5 min read

September 4, 2023

A-Level Results 2023: Increase of Pupils Awarded Top Grades, and 79% Placed at First Choice University

This year, more than a quarter of A-levels (27.2%) have been awarded an A or A*, a record breaking result compared to any pre-pandemic year. However, the results also show a significant drop from last year (35.9%), amid the return to pre-pandemic era grading.

Looking at the overall pass rate, the proportion of entries graded A* to E has fallen to 97.3% this year, which is lower than 2022 (98.4%), and just short of the pre-pandemic rate of 97.6% in 2019.

Geoff Barton, the general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said this year’s set of students should be proud of what they achieved.

“The proportion of students achieving the top A-level grades has fallen sharply this year, not as a result of under-performance, but because the grading system has been adjusted in the wake of the pandemic so that the distribution of grades in England is similar to 2019,” Barton said.

Has this affected University admission rates?

Of those who have had a decision made regarding their application so far, 79% of UK school-leavers have gained a place at their first choice of undergraduate course - slightly below 81% who did so last year, but higher than the 74% figure in 2019. However, initial UCAS figures show the number of pupils accepted onto UK degree courses has fallen 2.6% on the same point last year.

414,940 applicants have gained a place at university or college – down on 425,830 last year (-2.6%) but an increase on 408,960 in 2019 (+1.5%).

Overall the results are positive this year, as many prospective students also faced higher competition for university places, due to an increase in the number of 18-year-olds, along with the rising international demand.


*A-Level figures published by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ), cover A-level entries from students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
*Main Image Source: PA

Click on the button below to start your education journey with Carfax Education today

Read more: