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    Hi, I'm a mature student (23) currently applying for undergraduate arts courses and am filling out the UCAS application accordingly. I don't seem to have personal records of my GCSE grades (I have my A levels though), so I've gone with rough guesswork for the grades in the app from what I can remember.

    I could call up the examboards for the details, but I'd rather not pay the fee for two different examboards which I know I have the grades from. How important is it that I get these correct for this particular kind of course?

    On an additional note, I finished my GCSEs in the wave of 2010 (A levels in 2012) and have been in full-time employment for 3-4 years in the media industry. The minimum requirements for the courses ask for grades but is it possible that the skills and experience I've gained from employment over the years can compensate for a lack of GCSEs?
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    When a university makes you an offer through UCAS it is a legal contract - they are guaranteeing to accept you on the basis of the information you have provided.

    If you just guess your GCSEs and are then asked to provide verification the university are well within their rights to withdraw their offer and your application may be cancelled. That means no university at all this year - you won't be able to apply through clearing if your application has been cancelled for fraud. To be clear, just guessing your GCSEs when making an application is considered fraud.

    Many jobs are now asking for proof of qualifications (I'm much older than you and was asked to bring in ALL of my GCSE certificates for my current job). Particularly if you don't have the certificates for English and Maths you might as well order these now as you are highly likely to need them again in the future.

    Some universities may be more flexible given that you have additional experience, but if you are asking for special consideration it is all the more important to have an accurate record of your grades. You should contact universities before you apply to see what flexibility they will offer given the qualifications and work experience that you have. If a university agrees they will consider you based on X set of qualifications and then it turns out you actually only have Y and they're not happy to consider you that's a wasted choice.

    The deadline for equal consideration for applications is 15th January. If you don't have the money now, wait a couple of months until you do and order the certificates. Your old school may also be able to look up your grades (but not provide certificates) if you have your Unique Learner Number, which is probably on your A level certificates somewhere.

    In summary: do not do this. It's a bad plan.
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    (Original post by Moxynomy)
    Hi, I'm a mature student (23) currently applying for undergraduate arts courses and am filling out the UCAS application accordingly. I don't seem to have personal records of my GCSE grades (I have my A levels though), so I've gone with rough guesswork for the grades in the app from what I can remember.

    I could call up the examboards for the details, but I'd rather not pay the fee for two different examboards which I know I have the grades from. How important is it that I get these correct for this particular kind of course?

    On an additional note, I finished my GCSEs in the wave of 2010 (A levels in 2012) and have been in full-time employment for 3-4 years in the media industry. The minimum requirements for the courses ask for grades but is it possible that the skills and experience I've gained from employment over the years can compensate for a lack of GCSEs?
    It's not the end of the world to guess your grades when you first apply and then notifying universities of the exact grades once you've got hold of your certificates.

    If you don't have a copy of your certificates then the first place to contact is your old school. Quite often they'll hold on to uncollected certificates for a period of time so there's a chance you could get hold of them for free. If they don't have your certificates then they might be able to confirm your grades for your from their records.

    Alternatively you can apply to access your PLR for free (follow the instructions here: https://www.gov.uk/government/upload..._Record_v2.pdf ) which will let you know your actual grades.

    Most universities will want to see a copy of your GCSE certificates (even if you have work experience) when you enrol. That means a) you have to come clean ASAP if you guess your grades and then find you got it wrong and b) it's worthwhile doing what you can to get hold of your certificates over the next 6-9 months - at the least just maths and English so if they're on a single exam board that might halve your costs if you can't get them for free from your school.
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    So the basic gist is: yeah, I need 'em.

    (Original post by PQ)
    If you don't have a copy of your certificates then the first place to contact is your old school. Quite often they'll hold on to uncollected certificates for a period of time so there's a chance you could get hold of them for free. If they don't have your certificates then they might be able to confirm your grades for your from their records.
    I've done this already and it was a dead-end for me unfortunately. They confirmed my A-levels but for some reason they told me to check the examboards for GCSEs.

    (Original post by Indigo&Violet)
    In summary: do not do this. It's a bad plan.
    After reading your comments, duly noted. I'll do another search of the house's archive to see if they're not buried real deep somewhere, and if not, will look into both acquiring proof of the grades and asking the facilities about flexibility and such.

    Thank you for the insight on the matter. I'll be more cautious about this kinda thing from now on too.
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      Does that mean they would want to see the actual GCSE certificates, not the piece of paper with your grades on.I too lost my GCSE certificates but still have that piece of paper with my GCSE results on it. When do the universities check for proof? during enrollment?

      PQ
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      (Original post by Blackstarr)
      Does that mean they would want to see the actual GCSE certificates, not the piece of paper with your grades on.I too lost my GCSE certificates but still have that piece of paper with my GCSE results on it. When do the universities check for proof? during enrollment?

      PQ
      @Indigo&Violet
      Most universities will ask to see GCSE certificates (at the least for English and maths) at enrolment.

      A lot of employers will ask for the same.

      If you've lost your certificates then it's worth planning to get replacements from the exam boards over the next few months. You have to pay for each exam board so depending on how many exam boards you studied with it could cost anything from ~£40 to ~£120 (but if you're unlucky enough to be looking at the latter cost you can spread it out over the next 6-9 months instead of paying it all in one panic next August)
     
     
     
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