A Level results 2019: students receive their grades

More than 300,000 students, as well as teachers and parents across the UK are eagerly checking A-level results today. These scores will largely determine the students’ future. How have students fared across the UK?

Happy girls receiving their a level results

More than 300,000 students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland have received their A-level results today, with initial UCAS figures showing the following key points:

Key points from A-level results day

  • The percentage of A grades achieved is down on last year and has fallen to its lowest level since 2007. This year 25.5 per cent of 18-year-old pupils achieved an A grade or higher, against 26.7 per cent in 2018.
  • Girls have narrowly overtaken boys this year with 25.5 per cent achieving A* and A grades, compared with 25.4 per cent of boys.
  • The overall pass rate has stayed the same since last year at 97.6 per cent for pupils across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • For the first time the number of girls taking science subjects (STEM) has reached 50.3 per cent and has overtaken boys at 49.6 per cent. Although far more boys took physics, 30,159 compared to the girls 8,799, the overall results are an indication that the push to increase the take-up of sciences among girls is beginning to see results.
  • Spanish overtook French for the first time making it the most popular foreign language with 8,625 students taking Spanish compared to 8,355 taking French. 
  • Figures released by the University and College Admissions Service (Ucas) have revealed that 408,960 students have been accepted onto UK degree courses – a one per cent drop since 2018. Ucas has said that it anticipates 70,000 students will be offered courses though clearing this year.

Articles related to the 2019 A-levels results:


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UK Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) analysis of the A-level results

Key points in the Ofqual assessment of the 2019 A-level results include:
  • In general, the level of variation in individual school and college results at A* and A is similar to previous years
  • Differences between the average (mean) percentage of students achieving grades A* or A in 2018/2019 and in 2017/2018 were generally small, indicating that year-on-year results in the subjects analysed have remained relatively stable
  • Even when there are no changes to qualifications, individual schools and colleges will see variation in their year-on-year results: this is normal 
a level infographic 2019
UK Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) UK A-levels infographic, 2019

Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS & A Levels

Some schools overseas use Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS & A Level and those results were released on 13 August 2019.The number of entries for Cambridge International AS & A Level qualifications has grown by seven per cent, whilst the number of international entries for Cambridge IGCSEs has also risen by four per cent internationally this year.Globally, the most popular Cambridge International AS & A Levels are maths, physics and chemistry. The most popular Cambridge IGCSEs are maths, physics and First Language English.Cambridge Assessment International Education is part of the University of Cambridge. The Cambridge Pathway gives students a clear direction for education success from the age of five to 19.

Facts about the Cambridge qualifications

  • Cambridge Assessment International Education is the world’s largest provider of international education programmes and qualifications for 5 to 19 year olds
  • Over 10,000 schools in more than 160 countries offer Cambridge programmes and qualifications
  • Every year, nearly a million Cambridge learners prepare for their future with an education from Cambridge International
  • Cambridge Assessment was formed as the ‘Local Examinations Syndicate’ by the University of Cambridge in 1858. The first Cambridge international exams were taken in Trinidad in 1864 by six candidates
  • Cambridge IGCSE is the world’s most popular international qualification for 14 to 16 year olds. It is taken in over 150 countries and in more than 4700 schools around the world
  • 2018 marks the 30th anniversary of the first Cambridge IGCSE exam
  • There are over 800,000 subject entries for Cambridge IGCSE exams each year
  • Cambridge International AS and A Levels are taken in 134 countries with more than 545,000 subject entries each year.
  • Cambridge qualifications are accepted by over 1500 institutions across 78 countries.
Visit the Cambridge International website if you are interested in learning more about the Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS & A Levels.
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School results:

