Pass Exams

Learn how to do your best, and what to do if results are not as hoped
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College students sitting an exam

Exams let us know how much we have learned and how far we have advanced. But exams can be stressful. 

Common worries about exams include: 

  • How can I revise effectively?  
  • How can I focus during the exam? 
  • What happens if I don’t get the grades?

Revision is a skill. You will get better at it, and remember more, as you go along. Your teachers, family and friends can all share revision tips.

Take action: Find out more about revision techniques in these videos from BBC Bitesize

Exams if you have special educational needs

Some students need extra support to do their best in exams. This might include students who have an education, health and care plan, those with a disability or where English is not the student's first language.  

Instant expert: Find out all about support available to help children and young people with additional needs in exams.

Revising for your GCSEs

Many people feel nervous before their exams. But stress is not all bad. It can focus the mind.

Previous students who have completed their GCSE exams have these words of wisdom to pass on:

  • Set time aside for revision and make sure no-one else changes your plans  
  • Make a timetable so that you can fit everything in    
  • Take breaks when you are tired and set aside time to relax
  • Get together with friends, you can help each other
  • Remember that you can only do your best

Some things can make it hard for you to revise. For example, if you care for someone at home, are drinking or taking drugs, or if you have a learning disability.

Take Action: If something is getting in the way of you studying, you need to tell your teacher, course leader or another adult you trust as soon as possible. They will help you find the right support to help you do your best.

After GCSEs: what happens next?

If you don't get the grades you hoped or needed, don't panic. You can find a place for 16+ study, guaranteed. Here's how: 

  1. Your school, college, (or parent/carers if you are learning from home) must support you to find 16+ learning.
  2. For many children this will mean studying at the same place or a new place of learning for Sixth Form.
  3. If you don't know where you will be studying by the summer holidays you can still contact local colleges to ask about courses. 
  4. If you are not in learning and aged 16-18, contact the EET Service. 

Find out more

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