A-Level Results Day 2019 - Everything You Need To Know

For Students | 29 Min Read

when is A-level results day 2019

We’ve written the ultimate in-depth guide covering everything you need to know about A-level results day. From answering FAQs to advising you on A-Level retake courses and anything else you might be wondering about on A-level results day 2019

A-level results day is in equal parts exciting and nail-bitingly terrifying (although, let’s be honest, more so the latter). After two years of hard work, endless past papers and stress from all sides the day has finally come where you’ll open the envelope that will determine your future.

For some, A-level results day is a cause for celebration, and a big glass (bottle) of champers. For others, it’s a mixed bag. And for those students who don’t get the grades they wanted, it can seem like the end of the world.

However, try not to freak out. As long as you stay focused, make informed decisions and continue to work hard, you can bounce back and set yourself back on track for a successful future.

🎓 When Do A-Level Results Come Out?

🎓 What to do if you passed?

🎓 What to do if you failed your A-levels?

🎓 Steps for Clearing

🎓 Retaking your A-Levels


preparing for clearing

When do A-Level results come out?

A-level results day 2019 is Thursday 15th August. At 6am the exam boards will release results to schools and colleges.

To learn their exam results for each subject students will need to collect them from their school or college.

Each institution sets its own rules regarding when students can pick up their results, although most are open for A-level results day before 10am.

UCAS will obtain your results directly and will update Track once they have received them. This usually happens around 8am but, as the system will be busy, students might have to be patient and wait slightly longer to learn if they have been successful in achieving University admission.


What to do if you passed or did better than you thought…

This one is fairly straightforward, if you managed to get the grades you were hoping for - congratulations! There’s no better feeling than having all your hard work paying off.

Now all there really is to do is celebrate - responsibly - and start preparing yourself for the next step in your academic journey.

However, some students may have done better than they were expecting and managed to achieve higher than their predicted grades. This may mean that they want to reconsider their first choice University and re-apply somewhere else.

UCAS have recently introduced an Adjustment period that students can register for in UCAS Track. This essentially means that they have a short period of time to see if they can obtain a place on a better or different course at a different University than they had originally hoped for.

Below are the steps to follow if you want to go through Adjustment:

1) Before making this decision it is important that you are sure it is the right one for you. We recommend that you speak to an advisor at your school, college, centre or careers office - they will be able to offer expert advice as to whether Adjustment is the right move for you.

2) After deciding you definitely want to go through Adjustment, you will then need to register in UCAS Track. You can only do this if you have either met or exceeded the terms of your firm offer.

3) As there is no specialised vacancy list for Adjustment, students will need to check the course details and get in touch with the University admissions office in order to find out if there are any places available on the course or at the Uni that they hoping to get onto or into. Make sure that you let them know you are applying through Adjustment, and they will discuss course vacancies with you. Don’t accept an offer unless you are 100% sure that you want it - don’t make any rash decisions!

4) You may not find an offer that you want to accept, but if you do then you need to let them know as soon as possible. You can only have one Adjustment offer and the University will have to add themselves to your application. For more information about Adjustment, head over to the UCAS website.


What to do if you failed your A-levels…

Failing to get the grades you wanted in your A-levels can be super disappointing, and leave you feeling stressed, wondering where to turn and what to do next.

Whilst having a meltdown can sometimes be cathartic, it is, all in all, a bad idea. Try and gather some perspective, and do not panic. Although it might seem like the end of the world, we can promise you - it’s not!

Every year thousands of students miss out on the A-level grades they were expecting or hoping for. If this happens to you, it is important to act fast and make informed decisions to ensure the best outcome. Most of all, it's vital you understand exactly what your choices entail and how they could change your life, both for the next few years and far into the future.

There are a whole range of options open to students who have failed to get the grades they were hoping for in their A-level exams - from enrolling in a specialist course to help you get those top grades in your retakes, retaking your exams as a private candidate or even taking a Gap Year to help you refresh and rejuvenate yourself before you give your exams another go.

There’s a lot to think about and not always a lot of time to do it in, so it’s completely normal to feel confused, conflicted and frankly overwhelmed when it comes to knowing what to do if you fail your A-levels.

To help you make the right decision for you, here is the ultimate, in-depth guide on what to do after getting your A-level results.

Note - A-level results day is a stressful and emotional time that can feel impossible to navigate alone. Our experienced and understanding educational team are experts in guiding students with disappointing A-level results through their various options. For more information on what to do next, head to the Tutor House Blog for more details on all things A-level, University, and retake related. To chat to a human about how to choose your next steps, contact our educational experts here:

Make sure to check your UCAS track…

female student checking UCAS TRack

The first thing to do if your A-level grades are lower than expected is to check your UCAS track. If you have missed out on just a few grade boundaries, you could get lucky and receive confirmation of admission even if you didn’t quite meet the conditions of your original offer.

For other students, Universities will give them the option of studying on a different course instead - perhaps one that is more suited to their capabilities or that the University feels will better match their strengths.

But, for some students, missing out on your predicted grades can mean that the University will decide to reject your application. When this happens, students should check their status on UCAS to see if their status has been updated, as they may still have the chance of obtaining a place at one of their original University choices.

Call your University…

At this stage, you should take the time to phone your intended University’s admissions office - their number will be listed on their website or on correspondence they’ve sent you.

If you’ve only missed the grade by a couple of marks or a lot of your peers have also missed out on the required grades, you could still nab a spot on your first choice course.

If your exact course isn’t available, some Universities may offer similar courses for students that couldn’t quite make the cut. So if, for you, it’s more about the University than the course, you could still wind up where you want to be (although you should never commit to a course you aren’t passionate about just because you like the University).

Universities are not faceless institutions, they understand your situation so will help you in any way they possibly can. It’s always better to rule something out then keep wondering what could have been, so find out for sure if you’ve lost your offer.

