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A Level Results Day – expert advice!

A Level Results Day – expert advice!

Tash Bright No Comment

With A Level results day just around the corner, Sheffield’s students are coming to the end of a nerve wracking summer wait for those all-important grades. Many students will be celebrating on Thursday 16th August, but what happens if you don’t get the grades you want? To help navigate what can be a complicated process and to make sure students are prepared, local youth charity Sheffield Futures – responsible for delivering careers advice in many schools across Sheffield – is on hand to provide advice and guidance.

What to do if you don’t get the grades you need:

  1. Don’t panic. It’s important to stay calm so that you can act quickly. You are one of many young people who may not have the results they need to secure a place and if you’re panicking, you won’t be able to think clearly and act quickly to access the best courses left. It’s really useful to do some research before results day so that you’re fully prepared and have a plan B in your back pocket.
  2. Go on ‘UCAS Track’ to see if you have secured a place. If your ‘Track’ status hasn’t been updated, it means the university is still making a decision. Call them and ask if they will still take you. There may be a chance you will still be accepted if you have narrowly missed your grades. If your chosen institution (or your insurance offer, if you have one) won’t accept you then you will go into the UCAS clearing process.

However if ‘Track’ states that you’re in ‘Clearing’ then it means that you haven’t been offered a place, and you should keep calm – but act quickly.

  1. Check the UCAS website for all University places still available through clearing. The official list is published on ucas.com and many universities also publish their places on their own websites. If you’ve already done some research and know where else you would like to go, then you will have a head start. You don’t have to stick to your original choice, of course.

If you like the look of a course then call them. The idea is to persuade them to make you an informal offer over the phone. You will need your Clearing number and Personal ID.

  1. Again don’t panic and make sure you look at the clearing places and courses carefully. Consider what it might be like to live in that place. How far is it from home and is the course right for you? Try and visit if at all possible, especially if you haven’t already been to the university. Many of them hold clearing events in the days immediately following your results. It is useful to attend these, as they will give you a real feel for the place and the course.
  2. If you’re happy with the course and university and if they’ve made you an informal offer then make an official application through UCAS Track. Only do this if you have spoken to the university or college and have their agreement.

‘If you don’t get the grades you need to get in to university, the key thing is not to panic and be proactive. It’s important so you can act quickly, and make good decisions’ says Nigel Ball, All Age Guidance Manager at Sheffield Futures.

‘There’s a good chance that all may not be lost, as some institutions may still accept students who have only narrowly missed their grades.’ He continues.

‘A really important thing to do is to prepare in advance, and decide on second and third choices so that you can act quickly if you find yourself in the university clearing process. If you’ve got the details of these institutions to hand, you’re not going to be wasting valuable time researching. How quickly you act may be the difference between securing a place you will thrive in, versus one where you may not.’

Sheffield Futures provides the careers guidance and advice in schools across Sheffield.

Outside of school careers advice sessions, students can call Star House on 0114 2012800.

A level results day this year is Thursday 16th August 2018.

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