40 Years of Grade Inflation in British Archaeology

Posted on July 27, 2014


For the last week I have been posting on the subject of grade inflation: how it works with getting a job, the causes, and an actual look at the UK numbers for Archaeology. I am going to finish off this series of posts with some more UK data .

Pushing it back 20 years

In my last post I used data from HESA to look at grades in UK Archaeology all the way back to 1994. Why only 1994? That was the year that HESA first started collecting data, replacing the job done by the Universities Statistical Record (USR) which was closed down at that time too. Luckily, after USR folded the data it collected, since 1972, was deposited in the the UK Data Service. I downloaded this data and separated out the Archaeology degrees to look at the marks given for the years 1972-1993 and combined it with my earlier work.

Who would have guessed it? Grades have been going up for 40 years. It really took off 25 years ago but the trend has been going on for as far back as we have data.

Grade Inflation in UK Archaeology from 1972-1913

Grade Inflation in UK Archaeology from 1972-1913

 Fun Fact

In 1975/76 only two people got a ‘First’. Talk about being in the elite. I do wonder what happened to them, if they continued in archaeology or found work else where?

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