Our charitable purpose

We have over a century of qualifications expertise dating back to 1903 when our predecessor boards were founded by five leading universities. These public exam boards came into existence to provide an opportunity for young people from a range of backgrounds to access education and make the most of their potential.

This commitment to social mobility remains at the heart of AQA’s charitable purpose, which is to advance education by enabling teachers and students to realise their potential.

We demonstrate this by providing qualifications that enable students to progress, and reinvesting any surplus we make in:

  • research – through the expertise of our Assessment Research and Innovation teams, we ensure that we are able to continuously improve the quality and reliability of our assessments and contribute to the development of assessment policy and practice, both in the UK and around the world
  • offering a broad range of qualifications because we believe they have educational value – and not offering qualifications that could be profitable, but we don’t think would help students progress
  • directly funding activities such as our AQA Unlocking Potential programme, which helps develop and inspire young people facing challenges in life.
  • improving social mobility through education, by sponsoring groups of teachers from areas with low student attainment, to attend residential leadership courses with The PTI (Prince’s Teaching Institute).