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Leaving Cert 2021 Grade inflation

  • 04-09-2021 9:09am
    Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    Personally I blame the teachers .

    They should be living down to their reputation as being useless lazy civil servants, but instead they go and ruin it all and educate their students to an even higher standard.

    Is there any mechanism for getting rid of these good teachers?

    Cut their wages further and kick them into private sector I say.



  • Registered Users Posts: 17,126 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    That's even without taking into account that whole "having to walk to school in your bare feet" aspect.

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  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,411 Mod ✭✭✭✭2011

    There is no mechanism for getting rid of bad teachers never mind the good ones!

    You seem to suggest that somehow students have been educated to a higher standard this year than previous years, I see no evidence to support this.

    In my opinion teachers responded well to the challanges that covid presented but this has resulted in some grade inflation. Personally I don't think inflated grades is a big deal.

  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,411 Mod ✭✭✭✭2011

    This is not the case in many cases. I know many that sat the 2021 leaving cert, my own daughter included.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,321 ✭✭✭Economics101

    I see that Ross O'Carroll Kelly has passed his Leaving. Definitive proof of grade inflation.

    More seriously though if grades are generally inflated by x%, then presumably Points scores for Third level courses will rise by about the same proportion. What I don't get is the endless media and political nonsense about students being "deprived" because of higher points requirements. If it's largely due to higher grades(=higher individual points) it's a bit like getting a 10% wage increase if inflation is also 10%: you real income is the same

  • Erm, I did my leaving cert in 2010. Similarly it was stated that it was dumbed down. I did a pretty poor leaving cert overall. Did great in college which is also supposedly extraordinarily dumbed down.

    I've never been out of work since I finished college and I'm in a highly technical job that I love. The leaving cert never worked for or against me beyond getting me into college. So I really can't see it mattering a jot in long run.

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  • The teachers gave out the grades this year, and last year. You will see a grades deflation as soon as the students have to sit real exams again.

    You are deluding yourself if you genuinely believe these high grades reflect better educated students.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    In what way has it been dumbed down. can you give an example to back up that statement?

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    Not true, the students could still sit the exam in the despised teacher's subject.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    I suppose the typical few on 625 points would walk into medicine on merit. Whereas this year there might be a larger cohort who get the 625... and even at that a lottery will be implemented for all those 625ers.

    Plus if I were one of those that lost out due to lottery then it's a no brainer to wait till next year when there's no grade inflation.

    ....Unless they still offer the "simplified" leaving cert over the next couple of years and gradually phase out the grade inflation. So the high achievers might all just be knocked back due to a year of waiting.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    Agreed...Same old "youth of today" story, I did mine early nineties and it was claimed to be dumbed down by the previous decade.

    People often forget though that the sole purpose of the leaving cert is not to facilitate CAO entry to college.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,931 ✭✭✭salonfire

    You should pay more attention when you read the teachers forum. There are recent posts there that mention how Project Maths is so large, it cannot be taught properly in the time allocated to it. Also, the honours Irish essay has gone from very specific, niche topics to very vague that the student could use any rote learned essay to fit the title.

    Since you're so quick for praise, I assume you also as quick in criticizing third-level staff for our universities being in free-fall down the rankings?

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,937 ✭✭✭KaneToad

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,931 ✭✭✭salonfire

    One thing that's overlooked is the serious advantage youngsters have today compared to years ago is internet access. Things like Kahn Academy and YouTube are fantastic resources in explaining concepts in a way that can't be done on a whiteboard or a book. If a student does not grasp something during class, they always have the option of researching it online where chances are it is explained using videos. Then having past papers and solutions to hand as well.

    With so much resources at their disposable as well, it's only natural results are getting better.

    In fairness, teachers are incorporating these resources more into the classroom as well whereas years ago it was not possible. Especially the newer generation of teachers. That's bound to help as well.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,912 ✭✭✭✭mariaalice

    In the long run, it makes very little difference, going to college is a different ball game getting into a particular college course is one thing but staying there and passion the course of the exams is another.

    The type of student who does medician is still going to be the same as the ones doing it 30 years ago the same as any student doing any physics, maths, science, heavy course.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    You do realise Sal Khan explains everything on a whiteboard !

