
Harrow International School, Bangkok reported a strong set of results: 67% were graded A*-A (Grade 7-9); 88% were graded A*-B (Grade 5-9); 97% were graded A*-C (Grade 4-9); and 100% were graded A*-G.
One Harrow student achieved 12 A* and one A, four students achieved 11 A* and two students achieved 10 A*. Seventeen students achieved eight or more A* and 38% of the year group received eight or more A*-A.
Headteacher Jon Standen said: "We are all immensely proud of the achievement of the students. Their hard work and determination, supported by a committed team of enthusiastic teachers has led to record-breaking success."
At Modern International School Bangkok the small cohort of 34 students achieved a 94% pass rate, and the top scoring student Akshat Jain celebrated 9 A*.
The IGCSE results for St Andrews International School (Green Valley) were more than 20% above UK averages, with 88% of students achieving grades of A*-C, 39% of these being grades of A* and A. These results exceed the UK national average of 67% for A*-C.
St Mark's International School Bangkok, which launched its secondary programme in August 2015, reported that 31% of all grades were A*; 62% were A*-A; and 96% were A*-C.
The school says: "For us, these results are spectacular in a number of ways. Firstly, many of our students took the exams at least one or two years ahead of time. Secondly, they have achieved these results without assistance from any external tutors or support."