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GCSE results day explained

GCSE results day explainedFind out how to handle results day, whatever your grades.

When is GCSE results day?

Results day is on a Thursday in mid- to late August, one week after A-level results day. In 2015, it's on the 20th August. In 2016, it will be the 25th.

Preparing for results day

You don't need to do much to prepare for results day: you've done all the hard work already. Make sure you know where you need to go and when you need to go there, and make a note of the results you need for whatever you are moving on to next.

Beyond that, it's just a matter of preparing yourself mentally. Remember: your exam results won't determine the rest of your life, and there is plenty that you can do if you don't get the grades you hoped for. If you are nervous, try to talk to somebody who has been in your position before - they can help you to keep the situation in perspective. Finally, arrange something fun to do after you collect your results.

Collecting your results

Results are available from 6am, although your school might not open this early. Check in advance when your school opens.

You might be able to get your results online. This will depend on your school and your exam board, so ask about this in advance.

Remember that you don't have to open your results with your friends, parents, teachers or anyone else. If you're worried or nervous, you can take them somewhere to open them on your own - but remember that having people who care about you nearby can be a good thing whatever your results.

If you didn't get the GCSE results you wanted

Did you get what you need?

If your results are disappointing, the first question to ask is: how much does it matter? If you haven't done as well as you hoped but you have still got the grades you need for your college place, apprenticeship or whatever else you are doing next, then don't worry too much. Try to think about what lessons you can learn for the next exams you do.

Some universities and university courses do have extra GCSE requirements. For example, a university might only take people with a C or above in English and maths, and might require a certain number of Bs or above for competitive courses like medicine.

However, other universities don't have GCSE requirements at all, so disappointing GCSEs don't mean that you won't be able to go to university. Additionally, you will normally be able to retake GCSEs alongside your A-levels.


If you've just missed out on the grade you needed, or you've got a much worse result than you expected, then you may want to have your exams re-marked. Re-marking exams is common, and many students' grades go up every year as a result. However, be aware that your grades can go down as well as up.

If you want to get an exam re-marked, talk to your subject teacher about it. There may be a fee, although sometimes the school will pay for this, and either way the money should be returned if your mark changes.


Retaking your exams can be a good option if you haven't got the results you needed. You can retake maths or English in November, but for other subjects you'll have to wait until the next summer and retake your exams in the main exam season.

Make sure you make the most of the time before you resit the exam. You may be able to take extra lessons at your school or college, especially if you are retaking GCSEs alongside doing A-levels. If not, some colleges offer special courses for people who want to retake GCSEs.

It's no longer possible to retake individual modules of your GCSEs. You'll need to do all your exams again.

You will normally have to pay to retake a GCSE. The amount can vary depending on where you do the exam, so talk to your school about the cost.

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