### UMS explained! - Toot Hill School

```UMS explained!
What are A-levels worth?
• Most A-levels are made up of
four units, with a grand total
of 400 UMS marks available.
• Six-unit A-levels are out of
600 UMS marks
• Two-unit A-levels are out of
200 UMS marks
The best way to understand UMS is
with an example!
• Let's imagine a four-unit A-level,
with the first unit (we'll call it
Unit X) worth 30% of the
qualification.
• There are 400 UMS marks for
the whole qualification (because
it's a four-unit A-level),
• So Unit X will be worth a
maximum of 120 UMS marks
(30% of 400).
Don’t progress to the next slide if you don’t
understand this!!
For ALL A-levels…
• Grade boundaries for UMS marks are fixed so
that:
A = 80% of the maximum UMS
B = 70%
C = 60%
D = 50%
E = 40%
Lets continue with our example!
• For Unit X, this means that our UMS grade
boundaries are:
A = 96 (80% of 120)
B = 84 (70% of 120)
C = 72 (60% of 120)
D = 60 (50% of 120)
E = 48 (40% of 120)
UNDERSTOOD? If not
go back two slides
and start again!
Let's say the Unit X exam is out of 80
marks.
• These are called raw marks.
• Once the exam has been taken
by everyone, a committee at the
exam board gathers to decide
what the grade boundaries for
this particular paper should be
• They take into account for
example how difficult it is
compared to earlier versions of
the Unit X exam
Are you sure you
understand?
Unit X
• For this exam, let's say the
committee decides that the
grade A boundary is 60 out
of 80 and the grade E
boundary is 36 out of 80
(remember, these are raw
marks).
• The other grade boundaries
are spread evenly between
these two points.
We now convert the raw marks to UMS marks, because we
know where the equivalent grade boundaries lie…
•
•
•
If you took the exam and got 60/80, this would give you 96 UMS, because 60
happens to be the raw mark grade A boundary set by the committee, and 96 is the
uniform mark grade A boundary for this unit.
If you got 55/80, you would get 86 UMS (grade B).
If you got 45/80, you would get 66 UMS (grade D).
Conclusions…
• Because the raw marks
are converted to UMS
marks, it means
different students'
compared side by side,
with a particular UMS