The Reading / Listening - Exam Results - Level 5

The U.K. has made a U-turn over its exam grades system for students hoping to attend university. The government used a controversial algorithm to determine the grades of students who did not take exams due to COVID-19. The algorithm failed and gave students grades that were lower than those predicted by teachers. About 40 per cent were downgraded. Most affected students live in poorer areas. Many of them did not get into university as a result, despite not taking an exam. Grades for many richer students in private schools were higher than predicted.



The algorithm is now a scandal. Parents and students are furious. They called the government grossly incompetent for ruining the dreams and future of England's young people. One person said the algorithm was designed by the elite for the elite. After a major government U-turn, grades will now be based on the predictions of teachers. The UK Education Secretary said: "I am sorry for the distress this has caused young people and their parents but hope this announcement will now provide the certainty and reassurance they deserve."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Exam Results - Level 4 or  Exam Results - Level 6

Sources
  • https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-53810655
  • https://metro.co.uk/2020/08/16/level-pupils-launch-legal-action-ofqual-13135305
  • https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/end-exam-shambles-tories-tell-boris-johnson-cd306kz2r


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. students hoping
  2. The government used a controversial
  3. The algorithm
  4. Most affected students
  5. did not get into university as
  6. despite not
  7. richer students in
  8. higher than
  1. a result
  2. live in poorer areas
  3. predicted
  4. to attend university
  5. private schools
  6. algorithm
  7. failed
  8. taking an exam

Paragraph 2

  1. The algorithm is now
  2. Parents and students
  3. grossly
  4. designed by the elite for
  5. based on the predictions
  6. I am sorry for the distress
  7. young people and
  8. the certainty and reassurance
  1. the elite
  2. their parents
  3. they deserve
  4. incompetent
  5. this has caused
  6. a scandal
  7. of teachers
  8. are furious

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

The U.K. has (1) ___________________ over its exam grades system for students (2) ___________________ university. The government used a controversial algorithm to determine the grades of students who did not (3) ___________________ to COVID-19. The algorithm failed and gave students grades that were lower than (4) ___________________ teachers. About 40 per cent were downgraded. Most affected students live in poorer areas. Many of them did not get into university (5) ___________________, despite not taking an exam. Grades for many richer students in private schools were (6) ___________________.

The algorithm is (7) ___________________. Parents and students are furious. They called the government (8) ___________________ ruining the dreams and future of England's young people. One person said the algorithm was designed by (9) ___________________ the elite. After a major government U-turn, grades will now (10) ___________________ the predictions of teachers. The UK Education Secretary said: "I am sorry (11) ___________________ this has caused young people and their parents but hope this announcement will now provide the certainty and (12) ___________________."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

TheU.K.hasmadeaU-turnoveritsexamgradessystemforstudentsho
pingtoattenduniversity.Thegovernmentusedacontroversialalgorith
mtodeterminethegradesofstudentswhowdidnottakeexamsdueto
COVID-19.Thealgorithmfailedandgavestudentsgradesthatwerelo
werthanthosepredictedbyteachers.About40percentweredowngrade
d.Mostaffectedstudentsliveinpoorerareas.Manyofthemdidnotgetint
ouniversityasaresult,despitenottakinganexam.Gradesformanyriche
rstudentsinprivateschoolswerehigherthanpredicted.Thealgorithmis
nowascandal.Parentsandstudentsarefurious.Theycalledthegovern
mentgrosslyincompetentforruiningthedreamsandfutureofEngland's
youngpeople.Onepersonsaidthealgorithmwasdesignedbytheelitefor
theelite.AfteramajorgovernmentU-turn,gradeswillnowbebasedonth
epredictionsofteachers.TheUKEducationSecretarysaid:"Iamsorryfo
rthedistressthishascausedyoungpeopleandtheirparentsbuthopethis
announcementwillnowprovidethecertaintyandreassurancetheydese
rve."

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

Help Support This Web Site

  • Please consider helping Breaking News English.com

Sean Banville's Book

Thank You