Tag Archives: GCE

June 16th 1975

“No phone call – stuff ’em. English = hahahaha / Art = farce”

So to precis the day…

Whitwams bailed on the best record salesman (or worst instrument salesman) they were ever likely to find. Their loss, someone’s else’s gain.

Meanwhile my English exam was a joke and my Art exam redolent of a dodgy Brian Rix production.



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January 20th 1975

“Economics ‘O’ level retake”

Regular EFA70sTRO readers will recall that I pretty much crashed and burned in my GCE O-Levels back in August 1974.

Amongst the subject I failed at was Economics.

Seems like I was allowed to retake it?

How would I fare this time?

I don’t think my diary ever reports it so I will ease your intense unrelenting curiosity to inform you that…

I passed!

(OK, with another infernal ‘E’ grade…. but hey, it was still a pass!)

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December 4th (II)

Told that I would take Maths O’Level

No, Maths O’Level is not the imaginary vocalist in an Irish rock band.

More correctly, an “O-Level” refers to one of the set of GCE (General Certificate of Education) exams we took at school in the 70’s.

We all did a set subjects through our (high) school education and at age 16 took exams in each of them. When we later applied for work we were supposed to list the subjects we passed, and the grades we attained with each of those passes. (Grades, as I recall, we marked from A to E as a ‘pass’ grade, with F meaning a failure)

As far as I can gather, the American equivalent of a GCE is like coming out at the end of High School with a diploma, albeit one split into different courses/subjects. (A series of mini diplomas?)

Like American diplomas and/or SAT’s the scores we got could also assist us when we applied for college or university places.

My diary entry referred to the fact that I was being permitted to take my Mathematics GCE O-Level a year or two earlier than other students, presumably as a result of the scores I was getting in class.

I will doubtless mention this again later on in my diaries, so I’ll save the stories of my success (or lack thereof) until the pertinent forthcoming dates.

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