Even if you can’t negotiate a place this year, you can use the time to gage your dream University’s attitude regarding A-level retakes, so it’s definitely worth making the call.

Go through Clearing…

Alternatively, following a slightly disappointing results day, many students will choose to go through clearing. This is the process that allows students to apply for different courses at different Universities to the ones they originally applied for.

Clearing is a simple process at its core, many students end up going to study excellent courses at top Universities.

If you’re going through Clearing then you can apply between 5th July and the 23rd of October. You can only apply for courses that are not already full.

The most common reasons to go through Clearing are if you didn’t receive any offers from your chosen Universities, or failed to get the grades that you needed to get into your first choice Unis.


The steps for Clearing are as follows…

VARK What kind of learner are you?

1) If you’re not sure how to go about the Clearing process, the first step is to reach out to an advisor at your college, school or centre, and they will help you to work out what you should do next. They will be able to offer expert insight into which courses are best suited to you, and how to actually apply.

2) After this, you’ll need to establish which courses are actually available. The UCAS website has a search tool that will show students the Universities that have vacancies. If you can’t find the exact course you were hoping for, it is a good idea to consider which other subjects you might be interested in. Students can also choose to apply for joint honours as well.

3) Before you go ahead with actually adding your chosen Uni choice into UCAS track, you will firstly need to contact the Universities that you are interested in applying for. You will need to provide them with your clearing number and your personal ID so that they can locate your application and decide if you’re a good fit.

4) Once you’re happy with your choice, and the Uni has granted you permission, you will need to add your Clearing choice into UCAS Track. You will need to click on ‘Add clearing choice’ and then fill in all the necessary details regarding your course. Once you have done this, and the Uni has chosen to confirm your acceptance, you will be notified of this on the ‘Choices’ page in UCAS track.

Universities have thousands of free vacancies on courses across a wide range of subjects. One in eight students gets into Uni through clearing, so don’t worry - you’re not alone! And who knows, you may end up on a course that is better suited to you anyway.

Get your papers remarked

Getting your papers remarked is not an advisable option for everyone and is something that should be handled with caution. However, for students who only missed their required grades by a couple of marks, it may well be worth getting your papers remarked.

Some lucky students will end up picking up a few extra marks that can be enough to bag them the grades that the needed to get into the Uni of their choice.

However, bear in mind the process takes time so if clearing is something that interests you, you should make that a priority. Equally, if you are getting your papers remarked, ensure that you let your University know and check that they can hold your place for you.

Remember, your marks can go down as well as up, and if your remark does result in lower scores you will need to pay a fee for the remark. However, if your clearing options aren’t appealing or you have your heart set on a particular course, remarking exam papers can be worth that last shot in the dark.

The thing to remember with both remarking is that if you still don’t get the grades you need, or even drop a few marks, it’s still not the end of the world. Re-taking your A-levels can still get you that place on your dream University course, albeit a little later than expected, and can have a whole host of benefits too (more on those later).


Retaking your A-levels

students enjoying studying

It is widely acknowledged that retaking your A-levels really is the best way to secure the future you want.

Whether you feel you didn’t work hard enough the first time round, you had a bad day and didn’t perform as well as you should have in a particular exam or you experienced unforeseen circumstances that impacted your performance - many students choose to retake their A-levels after receiving grades lower than they were expecting.

Resitting exams the following year allows students the chance to overcome any of the challenges they may have faced the first time round, providing the perfect opportunity for them to prove to themselves that, through determination, hard work, and with a little help from Tutor House, they can get the grades they want.

Retaking your A-levels has a wealth of benefits. It will not only help you to achieve the grade you deserve, but will also better prepare you for life after school or college and considerably boost your chances of getting into your dream uni.

Students can choose to retake one, two or all three/four of their A-levels. Depending on the grades achieved, it may be the case that a student only needs to boost one of their grades in order to get into the Uni of their choice. Therefore, they can opt to just retake that specific subject. For those students that missed their grades in all their subjects by quite a substantial amount, they can go back and start from scratch, studying a new range of subjects that better suit their interests and skill set. There are a wide range of different options available to students. Tutor Houses’ A-level retake courses are designed to cater to each individual student’s needs. Don’t miss out and book your course here today.

In order to boost the chance of success in A-level retakes, students should seek out small classes in which they can receive the undivided attention of their teacher. This will ensure that they are getting the help that they need to make sure they are fully prepared come exam time.

Retaking your A-Levels with Tutor House

retaking A-levels at Tutor House.jpeg

Retake courses are, more often than not, the best option for a student who has failed one or more of their A-levels. Different courses are better for students in different situations so it’s important to pick the correct one wisely.

In a scenario where you’ve missed your required grade on one of your A-levels by a relatively small margin then, it’s likely that, you’ll need less tutelage to get your grade up. In such a case a short 6-month retake would likely be the best option.

If you’re in a situation where you’ve failed one or more of your A-levels quite badly then a longer one year retake course would suit your needs better.

Tutor House understands that failing to get the grades you want is disheartening and can really knock you back in terms of confidence. Our specialist A-level retake courses are designed to redress a students motivation, self confidence and approach to learning. Click below and start your journey towards success with Tutor House.

We employ experienced and qualified teachers who will work alongside students to make sure that they cultivate the skills, knowledge and confidence to get the grades that they want in those vital examinations.

With Tutor House, students can retake any, or all, of their A-level exams. We offer students the chance to receive a tailored teaching experience designed to ensure they are prepared for success in their A-level retake exams. With small classes facilitating individualised learning, students can receive top quality tuition from qualified and experienced teachers.

At the Tutor House Campus we offer a whole range of A-level and A-level retake courses, ensuring every student can find the education solution that’s right for them. Tutor House has a comprehensive range of A-level retake courses, so we are guaranteed to have an option that caters to every student’s individual needs. We offer six month A-level retake courses, 1 year intensive A-level retake courses and 2 year A-level retake courses.

