2021 exam changes

Your go-to place for exam changes and teacher support this summer

Key dates for 2021

To help you see what needs to happen when, we've laid out all the key dates and deadlines for awarding grades this year.


Late March

Ofqual Guidance

Guidance for Heads of centre and for making objective decisions will be published by Ofqual.


End of March

Assessment materials

To help support grading judgements we’ll be sharing sets of questions and mark schemes for every subject. These will be based on past questions.

Grading guidance

JCQ will publish guidance on how to determine grades from a portfolio of students’ work and provide grade descriptors.

Centre policy guidance

JCQ will publish guidance on centre policy, with suggested processes for managing quality assurance at a centre level.



Marked example answers

A set of marked example student answers with examiner commentaries covering the grade descriptors and a set covering the assessment resources will be made available across specifications. These will be held securely on Centre Services.

Centre-level internal standardisation and moderation guidance

Teachers can sign up for on-demand training modules to help with the accuracy and consistency of marking and grading.

Assessment materials

The questions will be made available on the public website. Marked example answers with commentaries and mark schemes will be held securely.



End of April

Post-results, appeals and complaints

JCQ will publish guidance on post-results, appeals and complaints.


26 May


Teachers can start to submit students' grades via Centre Services.




18 June

The deadline for submitting students' grades

21 June

Exam board quality assurance checks begin





10 August

AS and A-level results day

AS, A-level and level 3 VTQ students will receive their results.

AS and A-level post results

Post-results and appeals for AS, A-level and level 3 VTQs open.

12 August

GCSE results day

Students receive their GCSE and Level 1/2 VTQ results.

GCSE post results

Post-results and appeals for GCSEs and level 1/2 VTQs open.



  • Assessment materials for summer 2021 available in Centre Services and Secure Key Materials
  • Get ready for grading – our comprehensive support programme for teachers – has started
  • JCQ has published guidance on how to determine students’ grades this summer
  • Ofqual guidance now available to help teachers make objective judgements
  • Schools should keep students' work to support quality assurance processes and appeals
  • Students should continue with their NEA where it’s safe to do so

Connect with us

Contact our team

For the safety of our staff and others, we're following government advice to work from home.

This means it may take us longer to answer your call.

If you can, please email us instead.

Tel: 0800 197 7162

Email: eos@aqa.org.uk

8am–4pm Monday to Friday

Sign up for updates

Let us know if you’d like the latest updates about your subject.

Sign up for updates