Autumn 2020 exam series

Ofqual confirmed on 30 June that any student unable to receive a centre assessment grade or calculated result, and others who would like to improve their grades, will have an opportunity to take the full suite of GCSE, AS and A-level (including Level 3 Mathematical Studies Core maths) exams in the autumn.

Important dates

Exam dates

The autumn exams (collectively known as the November series) will take place between the following dates:

  • AS and A-level exams: Monday 5 October to Friday 23 October
  • GCSE exams: Monday 2 November to Monday 23 November.

Read the full dates and timetables.

Entry deadlines

The entries deadlines for November series are:

  • AS and A-level – now closed
  • GCSE (except English Language and Mathematics) – now closed
  • GCSE (English Language and Mathematics) – 4 October.

We’re pleased to let you know that PSE and Functional Skills English and maths will be available as part of the usual November exam series.

Results days

Exam seriesQualificationsResults day
November 2020AS and A-level
17 December 2020
November 2020GCSE English Language
GCSE Mathematics
Functional Skills
AQA Certificate and Level 3 Extended Project
14 January 2021
November 2020all other GCSE subjects
11 February 2021

Autumn 2020 exams papers

We’ll be using the exams papers we printed for the planned summer exams. Learn more about these exams papers, and get support materials for your school or college for the day of the exam.

Read more about exams papers.

Who is eligible?

Students are eligible if they:

  • were entered in the summer series and received a result
  • were entered, then withdrawn from the summer series
  • intended to take exams in the summer series but were not accepted by a centre – for example, home schooled or private candidates.

Where students were not entered for the summer 2020 series, schools must give us  supporting evidence for the entry to be accepted. This may include:

  • statement from school/college/tutor
  • student work that shows the student was studying the qualification – this may include notes, marked work, NEA, mock exam, essays, past papers
  • communication between student/tutor/school
  • a rejection letter/email from the centre.

The normal age restrictions apply to GCSE English and GCSE Maths for the November series - students must be at least 16 by 31 August this academic year.

Preparing for exams in November series

If your school enters for any subjects in November, schools and students will need to prepare for all elements of the exam papers, as they’ll be the same as in a normal exam series.

Non-examined assessments

Ofqual has confirmed that for this series, grades will be based on exam performance alone, with no non-exam assessment (NEA). The only exception to this is Art and Design, where there will still be NEA.

Tier of entry

Students can enter for the same subject at the same or a different tier.


The entry option must be the same as the summer series entry, unless schools can clearly show that the student has been prepared for a different option since then.

Entering centre

DfE expects the school or college that entered students for the summer series to enter them for autumn exams. There is an exception for GCSE English and GCSE Maths, where students who are required to continue to study these subjects (as part of ‘the condition of funding’). The school/college where the student is on roll from September is responsible for entering them for the qualifications, as normal. For further information, please see the DfE website.

Schools must use the same UCI for students in the November and summer series. If schools don’t do this, they’ll be asked to provide evidence of eligibility for the November series.

Centres in Northern Ireland and Wales

Entries will be accepted for students at schools/colleges in Wales and Northern Ireland, providing the student is eligible for the November series.

Special consideration

Unfortunately, exam boards will not be able to accept lost teaching time because of the coronavirus as grounds for special consideration.

Exam fees

While we normally review our fees before the start of each new school year, we’re keeping the current entry fees for our qualifications frozen for the autumn series.

You’ll be able to use our 26% refund from your summer entry fees to pay for any entries for autumn exams – and the government has promised to cover any shortfall.

Guidance from the Department for Education

You can find more information on school and college responsibility for autumn exams on the DfE website.