Half year intensive A-level retake courses -

This is the perfect option for students who only missed their predicted results by a few grades. The course runs from January to June, so gives students a few months to have a break, rejuvenate, maybe pick up a part-time job or even go globe-hopping before they get back to the grind. After a refresh, students often find that they have a much more positive attitude towards their studies, and, having already formed a base of knowledge, many find this six months period be the most enjoyable in education yet. With our superb teachers guiding you through each stage, students can reignite their love of learning (I’m serious), and get the grades they need to secure that all-important University spot.

1 - year A-level retake courses -

This option is perfect for students who were a little further off the mark or want to shift their academic goals and take up a new subject. The Tutor House Campus one year course acts as an equivalent to the entire A-level course, our outstanding teachers expertly squeezing two years of content into a single year of study without compromising on student understanding. While perfect for students who need that little bit more help in achieving their required grades, rather than just a top-up, some students choose to study an entire A-level (or three) using our one year course. As a result, if there is one subject you want to drop in favour of starting a new one, you could complete both your A-level retakes and a new A-level course all in one go, giving you the flexibility to reconsider your choice of degree or simply further boost your application.

2 - year A-level courses -

These are less of a retake more of a total overhaul, the 2 year A-level course is fantastic for students who want to totally start again and this time ensure they end up where they want to be. If you’re a student who really felt like they did not get the educational support they needed first time around, starting from scratch and taking your time may be the best solution. Equally, if you’ve completely changed your mind in terms of what degree course you want to do, the 2 year A-level retake course is the perfect opportunity to recalibrate and ensure you’re moving towards the future you want. It takes a lot of courage to completely start again, but with our fantastic teachers, small classes, and stunning campus, this is the ideal moment to take control of your destiny.

All the Tutor House Campus A-level retake courses are taught by outstanding teachers with years of experience in helping students achieve success. Our average class size is just six students, ensuring that we can give each student the individual attention and support they need to thrive. We also offer individual A-level courses where students work with an experienced personal tutor on an A-level retake course designed secifically for them.

For more information on which A-level retake course is right for you, how we can ensure you reach your goals, and why our campus is the best in London, speak to one of our expert education advisors today.

Speak with the team about TH Campus

Will retaking A-levels help or hinder my chances of getting into a top University?

student walking through library

There is a popular myth that it’s much harder to get accepted into University courses with A-level retake results. So you may well be wondering if your University will even accept A-level retake grades. The truth is that the vast majority of Universities, including coveted Russell Group institutions, do accept retake A-level results in the same way they would a first attempt. There are a few institutions or specific courses that increase their standard offer, so if you needed ABB originally it may have gone up to AAB, but with effective A-level retake courses achieving those grades is well within your potential.

Indeed, many Universities take the view that students who retake their A-levels to get the required grades not only show that they have the academic potential, they have also prove their dedication, work ethic and ability to keep going when the going gets tough - all of which are desirable traits in a University candidate.

There are a few of the very competitive courses, such as Medical degrees or Law courses at Russell Group Universities, where it is significantly more difficult for retake students to get an offer. Make sure you ring up your University to explain your situation and check their policy on retakes for your course so that you know exactly what your options are.

However, even if you can no longer get on the course you originally planned, retaking your A-levels can still prove hugely beneficial. Even if you shift your goals and take up or switch one of your subjects, A-level retakes can still enable you to get on a course at a top University that meets your requirements and keeps you on track to achieve your eventual career goals.

Retaking your A-Levels as a Private Candidate

Alternatively, students can opt to retake their A-levels as a Private Candidate. A Private Candidate is a student who studies independently, and then sits their exams with a recognised examination board (such as AQA or OCR) during the recognised exam period in May/June.

Students who qualify as private candidates can either be homeschooled, self-taught, have had tuition with a private tutor or have taken a distance learning course. If this feels like it could be the option for you, then get in touch with a qualified and experienced Tutor House tutor, today.

If you know that you have the skill and knowledge to succeed, but external factors got in the way the first time round, then retaking as a private candidate gives you the chance for a do over, whilst also allowing you the time and flexibility to take your studies in a new direction if you feel it is necessary.

How it works…

Once you’ve decided that you want to retake your A-levels as a private candidate, you will need to firstly locate and select an exam centre that accepts private candidates, and that supports the exam board that you are with. This will vary, so it is important that you do your research at this point.

Once you have done this, you will need to register at your chosen exam centre. For some students, getting back in touch with their school or college and seeing if they will allow you to retake your exams there as a private candidate is the easiest option.

Alternatively, there are also loads of exam centres that students can sit their retakes at - although you’ll need to make sure that they offer the subjects that you are retaking.

Then, go away and get learning, whether that be on your own or with the assistance of a tutor, and then come back on the day of your exam and hey presto.

Students will be charged a fee per exam when retaking as a private candidate. However, these will vary depending on the exam board. As an example of the cost - AQA charges around £77 for each A-Level.

If students are taking a course that includes coursework, then they will need to submit this to the exam centre that they have chosen to sit their exams with. Sometimes, the centre won’t accept coursework. In these cases, students can normally carry their previous mark forward - but this will depend on the exam board and centre. Make sure to check exactly what is required from you prior to registering with an exam centre to avoid confusion later down the line.

What are the benefits of retaking A-Levels as a private candidate?

female student reading in library

One of the best things about retaking A-Levels as a private candidate is that it gives students the flexibility and freedom to study in an environment of their choice. As there is no regimented schedule, students can learn when, how and where they want.

Whether they want to enlist the help of a private tutor, study independently or be homeschooled, retaking A-level exams as private candidate gives students the flexibility to approach their learning in a way that best suits them.

Moreover, this flexibility means students can study alongside doing other things, such as working, travelling or doing work experience or an internship. This makes retaking A-levels as a private candidate a hugely attractive option, as students don’t need to sacrifice another lengthy period of time to dedicate it to their studies.

