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Anger as OCR exam board makes third mistake this summer – this time in biology A-level

More than 4,000 people have signed a petition calling for grade boundaries in the paper to be lowered

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More than 4,000 people have signed a petition calling for grade boundaries in the paper to be lowered

Teachers and pupils have been left angry after exam board OCR made their third mistake in just over a fortnight. 

The exam board has apologised for not providing a vital formula in the A-level Biology paper after their own guidance to schools said it would be included. 

In yesterday's exam, pupils were asked to calculate standard deviation – but the formula was nowhere to be seen. 

A petition was launched last night calling on OCR to "cancel" the paper or lower the grade boundaries. More than 4,000 people have already signed the petition, which describes the exam as "one of the hardest papers" ever seen. 

Teachers, parents and pupils also took to Twitter to complain about the error:  

Student said Standard Deviation formula not given on OCR paper today. Spec says it would be. Anyone know anything? I'm not in school.

— Kathy Freeston (@KJF239) June 12, 2017


@ocr_science @ocrexams A level bio students told formula for st dev would be provided but it wasn't - explanation please?

— Rachel James (@R_J84) June 12, 2017



@ocrexams ocr biology exam H420/01 - standard deviation formula not included despite maths handbook detailing it would be! What to do?

— Rumi (@r_khatun) June 12, 2017

"Find the standard deviation" are you having a laugh. Told in the official OCR A textbook that we don't have to know the formula #ocrbiology

— Celeste (@celeste_lcc) June 12, 2017


Just last week, OCR apologised for "poorly wording" a question in an A-level psychology exam sat on Wednesday. 

It came after the exam board had to apologise for an error in a GCSE English Literature exam question on Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet at the end of May.

OCR has said it will consider the errors in all three exams in the marking and grading process this summer. 

A spokesperson for OCR told Tes: “For one question on OCR’s A-Level Biology paper H420/01 (Question 20a, worth 3 marks out of a total of 100), the formula for standard deviation was not provided.

"Some of OCR’s guidance to schools and teachers about the specification indicated that candidates would be provided with this. OCR apologises and will address any impact of this during marking and grading."

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