Confirmation of the current status on offers following government decision to cancel examinations.
How will Ulster University make offers now that Summer 2020 exams have been cancelled?
We appreciate this is an anxious time. Ulster University has continued to liaise with the relevant statutory and regulatory bodies to secure clarity on the alternative arrangements being agreed. Our applicants are our first priority in the Admissions team and we will do all we can to support you through these uncertain times.
The Department of Education in Northern Ireland has confirmed that calculated grades for those completing A levels will be issued based on information, judgement and evidence provided by schools and colleges, along with statistical information. This will provide the necessary assurance about the robustness, accuracy and fairness of the grades being awarded. CCEA and other UK awarding bodies are working to provide this information so that grades can be awarded in lieu of examination results.
In line with England and Wales, A level grades in Northern Ireland will be issued and released to universities by the awarding bodies on 13 August, and we will confirm all applicants who are still holding conditional offers at Ulster University at that time.
Further details can be found at https://www.education-ni.gov.uk
I already have an unconditional offer. Is it still valid?
If your offer is unconditional and you firmly accept that offer, your place is confirmed at Ulster University
What about other Level 3 qualifications such as BTECs?
Alongside the impact on GCSE and A level exams, students taking vocational qualifications such as BTEC Nationals, Cambridge Technical, level 2 and 3 qualifications and access programmes are also affected by the summer 2020 cancellations.
The Department for the Economy in NI has announced that it intends, where possible, to award the majority of qualifications and essential skills by the end of August, in line with published results dates, so that students can progress on their chosen pathway. These will be treated in the same way as A levels, with students receiving a calculated result based in part on teacher, trainer and tutor assessment of attainment, and where appropriate combined with other evidence and statistical methods.
Updates will be provided on these COVID19 webpages as the approaches to these qualifications are finalised.
OFQUAL has published consultation plans seeking views on the exceptional arrangements set out for awarding of Summer 2020 vocational and technical qualifications. The consultation closes on 8 May and details can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ofqual
What about Irish Leaving Certificate applicants?
We welcome applications from our applicants from the Republic of Ireland and we will ensure fairness in the assessment of your qualifications too. With the exams for the Irish Leaving Certificate now postponed, the Irish government is offering students the option of receiving calculated grades, or sitting the Leaving Certificate written examinations at a later date, when it is considered safe to do so.
The calculated grades system includes teacher estimation of marks and rankings, rigorous in-school alignment, oversight by the school principal and statistical methods to ensure national standardisation. Whilst the date for releasing calculated grade results has yet to be confirmed, it is likely to be as close as possible to the usual mid-August date.
We are exploring all options to enable us to act in the best interests of those Irish Leaving Certificate applicants who wish to come to Ulster University in September 2020. We encourage all Irish Leaving Certificate applicants to request calculated grades in lieu of examinations to allow us to consider you for September 2020 intake.
We continue to monitor the progress of the plans for the release of the State Examinations results, and will provide updates on our agreed approach for Republic of Ireland applicants on these COVID19 pages.
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