GCSEs are by no means a breeze

GCSE student and writer Victoria Nixon.
GCSE student and writer Victoria Nixon.
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With GCSE results day now over with, students can reflect on a journey that was far from a walk in the park.

Yet it is also a time when people say that exams are getting easier, as students’ grades improve every year.

Kate Amess (left) and Billi Jackson, from Spalding High School, celebrating GCSE success.

Kate Amess (left) and Billi Jackson, from Spalding High School, celebrating GCSE success.

But is that really the case?

Several reasons have been suggested for 66.9 per cent of 16-year-olds achieving A*-C grades.

It could be that the vast improvements in technology allow students to find out anything at the touch of a button.

One student who achieved three A*s, six As and two Bs on Thursday, said: “The older generation have had completely different experiences, doing their O-Levels, with the lack of Internet to help them study.

“I suppose they assume we rely heavily on technology to do the hard work for us as they feel like that’s what they would have done, given the choice.”

Other students spoke of copious amounts of homework and independent work that required them to give up even the simplest of hobbies such as reading and going outdoors.

The amount of work required to be successful in 11 subjects studied in depth is more than many realise.

Pippa Shirley, a student at Spalding High School, said: “When I first came to the school in 2013, I was two years’ worth of German classes behind everyone else, which left me incredibly disadvantaged.

“People doubted me when I took German at GCSE, but I carried on. Every week for the next two years I took tutoring classes at lunchtimes to help me catch up whilst my friends were relaxing.

“I proved myself when, despite teachers only expecting me to get a B, I achieved a final grade of an A.”

However, the decrease of students achieving A*-C declining from 69 per cent to 66.9 per cent might prove that GCSEs are not too easy at all.

The GCSE qualifications are designed so that all students across the UK are treated equally when they sit down to sit those exams.

These days, youths are told that their success is dependent on educational achievement, so they feel under pressure to perform better than everybody else. In today’s world, there is so much more competition to secure a future.