For students in the UK, who have been doing their GCSE’s and A-levels, August is the month where we find out our results. These results are important, because they determine whether you get into sixth form or college to study A-levels, continue to study your A-levels, or if you have got the grades to get into university. The wait from the final exam until results day is stressful for everyone, so I decided to write a post on how to cope with the waiting, how to deal with the results you get on the day, and the aftermath of receiving this list of numbers and letters that will determine your future.
The Build Up.
The two months or so leading up to results day is the worst part, because if you’re anything like me, then you will let your imagination go crazy and you will eventually have the worst case scenario set out in front of you. Chances are more than likely that things will go better than you thought. I always thought I did worse in exams than I actually did, because I didn’t want to get all psyched up about getting a good grade and then getting disappointed. However, you need to try and find the balance of being slightly pessimistic, but being positive enough to not let the anxiety drown you.
You need to find things to get your mind off the results as much as possible, so if you’re going on holiday then enjoy it and don’t let your results worry you too much! To be honest, the only time I was ever worried about my exams was last year but that was because I knew that my English literature and French exams hadn’t gone as well as I’d wanted. I wouldn’t say that softened the blow of not getting my predicted grades, but still. When I was on holiday, my results were always on the back of my mind and it wouldn’t let me enjoy the time with my family and friends as much as I would have liked.
SO, to survive the days leading up to results day, you just need to find ways to relax as much as possible. I can’t give you one solid answer, because everyone is different. But, things like going out with friends and talking about things other than school and exams can be a way to get your mind off things. Also, doing some form of exercise or activity which requires your focus and effort might be a good way to deal with possible stress and anxiety leading up to results day, because you are then putting your mind to something else.
So you have survived the build up to Results Day itself, now to deal with the day itself. If you’ve got the grades you want, or better, then there’s nothing really left to say. .Go and celebrate and be happy! But be aware that maybe your friends haven’t got the grades they want and may be a bit upset, so try not to rub it in their face and don’t keep talking about how good your grades are when they clearly don’t want to know at that moment in time. This kind of happened to me, especially last year when I didn’t get into my first choice of university and it was hard seeing other people in my sixth form being happy and being able to progress. (I also still had to wait to hear from my insurance choice, but you can read all about that here!)
If you are just one grade below what you wanted to get, that’s not really much to worry about. If you got a B instead of an A, or a C instead of a B, it’s not the end of the world. As long as you’ve passed then you are still able to continue with your education, whether it’s going on to A-levels or going onto University. It is disappointing hearing that you were a grade off what you had hoped, but at the end of the day, as long as you’ve passed then there’s not too much to worry about. However, if you get an unusually low grade (for example, if you were predicted a B and you get an E), then don’t be afraid to send it off for a re-mark! And do it as soon as possible, because you don’t want to waste the opportunity of finding out that maybe the exam board marked it wrong, and you did in fact get the grade you wanted!
When it comes to A-levels and getting into university, if you don’t get the grades required then it’s not the end of the road! You can apply for places via clearing, however it is a bit more of a hassle. The first thing you’ll need to do is apply for clearance on UCAS, then look at what universities are offering places for the course you are interested in studying, then call them up. Bare in mind that a lot of these places will be busy, so you may have to be on hold, or try calling a few times. Also, even though you will be able to apply for accommodation, there isn’t a 100% guarantee that you’ll get a room. For me, I was lucky and found somewhere to lodge for the first three weeks before I was offered a room, so make sure you keep this in mind too.
Go out and enjoy the last few weeks of freedom before you go back to school or college, or start your adventure at university. If you do happen to be in the situation where you have applied to university via clearance, then it may be that you will be contacting universities for the next few days but it really shouldn’t take too long at all. The next thing you should do is start packing, if you haven’t done so already!
So those are my top tips for surviving results days! I hope they have helped, and hopefully you are stressing less than you were. If anyone would like me to do a Clearance Masterclass type post then I am more than happy to! I definitely felt I could have done with more information about the whole progress. Knowing me I’ll probably end up doing it anyway!