And The Results Are In……….

This week GCSE results came out.  This is an incredibly stressful time for students and their parents and it may seem as though a student’s entire future depends on it. However, it is vital to put things in perspective and know what to do if the results are not as expected.Many GCSEs will now be graded 9–1, rather than A*–G.  There is still quite a lot of confusion over what number is a pass. The idea is that a 4 is a pass whereas a 5 is a good pass.  Many colleges are equally confused by the new grading system and are asking for a grade 5 whereas previously they would have required a C 

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What to do if you are not happy with your results

If your result in any subject falls outside of what you expected to achieve, then the first thing to do is to talk to your teacher or examination officer.

You can’t request a review or results from an examination board directly – your school or college will need to request these on your behalf. It may not always be necessary.

If you needed certain grades to go onto a course at college or sixth form, then contact the college and explain your situation.  They will then inform you if they require you to resit an examination or if they are happy to allow you on the course. Resits can be sat as early as November.

Seek advice from your school or future college concerning availability of other courses.  If you were hoping to do A levels, then it might be worth looking at BTech courses instead. There are over 2,000 BTEC qualifications across 16 sectors, including: applied science, art and design, business, childcare, construction, engineering, media, health and social care, hospitality, ICT, performing arts, public services, and travel and tourism.

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Whilst many employers and colleges now require GCSE passes in English and Maths there are GCSE equivalents. Functional Skills courses are practical skills in English, Maths and ICT. Functional Skills provide an individual with essential knowledge, skills and understanding that will enable them to operate confidently, effectively and independently in life and work. For qualification equivalency look at:

http://www.learndirect.com/help/about-learndirect/learning-with-learndirect/qualification-equivalency/

An apprenticeship might also be another alternative to A Levels. With an apprenticeship, you can benefit from gaining job specific skills, work experience and new qualifications. Over 90% of apprentices stay in employment after finishing their apprenticeship and over 79% of apprentices said their career prospects had improved because of their apprenticeship training.

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Finally, and this is probably the most important thing to consider and it is something that I always tell my GCSE students; in the great scheme of life this really is only GCSES. Your future happiness may appear to depend on these results but in all honesty, there is so much more that is important. If you have performed poorly in your exams the most important thing is to draw a line under the failure and look to the future. You might need to do resits, you might need to rethink your future career choice, you might even decide that academia is not for you and look at a more practical career choice instead. What is important is not to give up. Seek advice and learn from your failure.

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