Retaking exams as a private candidate is also an attractive option financially. Whilst, of course, ootatrh jstudents will need to invest in a private tutor or homeschooling, if they choose to study independently they will only need to pay for the exams themselves, rather than a further year or two years in education. For students on a tight budget that have mastered the art and discipline of independent study - this is the perfect option.

Should I retake my A-Levels as a private candidate?

There are definitely benefits of retaking your A-levels as a private candidate. Not only does it give students another shot at achieving the grades they need to get into the University of their choice, but it is also a flexible and affordable option, too.

However, retaking A-levels as a private candidate is most certainly not for everyone. Studying independently is tricky, and, without guidance and support, it can be hard to know where to start. Without a fixed schedule, learning plan and someone to help you stay on track, many hardworking and intelligent students struggle to thrive in an independent learning environment.

Generally, we only advise students with a very strong work ethic, good self-motivation and an approach to learning that doesn’t require too much structure or external assistance to retake their A-levels as a private candidate.

For students that want to retake their A-levels but are intimidated by the thought of having to study independently, then retake courses are definitely the right option for you. Our expert teachers will work alongside their students in order to ensure that they are fully prepared to sit their exams second time round. Click here and enrol in one of the top A-level retake course in the UK.

What are my other options?

Take A Gap Year

student traveling on gap year

Does this really count as an option? Well actually yes. You’ve probably done nothing but study, except for school holidays, for the last 13 years and it’s totally acceptable to need a break.

If you want time to stop and think, evaluate your options, and apply for a University course that matches with your A-level results starting next year, you are absolutely entitled to do so.

If this is something that you’re interested, make sure that there is a University course you want to do that you could get onto with your A-level results. This is a gap year, a chance to recover and prepare for the next few years of study, NOT you giving up on your academic dreams.

If there isn’t an alternative University course that meets your goals and results, consider taking a gap year, either travelling or working to save some money, and then taking a one year A-level retake course that will boost your grades to where they need to be.

Equally, if your A-level results this year weren’t far off hitting your required grades, you may be able to combine a gap year with an intensive 6-month A-level retake course. Effectively getting the best of both worlds!

Nothing says “I’m coming back stronger” like turning something negative into a positive. For more information on how you can combine a gap year and retaking A-levels (hello having and eating your cake), reach out to one of the Tutor House Campus educational experts here:

Work for a year…

student getting work experience

It can be tempting for students who’ve had their academic confidence knocked to consider moving into employment for a year. This has a host of benefits, giving students some real-world experience, helping them to gain some perspective and also earn some money whilst they’re at it.

However - it is important to make sure you don’t give up on your academic dream. Whilst entering the employment market full time certainly has its appeals, the allure of instantly earning money quickly wears off when you’re paying taxes and rent, and all your buddies have moved on to explore a new city, new ideas, and new meet new people - not to mention ending up in lucrative careers.

Trust us - retake your A-Levels and go to University -- you won’t regret it. University is an awesome experience and, we feel, a right of passage all students deserve to enjoy. Beyond getting a top quality qualification that get you that step closer to your dream career, University has a whole host of other benefits for students personal development.

Going to University is your chance to ease into independence, make friends for life, and discover your passions both academically and recreationally - and no, we don’t just mean REALLY developing your taste for beer.

Asides from being an amazing experience with a tonne of social and personal rewards (screw gap years actually, University is where you find yourself), there’s no denying the advantage of getting a top degree in a subject you are passionate about. It’s true that every Tom, Dick and Harry has a degree these days, but that actually just means that if you DON’T have a degree you’re even further behind when it comes to getting a good career.

Being qualified to Degree level STILL opens up doors that simply aren’t an option for those without a University qualification. From getting onto a graduate job course or government fast-track to teaching English overseas, there are all kinds of opportunities enjoyed by University graduates that you can’t access without a degree. You’d be surprised the affect your degree has on your life, so our advice is make sure you get it, and get the one you want.

If you open your results envelop and it’s not good news, you shouldn’t abandon all hope and take the first job you can get in a desperate attempt to make yourself feel better. Pop the kettle on and have a good long think about where your passion really lies before making any rash decisions.

If you’re umming and ahhing about whether or not to stay in education - more often than not you should commit to retaking your A-levels - there’s nothing worse than looking back and wondering ‘what if’.

With a Tutor House A-level retake course, students can reach their full potential, get a place at the University of their dreams and reap the benefits of a top Degree for the rest of their lives.

So, SHOULD I retake my A-Levels or not?

Students Hanging Out

The decisions you make now will affect the rest of your life, so it is vital you make choices that you will feel happy with in the future. If you are finding the whole situation overwhelming and confusing, reach out to our expert educational advisors today and discuss all your academic options.

For a huge number of students, retaking A-levels does give them the best chance of making their University and career dreams come true. Options like clearing and apprenticeships generally lead to disappointment when the rush to move onto the next step dies away and students are left on a course they simply don’t care about or at a University they don’t like.

Equally, not being able to get onto the University course you want, whether you choose to go to a different University, start work, or take an apprenticeship, almost always limits your ability to find a fulfilling and well paid career later in life.

While every student is different, and you should do what’s right for you, retaking A-levels is usually the best way to keep doors open and ensure you have the life, and University experience, you deserve.

It’s better to wish you hadn't than wish you had, so don't wind up wishing you’d invested in yourself and your education at this vital point. For more information on what your options are and how to make retaking A-levels work for you, contact our expert educational advisors now:

However, if you’re unsure, or even have the slightest flicker of doubt, I implore you to consider retaking you exams and having another shot at success. A-levels are a hugely important qualification, and Degrees are even more so - especially in today’s competitive job climate.

So, our advice? Enroll in a six month, one year intensive or two year A-level retake course with Tutor House, get the grades you need to go to University and take the next step towards a successful future.




Ella Grimwade

Written by Ella Grimwade

Published June 7, 2019, 12:56 p.m.

