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Tutor Doctor | Aug 4, 2015

What to Do If You're Planning on Going to University and Your A-level Results Aren't Up to Target

Categories: Education, Performance, Testing

Sitting exams might seem like months ago but A-level results day (13th August) is just around the corner. Even though we hope that everyone gets the results they want, we know that sometimes things don’t go as planned. Here at Tutor Doctor we want to make sure you’re prepared, especially if you’re planning on going to university and didn’t quite get the UCAS points you needed. Remember you’re not alone and thousands of others will be feeling exactly the same as you.

Don’t Panic
First things first- don’t panic! This will only make things worse. If you didn’t do as well as you had hoped, don’t beat yourself up. Remember you have loads of options. Try to stay positive and think about what the next best move is for you.

Check UCAS
Before you start making any drastic decisions always check UCAS. Even if you know that you’ve just missed out on the points you need for your first choice, your insurance option may have accepted you. Don’t automatically assume that you haven’t got in.

It’s also always worth ringing your first choice of university even if you didn’t get the grades. They may be able to offer you an alternative course to the one you originally applied for, otherwise known ‘changed course offers.’ For example you may have applied for a psychology course and be offered psychology and sociology combined. This is definitely worth considering, especially if that university was particularly appealing to you.

Clearing
Often universities will operate special clearing hotlines around exam results day. Don’t rule it out- you might even find a course that is actually more suited to you. On the other hand, never choose a course just for the sake of it. Remember you will invest a lot of your time and money in university, so being confident in your decision is a must.

Re-apply
If you have your heart set on university then remember you can always apply again next year. There is no age limit or time frame which you should attend. Another benefit of doing this is that you already know your grades before you apply, so can make more realistic choices.

Re-take
Re-sitting modules or exams is always an option and is a wise choice, especially if you have done well in the majority of your other units. Perhaps think about the reasons why you might have not received the results that you’d hoped for. By identifying where you went wrong should help you work towards ensuring better grades the second time. For example did you not put the work in? Was there an area you really struggled with?

Re-evaluate
When things don’t go to plan sometimes the best thing to do is re-evaluate where you’re heading and what you want to do. Really take some time to think about all of your options. Is taking the academic route actually best for you? Would you perhaps be better suited to employment-based training? There are tons of paid apprenticeships available in the UK, which really help you get on the career ladder.

Take a gap year
Taking a gap year is always a great and rewarding adventure to consider. Just make sure that you are doing it for the right reasons and not because your friends are. Don’t forget, there is plenty of time to travel after uni or during the long summer breaks.

Get a job/Internship
Remember university isn’t for everyone. Getting a job/internship and building your skills up out in the industry might be the option that suits you best.

Your results don’t define you
Whatever you decide, remember that your results don’t define who you are. Try and keep your head clear, stay positive and work through all of your options. Most importantly- take your time!