DJS Research explores why teachers switch exam boards

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12th August 2015 17:49 - Education

Recent market research findings from DJS Research’s education market research arm, VoicED, have revealed what makes teachers switch exam boards, and what they’re looking for once they have made the change. The research aimed to discover new business development opportunities, market understanding, customer satisfaction and customer expectations.

The indicative study of 25 respondents revealed that the process of changing from one exam board to another is largely easy, however, the respondents did reveal the worst elements of switching. Below are some quotes, direct from respondents, which outline their perception of the worst elements of changing exam boards.

“Entirely different standards applied to work. Lack of clear communication. Negative feedback on work submitted. Poor quality training. Poor results.” Respondent

“Confusing messages and approval processes and forms!” Respondent

“Second guessing the unwritten expectations of the board.” Respondent

When the respondents were asked “What were the main reasons you made the change to a different exam board?” The responses varied:

10 respondents – Accuracy & reliability

10 respondents – Other

9 respondents – Grades were not as expected

8 respondents – Quality of customer service

6 respondents – New personnel/professional changes at school/in department

6 respondents – Impact of policy change

3 respondents – Cost to administrate/cost to run

3 respondents – Funding and/or pupil premium

2 respondents - External influence

The respondents were also asked what they would like from a new exam board, after going through the process of switching from one to another. One respondent said that they were looking for: “More consistent marking and better customer service”, whereas another respondent said they were looking for: “Improved results, better balance of course and less emphasis on controlled assessments”

Other respondents said that they wanted: “New opportunities to develop exciting schemes of work. Have worked closely with the new exam board to develop exemplar material” and “Encouragement you to review and refresh schemes of work. Adds variety to teaching diet.”

The research also found a potential opportunity for exam boards, as making the switch an easy process meant that market share could be grown from other exam boards, on the other hand, this also means that exam boards should maintain a good relationship with their customers, ensuring high quality customer service and that customer satisfaction is prioritised, in order to retain current customers and prevent them from switching to a competitor.

Below is an infographic containing the key findings of the study – courtesy of our in-house data visualisation specialist, Steph Skupien - but for further information please get in touch with Elliot Simmonds or Kate Slater via email, or call 01663 767 857. A pdf version of this infographic is also available, here: Teacher views on switching exam boards.

DJS Research explores why teachers switch exam boards

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