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A-Level Results Day 2019 - Everything You Need To Know

For Students | 29 Min Read

when is A-level results day 2019

We’ve written the ultimate in-depth guide covering everything you need to know about A-level results day. From answering FAQs to advising you on A-Level retake courses and anything else you might be wondering about on A-level results day 2019

A-level results day is in equal parts exciting and nail-bitingly terrifying (although, let’s be honest, more so the latter). After two years of hard work, endless past papers and stress from all sides the day has finally come where you’ll open the envelope that will determine your future.

For some, A-level results day is a cause for celebration, and a big glass (bottle) of champers. For others, it’s a mixed bag. And for those students who don’t get the grades they wanted, it can seem like the end of the world.

However, try not to freak out. As long as you stay focused, make informed decisions and continue to work hard, you can bounce back and set yourself back on track for a successful future.

🎓 When Do A-Level Results Come Out?

🎓 What to do if you passed?

🎓 What to do if you failed your A-levels?

🎓 Steps for Clearing

🎓 Retaking your A-Levels


preparing for clearing

When do A-Level results come out?

A-level results day 2019 is Thursday 15th August. At 6am the exam boards will release results to schools and colleges.

To learn their exam results for each subject students will need to collect them from their school or college.

Each institution sets its own rules regarding when students can pick up their results, although most are open for A-level results day before 10am.

UCAS will obtain your results directly and will update Track once they have received them. This usually happens around 8am but, as the system will be busy, students might have to be patient and wait slightly longer to learn if they have been successful in achieving University admission.


What to do if you passed or did better than you thought…

This one is fairly straightforward, if you managed to get the grades you were hoping for - congratulations! There’s no better feeling than having all your hard work paying off.

Now all there really is to do is celebrate - responsibly - and start preparing yourself for the next step in your academic journey.

However, some students may have done better than they were expecting and managed to achieve higher than their predicted grades. This may mean that they want to reconsider their first choice University and re-apply somewhere else.

UCAS have recently introduced an Adjustment period that students can register for in UCAS Track. This essentially means that they have a short period of time to see if they can obtain a place on a better or different course at a different University than they had originally hoped for.

Below are the steps to follow if you want to go through Adjustment:

1) Before making this decision it is important that you are sure it is the right one for you. We recommend that you speak to an advisor at your school, college, centre or careers office - they will be able to offer expert advice as to whether Adjustment is the right move for you.

2) After deciding you definitely want to go through Adjustment, you will then need to register in UCAS Track. You can only do this if you have either met or exceeded the terms of your firm offer.

3) As there is no specialised vacancy list for Adjustment, students will need to check the course details and get in touch with the University admissions office in order to find out if there are any places available on the course or at the Uni that they hoping to get onto or into. Make sure that you let them know you are applying through Adjustment, and they will discuss course vacancies with you. Don’t accept an offer unless you are 100% sure that you want it - don’t make any rash decisions!

4) You may not find an offer that you want to accept, but if you do then you need to let them know as soon as possible. You can only have one Adjustment offer and the University will have to add themselves to your application. For more information about Adjustment, head over to the UCAS website.


What to do if you failed your A-levels…

Failing to get the grades you wanted in your A-levels can be super disappointing, and leave you feeling stressed, wondering where to turn and what to do next.

Whilst having a meltdown can sometimes be cathartic, it is, all in all, a bad idea. Try and gather some perspective, and do not panic. Although it might seem like the end of the world, we can promise you - it’s not!

Every year thousands of students miss out on the A-level grades they were expecting or hoping for. If this happens to you, it is important to act fast and make informed decisions to ensure the best outcome. Most of all, it's vital you understand exactly what your choices entail and how they could change your life, both for the next few years and far into the future.

There are a whole range of options open to students who have failed to get the grades they were hoping for in their A-level exams - from enrolling in a specialist course to help you get those top grades in your retakes, retaking your exams as a private candidate or even taking a Gap Year to help you refresh and rejuvenate yourself before you give your exams another go.

There’s a lot to think about and not always a lot of time to do it in, so it’s completely normal to feel confused, conflicted and frankly overwhelmed when it comes to knowing what to do if you fail your A-levels.

To help you make the right decision for you, here is the ultimate, in-depth guide on what to do after getting your A-level results.

Note - A-level results day is a stressful and emotional time that can feel impossible to navigate alone. Our experienced and understanding educational team are experts in guiding students with disappointing A-level results through their various options. For more information on what to do next, head to the Tutor House Blog for more details on all things A-level, University, and retake related. To chat to a human about how to choose your next steps, contact our educational experts here:

Make sure to check your UCAS track…

female student checking UCAS TRack

The first thing to do if your A-level grades are lower than expected is to check your UCAS track. If you have missed out on just a few grade boundaries, you could get lucky and receive confirmation of admission even if you didn’t quite meet the conditions of your original offer.

For other students, Universities will give them the option of studying on a different course instead - perhaps one that is more suited to their capabilities or that the University feels will better match their strengths.

But, for some students, missing out on your predicted grades can mean that the University will decide to reject your application. When this happens, students should check their status on UCAS to see if their status has been updated, as they may still have the chance of obtaining a place at one of their original University choices.

Call your University…

At this stage, you should take the time to phone your intended University’s admissions office - their number will be listed on their website or on correspondence they’ve sent you.

If you’ve only missed the grade by a couple of marks or a lot of your peers have also missed out on the required grades, you could still nab a spot on your first choice course.

If your exact course isn’t available, some Universities may offer similar courses for students that couldn’t quite make the cut. So if, for you, it’s more about the University than the course, you could still wind up where you want to be (although you should never commit to a course you aren’t passionate about just because you like the University).

Universities are not faceless institutions, they understand your situation so will help you in any way they possibly can. It’s always better to rule something out then keep wondering what could have been, so find out for sure if you’ve lost your offer.

