Contact us

Exams update - October 2016
Hot topics | Hints and tips | Exam time | News roundup | Subject updates 

Welcome to your Exams update
How time flies! We can’t quite believe it’s time to submit entries for any November re-sits already.

You’ll have seen that our
entry fees for June 2017 are now published and we want to thank you for your patience – our full fee document will be available shortly. You may have noticed that the fees for our new GCSE and A-level qualifications are slightly higher than our early indicative pricing.

Our aim is to keep our prices competitive, but we need to take account of our increased costs. Among these are the costs associated with product reform as well as an increase in the need for more expert and senior examiners and e-marking costs.

Another factor is the anticipated decrease in entries for AS. We know these are still valued by many of you so we have spread our A-level fee increases across the full suite of A-level qualifications to ensure they remain accessible.

We have spread the increase for GCSEs across all these qualifications too; this increase is lower than for A-levels but is essential to ensure that we maintain quality and standards.

As previously, we have set higher fees in some subjects, for example, those with lower entry levels and/or higher delivery costs. This helps us to continue offering as wide a choice of subjects as possible and secure the future of our qualifications.

Any surplus we make from these fees gets reinvested into education, which includes developing and offering as broad a range of qualifications and subjects as possible, providing educational services and building enhanced support and training for examiners into our new qualifications.

Also this month, we’re conducting some new exams officer training, so if you’re a new exams officer, please have a look at what’s available and book yourself on to a session via our
Courses and Events.

Each month, we invite you to Have your say 
and you’ll be able to read my comments about the survey within this update. We do read it each month and we’ve listened to your feedback about our new exams officer events. So, to make sure we’re supporting our experienced exams officers too, we’re compiling a programme of online events later in the autumn term with general reminders and updates and importantly, an opportunity to have a Q&A session with some of our team.

Have a great month.

Nikki Bolshaw
Head of Customer Services
Hot topics
  • 2016/17 entry fees are available on our website.
  • The entry closing date for the November 2016 series BG16 is 4 October.
  • Last date to request June 2016 access to scripts to support teaching and learning is 4 October. Orders will be sent to arrive in schools and colleges from 4 October.
  • The entry closing date for the January 2017 series 1A17 is 21 October. For our Tech level and Applied General vocational qualifications, the entry closing date for the January 2017 session is Monday 31 October.
  • Deadline to apply for summer 2017 Transfer of credit is 21 October.
  • New to exams officer role? Book on one of our free training events events this term, including our '5 things a new exams officer needs to know' session on 6 October.
copyhere copyhere
Have your say
Please take a moment to tell us what you think.

Do you feel supported for post-results services this summer?
Send us your feedback

Hints and tips
  • Revised version 1.1 of the entry codes book and version control is available on our website. Printed copies will arrive in schools and colleges from 10 October. Please always check our website for the latest version.
  • Looking for a Qualification Accreditation Number (QAN)? You can find the QAN or ‘Qualification Number’ alongside each subject in our entry codes book.
  • Download JCQ exam room posters.
  • e-AQA Centre marks submission (e-Subs) opens on 14 October for the November 2016 series.
copyhere copyhere
Exam time
Summer 2016 certificates
Your students' certificates will arrive at your school/college by 7 November.

Please check all certificates carefully and let us know of any incorrect details, such as grade discrepancies, student names or dates of birth - read our
email sent to exams officers on 23 September. We will re-issue a summer 2016 certificate free of charge providing the original certificate is returned to us by 31 January 2017. After this date, we will charge a fee.

For further information about receiving and returning certificates, please visit

Receiving November 2016 exam materials
GCSE, AQA Certificate and Functional Skills question papers, exam stationery and computer-generated materials for the November 2016 exams will arrive in schools and colleges mid/late October prior to the half-term break. See our dispatch arrangements for the autumn term.

Please always check instructions on the question paper pack for information about any additional stationery that may need to be provided by you and/or your students.

If you need more exam stationery you can request these using the
top-up order form.

Submit marks for the November 2016 series
You can submit centre assessed marks online for the November 2016 series from 14 October - see submit marks for information and guidance and ways you can submit. The deadline to submit marks for the November series is 5 November 2016.

