A level results - Should she re-take?
Written by Marion Gibbs on 16/08/2012
Q. My daughter didn’t quite get the grades to take up her place at her chosen university. We have suggested that she use part of her gap year to retake and try again but she wants to try and get a place on a different course with lower grade requirements. Should we try to persuade her to persevere with her original plan despite the setback? She says it’s her decision not ours but I’m concerned she may regret it later on…
There are several important issues to consider here. For example, what career path might your daughter might wish to pursue after university? Will the different course with lower grade requirements equip her for this? How closely related is the alternative degree course to anything that your daughter has studied or wished to study before – will she really enjoy it? You say that she did not ‘quite’ get the grades for her chosen university – if she took a gap year and re-applied for less selective universities, would she meet their criteria? Quite a high proportion of students do not actually improve their A level grades after re-sitting; if your daughter is not fully committed to taking the year out and re-sitting she may find herself still without a place a year later. Some universities do not accept re-sit results for some of their courses. If your daughter is aiming for a popular course such as medicine, law, psychology or English at a selector university she may find that she will not get an offer on the basis of improved grades.
Both you and your daughter need to do some careful research and she must think long and hard about what she really wants to do. There is no point going to university now to study a course in which she is not genuinely interested, just for the sake of going to university; the drop-out rate among students who have made such a choice is proportionately high. However, ultimately it must be her decision.
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