Even if you can’t negotiate a place this year, you can use the time to gage your dream University’s attitude regarding A-level retakes, so it’s definitely worth making the call.

Go through Clearing…

Alternatively, following a slightly disappointing results day, many students will choose to go through clearing. This is the process that allows students to apply for different courses at different Universities to the ones they originally applied for.

Clearing is a simple process at its core, many students end up going to study excellent courses at top Universities.

If you’re going through Clearing then you can apply between 5th July and the 23rd of October. You can only apply for courses that are not already full.

The most common reasons to go through Clearing are if you didn’t receive any offers from your chosen Universities, or failed to get the grades that you needed to get into your first choice Unis.


The steps for Clearing are as follows…

VARK What kind of learner are you?

1) If you’re not sure how to go about the Clearing process, the first step is to reach out to an advisor at your college, school or centre, and they will help you to work out what you should do next. They will be able to offer expert insight into which courses are best suited to you, and how to actually apply.

2) After this, you’ll need to establish which courses are actually available. The UCAS website has a search tool that will show students the Universities that have vacancies. If you can’t find the exact course you were hoping for, it is a good idea to consider which other subjects you might be interested in. Students can also choose to apply for joint honours as well.

3) Before you go ahead with actually adding your chosen Uni choice into UCAS track, you will firstly need to contact the Universities that you are interested in applying for. You will need to provide them with your clearing number and your personal ID so that they can locate your application and decide if you’re a good fit.

4) Once you’re happy with your choice, and the Uni has granted you permission, you will need to add your Clearing choice into UCAS Track. You will need to click on ‘Add clearing choice’ and then fill in all the necessary details regarding your course. Once you have done this, and the Uni has chosen to confirm your acceptance, you will be notified of this on the ‘Choices’ page in UCAS track.

Universities have thousands of free vacancies on courses across a wide range of subjects. One in eight students gets into Uni through clearing, so don’t worry - you’re not alone! And who knows, you may end up on a course that is better suited to you anyway.

Get your papers remarked

Getting your papers remarked is not an advisable option for everyone and is something that should be handled with caution. However, for students who only missed their required grades by a couple of marks, it may well be worth getting your papers remarked.

Some lucky students will end up picking up a few extra marks that can be enough to bag them the grades that the needed to get into the Uni of their choice.

However, bear in mind the process takes time so if clearing is something that interests you, you should make that a priority. Equally, if you are getting your papers remarked, ensure that you let your University know and check that they can hold your place for you.

Remember, your marks can go down as well as up, and if your remark does result in lower scores you will need to pay a fee for the remark. However, if your clearing options aren’t appealing or you have your heart set on a particular course, remarking exam papers can be worth that last shot in the dark.

The thing to remember with both remarking is that if you still don’t get the grades you need, or even drop a few marks, it’s still not the end of the world. Re-taking your A-levels can still get you that place on your dream University course, albeit a little later than expected, and can have a whole host of benefits too (more on those later).


Retaking your A-levels

students enjoying studying

It is widely acknowledged that retaking your A-levels really is the best way to secure the future you want.

Whether you feel you didn’t work hard enough the first time round, you had a bad day and didn’t perform as well as you should have in a particular exam or you experienced unforeseen circumstances that impacted your performance - many students choose to retake their A-levels after receiving grades lower than they were expecting.

Resitting exams the following year allows students the chance to overcome any of the challenges they may have faced the first time round, providing the perfect opportunity for them to prove to themselves that, through determination, hard work, and with a little help from Tutor House, they can get the grades they want.

Retaking your A-levels has a wealth of benefits. It will not only help you to achieve the grade you deserve, but will also better prepare you for life after school or college and considerably boost your chances of getting into your dream uni.

Students can choose to retake one, two or all three/four of their A-levels. Depending on the grades achieved, it may be the case that a student only needs to boost one of their grades in order to get into the Uni of their choice. Therefore, they can opt to just retake that specific subject. For those students that missed their grades in all their subjects by quite a substantial amount, they can go back and start from scratch, studying a new range of subjects that better suit their interests and skill set. There are a wide range of different options available to students. Tutor Houses’ A-level retake courses are designed to cater to each individual student’s needs. Don’t miss out and book your course here today.

In order to boost the chance of success in A-level retakes, students should seek out small classes in which they can receive the undivided attention of their teacher. This will ensure that they are getting the help that they need to make sure they are fully prepared come exam time.

Retaking your A-Levels with Tutor House

retaking A-levels at Tutor House.jpeg

Retake courses are, more often than not, the best option for a student who has failed one or more of their A-levels. Different courses are better for students in different situations so it’s important to pick the correct one wisely.

In a scenario where you’ve missed your required grade on one of your A-levels by a relatively small margin then, it’s likely that, you’ll need less tutelage to get your grade up. In such a case a short 6-month retake would likely be the best option.

If you’re in a situation where you’ve failed one or more of your A-levels quite badly then a longer one year retake course would suit your needs better.

Tutor House understands that failing to get the grades you want is disheartening and can really knock you back in terms of confidence. Our specialist A-level retake courses are designed to redress a students motivation, self confidence and approach to learning. Click below and start your journey towards success with Tutor House.

We employ experienced and qualified teachers who will work alongside students to make sure that they cultivate the skills, knowledge and confidence to get the grades that they want in those vital examinations.

With Tutor House, students can retake any, or all, of their A-level exams. We offer students the chance to receive a tailored teaching experience designed to ensure they are prepared for success in their A-level retake exams. With small classes facilitating individualised learning, students can receive top quality tuition from qualified and experienced teachers.

At the Tutor House Campus we offer a whole range of A-level and A-level retake courses, ensuring every student can find the education solution that’s right for them. Tutor House has a comprehensive range of A-level retake courses, so we are guaranteed to have an option that caters to every student’s individual needs. We offer six month A-level retake courses, 1 year intensive A-level retake courses and 2 year A-level retake courses.

