Gender and Subject Choice – Links and Recent Examination Results

Russell Haggar

Site Owner

Page last edited: 29/10/2019

 

This page begins with a series of links and data for recent GCSE and GCE Advanced Level examination results and is then divided into five sections some of which are further subdivided. Thus the structure of the document is as follows.

Links and Recent Examination Results

Section One: - Click Here

EXCEL Charts and Summaries of the 2018 and 2019 GCSE and GCE Advanced Level subdivided by Gender. I hope that teachers and students will find these charts especially useful.*******

Section Two: - Click Here

Preliminary summaries of recent trends in subject entries at GCSE and GCE Advanced Level subdivided by Gender.

Section Three:

A longer section containing data for recent years on gender differences in subject entries and in examination results in specific subjects at GCSE and GCE Advanced level and in Higher Education. This section is further subdivided as follows

Section 3[a] - Click Here

 Gender and GCSE Examinations

Overall GCSE  Grades A*-C 2011-2019

Gender and GCSE Subject Choice 2012-20198

Section 3[b] - Click Here

 Gender and GCE Advanced Level Examinations

Overall  GCE Advanced Level Grades A*-E 2011-19l

Gender and GCE Advanced level Subject Choice 2008-2019

Section 3[c] - Click Here

Vocational and Higher Education

Gender Differences in Subject Choice: Vocational Education

Gender, Subject Choice and Higher Education

Section 4 : - Click Here

An introductory essay on Gender and Subject Choice which relies on data from Sections One and Two

Section 5: - Click Here

Appendices on a range of related issues which are primarily for my own use

 

Links and Recent Examination Results

Click here for a Guardian article on why girls who achieve good GCSE results in STEM subjects are nevertheless less likely than boys to choose them as A Level options

Click here for Guardian article entitled Science doesn't belong to men. And here's the proof [by Afua Hirsch  ]  October 2018

Click here for Conversation article entitled Nobel Prize should be just the start of making women scientists more visible by Shelley Thompson  October 2018

Click here for BBC item: No Room at top for top women scientists   September 2019

You will also come across arguments that the structures of male and female brains are different and that helps to explain differing aptitudes of males and females for different subjects. Click here for a critical discussion of such views.  February 2019

BBC Horizon Programme[2014]  via You Tube: Is Your Brain Male or Female?.

 

 Gender and Subject Choice: Data and Explanations

  I have revised and reorganised this document in August  2019 to include data on the 2019 GCSE and GCE Advanced level Examinations. The charts and tables in the document are derived from my own calculations using mainly data on the  Joint Council for Qualifications [JCQ]  website publication for GCSE and GCE Advanced Level examination results . You may access the Examinations section of the JCQ website here.

Also trend  data for 2015 -2019 have been effectively summarised by FFT Education and  you  may  access their diagrammatic presentations here These data sources  are supplemented various items from the BBC, Guardian, Independent and SchoolsWeek  websites.

August 2016: Comparable Outcomes

GCSE and GCE Advanced Level Results improved steadily in the early 21st Century leading some to claim that this illustrated not that the quality of teaching and learning was improving but that the degree of difficulty of the examinations. Consequently both GCSE and GCE Advanced Level results have come to be determined by the use of a technique known as comparable outcomes whereby examiners seek to determine the percentages of students attaining each GCSE  grade with reference to attainment levels in Key Stage Two examinations  results and to determine percentages of students attaining each GCE Advanced Level Grade with reference to attainment levels in GCE examinations.. Usage of this system has halted the yearly improvement in GCSE  and GCE Advanced Level Grades. The following links provide further information on Comparable Outcomes.

For Comparable Outcomes in 2017 click here and here

 

Links to information on GCSE and  GCE Advanced Level Results  in  2019, 2018 and 2017

GCSE Results 2019, 2018 and 2017

GCSE  Level results for 2019, 2018 and 2017 can be found here by   clicking here for the Joint Council for Qualifications Website   Note that there are also links to detailed analysis of these results and   there are also links to detailed annual statistics going back to 2001  .

For 2019

For 2018

  • Click here for BBC article on overall GCSE Results 2018
  • Click here and here for Guardian articles on narrowing gender gap
  • Click here for summary of study suggesting females with top GCSE Science grades deterred from studying STEM A Levels
  • Click here for the Guardian GCSE page [numerous articles]

 

 For 2017     Click here for TES article on Gender and GCSE results

 

GCE Advanced Level Results 2019, 2018 and 2017

GCE Advanced Level results for 2019, 2018 and2017 can be found here by clicking here for the Joint Council for Qualifications Website. Note that there are also links to detailed analysis of these results and there are also links to detailed annual statistics going back to 2001

For 2019

  • Click here for fine summary of the key issues from the Times Education Supplement
  • Click here for very useful BBC item : Which subjects are students dropping?
  • Click here for a very useful Guardian article focussing on fall in percentage of A* and A grades, gender differences in attainment of A*-C grades, increased take up of Science subjects by females [data are for England rather than UK but this is true also  for the UK as a whole], data on the 10 most popular A Level subjects in 2019 and 2018
  • Click here for Guardian article declining entries English Literature.
  • Click here for Guardian article on A levels and Social Class
  • Click here for Guardian article on HE entrance based on predicted A level grades.

For 2018

The BBC highlight that "last year's students in England took new more challenging examinations in 13 subjects with 11more following this year. Despite this 26.6% of examinations were awarded A's and A*s compared with 26.3% in 2017.  However  the Guardian highlight that the proportion of examinations in England gaining Grade C or above fell to 76.8% [ its lowest level since 2012] and in a separate article explain this in terms of " a combination of new exams. and a lower ability cohort".

For 2017

Click here for TES article on Gender and Advanced Level Results    and here  for an article from The Conversation   and here and here for articles from Guardian and here for a BBC article. Click here for an item on A Levels from the BBC's More or Less. Click here for a Guardian article on Gender differences in access to university

 

Click here to go to Section 1