With A-level results day nearly upon us, sixth-formers across the country are waiting to open their results after two years of hard work to find out how their exams really went.
For many students, it means finding out whether they have a place at their first choice university, or if they will need to look at other options.
Here is a guide for students and their families on how to best plan for the day.
When do my results come out?
A-level results are published this year on Thursday 15 August.
Ucas Track will go live at 8am and students will be updated on the status of their university offers.
You can check online to see whether your offer has been confirmed as unconditional, but you will need to go into your school or college in the morning to collect your results.
The grade boundaries for individual subjects will also be published on Thursday morning.
How can I prepare for the day?
Make sure you’re ready on the morning of results day. Have your Track sign-in details to hand, and see that your contact details are up to date.
If you won’t be able to answer the phone throughout the day, you can nominate a family member or guardian to speak on your behalf so they can communicate with Ucas or your chosen universities.
If you feel you may need to use Ucas Clearing, it’s worth looking in advance at vacancies listed for courses you’re interested in, and keep a note of the Clearing phone numbers of potential courses.
How can I collect my results?
You will be able to go into your school or college to collect a hard copy of your results. Opening times will vary, so it is worth checking them in advance.
If you are not able to travel in, your school may allow you to nominate a family member to collect your results for you. Others might be able to send your results in the post or over the phone, or even make results available online.
What happens if I have not got the results I expected?
If your grades are not what you had hoped for, it is important to remember you still have lots of options.
If you missed the offer for your first choice university, speaking to them directly might mean they still choose to accept you or they might make an alternative course offer.
If you have missed offers from both your firm and your insurance choice universities, you can look through Clearing to see if there are available spots on degree courses you are interested in.
You can also consider taking a gap year and reapplying to university, possibly while resitting some or all of your A-level subjects. It is also possible to request a review of your exam results.
What are my options if I do better than predicted?
If you are in the position of having met and exceeded your firm choice offer, then you can use Ucas Adjustment. You need to register for the service on Track.
You will get five days to speak to other universities about potential vacancies on courses you’d be interested in.
Until you have accepted an offer from another university, and the new university has confirmed the offer on Track, you get to keep your firm choice offer.