Results and certification Understanding marks and grades

Converting marks, points and grades

From this page you'll find links to download our Edexcel UMS mark converter and tips on how to use these tools.

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Convert UMS and raw marks

When you get your results slip, you may find that your ‘final mark’ is different from the score on your exam paper – the so-called ‘raw mark’. This is because the majority of our results are all published in UMS marks.

We've developed a mark converter to help you calculate your raw mark from the UMS mark published on your results slip. This will help you to see how far away you were from a particular grade. This does not apply to Linear qualifications.

Download our UMS mark converter

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You'll need to have the full version of Microsoft Excel 2007 or above to use the mark converter. It can calculate raw marks from UMS marks for the following qualifications:

  • GCSE
  • A level
  • International A level
  • CiDA from 2012.

If you don't have Excel 2007 or above, or need a raw mark for a different qualification, the exams officer at your school or college will be able to provide this information.

The raw mark is the number of marks a learner achieved on an exam or assessment.

The UMS mark (Uniform Mark Scale mark) or points score is a conversion of the raw mark.

For some of our qualifications, components can be taken at different times throughout the course. For example, some of our Edexcel A level Mathematics exams can be completed in the first or second year of study.

To make sure that any differences in the difficulty of exams or assessments are taken into account when adding up your marks to give an overall grade, we convert the ‘raw’ or exam paper mark into a UMS mark.

UMS grade boundaries are fixed so they are the same for each exam session. Raw mark grade boundaries may change for each exam session.

The raw mark is never shown on your results slip, so students will either see a UMS mark, a points score or no numerical mark at all.

Exams officers can find the raw mark on the 'Component Mark List' report from Edexcel Online. If you have access to ResultsPlus or ResultsPlus Direct, you can also find the raw mark on the question paper screen.

Our senior examiners determine the grade boundaries using raw marks, which are then mapped to the UMS grade boundaries published in the specification.

In some cases, converting two consecutive raw marks will give non-consecutive UMS marks. This means that it won't always be possible to achieve all UMS marks on a particular exam or assessment.

Example: A level Biology Unit 1 (6BI01/01) taken in summer 2013

Raw mark UMS mark
36 36
37 39

For this exam paper there is no raw mark which converts to a UMS mark of 37 or 38 - so it wouldn’t be possible to obtain a UMS mark of 37 or 38 in this exam. 

When taking one of our Edexcel GCSE foundation tier papers, the highest grade you can achieve is a C. This is because foundation tier papers don’t assess the skills or knowledge required for a grade B.

To ensure that the UMS mark you’re awarded doesn’t contribute more to your overall grade than the difficulty of your paper permits, the maximum number of UMS marks you can achieve is capped.

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