Over the past couple years students’ grades were based on course work assessed by their teachers, this year however, it’s back to traditional exams. This has some implications, for example, the lowering of the overall grade boundaries by examining boards in order to regulate them. In this blog post we will discuss how this year A-Level Results day is differentand how tutoring can support students that perhaps didn’t quite reach their target grades.
The re-introduction of exams didn’t go as smoothly as it could have. For example, the English language and literature paper had missing excerpts of three Shakespeare plays, and while WJEC has apologised and assured that students’ grades will not be affected, this still caused a lot of emotional distress for students. There were also concerns about an AS-Level maths paper which included questions from topics that students believed would be excluded. This combined with the stress of sitting exams and the lowering of grade boundaries could result in some students not achieving their target grades.
There are many options if students didn’t achieve the grades they required. The key thing to do is keep calm and not panic.Many universities offer clearing options, meaning that there could be a course with admission criteria that perfectly suits the grades achieved. Some universities make exceptions and still allow students into their chosen course, therefore it’s important to call up and ask if there is anything that can be done. For both AS and A-Level students there are possibilities to challenge any grades given (this needs to be done with the assistance of the school or college), and of course, there are also chances to re-sit certain examinations or re-do some coursework. For students who didn’t get their place in university and don’t want to go through clearing – re-sits will keep them from university for another year, however, it may be worth it to get onto the course they want to study.
Over the last year we have helped A-Level students prepare for exams. From helping them with exam technique to teaching them both context and content necessary, and perhaps beyond, of what they were taught in school. Thus putting them at a huge advantage when un-expected questions showed up in exam papers. One-on-one tutoring creates the opportunity to address very individual struggles students face. Tutoring can also hugely boost self-belief in students and it can help ease their stress. Even if it’s one session to answer some key questions a student may have. On the other hand, some students book a few sessions a week prior to their exam and cram revision together with the expert help of a tutor. That is to say, whatever support a student wants we are happy to provide it!
Our latest blog is written by Aleksandra Dul, our English Tutor for GCSE and A level.