Brighton College: a record-breaking results day

A new A-level record was set at Brighton College with an incredible 294 grades at A*, the grade reserved for the highest performing pupils in the country. Overall, 42% of grades were at A*, which compares to 8% nationally.In a remarkably talented year, 20% of the cohort sitting the exams got three or more A*s, and 125 sixth formers gained A*/A in every subject they sat.Head Master Richard Cairns said: "This was a year group whose company I hugely enjoyed and will greatly miss. They were slightly quirky, wonderfully colourful and just a little bit irreverent. They never took themselves too seriously and they wore their ability lightly. That modesty makes me even more proud that it was they who have broken our already impressive A-level record."Languages were one area of notable success at a college which has long led the way in offering less widely-taught languages such as Russian and Mandarin. All pupils who took Russian and Mandarin Pre-U, a qualification that aims to develop skills for degree study, got the equivalent of A*/A. This was matched by everyone studying Spanish A-level.Among those celebrating were:
  • Jessica Olliver, who was born profoundly deaf, and is now a Deaf Ambassador campaigning for disability rights at a national level. Jessica secured A* in Philosophy, A* in Maths and A in Politics, and is going on to study International History and Politics at Leeds.
  • The Heap triplets: Alice, James and Thomas
  • Having gone through their studies together, the talented siblings notched up nine A*/A-levels between them. Now they will go separate ways, with Alice going to Nottingham to study History, James heading for Bath to study Architecture, while Thomas plans to take a gap year.
  • Luc Smith combines academic brilliance with top sporting talent, playing for the U18 team at Premiership rugby club Harlequins at the same time as scoring four A*/As in Economics, Physics, Maths and Further Maths. Rugby prowess runs in his family, as his older brother is Old Brightonian and current England/Harlequins fly-half Marcus Smith. Luc is heading for London to study Civic Engineering at Imperial College, while keeping his rugby skills up to speed with the Rosslyn Park league team.
  • Maximilian Murphy's achievement in securing A*s in History, Maths and Music, plus an A in Computing, may inspire father Stuart to commission something, given his background as the new head of ENO following lead roles at Sky and BBC3 – where he was the executive who commissioned the legendary TV series Gavin and Stacey.

British School of Brussels students celebrate A Levels results
British School of Brussels

British School of Brussels (BSB)

At A Level, BSB results were excellent and match the great results of recent years despite the move to the new, more challenging linear A Level system. BSB students achieved a 99% pass rate, with an impressive 31% of grades at A*/A (26.2% national average 2018) and an excellent 62% at grade A*-B (2018 national average 52.9%). These grades are well above the national level in all respects and match the results achieved when the exams were modular in 2017.BSB does not select students by ability. For many, English is not their native language. This makes success even more tremendous. The programmes are led by a highly committed and well-qualified team of teachers and our academic, university and pastoral support is organised throughout the two years to help individual students to be the best they can be and aim high.Principal, Melanie Warnes:"I am delighted with these results as they are so well deserved by all. I am immensely proud of our students and I wish them every success and happiness in the future."Sue Munday and James Willis, Co-Heads of Post-16:"We are thrilled with our students’ results across all the qualification pathways that we offer. It is always really gratifying to hear the individual stories and see that they have been rewarded for the tremendous amount of hard work, effort and commitment that they have put in. We wish everyone all the very best of success for the future."John Knight, Head of Secondary School and Vice-Principal:"This years fantastic results are a testimony to the determination of our talented students and teachers and the wonderful support from parents. These excellent grades are important in opening doors to university and beyond, though perhaps even more important are the skills, qualities and values the students have developed whilst at BSB. They are a wonderful group of students and I wish them all every success in the future!"

Students at the British School in the Netherlands await their A Level results
British School in the Netherlands

British School in the Netherlands celebrates excellent results

BSN Class of 2019 A Level Results
  • 30% of all grades are at A*/A
  • 54% of all grades A*- B
  • Average results for A level and BTEC students are 121 UCAS points and equivalent to BBB
  • Successes for our first cohort of students studying for the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)
Students have gained places at a wide variety of universities including the University of Oxford, Durham University, Imperial College London, Technische Universiteit Delft, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Universiteit Leiden and further afield at places such as the University of British Columbia. They will be studying subjects ranging from Dentistry, Medicine and Veterinary Science to Fine Art, Law and Economics, as well as Electrical Engineering, Music Production and Fashion Management.Paul Topping, Headteacher of Senior School Voorschoten and an Executive Lead at the BSN is very pleased with his school's A-level results, and especially so as schools emerge fully from the stages of A level reform.“I would like to congratulate students on their outstanding achievements this year and thank parents for their unstinting support during the Sixth Form years. It has been a real pleasure to witness students and staff working together to produce these excellent outcomes, and I’d like to recognise, particularly, the leadership of Mr Lloyd, Mrs Andrews and the Sixth Form team, and Mrs Street and her careers staff,” he said."Students’ success is always achieved through hard work and determination in their studies and rarely without the commitment and professionalism of teaching and support staff whom I would like to thank, along with Governors, for their continuing leadership, dedication and vision."This is a school where individual students are really known and understood. We are extremely proud of each and every one and wish them all well as they embark on this new and exciting stage of their lives at Universities and Higher Education establishments around the world.“Together with our excellent IB and BTEC results and with the thriving Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award at Gold level, our A level outcomes demonstrate the success of our broad range of Sixth Form programmes at the BSN. 

