A-level results 2020: here are your options whether you’ve missed your grades or made your university offers

students looking concerned while reading their results

What to do now you've got your calculated grades

If you were supposed to be sitting A-level or AS-level exams this summer, you'll now have received your calculated grades.

Hopefully, the system worked out OK for you and you've got the grades you wanted. However, it's clear from the conversations on the TSR forums that many students have received grades significantly below what they would have expected.

Below, we've outlined a range of exam result scenarios and how to deal with each of them.

I have met or exceeded my firm university offer

Congratulations! If your results have met the conditions of your offer, you  don’t need to do anything else – you’re definitely in and you’ll be starting university in September.

Start getting ready by checking out our ultimate list of what to take to university and these 11 things you must do before Freshers Week.  

If you’ve not only met all of your offer conditions, but also exceeded any part of that offer, you’ll also have the option to use Adjustment.

This could help you upgrade to a better university or course – but you’ll only have five days from results day to do this. You can find out more about Adjustment here.


Help with your A-level results

Many students have questions about the A-level results they have received. If you're looking for help with your results, these other articles on The Student Room should also be useful.

If you are still looking for a university place, you might want to use our Clearing information service. If you sign up for this, you'll receive emails from universities who still have places in your chosen subjects. You can sign up for Clearing emails here 


I have made my insurance offer

If you missed your firm choice but your insurance choice is now showing as Unconditional Firm, it means you’ve got a place at your insurance university.

I’ve changed my mind about my firm and insurance choice universities

If you’ve been offered a place but you’re having second thoughts about your choices, you can decline your place on Track and release yourself into Clearing. We’ll go into more detail about Clearing a bit further down.

students holding their results and hugging

My offer is still showing as Conditional Firm on Ucas Track

If your offer is still showing as Conditional Firm, it means you haven’t met the conditions of the offer but the university hasn’t made a decision yet about whether or not to offer you a place.

The university also might be holding you as Conditional Firm in case you’re planning on sitting the optional autumn exams. If this is not something you’re planning on doing, you should let the university know. 

You have a few options here. You can call up the university to find out what’s going on, you can wait for them to make a decision or you can decline the place before they’ve decided.

Take a look at our expert guide to what you should do if you're still being held as Conditional Firm



I did not make my university offer

If you have not been offered a firm or insurance place, you still have a few choices.

You could ask your school to appeal your grades

You'd usually be able to get the marking of your exam reviewed if you thought your grade was incorrect.

But, because A-level students have been given calculated grades instead of taking exams this summer, things are a little different this year. 

You will only be able to appeal your results if you think an administrative error was made with your grade – for example, your name was mixed up with someone else’s and the wrong grade was entered into the system.

If you think this might have happened, you’ll need to ask your school or college to open an appeal on your behalf. The deadline for submitting an appeal is 17 September, and your grade will be protected so it definitely won’t go down.

Alternatively, if you think you were affected by bias or discrimination, the first thing to do is speak to your school or college and raise a complaint through them. If that does not solve the issue, you could consider going to the exam board.

“It is important to remember that this would not be an appeal, but rather an allegation that malpractice or maladministration occurred in relation to your centre assessment grade(s) or rank order position(s). Such allegations would be serious, and taken seriously,” Ofqual has said in its guidance on appeals and malpractice

If you think that you might have the grounds for an appeal, you can find out more about what you need to do here

students reading results together

You could sit the optional autumn exams

If you’re not happy with your calculated grades, you have the option to sit a series of A-level exams in the autumn.

These exams will run from Monday 5 October to Friday 23 October, with results expected on Thursday 17 December – here are links to all of the autumn exam timetables.

It will be up to the individual universities to decide whether to let you take the autumn exams and start your course in 2020, so this is something you would need to discuss with the admissions department.

You could find a university place through Clearing

If you haven't got the results you needed, Clearing provides a way to find a university place in 2020. You can read our guide to Clearing here.

Clearing is a way for universities and colleges to fill the places they have left on their courses – there are still thousands of places available, with plenty of them at highly ranked universities.

In fact, Ucas has predicted that this year will be the busiest ever for Clearing, with a record 80,000 students expected to find places through Clearing in 2020.

Here’s where you’ll find all of our Clearing content.

You could reapply for university next year

If you prefer, you could always choose to take a year out and start again next year with a fresh application. This would give you plenty of time to potentially take the autumn exams, or even next summer’s resits.

Take a look at our guide to A-level retakes, resits and the optional autumn exam series

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