Half year intensive A-level retake courses -

This is the perfect option for students who only missed their predicted results by a few grades. The course runs from January to June, so gives students a few months to have a break, rejuvenate, maybe pick up a part-time job or even go globe-hopping before they get back to the grind. After a refresh, students often find that they have a much more positive attitude towards their studies, and, having already formed a base of knowledge, many find this six months period be the most enjoyable in education yet. With our superb teachers guiding you through each stage, students can reignite their love of learning (I’m serious), and get the grades they need to secure that all-important University spot.

1 - year A-level retake courses -

This option is perfect for students who were a little further off the mark or want to shift their academic goals and take up a new subject. The Tutor House Campus one year course acts as an equivalent to the entire A-level course, our outstanding teachers expertly squeezing two years of content into a single year of study without compromising on student understanding. While perfect for students who need that little bit more help in achieving their required grades, rather than just a top-up, some students choose to study an entire A-level (or three) using our one year course. As a result, if there is one subject you want to drop in favour of starting a new one, you could complete both your A-level retakes and a new A-level course all in one go, giving you the flexibility to reconsider your choice of degree or simply further boost your application.

2 - year A-level courses -

These are less of a retake more of a total overhaul, the 2 year A-level course is fantastic for students who want to totally start again and this time ensure they end up where they want to be. If you’re a student who really felt like they did not get the educational support they needed first time around, starting from scratch and taking your time may be the best solution. Equally, if you’ve completely changed your mind in terms of what degree course you want to do, the 2 year A-level retake course is the perfect opportunity to recalibrate and ensure you’re moving towards the future you want. It takes a lot of courage to completely start again, but with our fantastic teachers, small classes, and stunning campus, this is the ideal moment to take control of your destiny.

All the Tutor House Campus A-level retake courses are taught by outstanding teachers with years of experience in helping students achieve success. Our average class size is just six students, ensuring that we can give each student the individual attention and support they need to thrive. We also offer individual A-level courses where students work with an experienced personal tutor on an A-level retake course designed secifically for them.

For more information on which A-level retake course is right for you, how we can ensure you reach your goals, and why our campus is the best in London, speak to one of our expert education advisors today.

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Will retaking A-levels help or hinder my chances of getting into a top University?

student walking through library

There is a popular myth that it’s much harder to get accepted into University courses with A-level retake results. So you may well be wondering if your University will even accept A-level retake grades. The truth is that the vast majority of Universities, including coveted Russell Group institutions, do accept retake A-level results in the same way they would a first attempt. There are a few institutions or specific courses that increase their standard offer, so if you needed ABB originally it may have gone up to AAB, but with effective A-level retake courses achieving those grades is well within your potential.

Indeed, many Universities take the view that students who retake their A-levels to get the required grades not only show that they have the academic potential, they have also prove their dedication, work ethic and ability to keep going when the going gets tough - all of which are desirable traits in a University candidate.

There are a few of the very competitive courses, such as Medical degrees or Law courses at Russell Group Universities, where it is significantly more difficult for retake students to get an offer. Make sure you ring up your University to explain your situation and check their policy on retakes for your course so that you know exactly what your options are.

However, even if you can no longer get on the course you originally planned, retaking your A-levels can still prove hugely beneficial. Even if you shift your goals and take up or switch one of your subjects, A-level retakes can still enable you to get on a course at a top University that meets your requirements and keeps you on track to achieve your eventual career goals.

Retaking your A-Levels as a Private Candidate

Alternatively, students can opt to retake their A-levels as a Private Candidate. A Private Candidate is a student who studies independently, and then sits their exams with a recognised examination board (such as AQA or OCR) during the recognised exam period in May/June.

Students who qualify as private candidates can either be homeschooled, self-taught, have had tuition with a private tutor or have taken a distance learning course. If this feels like it could be the option for you, then get in touch with a qualified and experienced Tutor House tutor, today.

If you know that you have the skill and knowledge to succeed, but external factors got in the way the first time round, then retaking as a private candidate gives you the chance for a do over, whilst also allowing you the time and flexibility to take your studies in a new direction if you feel it is necessary.

How it works…

Once you’ve decided that you want to retake your A-levels as a private candidate, you will need to firstly locate and select an exam centre that accepts private candidates, and that supports the exam board that you are with. This will vary, so it is important that you do your research at this point.

Once you have done this, you will need to register at your chosen exam centre. For some students, getting back in touch with their school or college and seeing if they will allow you to retake your exams there as a private candidate is the easiest option.

Alternatively, there are also loads of exam centres that students can sit their retakes at - although you’ll need to make sure that they offer the subjects that you are retaking.

Then, go away and get learning, whether that be on your own or with the assistance of a tutor, and then come back on the day of your exam and hey presto.

Students will be charged a fee per exam when retaking as a private candidate. However, these will vary depending on the exam board. As an example of the cost - AQA charges around £77 for each A-Level.

If students are taking a course that includes coursework, then they will need to submit this to the exam centre that they have chosen to sit their exams with. Sometimes, the centre won’t accept coursework. In these cases, students can normally carry their previous mark forward - but this will depend on the exam board and centre. Make sure to check exactly what is required from you prior to registering with an exam centre to avoid confusion later down the line.

What are the benefits of retaking A-Levels as a private candidate?

female student reading in library

One of the best things about retaking A-Levels as a private candidate is that it gives students the flexibility and freedom to study in an environment of their choice. As there is no regimented schedule, students can learn when, how and where they want.

Whether they want to enlist the help of a private tutor, study independently or be homeschooled, retaking A-level exams as private candidate gives students the flexibility to approach their learning in a way that best suits them.

Moreover, this flexibility means students can study alongside doing other things, such as working, travelling or doing work experience or an internship. This makes retaking A-levels as a private candidate a hugely attractive option, as students don’t need to sacrifice another lengthy period of time to dedicate it to their studies.

