Provisional A Level results 2014/15: Entries and attainment in facilitating subjects

Last year we looked at the Department for Education (DfE) statistical first release (SFR), for the overall attainment for level 3 students aged 16-18 at the end of advanced level study in 2013/14. A year later, we have carried out the same analysis using the latest 2014/15 dataset, in order to see what has changed.

In 2014, we discussed the decline in the percentage of A* to A grades overall, since 2010/11. Whilst this figure has remained fairly static (26.7% in 2013/14 to 26.4% in 2014/15), it has not reached the 27.2% seen in 2010/11.


Click on the infographic to filter the data and explore in more detail


As last year, over 50% of A Level entries in all regions of the UK were in facilitating subjects.

In terms of subject choices, the greatest percentage of entries remain in Mathematics (11.1%), followed by English (10.5%), Biological Sciences (7.2%) and Chemistry (6.2%) – all percentages are very similar to last year’s.

We next looked at entries by region. Last year, we found that the North East had the greatest percentage of entries in England for English (14.7%). This is still the case, with 15% of students opting for this subject.

London continues to have the greatest emphasis on STEM subjects, with the highest percentage of entries for Mathematics (12.4%) and Chemistry (5.3%).

A*-A grade passes

In England, 36% of grades achieved for facilitating subjects were A*-A. This compares to 36.6% the previous year.

Students did particularly well in London, the North East and the South West, with the percentage of students achieving an A* or A in a facilitating standing at 67.5%, 66.5% and 66.3% respectively.

Subject-wise, every region came out on top in terms of percentage of students achieving A*-A in at least one facilitating subject. The table below shows the highest percentage of A*-A grades received in each facilitating subject, and in what region, perhaps suggesting different subject strengths in different regions.


Take a look at our Big Numbers from last year, and perhaps draw some comparisons yourself. We would be interested to hear what you find. Join us on Twitter @learningplusuk, on our Post-16 Learning Forum or LinkedIn group to let us know what you think!