D\\\'Overbroecks A Levels Results 2019

D’Overbroeck’s announces A Level results

Students at leading north Oxford independent school d’Overbroeck’s are celebrating another year of high achievement in their A level results with 50 per cent of grades at A*/A. Of these, 19% were A*.Principal Jonathan Cuff says, “Once again we have a large cohort of students achieving excellence in a multitude of different academic subjects. Whilst we will celebrate these results with our students today, and reflect on all their hard work, we will also take time to recognise those achievements that aren’t represented on exam results day; the musicians, sportsmen and women, artists and actors who have competed in national competitions, completed research projects or volunteered for extraordinarily selfless causes throughout the year. In addition, the impressive grades many of our students have been awarded for their Extended Projects demonstrates just one of the ways in which we work with our students to help them develop skills beyond the curriculum.”

Holly Richards with her parents
Holly Richards with her parents, Headington School, Oxford

Headington School, Oxford

It was celebration time at Headington School as girls picked up another fantastic set of A Level results. An impressive 49.5 per cent of all entries were rated at A* or A, and 78 per cent were graded at B or higher. Girls collected a total of 146 A* and A grades between them, sitting a total of 295 A Levels.A number of  students are heading to Oxford and Cambridge, while a few sixth formers are headed overseas with two securing scholarships abroad. A Level results at a glance:
  • No of students 93
  • Passes at A* - A: 49.5 %
  • Passes at A* - B: 78.0 %
  • Passes at A* - E: 99.3 %
Headmistress Caroline Jordan said, “I’d like to congratulate each of the girls on their tremendous achievements, which are the culmination of two years of very hard work. This year group has had an absolutely incredible work ethic and I am so pleased to see that their results reflect this fantastic attitude, which will stand them in good stead for what comes next in their educational journey.”
Kingham Hill School 2019 A Level Results
Kingham Hill School

Kingham Hill Sixth Form celebrates 4th year of record breaking results

For the fourth year running, Kingham pupils are celebrating record-breaking examination success, with 45 per cent of all grades achieving A* or A grades. “Coming first in the Oxfordshire league table for Sixth Form academic qualifications last year was a tough act to follow, but I am delighted that our pupils and their teachers have secured record-breaking results yet again,” said Headmaster Nick Seward. Nearly three quarters of all grades achieved were A* to B, giving students the confidence and courage they need as they embark on their university journeys. The Head of Sixth Form, Helena Berkeley, commented,  “I am so proud of all my Sixth Formers as they head out into the world, fully equipped to flourish. From UCL to Loughborough, Edinburgh to Amsterdam and Exeter to Syracuse, I am certain that the Kingham class of 2019 will be embracing the school’s unofficial motto and working hard, playing hard and serving well in the years to come.” 

