GCSE results day 2016: Now I have my grades, which A-levels should I take?

Less than a third of students said they felt suitably informed of how their A-Level options would impact their university or degree choice, a survey found

Rachael Pells
Education Correspondent
Thursday 25 August 2016 00:22 BST
With GCSE results in hand, students wanting to go on to A-Level will need to confirm their subject choices for sixth form or college
With GCSE results in hand, students wanting to go on to A-Level will need to confirm their subject choices for sixth form or college

After months of waiting, thousands of students await their GCSE results on Thursday, as well as the celebrations that may follow.

For many, the next step will firming up which A-Levels to choose in order to help them on their way towards work and university.

But with more than half of A-Level students admitting they picked their choices without thinking about what degree they’d like to study, it’s important to consider which subjects will be most beneficial beyond the boundaries of school or sixth form.

Considering which subjects are best for you shouldn’t be a chore – here are Which? University’s five top tips to help you on your way:

1. Certain university courses will look for specific GCSEs and A-levels

To apply for some uni courses, you’ll need specific GCSE and A-level subjects at specific grades. If you know what you want to study at university, you should check out the full entry requirement details.

2. Taking certain A-levels will open up more university course options

If you haven’t decided what you want to study at university, don’t panic – you won’t be the only one. The most commonly asked-for subjects in university entry requirements can be found here.

3. Some courses and universities have lists of subjects they don’t accept

Be aware that some courses will view certain A-levels as more beneficial than others. Some universities actually list which A-level subjects they prefer, whilst others actually have ‘non-preferred’ subject lists.

4. Many universities and courses will consider you whatever you choose

Don’t forget – many courses will consider a wide range of A-level and other qualification choices and do not normally have essential subject requirements. Try not to get too bogged down in essential A-levels you have to take.

5. It’s not all about A-levels

BTECs and vocational qualifications are a valid route to university, too, and more students are taking this route now, so it’s worth looking into all of your options.

Which? University’s A-level Explorer tool can help as a resource for students to make better informed choices.

Find out more about GSCEs, A-Levels and University choices here.

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