SQA Results Day: What next if you've applied to university?

Planning on leaving school and going to uni? How your results have turned out might affect your options.

Use our handy decision tree to work out what choices you have and what might suit you best.

A flowchart illustrating the options a pupil has if they want to go to University.

I have applied to go to university. What shall I do if…

...my grades are what I expected?

  • Great! Well done you. If your grades are as expected and you have met the conditions of your offer, UCAS Track will update and you will be accepted onto your chosen course.

  • But if you’ve changed your mind and want to go for your insurance choice, you’ll need to contact the university to see if they can still offer you a place. Then if your firm choice agrees to withdraw your offer, you will be entered into Clearing where your insurance choice can then make you an offer.

  • Remember there are no guarantees, and once your firm offer has been cancelled, you can’t automatically go back to it. You can always discuss your options with a Careers Adviser on the SDS Exam Results Helpline if you wish to explore your options.

...my grades are better than expected?

  • Result! You can either go for your firm choice, or you could be in a position to change courses.

  • UCAS Adjustment allows students who have met and exceeded the conditions for their firm choice to apply for a different course whilst retaining their original offer. Adjustment is available between 16-31 August and is totally optional.

  • If you might be interested in using Adjustment, contact the SDS Exam Results Helpline for advice to help you decide if it’s a good option for you.

...my grades are worse than expected?

  • Try not to worry, you still have options

  • Students can't contact the SQA directly to make an appeal. If schools have a concern about a candidate’s results, a request for a clerical check or a marking review can be made by head teachers via the SQA’s Results Services.

  • If no-one is able to offer you a place, you will be automatically entered into Clearing to help you find an alternative course. Find out more about Clearing on the UCAS website.

  • If you have met the conditions for your insurance choice, this will be confirmed and UCAS will send you a letter in the post. This letter will confirm the course you will study and explain if there’s anything else you need to do.

  • But, if you’re in a situation where you haven’t met the grades for your firm choice but they haven’t declined the conditional offer yet, give them a call. Even if you didn't meet the conditions, the university or college might still be prepared to accept you or may be considering whether to offer you a place on an alternative course.

  • Don’t panic, there are still options even if you still don’t hold any offers, and there is nothing suitable through Clearing. You could look at applying for college, which can be a great stepping stone towards university – and some courses can lead to direct entry to university. You could also resit any courses which you’d need for your desired course.

Where else can I get advice?

The SQA will run its Candidate Advice Line on 0345 279 1000 from 8 am on Tuesday 6 August 2019, until 9th August 2019, offering results guidance

SDS (Skills Development Scotland)’s advisers can give you information on your options, including applying for college or university through clearing, and taking resits, as well as Modern Apprenticeships, Foundation Apprenticeships or alternative courses for this year.

You can also contact the SDS Exam Results Helpline, from 8 am on Tuesday 6 August 2019 on 0808 100 8000.

Young Minds: Results day top tips
UCAS: How to use Clearing
SQA