King's College students widely exceed UK national averages

While the UK national average indicators for the highest grades have dropped down to 7.7% this year (according to the latest data released), the students from King’s College schools, based in Worcestershire and in the Spanish cities of Madrid, Alicante and Murcia, have risen above the expectedKing’s College students from across the Group have widely exceeded UK national averages in all their A Level results. While the UK national grades have averagely dropped down to 7.7% A*, 25.2% A*-A and to a pass rate of 97.5%, King’s College students in both the UK and Spain have widely surpassed those percentages with a 22.42% A*, a 44.26% A*-A and a pass rate of 97.5%. These outstanding results, firmly position King’s College, once again, at the top of the British international schools ranking around the world.The notable grades obtained by King’s College students will allow them to access some of the top universities in the world, including Oxford University and Cambridge University in the UK, Stanford University and University of California Berkeley in the USA, as well as ICADE, IE and Universidad Complutense de Madridamong many other notable and elite institutions. This achievement is particularly remarkable in the case of the non-native international students, who have achieved such great success in these A Level examinations, sat in their second language, English.“Congratulations to all of our students for these excellent results. King's is extremely proud to have helped them achieve their goals. It is extremely gratifying to see our students at King’s College are bucking the trend compared to UK national averages and in fact excel with these extremely high standards and results.”, said Sir Roger Fry, founder and Chairman of King’s Group.While the King’s Group Chief Academic Officer, Mr Nigel Fossey added “These outstanding results are a testimony to the hard work of our pupils and the very high standards of teaching at all of our schools. King´s students have received offers from world class universities, including Oxford, Cambridge and Stanford.” 

King Edward's Witley 

Students from King Edward’s Witley have received their A-level results this morning, marking another successful year for King Edward’s Sixth Form.  The pupils, who had chosen the A-level programme alongside their peers taking the International Baccalaureate Diploma, are going on to a diverse range of universities, courses and futures.King Edward’s outgoing Headmaster, John Attwater, congratulated the students, commenting: “Their results reward a lot of hard work by staff and students alike, with some real individual achievements in evidence.  I am delighted that their success really reflects the diversity of pupils here and the breadth of exciting futures in store for them;  this year in particular we have seen a wider range of universities applied to as students have chosen very specific courses to match their interests. I think this reflects both the excellent careers advice they have received and a real desire among today’s school leavers to seek value for money and practical use in their degree courses.  For instance, Sam Hung, from Hong Kong, whose 4 A-levels include an A*, two As and a B, has specifically chosen the Mechanical Engineering course at Bristol, Jozef Gaszka, from Witley, is off to the Royal Academy of Music with a Scholarship in Organ Studies, and Jonathan Chan goes to study technical theatre at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama; other courses chosen range from Creative computing to Civil and Railway engineering and Business Management.”

Merchiston Castle School, Edinburgh

Merchiston community has once again enjoyed a set of outstanding results.Modular A Levels have now been fully replaced by linear qualifications, meaning that the whole two years’ content of each A Level subject is examined over only a handful of weeks in the summer of Upper Sixth – and it is great to see Merchiston pupils continuing to thrive in this new, consciously demanding assessment environment.Overall, a full 38 per cent of candidates achieved A*/A grades, with 71 per cent at A*- B – and particular congratulations this year should go to the Maths Department, whose candidates were sitting linear for the first time; nonetheless more than a quarter of the cohort brought home the formidable A* grade.This builds on the news of the school’s excellent results in SQA exams received earlier in the summer, at Higher and Advanced Higher, pointing strongly towards another enviable set of university destinations in the UK and abroad. Details to follow!Congratulations to all of last year’s Upper Sixth, and to staff and colleagues whose hard work has once again paid off in such style.

Tanglin Trust School

Congratulations to the Class of 2019 for their excellent A Level results this year with a 99% pass rate.This year, an outstanding 20% of all grades were an A*, an increase of 50% on our 2017/18 results. In England, top grades fell to their lowest level in more than a decade with 7.8% of all grades being an A*.Further, 47% of all grades achieved were an A* or A compared to 25.5% in England, and 91% of all grades were in the A* to C range.Other achievements include:
  • 73% of all grades achieved were in the range A* to B
  • 36% of students taking the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) achieved an A*
  • Almost two thirds of students taking the EPQ achieved A* or A

Craig Considine, CEO of Tanglin Trust School said, "These results reflect the hard work of our students and excellent preparation by our enthusiastic and dynamic teachers. Alongside intensive, specialist study of 3-4 subjects over two years, students have also taken the EPQ, an in-depth piece of research which involves producing a 5,000 word essay or a product and 2,000 word report, a 30 minute presentation and an independently managed project as part of the school's Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) programme. Students deserve hearty congratulations as they move onto the next chapter of their lives."Along with our IB Diploma graduates, many of our A Level graduates have secured their first choice at top universities globally. We wish them every success as lifelong learners who have the skills to contribute with confidence to our world.For more information about Tanglin Trust School's Sixth Form and A Level Programme, please contact their Admissions department.
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