What comes next? What you can do after receiving your GCSE or A-level results

Culinary apprenticeship placement from Cambridge Regional College

An apprenticeship provides you with real-world learning, the chance to earn as you train and can provide you with the skills you need to progress in your chosen career. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

What should I do now? A question many students will ask themselves after results day. Even though it’s only five little words, the answer you decide upon could be life-changing.

To help you clear your head and better understand your options, we chat with Judith Cutts from Cambridge Regional College. Below, she answers the burning questions on parents’ and students’ minds and explains what you can do now you have your results.

Q: Hey Judith, it’s a nerve-racking time for lots of students right now. What advice can you offer to help put their minds at ease?

Firstly, congratulations on your results. It's important for both parents and students to know, no matter what they may be, that you have options and can find a path to achieve your goals. My advice is, don’t panic, there's a way forward. 

If you’re not sure what your next steps may be, you did better than expected or didn’t get the grades you want, try visiting one of our advice cafes. You can chat with an independent career advisor about your post-result options and get help with finding and applying for a course at college or an apprenticeship. 

 Cambridge Regional College GCSE and A-level advice classes in Huntingdon in August and September 2021

GCSE and A-level results advice cafes are running at CRC's Huntingdon and Cambridge campuses to offer students the support and guidance they need. - Credit: CRC

Q: What post-study options do I have?

After receiving your GCSE results, you can:   

  • Move on to a full-time vocational course at college
  • Apply for an apprenticeship
  • Continue on to A-levels at sixth-form 

What’s right for someone else may not be the right option for you, which is why it’s important to consider all of your options. 

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A-levels are perhaps best suited to individuals that enjoy academia, learning in a classroom and wish to study several subjects.

At CRC we offer, full-time vocational courses are great for those that work best in a practical environment, want to gain hands-on learning and explore the full range of options of a subject in depth. You’ll take part in projects, activities and work experience placements. We offer vocational study programmes for health and social care, childcare, art and design, music, media, business, engineering, forensic investigation, hair and beauty, E-sports, uniformed public services and many more.

Apprenticeships offer a blend of on-the-job training and study. You’ll be paid as you learn and will need to be self-motivated and capable of independent study. We have lots of apprenticeship vacancies recruiting now with employers across the region. We also offer lots of different apprenticeships and work with over 1,000 employers nationally and locally, to help you find a programme that’s right for you.

For those who received their A-level results, alongside apprenticeship opportunities, you can look to study higher education at the college too in areas such as early years education, sports studies, policing, public services, engineering, construction, interior design and more. 

Cambridge Regional College, Huntingdon campus. Picture: CRC

Cambridge Regional College, Huntingdon campus. Picture: CRC - Credit: Archant

Q: What are the benefits of applying for an apprenticeship or vocational course?

A: Both enable you to learn in practical real-world environments, or industry-standard facilities, from industry professionals and gain the qualifications and skills you need to progress into your chosen career or study at university. Apprenticeships are ideal for individuals who are excited to get out of the classroom and straight into the world of work. We encourage students to achieve their best, build their confidence and skills and transform their passions into a career.

 Q: How can I find out which post-study route is best for me?

If you're struggling to know what subject area to pick, you can use our online diagnostic quiz, careers coach, to discover what opportunities may be best suited to you. Visit our website to explore our range of apprenticeship programmes and vocational courses. You can also use it to look at the latest apprenticeship job vacancies in the region, sign up for job alerts or to book a free apprenticeship advice appointment.   

We are running GCSE and A-level results advice cafes at both our Huntingdon and Cambridge campuses from August 12 to September 3, 2021. Parents and students can stop by to chat with our expert guidance team and find the support and information they need to find a place on the right course for this September.  

To find out more visit camre.ac.uk, call 01223 226315 or email enquiry@camre.ac.uk.

Find the Cambridge Campus at Kings Hedges Road, Cambridge, CB4 2QT. The Huntingdon Campus is located on California Road, Huntingdon, PE29 1BL.