Pupils will be ranked nationally?

From TES:

Pupils will be given national rankings according to their exact scores in the new O level-style exams being planned by Michael Gove, TES has learned. Sources close to the education secretary said that he intends to introduce the controversial idea, proposed last year for A-level students, as part of his overhaul of the exams system for 16-year- olds.

Certificates for the qualifications replacing GCSEs in English, maths and science would go beyond a simple grade. They would include the candidate’s ranking and a graph showing where they placed in the overall distribution of scores. [Read the rest of the article in TES.] 

The Telegraph adds (with reference to TES) that

Each pupil’s score would be set against marks achieved by all other candidates nationally, with teenagers being given a percentile ranking from one to 100.

Gender differences in mathematics anxiety

A new study published today in BioMed Central’s open access journal Behavioral and Brain Functions [Devine A, Fawcett K, Szűcs D, Dowker  A (2012), Gender differences in mathematics anxiety and the relation to mathematics performance while controlling for test anxiety. Behavioral and Brain Functions (in press; still was not online at time of writing).] reports that a number of school-age children suffer from mathematics anxiety and, although both genders’ performance is likely to be affected as a result, girls’ maths performance is more likely to suffer than boys’.

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