Schools and exam bodies are to work together to award grades for GCSE and A-level students this summer.
It follows the cancellation of the exams due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Details of exactly how the alternative arrangements will work are still being ironed out. But the Government released some further information this afternoon.
Teachers will draw on a range of evidence to come up with the grade in each subject that they feel the student would have received if exams had gone ahead.
It will include taking into account mock exam marks and non-exam assessment, which could mean looking at how well they have performed throughout the course. This information will then be passed on to exam boards, who will also look at ‘prior attainment’ before coming up with a final grade.
There will also be an option for young people to sit an exam early in the next academic year if they want to take it up.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “My priority now is to ensure no young person faces a barrier when it comes to moving onto the next stage of their lives – whether that’s further or higher education, an apprenticeship or a job.
“I have asked exam boards to work closely with the teachers who know their pupils best to ensure their hard work and dedication is rewarded and fairly recognised.
“We recognise that some students may nevertheless feel disappointed that they haven’t been able to sit their exams. If they do not believe the correct process has been followed in their case they will be able to appeal on that basis.”
Exams regulator Ofqual will be working with teachers’ representatives and exam boards before finalising the approach.
The aim is to provide these calculated grades to students before the end of July.
A Department for Education spokesman said: “We will also aim to ensure that the distribution of grades follows a similar pattern to that in other years, so that this year’s students do not face a systematic disadvantage as a consequence of these extraordinary circumstances.”