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Languages and the creative arts are falling out of favour among GCSE and A-level students, who are increasingly opting for more vocational subjects such as computing and business studies.

Provisional figures for England show exam entries for German have fallen by 17% for A-level students and 6% for GCSE studies, while Spanish and French have fallen 13% at A-level, although there has been a 5% increase for Spanish GCSEs, and French entries stayed at a similar level.

Computing A-level entries rose 15% on last year, contributing to a 65% rise since 2019. At GCSE, entries are up 12% year on year.

Business studies is becoming increasingly popular, with provisional GCSE entries up 13% – and 27% since 2019 – along with a 6% increase for A-levels. Economics entries increased by 5% at GCSE and 7% at A-level.

There are more entries for this summer’s exams for GCSE and A-levels, according to figures published on Thursday by the exams regulator Ofqual. GCSE provisional entries have increased by 3.6% from 5,349,250 in summer 2022 to 5,543,840 this summer, and A-level entries are up 2.3% from 788,125 last summer to 806,410.

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