Find out how to get your grades, what is happening under the devolved administrations, and what you can do to make your life easier.

​You might be worried about how you'll get your grades this summer if you're a private candidate, separate from any school or college. Don't be! We've put together the guide below to tell you everything you need to know, and how you can access support.

We’ll be updating this page regularly as the governments and examining bodies release more info.

Governments across the UK have determined that summer exams will not happen in 2021. As a result, examination centres will now be responsible for determining your grades for you, based on previous examinations, coursework and predicted grades. The obligation will be on them to find out as much as they can about you and your studies. However, each nation within the UK will each approach this in a slightly different way.  

In all cases, additional information is being developed to support private candidates. We will update this page as this information becomes available.

Steps you can take right now

  1. Develop a good relationship with your examination centre - Good communication will be vital and can help both parties out. Contact the head of department or exams officer for each subject you are studying and introduce yourself. Most will sympathise with your situation and will work with you to make things easier. If you have a private tutor or anyone who is helping to support your learning, it may be worthwhile introducing them into the conversation as well. Your success is in their interests, and they’ll be able to give an honest picture of your progress without any modesty you might feel. 
  2. Try reaching out to other private candidates - Remember that you’re not alone. While the current approach was built with school students particularly in mind, there are lot of people who are in exactly the same position as you. Talking to other people who are going through the same process can help to ease any concerns that you may have about being left out. Some organisations, such as the National Extension College (NEC) exist specifically to support independent learners like you.
  3. Contact your UCAS choices - The university or college you have applied to may not be aware that you are a private candidate. Getting in touch with them to discuss your situation might help you get some clarity. You can then discuss the ways you can meet the terms of your offer. They'll also be able to better support you when results day comes around. 

  4. Join our mailing list - As we get new information, we'll also be sending out emails to let you know how things stand. Sign up here for updates.