Students in the UAE are celebrating another successful year of A Level results. The achievements are particularly noteworthy, given the A Level reforms that have been taking place over the last two years.
The UK government scrapped the old modular A Levels in favour of more rigorous linear examinations in order to drive up standards. This summer is the first time that students, teachers and universities have received results from the new style of A Levels, which affects thirteen subjects this year: Art and Design, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, English Language, English Language and Literature, English Literature, History, Physics, Psychology, and Sociology.
Additionally, The Daily Telegraph in the United Kingdom has reported that it expects appeals to rise significantly this summer for two reasons. Firstly on account of the new A Level reform which will leave some students with significantly different grades to those predicted and secondly because one of the major examination boards Edexcel has made it possible for schools to download all A Level scripts for free on results day.
Dubai College, one of the top performing schools in Dubai, with 58% of all examinations resulting in an A or A* and one in five grades awarded as the very top grade, while 88% of all students achieved A*-B.
Thirty-six students (30%) scored all As and A*s and five students earned straight A*s in their exams, ensuring they met their respective offers from Oxford, Cambridge, Durham and Bath universities. Initial results show that 75% of DC students will be heading to UK universities, 12% to the US with the remainder heading to other parts of the world.
Commenting on the A Level reform and how it may affect students' university placements, Dubai College headmaster Mike Lambert said: "Should the university offer of any student at Dubai College be adversely affected this year we will communicate with the examination boards directly to appeal the results where appropriate. We will also speak directly to the relevant university to put the performance of Dubai College students in perspective. Other schools are strongly encouraged to do the same.
"Despite the uncertainty, it is reassuring to see that Dubai College students are still gaining access to the very best seats of learning in the world. 16 of our students this year (13% of the cohort) have gained access to one of the top ten universities in the world (top 1%), as rated by QS World University Rankings 2018, with 3 students heading to each of Oxford and Cambridge, 5 to UCL, 4 to Imperial and one to MIT. Our top three most popular courses are Finance and Economics, Engineering and Medicine."
DUBAI BRITISH SCHOOL
Students at Dubai British School also celebrated excellent results, with 20% of the cohort receiving A* and 34% earning A*-A. Furthermore, 62* of the school's cohort achieved A*-B grades, and 85% earned A*-C grades.
Commenting on the results, DBS principal Brendon Fulton said: "We could not be prouder of our Year 13 students, who, despite uncertainty with the ongoing changes to the UK curricula, have recorded an excellent set of results. We will be celebrating the entire range of achievements of our students from our top A-Level student, Ben Bristow, who, having achieved 4 A* grades, will be going off to Cambridge to study Engineering, to the 4 A* equivalent grades of our top BTEC student, Ryan Mortimer, who is off to University College London, and the rest of our 61 Year-13 students who will almost all be advancing to their first choice universities in the UK and around the world.
"DBS is a non-selective school that records A-Level and GCSE results that are significantly above UK National Averages year after year. We are proud of the inclusive nature of education offered at the school and these excellent exam results. Hopefully we can serve as an example to the many other schools who refuse to give students of all ability a chance at success."
This year, 46% of GEMS students achieved A*-A grades, and 69% earned A*- grades. The number of students earning an A*- A grade has seen an increase of seven percentage points from last year, while the A* - B grades saw an increase of four percentage points.
Of over 400 examination entries, 19% achieved A*s, and 52% of all results were at either A* or A. Of the 138 students, seven achieved straight A*s, and 39 students (28 per cent) achieved all A*or A grades.
Jumeirah College had the largest cohort to enter A Levels this year, and five students received straight A*s.
Nidhi Kumar, from The Cambridge High School, Abu Dhabi, is the GEMS topper, earning A*s in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and English Literature.
A large number of students from Our Own English High School, Al Ain, The Winchester School- Jebel Ali, The Cambridge International School Dubai, and Jumeriah College received four A* grades.
GEMS students have already received acceptances from universities such as: University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, University College London, Imperial College London, King's College London MIT, Stanford University, Columbia University, Princeton University, and University of Pennsylvania.
Commenting on the results, GEMS Education chief education officer Sir Christopher Stone said: "I would like to congratulate the students, teachers and parents on yet another successful year. We are excited to see that these great results will mean that our students can accept offers to some of the very best universities and colleges in the world. We are genuinely proud of them and their achievements."
SCHOOL AL KHUBAIRAT
Abu Dhabi's British School Al Khubairat's 2017 cohort also earned impressive results, with 36% of students achieving A*-A grades in 2017. 65% of students achieved A*-B grades, while 89% earned A*-C grades.
BSAK student Maria Lovin earned five A*s, while Dora O'Neil and Charles Smith earned three A*s and two As each.
The results also mean BSAK students have gained placement at top universities, including London School of Economics, Durham, Bath, Imperial, UCL, Edinburgh in the UK, Columbia and UCLA in the States as well as New York University Abu Dhabi .
BRIGHTON COLLEGE ABU DHABI
Headline figures from Brighton College Abu Dhabi show that 43% of students in the 2017 cohort achieved A*-A grades, while 70.49% earned A*-B grades. 17.5% of students earned at least one A* grade this year, while 25% of students achieved three As or higher grades.
Commenting on the results, Brighton College Abu Dhabi headmaster Simon Corns told Education Journal Middle East: "We were very pleased with our results once again, which were in line with predictions. For the second year in a row, Brighton has gained excellent results thanks to inspirational teaching and hard-working pupils. We congratulate all of them.
"There are a number of individual successes, including a pupil in Year 11 (!) who has gained three A* grades at A level, having previously won the Physics Olympiad. It is early on the university front but it is clear there will be plenty of good news to follow in that domain too. One candidate has already met the offer from Harvard; another has received an unconditional offer from Oxford but there are many other excellent achievements, more of which will be published on our website in due course."
This story will be updated throughout the day as more schools send us their results. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like your school's A Level results to be featured in our round-up.