Retaking exams as a private candidate is also an attractive option financially. Whilst, of course, ootatrh jstudents will need to invest in a private tutor or homeschooling, if they choose to study independently they will only need to pay for the exams themselves, rather than a further year or two years in education. For students on a tight budget that have mastered the art and discipline of independent study - this is the perfect option.

Should I retake my A-Levels as a private candidate?

There are definitely benefits of retaking your A-levels as a private candidate. Not only does it give students another shot at achieving the grades they need to get into the University of their choice, but it is also a flexible and affordable option, too.

However, retaking A-levels as a private candidate is most certainly not for everyone. Studying independently is tricky, and, without guidance and support, it can be hard to know where to start. Without a fixed schedule, learning plan and someone to help you stay on track, many hardworking and intelligent students struggle to thrive in an independent learning environment.

Generally, we only advise students with a very strong work ethic, good self-motivation and an approach to learning that doesn’t require too much structure or external assistance to retake their A-levels as a private candidate.

For students that want to retake their A-levels but are intimidated by the thought of having to study independently, then retake courses are definitely the right option for you. Our expert teachers will work alongside their students in order to ensure that they are fully prepared to sit their exams second time round. Click here and enrol in one of the top A-level retake course in the UK.

What are my other options?

Take A Gap Year

student traveling on gap year

Does this really count as an option? Well actually yes. You’ve probably done nothing but study, except for school holidays, for the last 13 years and it’s totally acceptable to need a break.

If you want time to stop and think, evaluate your options, and apply for a University course that matches with your A-level results starting next year, you are absolutely entitled to do so.

If this is something that you’re interested, make sure that there is a University course you want to do that you could get onto with your A-level results. This is a gap year, a chance to recover and prepare for the next few years of study, NOT you giving up on your academic dreams.

If there isn’t an alternative University course that meets your goals and results, consider taking a gap year, either travelling or working to save some money, and then taking a one year A-level retake course that will boost your grades to where they need to be.

Equally, if your A-level results this year weren’t far off hitting your required grades, you may be able to combine a gap year with an intensive 6-month A-level retake course. Effectively getting the best of both worlds!

Nothing says “I’m coming back stronger” like turning something negative into a positive. For more information on how you can combine a gap year and retaking A-levels (hello having and eating your cake), reach out to one of the Tutor House Campus educational experts here:

Work for a year…

student getting work experience

It can be tempting for students who’ve had their academic confidence knocked to consider moving into employment for a year. This has a host of benefits, giving students some real-world experience, helping them to gain some perspective and also earn some money whilst they’re at it.

However - it is important to make sure you don’t give up on your academic dream. Whilst entering the employment market full time certainly has its appeals, the allure of instantly earning money quickly wears off when you’re paying taxes and rent, and all your buddies have moved on to explore a new city, new ideas, and new meet new people - not to mention ending up in lucrative careers.

Trust us - retake your A-Levels and go to University -- you won’t regret it. University is an awesome experience and, we feel, a right of passage all students deserve to enjoy. Beyond getting a top quality qualification that get you that step closer to your dream career, University has a whole host of other benefits for students personal development.

Going to University is your chance to ease into independence, make friends for life, and discover your passions both academically and recreationally - and no, we don’t just mean REALLY developing your taste for beer.

Asides from being an amazing experience with a tonne of social and personal rewards (screw gap years actually, University is where you find yourself), there’s no denying the advantage of getting a top degree in a subject you are passionate about. It’s true that every Tom, Dick and Harry has a degree these days, but that actually just means that if you DON’T have a degree you’re even further behind when it comes to getting a good career.

Being qualified to Degree level STILL opens up doors that simply aren’t an option for those without a University qualification. From getting onto a graduate job course or government fast-track to teaching English overseas, there are all kinds of opportunities enjoyed by University graduates that you can’t access without a degree. You’d be surprised the affect your degree has on your life, so our advice is make sure you get it, and get the one you want.

If you open your results envelop and it’s not good news, you shouldn’t abandon all hope and take the first job you can get in a desperate attempt to make yourself feel better. Pop the kettle on and have a good long think about where your passion really lies before making any rash decisions.

If you’re umming and ahhing about whether or not to stay in education - more often than not you should commit to retaking your A-levels - there’s nothing worse than looking back and wondering ‘what if’.

With a Tutor House A-level retake course, students can reach their full potential, get a place at the University of their dreams and reap the benefits of a top Degree for the rest of their lives.

So, SHOULD I retake my A-Levels or not?

Students Hanging Out

The decisions you make now will affect the rest of your life, so it is vital you make choices that you will feel happy with in the future. If you are finding the whole situation overwhelming and confusing, reach out to our expert educational advisors today and discuss all your academic options.

For a huge number of students, retaking A-levels does give them the best chance of making their University and career dreams come true. Options like clearing and apprenticeships generally lead to disappointment when the rush to move onto the next step dies away and students are left on a course they simply don’t care about or at a University they don’t like.

Equally, not being able to get onto the University course you want, whether you choose to go to a different University, start work, or take an apprenticeship, almost always limits your ability to find a fulfilling and well paid career later in life.

While every student is different, and you should do what’s right for you, retaking A-levels is usually the best way to keep doors open and ensure you have the life, and University experience, you deserve.

It’s better to wish you hadn't than wish you had, so don't wind up wishing you’d invested in yourself and your education at this vital point. For more information on what your options are and how to make retaking A-levels work for you, contact our expert educational advisors now:

However, if you’re unsure, or even have the slightest flicker of doubt, I implore you to consider retaking you exams and having another shot at success. A-levels are a hugely important qualification, and Degrees are even more so - especially in today’s competitive job climate.

So, our advice? Enroll in a six month, one year intensive or two year A-level retake course with Tutor House, get the grades you need to go to University and take the next step towards a successful future.




Ella Grimwade

Written by Ella Grimwade

Published June 7, 2019, 12:56 p.m.

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