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GCSE and A Level Results Day: Why You Don’t Have to Panic if You Don’t Get the Grades You Need

16th June 24

In light of A-level and GCSE results day this August, many learners will be waiting with bated breath to see if their results unlock the next stage in their academic or employment journey. A lot of people assume this just applies to teenagers, but there are plenty of adult learners who rely on these qualifications for a career switch later in life.

If you fall into either category, missing the mark on something you’ve been working so hard to achieve isn’t the greatest feeling. What you need to know, however, is if this should happen to you, there’s no need to panic. You have options to choose from that will keep you on that path to your goals.

A-level and GCSE Results Day 2024

First things first, it’s best to get yourself mentally prepared for results day. Knowing the dates in advance also helps you research any potential alternatives you may need to consider ahead of time.

When Do GCSE Results Come Out?

This year, GCSE results day falls on the 22nd of August.

When Do A-Level Results Come Out?

For those waiting for A-Level results, you will receive them on the 15th of August 2024.

woman studying on laptop with headphones on

What Are My Options if I Fail My GCSEs?

GCSEs are the traditional gateway to the next phase of academic studies, but what most people don’t realise is that they are actually required for much more later down the line.

When it comes to applying to university, you might think it’s only A-levels that the university wants to see, but your GCSE results are just as crucial. The same goes for certain jobs, with employers wanting to get an insight into the first formal record of your academic ability and potential.

Thankfully, universities and employers are mainly concerned with English and Maths, as these provide an essential foundation for learning other subjects, and they are crucial building blocks for any career. You can find out more about why English and Maths are so important in our blog.

If you fail GCSE Maths or GCSE English, there is a quick-to-complete alternative that can get you an equivalent qualification.

Functional Skills Courses

The UK Government came up with the idea of Functional Skills courses to help the nation develop critical literacy, numeracy and Information Communication Technology (ICT) skills for everyday life.

There are various levels available, but when you study Functional Skills at Level 2, it provides the equivalent to a pass at GCSE.

This is what most universities and jobs will want you to have to meet their entry requirements, and as they can be completed online in just a few short weeks, you can blitz through them and stay on track to your goal.

So, if come August you find that you’ve not got the grades required in your GCSE Maths or English, don’t worry. Check out our English and Maths Functional Skills alternatives. If you fail any other GCSE subjects, our online GCSE and iGCSE range are also much quicker to complete than their classroom counterparts. So, there’s an option for anyone who fails their GCSEs come results day.

What if I Fail My A-levels?

When it comes to A-levels, these are traditional advanced-level qualifications which have provided the preferred gateway to university for many years. Unlike GCSEs, A-levels tend to be where people find their feet and study course subjects that are of most interest to them or are most influential to their life goals.

So, yes, A-levels are a big deal. With many employers also looking at these in combination with a university degree education to access gated roles, they can be imperative for your progression down many paths in life.

But what happens if you fail A-levels? Do you need to go and complete full courses in multiple subjects again? Thankfully not.

Access to Higher Education Diplomas

In years gone by, universities wouldn’t consider you unless you had the specific combination of A-levels that opened the door to different modes of degree-level study. Now, things are much more flexible.

The Access to Higher Education Diploma does what it says on the tin and provides learners with access to university without A-levels. It has been designed as a Level 3 alternative, with substantial enough teachings that it equates to three separate A-level qualifications.

The beauty of this is, if you’ve just failed your A-levels, you can study one course that takes less than a year to complete, rather than committing years to completing individual A-levels a second time.

What’s more, anyone who failed their GCSEs can side-step the A-level route and take an Access to HE Diploma instead. This is because you don’t need any GCSEs to enrol, you just need to meet the Level 2 entry requirements by the time you apply to university, which you can do through our Functional Skills courses.

The difference between A-levels and the Access to HE Diploma is that the latter is typically vocation or industry-focused, as opposed to the subject. So, you need to have a good idea of what you want to do for your career ahead of your choosing, as the pathways available are quite specific.

career path ahead written on yellow road sign

For example, there are Access to HE Diplomas designed to help you become a:

However, if you are looking to break into a certain field there are also Access to HE Diplomas that cover wider areas of study such as:

You can view the full list of available Access to HE Diplomas on our website. For any learner looking to re-sit their A-level courses, we also have a wide range of online A-level and iA-levels available, which takes much less time to complete than those studied in class.

Get Your Bachelor's Degree Through An Online Degree Pathway

Access to Higher Education Diplomas are perfect for anyone who was quite far off meeting the benchmark of their degree. But if you only missed it by a small amount of points, you may well be able to study your chosen degree without the need to go through UCAS Clearing. 

Our online degree pathways enable you to study Year 1 and Year 2 of your bachelor's degree at home, then progress to university (with guaranteed admission) to complete Year 3, which can also be studied online. This provides a faster and much more cost-effective way to get your degree and the entry requirements are less strict than the campus-based programmes. 

Find out more about the in-demand online degree pathways we offer and the universities you can study with here.

Online Options For Every Learner

No matter if you’re a school or college leaver, or you’re an adult learner attending school in your own time to get the grades you need to progress, there’s an online option that means you don’t have to panic on results day.

If you fail your A-levels, our Online Degree Pathways, Access to Higher Education Diplomas, online A-levels and online iA-levels provide an ideal alternative. Should your GCSE results not be up to scratch, our online Functional Skills courses can have you back on track in no time, or you can turn to online GCSE and iGCSE courses as an alternative to classroom-based learning.

The main thing to remember is, don’t worry, we have your back when it comes to getting qualified for your future. Find out more now by speaking to one of our Course Advisors on 01202 006 464, or by reaching out to us online. Alternatively, click the link below to view our online Access to Higher Education Diplomas in more detail.

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