SQA Results Clerical Check

Page last updated at 2:29 PM, Wed 09 Aug 2017


Dear Parent/ Carer

Criteria for post SQA results clerical check or marking review

I thought it would be helpful to clarify for all parents/ carers the significant change in processes for querying an examination result and ways in which the SQA will accept what are now called ‘post results clerical checks’ or ‘marking reviews’. The old ‘Appeals’ system whereby a pupil’s prelim paper could be submitted to the SQA in August/ September to request and support an upgrade of the final award no longer exists. All schools can now do is to request a clerical check or marking review of the exam paper and I would like to let you know the details of this new system.

There are very limited circumstances in which a school will be able to submit a request for clerical check or marking review. Dunfermline High School will submit a request if we hold clear and compelling evidence that there is a reasonable possibility that an error may have occurred with the marking or the totalling of marks in a candidate’s script. This means that if a candidate’s final grade is markedly at odds with the totality of assessment evidence gathered during the year, and out of line with the performance of other candidates with similar profiles, we may make a request.

It is not sufficient for a candidate’s final award to be below the level anticipated by any estimate submitted to SQA or that achieved in the prelim exam. The expectation is that there will be compelling evidence from all aspects of assessment: class units, unit tests, coursework and any prelim exam.

In particular, a clerical check and/ or marking review will not be requested where:

  • The candidate’s final award is in line with the estimate previously submitted to SQA by the school
  • The final award is within the same grade as that predicted by the evidence the school holds
  • The candidate’s performance has shown inconsistencies during the year such that the final award falls within the range of evidenced performance

In general terms, Dunfermline High School will submit a request when the assessment evidence is consistent and points to an award at least two bands above the final award. You should also be aware that as a result of this clerical check or marking review the marks can go down as well as up and this must be accepted.

We will submit requests only on the basis of assessment evidence. We cannot do so on compassionate grounds or, for example, because entry to Higher Education is conditional on a particular award. Neither can we agree to submit a request because a candidate or others have agreed to pay any charges arising. Finally, a request cannot be submitted if the candidate has already been through the Exceptional Circumstances Consideration Service.

Further information about the SQA Results Services can be found at www.sqa.org.uk/resultsservices. Decisions about eligibility for the Post results Service will be taken by the school, based on advice offered by the relevant Head of Department, and in conjunction with the SQA Coordinator, Mr Graeme Brown.

I hope this clarifies the new situation for all parents and carers. If you would like any further information about our school’s approach then do please contact  Graeme Brown from 14 August on 01383 602402.

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