Entries for Biology, Chemistry and Physics declined (18.6; 16.8; 14.6 % respectively).
This decline, the first in over 10 years, is due to a combination of factors including a move to linear assessment impacting on subject choices, and the introduction of Further Additional Science – a new qualification that provides a different pathway for students to study the same content as the separate science GCSEs and obtain three science GCSEs.
There were 21,119 entries for the new Further Additional Science.
The 16.9 % drop in entries for GCSE Science (from 451,433 to 374,961) is largely due to a 34.4 % drop in entries from 15 year olds who, probably due to the ‘first result counts’ rule, decided to defer entry until next year. This significant change in entry pattern also impacts on results. The 15 year olds taking the decision to wait another year to take their GCSE Science are generally not high performing candidates. Therefore, with these candidates not included in this year’s results, there has been an increase of 6 percentage points at A*-C.
It is important to note that GCSE Science entries for 16 year olds have increased 24.4 % on last year.
Source: Joint Council for Qualifications