GCSE Results, what to do next?

It is the dreaded time of year again. The day that students across the UK have been nervously waiting for. Yes, it is GCSE results day.
This is the first year the government has introduced the new numbered grading systems, with the traditional C pass mark now a Grade 4. That is not the only change, GCSE’s are getting tougher, with only 732 pupils receiving the top Grade 9, across all their subjects[1]!
If today you have received the grades you were hoping for, congratulations! But for those who have just missed out all is not lost. After all, some of the biggest names in business have very few or even no GCSE’s. Take Sir Alan Sugar, star of The Apprentice and founder of Amstrad, he is now said to be worth £1.4billion and has only one GCSE to his name[2].
Others include Sir Richard Branson, suffering with severe dyslexia, quit school at 15 and set up Virgin which needs no introduction. The extremely successful company is now worth an incredible £3.6billion[3]. However, it is not just some of the UK’s most high-profile business men who missed their grades, Albert Einstein at the age of 15 was actually expelled altogether! Whatever your grades there are always opportunities to re-take exams or find a different path.
So, what are your options? The next step can be a confusing one, especially trying to find the right path for you. So here at Voice we have come up with a few options to help you make your mind up.

  • A-Levels

If your goal is to go to University, A-Levels are a great way pathway to higher education and allows you to study in more depth, subjects you have enjoyed at GCSE level. Also, if you have a set career path in mind it is important to be realistic, make sure you research the subjects they look for and the GCSE grades they expect. For example, if you are hoping to be a doctor having A-Levels in History, Geography and English, won’t necessarily help you achieve this. However, Science and Maths will help you.

  • BTECs

If the traditional english, maths and science subjects aren’t for you then maybe consider BTECs. These are great alternative offering courses which are more work related and vocational. There is more than one pathway to University, BTECs are also an accepted qualification. However, if University isn’t for you BTECs are highly valued by employers, offering a more practical learning approach. If you can’t decide between these options, then don’t worry BTECs and A-Levels can be studied alongside each other.

  • Apprenticeships

If you aren’t one for sitting in the classroom all day, an apprenticeship could be the best route for you. Apprenticeships combine the classroom, with a hands-on approach, while also giving you the opportunity to secure a job at the end. Apprenticeships can really be a great way to get your foot on the career ladder. Here at Voice we have had many apprenticeship success stories, with our very own Voicettes. Meg’s passion for social media and blogging saw her gain a Level 3 diploma in social media and digital marketing. While Sophie’s copywriting skills have seen her undertake a Level 4 diploma in Public Relations. With the valuable experience gained by both, they have since gone on to be promoted to Account Executives, after their apprenticeships. With Meg now a Senior Account Executive. Apprenticeships really are the way forward.
[1] https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-45261461
[2] https://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/0/what-next-after-gcses-a-guide-to-apprenticeships-btecs-and-nvqs/
[3] https://www.walesonline.co.uk/business/business-opinion/sir-richard-branson-shows-you-7664390