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Arrangements for resits are made individually by each body.
GCSE syllabuses are set, examinations administered and certificates awarded by five "awarding bodies" or Examination Boards: AQA, CCEA; Edexcel; OCR; WJEC.
The exam boards are overseen by three regulatory authorities: in England - Ofqual (Office of the Qualifications and Examinations Regulator); in Wales - DCELLS (Department for Children, Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills; in Northern Ireland: CCEA (Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessments).
Each GCSE subject is assessed by formal examinations or by coursework, or by a combination of the two.
GCSE represents Key Stage 4 of the National Curriculum, and although GCSE provides a uniform framework of assessment, in fact it represents two "levels" of the National Qualifications Framework (Levels 1 and 2).
Taking GCSEs is not compulsory, and it is up to schools whether to enter pupils for examinations.
There are around 50 different GCSE subjects, alongside 14 Vocational GCSEs which have recently been introduced to replace Part 1 GNVQs (General National Vocational Qualifications).GCSE provides a uniform framework for assessment, with all candidates in all subjects graded from A* to G (with U being the result given to those whose papers are "ungraded").Scotland has a different system altogether, with examinations called Standard grades, Higher grades and Advanced Higher grades, which are taken at different ages.The first GCSE courses began in 1986, and the first examinations were taken in 1988.The inclusion of coursework in GCSE assessments was a novel innovation, which many teachers at the time regarded with scepticism.Grades A to C are Level 2 (intermediate) qualifications, while grades D to G are Level 1 (foundation) qualifications.Depending on their expected grades, pupils in certain subjects will be entered for the "higher" or the "foundation" tier GCSE exams. GCSE stands for General Certificate of Secondary Education.GCSE examinations are taken by most pupils at the end of compulsory school education (year 11)in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.There was, however, a decline in the number of pupils taking core subjects such as geography and history and modern languages, and a marked rise in the number of non-academic/vocational qualifications being taken, particularly by pupils from the poorest backgrounds or those attending schools in disadvantaged areas.Consequently, the new Coalition government introduced the English Baccalaureate as a "performance measure" in the 2010 performance tables published in January 2011.