    Btw have you've ever tried giving a student a youtube video to grasp a concept do you think they just magically know it by them watching it.

    And getting a student to go home and "research it online...."

    Education mostly takes place because of the interaction between the teacher and student, that's the most powerful resource.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,379 ✭✭✭Treppen

    I'm very well aware of the "Project Maths" course as I teach it, but I'm sure you'll keep on mansplaning to us teachers what it involves. The issue with the course length is not "recent" either, it has been flagged since it was introduced and choices for topics removed.

    I don't just linger around the teacher's forum pretending I'm a teacher you know...

    Nice try setting up a strawman argument with 3rd level rankings though.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,931 ✭✭✭salonfire

    Laughable stuff. Are you seriously going to discount the availability of these extra resources as a reason for improving grades and helping the students understand the topics more in depth? I didn't say getting a student to research online. I'm saying if the student themselves feel under-prepared or don't fully understand something covered in class, they can spend their own time researching and improving via the Internet.

    Of course YouTube videos help understand and if the students have more opportunity to watch more videos the better . I hope I don't have to tell you how important the visual aspect of learning is. And to some more impactful than to others.

    It's surprising you seem to be unaware of students who self-study a subject and manage to achieve top marks without a full time teacher.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,931 ✭✭✭salonfire

    Then you should know one of the complaints about the new Maths course it is not great in having the student actually understand the maths concepts. This leads to knock-on effects in Third Level where students are less prepared for maths in science and technology courses.

    Just as I thought. Quick to praise but shy away when it comes to any questioning if there are any falling standards.

  • Registered Users Posts: 67 ✭✭ireallydontknow

    I don't agree with OP but these stats give a sense of just how massive the inflation is.

    Year: 2019 ... 2021

    625: 0.4% ... 2.3%

    550+: 5.6% ... 15.1%

    500+: 13.3% ... 26.7%

    Avg: 360 ... 420

    You may say that if everyone is inflated, what's the issue? Well, first, previous and subsequent cohorts are massively disadvantaged. But so too are the many people who perform better in the actual exam than they do in class tests. They may have sat the exams but they will have seen their results eclipsed by those given generous predicted grades. Then there's the fact that there will be disparities in how generous teachers are.

    What staggers me is that there seems to be no adverse reaction to this. This is a national scandal and there's barely any talk of it here or on reddit. Newspapers are covering it like it's an education story when it ought to be a political one.

    I have a sister who will be sitting the exams next year who may well be competing against people whose points scores are 40-50 points higher than they should be.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 23,091 Mod ✭✭✭✭Podge_irl

    Any system that involves teachers giving out grades is going to result in grade inflation as at the very least it removes the element of kids who are capable of getting high marks but who, for any of a multitude of reasons, come a cropper in an exam. A teacher can reasonably estimate that they have 10 students capable of getting an A in the exam, but he doesn't know which one will panic and do a terrible job on the day.

    There is a pretty reasonable argument to be had about which is fairer and its not straightforward.

  • Registered Users Posts: 67 ✭✭ireallydontknow

    'doesn't know which one will panic and do a terrible job on the day'

    This is an incredibly naive explanation for why six times as many people got maximum points (and the many other over-achievements). Are we to assume that 1000 of the 1400 would ordinarily have panicked?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,406 ✭✭✭History Queen

    Most teachers did not want predicted grades as we felt it was an inherently unfair system. The Department of Education time and again failed to plan for contingencys and to take teachers views in to account. I feel sorry for anyone who suffered as a result of the system.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 23,091 Mod ✭✭✭✭Podge_irl

    It doesn't capture the full picture, but I would imagine a significant portion of students would underperform in at least one exam yeah.

  • Registered Users Posts: 36,701 ✭✭✭✭Gatling

    They made a mess of it , imagine the students who worked their backsides off and put in real efforts during the lockdowns finding Donal the class clown and dizzy dora have gotten first choice offers based off inflated grades despite not making the effort ,

    Oh look I got 600 points I was only expecting 300/400 at most

    Langley, Virginia. 6410

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