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A-levels: More high grades but overall pass rate falls

More A-levels pupils were handed the very highest grade this summer, but the overall pass rate fell for the first time in more than 30 years, official figures show.

In total, just over one in four of exams were awarded an A* or A grade, down 0.3 percentage points on last summer.

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Most students 'not prepared for missing A-level grades'

54% of students with a conditional offer from a university aren't prepared for the possibility that they might miss out on their first and second choice places, a new study has revealed.

The survey of 1,000 A-level students by Which? University also found:

  • Only 48% are confident they'll get the grades they need for their first choice.
  • 28% haven't thought about what they'll do if they miss their first choice.
  • 70% haven't researched clearing.
  • 83% of those surveyed have a second, insurance choice as a back up, but 40% of those don't actually want to go to their back-up and for 23%, the grades for their insurance choice are the same as or higher than those for their preferred course.

A record number of sixth-formers, 34.8%, applied for university this year, but an estimated 30% of students will miss out on their first choice place.

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