Series Name

Predicting grades

Make confident 9-1 grade predictions

Our quality assessments and markbooks provide results in terms of 9-1 indicative grades to help you report progress in a meaningful way to colleagues, students and parents. We check our indicative grades for accuracy on an annual basis so you can be confident in your grade predictions.

To understand how you can use our assessments to formulate grade predictions, take a look at our step-by-step guide to using our assessments and markbooks. 


We have consulted subject and grading experts to help us map Steps in our Scale to indicative grades for each of the subjects, and calibrated our third mapping following the 9-1 exams in August 2019. Read our GCSE Steps and Indicative grades calibration report here (PDF 190 Kb). 

Subject-specific mapping

Below, you’ll find our mapping of our Progression Scale Steps to indicative GCSE grades (9-1) for Maths, English, History, Geography, Science, French, German and Spanish. 

We’re really excited about this work and its potential for helping teachers and students. It is, however, important to understand that this mapping is for guidance only to support teachers’ own predictions of progress and is not an accurate predictor of grades.

As grade boundaries can sometimes change, we will update our Progression Maps, the Scale and indicative grade mapping annually, to reflect changes to national subject entry patterns and performance. The latest review took place in August 2019, with no changes made to the mapping shown below.

Pearson Steps mapped to indicative grades GCSE (9-1) September 2016 for Maths, English, History, Geography, Science and MFL: 

Indicative grades mapping GCSE 2017

Pearson Steps mapped to indicative grades for A level Maths:

 A level maths indicative grades

Our Pearson Progression Scale is criterion referenced. If a student can perform a task or demonstrate a skill, we say they are working at a certain Step according to the criteria. Teachers can mark assessments and issue results with reference to these criteria which do not depend on the wider cohort in any given year. For GCSE exams, all Awarding Organisations set the grade boundaries with reference to the strength of the cohort in any given year.  For more information about how Edexcel set grade boundaries, go to:



Any questions?

Please go to our page on Indicative Grades specific FAQs


Where next?

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Progress assessments by subject: 

> Maths          > Science
> English        > MFL
> History       > Geography

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