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24 September 2014

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Waiting for GCSE results
Julia McCarroll
Julia McCarroll
Last updated: 21 August 2004 1552 BST
lineJulia McCarroll, a sixth former at Beaufort Community School remembers the nail-biting waiting well because last year it was her! Here's her advice for the run-up to results and beyond.
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Nearly everybody has to experience the stress of taking GCSEs and we all know what a relief it is when the exams are finally over but the stress of the results will still linger over us until results day.

The pressure of waiting begins as soon as you leave the exam room and is exaggerated by discussions with friends about the answers.

Students tell each other what answers they put to certain questions and this can cause panic and worry if they haven't put the same.

quoteFail to prepare and prepare to fail!
Julia McCarroll

This was the case for me when I left a dreaded science exam and found out that I put a different answer to my friend on a question that we both had practiced so many times!

Is it really worth all the worry? If failure is the case, there is always the option of retake and it's reassuring knowing that there's always another chance.

However, some subjects are easier to retake than others. English and Maths retakes are easy to take up, but what about the other subjects?

Most schools don't offer many subjects for retake and so students only have the option of retaking subjects at college.

This can be a problem as students may not have the time to go to college after school. They may lack transport and most importantly, motivation!

Getting Away

Sometimes the best thing for a student to do in a situation like this is to take their mind off the waiting.

For example, going away on holiday with family or spending time with friends in the same situation and just doing things you enjoy. I was lucky enough to escape to Spain with my family but returning the night before results day meant a sleepless night filled with concern for me!

If you can't escape the anticipation of results, you should tell yourself, 'I did the best I could' and you will get what you've worked for. Fail to prepare and prepare to fail!


What makes the waiting worse is that sometimes, students have not only got their own expectations to live up to, but those of their parents or relatives as well.

This just adds to the mounting pressure so my message to mums and dads is 'stand by your children and reassure them that you'll love them whether they pass or fail'.

GCSEs have the potential to affect future career plans but as long as you gain five or more A* to C grades, the next step is in reach, which is A Level or Apprenticeships.

All these daunting aspects can lead to stress and restless nights but in my opinion, it isn't worth it! If you pass, the relief is overwhelming and definitely worth a celebration or two, but if you fail, there is always a second chance.

You can retake some subjects at school the next year and take the others up as evening classes at your local college but nobody ever does as badly as they expect. It isn't as bad as we lead ourselves to believe!

This article contains user-generated content (ie external contribution) expressing a personal opinion, not the views of BBC Gloucestershire.


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