Saturday, January 13, 2007

Looking Into the Future

In Great Britain, grade inflation at all levels has gotten so bad that they have now introduced a 'supergrade' - 'A*' - to set some students apart from all the others that get A's:

The scale of "grade inflation" in schools and universities since Labour came to power is laid bare in official figures today.

The number of A grades at A-level and top honours degrees has soared more than 50 per cent since 1997.

The trend at GCSE is almost as marked, with pupils now passing 36 per cent of exams at the top two grades of A and A*...

In a tacit admission of the problem last year, ministers pledged to toughen up A-levels with an A* supergrade and a return to traditional open-ended questions.

It has also backed a review of the degree classification system amid claims by the official university standards watchdog that it is little better than a "lottery".

A Daily Mail analysis illustrates starkly the extent to which grading has drifted upwards at the three most crucial stages of the education system.

At GCSE, top grade passes have risen from 14 per cent in Labour's first year of office to 19.1 per cent last summer.

The brightest pupils now find the exams so undemanding that huge hauls of passes are becoming standard...

Meanwhile sixth-formers now pass a quarter of A-levels at grade A - up from just 15.7 per cent nearly a decade ago.

And figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency have shown how first-class honours degrees have rocketed 55 per cent.

More than one in ten undergraduates now achieve the highest university accolade while more than half achieve the top two grades - either a first or upper second.

Out of 289,200 undergraduates awarded degrees last year, 172,000 were awarded one of these degrees...

Is it that bad in the US?

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