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Cambridge will support independent schools in the UK by offering 9-1 graded IGCSEs in our most popular subjects. Schools will be able to retain A*-G or move to 9-1 grading. The syllabuses will be distinguished from each other by their syllabus codes. Although they are separate qualifications, the syllabus content and the method of assessment will be the same in each syllabus.
Whichever grading scale schools choose to offer, universities have informed us that they are committed to maintaining consistent entry requirements and that students with A*-G graded IGCSEs will not be disadvantaged.
How will grading work for 9-1 Cambridge IGCSE?
The grading process for 9-1 IGCSEs will, in most respects, be the same process we use to grade all our syllabuses.
Like the GCSE boards, we will use a new approach (called the “tailored approach”) for grade 9. The tailored approach uses an equation to determine how many candidates should receive a grade 9, and allows us to set a grade boundary. The tailored approach equation is:
Proportion of those achieving at least grade 7 who should be awarded grade 9 = 7% + (0.5 × (percentage of candidates awarded grade 7 or above))
The equation takes into account the ability of the candidates entered for the exam. For example, if candidates taking an IGCSE were more able on average than those taking GCSE in the same subject, the standard of performance required to get a grade 9 would not be affected.
Where necessary, we will use other methods alongside the tailored approach to identify the grade 9 boundary.