This year’s SQA exam results are scheduled to arrive by post on Tuesday 6 August 2019. Almost all pupils will have signed up to MySQA in order to receive their results electronically by text and/or email. Pupils were instructed to sign up by 5pm on Tuesday 16 July 2019, and activate the account by 5pm on Wednesday 17 July 2019. SQA have to temporarily close registration to allow them to prepare the sending of exam results but registration opens again at 9am on Wednesday 7 August 2019.
The following information, compiled from SQA documentation, may prove useful for some pupils once the results have been published.
Your Exam Certificate
If you’re unsure about what your certificate tells you, the SQA have a page and a video to help you: https://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/65952.html
Missing Exam Certificate
A missing exam certificate could be due to the volume of mail being handled by the postal service or to an incorrect address being held by the SQA. The school makes changes to addresses throughout the year as and when reported by parents and pupils. A final electronic transfer of all pupil names and addresses in our system was sent to the SQA by the deadline of 28 June to ensure certificates are issued to the correct address.
If your exam certificate has not arrived by the following day, Wednesday 7 August, please contact the school between 10:00AM and 2:00PM. Note that you should not expect to be given exam results over the phone. This is in order to maintain pupil confidentiality and ensure data does not get released to an unauthorised individual. You should at least be able to provide your candidate number before any communication can be relayed. Note that the school office will not be staffed throughout the school holidays. A member of the office will be available on results day. If, however, no-one is available at school, you will be able to contact the SQA.
If you have signed up to the aforementioned SQA’s results service, you should still receive your results even if your certificate has not arrived.
If there are results missing from your certificate, this is likely to be because you have scored less than the requirement for a grade D and will therefore have been given a ‘no award’ for the course. No awards are not displayed on your certificate. If you passed any of the units belonging to this course, these will still be listed in the National Units sections of your certificate (on the Summary of Attainment and Detailed Record of Attainment pages).
It may also be that there are some unit results missing, which has prevented you from getting the full course award. To get a full course award you need to successfully complete all the units for the course as well as pass the external exam. Go to the certificate you have received and look under the National Units heading. If the subject shows, for example, X821 76 Drama: External Assessment, then there are either unit results missing or you have failed a unit. Alternatively, it might be that a unit was not passed in time for the certificate being issued. If you fall into the latter category, the SQA will issue you an updated certificate in September.
If there are any items missing which you know you have already passed, check to see if they were certified in a certificate issued previously.
There is no longer an appeals process for pupils who have failed or not performed as well as they did in their estimate exams. This process was removed by the SQA when the new National Qualifications were introduced in session 2013/2014. The SQA’s Exceptional Circumstances Consideration procedures can be followed during the actual exam diet if a pupil has been unwell in the exam itself or if there were other ‘exceptional circumstances’, perhaps due to family bereavement. Such appeals can only be made within 10 days of the exam being taken and are made at the discretion of the Head of Centre.
Once the results have been released, if there is clear and compelling evidence that a pupil has been consistently performing at a considerably higher level than that of their final exam result throughout the entire year, and not just in their estimate exam, the Head of Centre may feel that the exam paper should be considered for a marking review, for which there is a charge of up to £40. A difference of one grade between the estimate and final exam is not normally sufficient for a review and there must be a range of robust evidence for the entire course throughout the year to prove that the pupil has been performing at a much higher level than the final award. A prelim exam paper from February alone is not enough evidence for a marking review. There are very few requests for clerical or marking reviews. Furthermore, not all exams are eligible for a clerical check; this can depend on whether or not they were electronically marked.
This year, requests for priority marking reviews, i.e. marking reviews for pupils whose grades are required for entry to university in September 2019, have to be submitted to the SQA by 16 August 2019. A letter has already been issued to senior pupils and information posted on the school’s website here. Pupils must call the school office on Tuesday 6 August or Wednesday 7 August 2019 between 9:00AM and 3:00PM if they wish the school to consider and submit a priority marking review to SQA. Any non-priority marking reviews, i.e. those where a place at university in September 2019 is not dependant on a change of result, can be considered once pupils return to school on Wednesday 21 August 2019 and they have spoken to subject or principal teachers. The SQA deadline for a non-priority marking review is 27 August 2019.
Pupils and parents need to be aware that previous reviews have resulted in pupils’ marks going down as well going up. For example, a pupil awarded a grade B with a score of 62%, could find a check identifies marks awarded in error, thereby resulting in the pupil’s score being brought down below the threshold for a B and the result being downgraded to a grade C. Bear in mind this can have an unwanted effect on an offer of a place at a university or college with the candidate now unable to meet the entry requirements as a result of the downgraded result.
University and College Places
If you have not achieved the results you hoped for to pursue a particular course at university or college, do not become despondent. There can be various ways to purse your chosen course and several sources of guidance.
In terms of Further Education, UCAS (the Universities & College Admissions Service) have information for pupils who not achieved the results required for the chosen course. The university may still accept students for the course or offer them an alternative. Phone the university and college and ask if there is a possibility you can still be accepted. Further details are available here and on the UCAS website: https://www.ucas.com/
Careers Advice and Skills Development Scotland
For careers advice, including university and college places, call the Skills Development Scotland Exam Results Helpline on 0808 100 8000. Qualified Careers Advisors will be on hand to offer advice, and discuss clearing vacancies and alternative options. They will also be available at the centre on Union Steet. Pupils can also get in touch via their Facebook page, SDS Aberdeen City and Shire, and on Twitter, @FinlayNat_SDS. Information will also be posted on the website: https://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/