Caitlin's latest blog - it's decision making time

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 12:00 AM

Caitlin, one of our student bloggers, talks about some of the decisions that need to be made after results day.

As results day approaches, you may have to make some important decisions. If, like me you’re going into Year 13 in September, you will have to consider whether dropping a subject for A2 is the correct choice for you.

Perhaps you really enjoy all your subjects, and want to take as many as possible. Should you drop them, then? It’s worth considering that you are unlikely to be at a disadvantage for studying three subjects only at A2. It’s better to choose three and get good results in all of them than to take on too much work and get poorer grades because of it. Only you can decide this but remember to be realistic about how much extra study you can handle. Get as much advice as possible. Talk to your teachers about the kind of workload involved.

If you already know what subject you want to read at university, you should check out for advice on which A-levels will be most relevant or useful to you. Remember that some university courses will require not just specific grades, but particular subjects to be studied in order to be considered. It is important that you are well informed now, so that there are no surprises when you get round to applying through UCAS.

Ensure that you have read the syllabus for any course in which you are potentially interested.  You could talk to older students - maybe your friends have siblings that have or are currently studying the same or similar subjects.

On the other hand, if you’re still undecided about courses or higher education you might have different priorities. You might want to take only the subjects that you enjoy. Remember, studying a subject at A2 will be harder than AS Level. It’s definitely easier to work hard at a subject that you find interesting or are passionate about. On the other hand, it’s also worth focusing on subjects for which you expect or hope to get a good grade. If you’re already finding a subject particularly challenging, some difficult choices may need to be made if carrying on with it might potentially affect your other A-Levels.

Once the results have come out, you’ll either be partying with your friends or sadly disappointed. Remember, it really is not the end of the world; but it will seem like that at the time. If you missed out on a predicted grade or felt you were harshly marked then it is worth considering a remark of your paper. In my case, a remark of my GCSE English paper resulted in an improvement of two grades. Again be realistic, and remember that grades can also be lowered following a remark! Another option is to re-sit the exam to improve the grade. Be careful though, as the only thing it might help is your ego. Consider whether getting a better grade is essential for your chosen course because it can add yet more strain to an already heavy workload.

Good luck for results day!

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