As of the fall semester of 2011, a new grading system was introduced in Sweden. The new grading criteria are much clearer and students will be able to better view their progress. Even the parents have the option to take part in their child's final school grades. The new final school grades are meant to lead to a more fair grading, according to Jan Björklund, former Minister for Education.
For every course syllabus, The Swedish National Agency for Education has formulated a clear objective as well as a description for how the subject contributes to the student’s education. Also, the course syllabus should partly describe what you will learn and what concepts are included. Feel free to ask for your course syllabus to find out more. By doing this you will also find out what you need to learn to earn your final school grades.
A through F, or no grade
The new grading system contains six levels of grading, A-F. The five levels A-E represent passed results, and F represents a failed result. Which grade a student will get depends on how well the student has reached his or her goal. There are goals set for the highest grade (A), the middle grade (C), and the lowest grade (E). The goals set for these levels are the same for every student, regardless of where in Sweden you live.
If the student has a high level of absence and has not participated in some sort of assessment, the teacher may not be able to give the student a grade. In this case, the teacher would assign a dash (-) in place of a grade. This means that you have neither passed nor failed.
The worth of the final school grades
Every grade has a worth. The final school grade E is worth 10 points, the grades following have an increasing value of 2.5 points. Hence, the highest grade (A), is worth 20 points. A failed grade, F, will result in zero points.
A - 20
B - 17.5
C - 15
D - 12.5
E - 10
F - 0
Specified knowledge requirements
There are so called specific knowledge requirements, meaning clearly formulated requirements regarding the grades E, C, and A. Regarding the grades D and B, there are no specified knowledge requirements. When given the grade D, this implies that the knowledge requirements for the grade E, and to an extent the grade C, are met. When given the grade B, this implies that the knowledge requirements for the grade C, and to an extent the grade A, are met. The grounds for these grades may vary among students, who may meet different aspects of the knowledge requirements.
Because “to an extent” may vary from student to student, these knowledge requirements are not specified on either a national or a local level.
The teacher makes an assessment based on the general picture of the student’s knowledge, and compares it to the overall knowledge requirements. Dependent on the aim of the subject and the central content of the course, the teacher will then assess which parts of the knowledge requirements the student has met.
For which type of school do the new grades apply?
The new grades are applied to both compulsory school and upper secondary school. In Special needs upper secondary school however, only the five levels of grading for a passed grade (A-E) are distributed.