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You have your results – so what’s next?

Supporting information for learners and parents

How were qualifications being awarded in 2020-21?

The Covid-19 pandemic led to many exams and assessments being cancelled in 2021 and all parts of the education system have been working together to ensure that learners are still able to get their results in a timely manner and carry on with their lives - whether that is to continue with their education, further their career, or go into the workplace.

We appreciate that this was an enormously challenging time for learners with a great deal of uncertainty. Many will have missed out not just on teaching and learning, but on the support offered by face-to-face contact with fellow students, friends, and family.

In the aftermath of results release in August, we want to say that we are extremely proud of all that our learners have achieved and we look forward to what you choose to do next, whatever grades you received.

Have a query about your 2020-21 results?

The process for appealing your results will depend on the awarding organisation. In the first instance, please speak to your college, school or training provider about any concerns and next steps to check whether they have made an administrative or procedural error in submitting your grades. For NCFE qualifications, we have a learner-centric appeals process in place if you do believe there has been an error in judgment, after speaking to your centre. You can read more here.


Look after yourself

As you move on to the next stage of your life and career, it’s really important that you look after yourself. See our top self-care tips to help you through.

What’s next for you?

Remember that you now have lots of options in front of you and you are empowered to make the choices that suit your skills, your passions, your ambitions and ultimately, that make you happy!

You don’t have to go to university to be successful – there are high-quality alternative paths to success including vocational and technical training, apprenticeships, learning on the job – or even taking a gap year to travel and take a breath!

Also, you are likely to change careers several times as you progress which will mean learning and re-skilling throughout your lifetime! With this in mind, it’s really important to develop those core meta-skills to help you adapt and thrive, no matter what career you end up in – confidence, resilience, communication skills and positive mental fitness.

Take a look at the links on the right for post-16 and post-18 options, comparisons between apprenticeship and university and more. We’ve also included some helpful careers resources below:

Stories of success

We are delighted to see so many learners achieve their qualifications and go on to do great things – be inspired by our stories of success here.


Qualifications of interest

NCFE offers qualifications in a huge range of sector areas: Creative, Digital, Sports, Travel, Health, Social Care, Early Years, Education and much more! Search for qualifications that you might be interested in and find a college or training provider nearby here.

How to make the best decision for you

Life is full of decisions – some more difficult than others. Here are some tips on how to make good decisions when it comes to your future career:

  1. Don't make a decision when you feel stressed or emotions are heightened.
  2. Give yourself time to think.
  3. Consider the pros and cons to all your options – do your research.
  4. Think about your goals, ambitions and what makes you happy.

Talk to friends, teachers, parents to help you but don’t let them persuade you – this is your call.