Examiner labels for November 2016 exams series
The Department for Education (DfE) provides the yellow label service for schools and colleges in England to send unmarked exam scripts to examiners securely via Parcelforce. For schools outside of England, we send white labels. We’ll also send blank sheets to print your labels in your stationery pack.

So that you have the most up-to-date label, you’ll receive your exam day labels by email 24 hours in advance of each day's exams. Please
tell us if your email address has changed since the last exam series.

To find out more, please see DfE’s
guide to using the Yellow Label Service and our send scripts for marking page and summary sheet.

We're here to help
Our Customer Services team is available to help with your general enquiries. You can contact us on 0800 197 7162 (or +44 203 671 8010 from outside the UK) or email

Online – we will update our exams administration page and on e-AQA with any news affecting most schools, including popular topics.
News roundup
When we invoice post-results services
To help with planning school/college budgets, we’ve been reviewing our processes to bring our post-results services invoice period in line, so that they are consistent for each series.

We will start to invoice our summer 2016 post-results services from early November – see below for when we’ll invoice for each series:
  • June series – November
  • November series – March
  • January series – June
  • March series – July
We’ll only send you an invoice when the review is complete.

AS/A-level MFL Speaking Tests – visiting examiner requirements
French (2650) and (7651 new)
German (2660) and (7661 new)
Spanish (2695) and (7691 new)

On 12 September we emailed an intention to enter survey to all schools and colleges who made MFL entries in 2016 to gather your requirements for speaking tests in AS and A-level languages.

You will need to complete this survey if you’re entering students for speaking tests in summer 2017 to let us know:
  • if you require a visiting examiner, or
  • you intend to take the teacher conducted option.
The closing date for completion of this survey is Friday 7 October.

If you’ve not received the survey or you’re teaching AQA languages for the first time in summer 2017 because you’ve moved from another awarding body, please contact MFL Resource Management on 01483 437765 or email

Does your school/college accept private candidates?
If your school or college accepts private candidate entries and you would like to appear on our list, please let us know. Simply login to e-AQA and follow the links from Entries > Intention to enter and tick the ‘accept private candidates’ box.

Please note that once the box is ticked, the information will carry forward for each exam series, until you change it. You can also change your details at any time. If your school/college no longer accepts private candidates, simply untick the box.

We’ll then update the
list of schools/colleges that accepts private candidates on our website. Please note that during peak periods, we may not be able to update your details straight away - please bear with us and we’ll update your details as soon as we can.

If you are an overseas or temporary approved school or college, you can’t apply to accept private candidates.


Nominate your students for our inspiring mentoring programme
Our free AQA Unlocking Potential programme, jointly run by AQA and the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, connects young people with an inspiring mentor to help them rise above adversity and achieve their true potential.

Nominate two of your students aged between 14 and 19 years before Monday 24 October 2016. Selected students will be paired with an inspiring mentor to plan and deliver a local community project that they feel passionate about.
To find out more about how this programme can benefit your students, please visit

Joshua was mentored by Romaine Bailey, who represents Great Britain in Taekwondo.

“The AQA Unlocking Potential programme gave me the confidence I needed to realise my dreams and start taking steps towards them. Working with my athlete mentor taught me to realise that I should always put myself and my future first, and also to let go of things that are out of my control.”

Vacancies for A-level and GCSE exam markers
We are currently inviting teachers to mark or to moderate 2017 A-level and GCSE exams.
  • Enhance your teaching skills and knowledge of assessment.
  • Strengthen your knowledge of reformed specifications.
  • Earn extra income ahead of the holiday period.
If you have colleagues in your school/college who may be interested in applying to mark or to moderate with AQA they can apply now.

Please also watch our
video about exam marking and the benefits for teachers. We are particularly interested in talking to teachers of Geography, Religious Studies, History, Psychology and Sociology.

Subject updates
GCSE Music (47202)
The Appraisal Booklet for unit 2: Composing and Appraising Music is available on e-AQA Secure Key Materials. Please note that for summer 2017 and onwards, this booklet is no longer being sent out to schools and colleges in hard copy.

Read our Privacy statement.

© Copyright 2016 AQA and its licensors.

AQA Education (AQA) is a registered charity (number 1073334) and a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (number 3644723). Our registered address is AQA, Devas Street, Manchester M15 6EX..