A report on the completion and success rates of learners on vocational programmes, general education programmes (including A Levels) and the Welsh Baccalaureate for August 2021 to July 2022.
This is the latest release in the series: Consistent performance measures for post-16 learning (achievement)
This report covers outcomes for general education and vocational education in sixth forms and colleges.
General education (A level) learners’ outcomes have generally improved compared to before the pandemic. Outcomes for vocational learners have been worse.
The way in which examinations and assessments were conducted and awarded changed during the pandemic. The 2021/22 examination period was a transitionary year for learners. This was not a complete return to pre-pandemic examinations. More context is available in the release.
The grades for learners were higher across the board when compared to 2018/19.
The greatest increase came from the middle and higher grades:
- 20% of the full-time learners who started an AS level in the 2020/21 academic year achieved the equivalent of three A levels at A* to A in 2021/22, compared to 9% in 2018/19
- 58% achieved at least three A*s to Cs, compared to 42% in 2018/19
- 75% achieved three or more A levels of any grade, compared to 65% in 2018/19
The percentage of learners who completed their AS and went onto their second year of A levels was higher than before the pandemic.
Outcomes were less equal than before the pandemic:
- learners with Black, African, Caribbean, Black Welsh, Black British backgrounds didn’t see the same level of rise in grades that other learners saw
- grades rose more for younger learners
- the gap between learners from the most deprived neighbourhoods and the least deprived neighbourhoods widened
Learners taking Mathematics, Chemistry, Biology and Physics were particularly likely to get high grades. Half of second year maths A level learners got at least an A.
Outcomes for vocational learners were lower than in 2018/19 across all levels of learning:
- 84% of full time programmes were completed in 2021/22, compared to 88% in 2018/19
- 74% of main vocational qualifications were successfully achieved, compared to 80% in 2018/19
Level 3 outcomes were lower than 2018/19, unlike during the first two years of the pandemic where they were higher.
The largest drop in success rate were for learners in Social Sciences; Science and Mathematics; Health, Public Services, and Care; and Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies.
Learners aged 16, and between 20 and 24 typically had higher success rates than other learners in 2018/19, in 2021/22 this was no longer the case.
There was less of a gap in outcomes for learners from more deprived areas than in 2018/19.
Outcomes for the Welsh Baccalaureate (known as the Welsh Bacc) were better than before the pandemic for learners on general education programmes, but not for vocational learners.
The standard performance measures were not produced in academic years 2019/20 and 2020/21 due to the disruption of the pandemic. Instead, special reports were produced on Outcomes for learners in post-16 education affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Those statistics cannot be compared with this report.
Consistent performance measures for post-16 learning (achievement): August 2021 to July 2022 , file type: PDF, file size: 2 MB
Datasets and interactive tools
Consistent performance measures for post-16 learning (achievement), August 2021 to July 2022 , file type: ODS, file size: 127 KB
Rydym yn croesawu gohebiaeth yn Gymraeg / We welcome correspondence in Welsh.
Telephone: 0300 025 8099
Rydym yn croesawu galwadau yn Gymraeg / We welcome calls in Welsh.