SQA Updates - 2020/21

Information about National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher Qualifications

From Monday 15 March, pupils in S4 to S6 who are taking national qualifications will begin their return to school and will have priority for face-to-face lessons. Learning and teaching, whether in school or through remote learning, will continue to enable both teachers and pupils to review and consolidate all learning, before moving on to focus on completing assessment evidence.

The number of assessments which pupils will undertake for qualifications purposes may vary across their subjects. This is due to the nature of individual subjects and how they are taught. Pupils should talk to their teachers if they have any questions about what work will count towards assessment evidence.

With the SQA exams being cancelled this year, teachers will use their professional judgement to decide results at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher based on the marked evidence from pupils’ assessments. These will remain provisional results until all quality assurance checks have been carried out.

To ensure provisional results are fair and credible across the whole of Scotland, quality assurance processes will be applied in two phases:

  • In the first instance quality assurance will be carried out by the school, with support from the local authority. This includes discussing and agreeing the marking of pupils’ work across all classes and local schools.
  • Alongside this SQA will also carry out quality assurance as support for teachers. For example, reviewing their assessment and marking standards. This is to ensure that when teachers conduct assessments, that national standards are applied reliably and consistently across Scotland.

Schools will submit provisional results to SQA by 25 June.

SQA will not adjust provisional results. It will check for administrative errors that might have happened when schools were sending the quality assured results to SQA. When that check is completed, provisional results will become final.

Pupils will receive their results by post on Tuesday 10 August 2021. They will also receive their results by text and/or email if they decided to sign up for this service at www.mysqa.org.uk.

SQA has created an information booklet outlining ‘What you need to know for 2021 – National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher’ qualifications. This includes further details on how results will be arrived at and about the quality assurance process for this year.

The booklet is available to download from the SQA website and will be posted directly to your child w/c 15 March.

You can stay up to date on the 2021 National Qualifications by visiting sqa.org.uk/NQ2021.

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