GCSE Results Day 2022: Key dates and information

For the first time since 2019, GCSEs will be taking place after being cancelled for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In 2020, exams were replaced with centre-assessed grades (CAGs).

In 2021, teacher-assessed grades (TAGs) were used.

GCSE Exam Timetables

GCSE exam timetables have been released by the exam boards or "awarding bodies". Their individual exam timetables can be found as follows:

The Joint Council for Qualifications has produced a timetable that statesGCSE exams will begin on 16 May and finish on 28 June.

Where there is more than one exam paper per subject, those papers will be spread further apart than usual.

For example, the two English language papers will be sat on 18 May and 10 June, and English Literature will be sat on 25 May and 8 June.

Mathematics has three papers and they will be sat on 20 May, 7 June and 13 June.

Adjustments for GCSEs

Students in exam years have had two years of disrupted schooling due to the pandemic.

As a result, the Department for Education has decided to make adjustments to the 2022 exams. This includes reducing content and advance information on exam topics.

When is GCSE results day 2022?

This year, GCSE results are out on Thursday 25 August 2022 in England and Wales. In Scotland, National 5 results day is 9 August 2022.

Exams will take place as normal in May and June 2022, although if you're worried about your grades due the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, take a look at this government blog post on 2022 GCSEs.

When should I collect my GCSE results?

Students can collect their results from school or college in the morning, usually from around 10am.

We advise you bring any acceptance letters and contact details for any sixth form or college that you’re interested in attending, along with some form of ID.

If you are unable to collect your results in person, you can request in advance to receive them via email, which will be available from 8am.

To receive your results via email, talk to your school or college.

Do I need to take anything with me?

Depending on the results you get, you may need to do some ringing around, so your mobile phone is essential (make sure it's fully charged!).

If you have applied for a course that has requirements relating to a points system you may also need the calculator on your phone, as you will need to work out whether you’ve done enough to gain your place!

If you’ve done well, you will probably also want to take lots of photos with your friends, so try not to forget your phone!

What should I do when I get my GCSE results?

When you first get hold of the envelope, you may feel a moment of panic. After all, the information inside the envelope could well make a huge difference to your future. However, it’s important to keep a clear head.

You may be with a group of friends who will all want to compare results, but if you can, you should take your envelope into a quiet corner and read through them first – on your own.

Read through each line slowly, and ensure that you are interpreting the information correctly. It can be tempting to skim-read your results, however this can cause mistakes when reading, which can be heart-breaking to discover further down the line.

Five minutes on your own is a great idea here.

What do the GCSE grades mean?

Unfortunately, it’s no longer as simple as having A*-U grades.

The new numerical system instead uses numbers from 9-1 (highest to lowest, with a U grade for marks that were too low to be classified), and it is vital to know where the old grades would fit.

To put it simply, an A* is in the middle of new grades 8 and 9, a 7 is an A, and a 4 is a grade C.

Knowing these benchmarks should help to give you an idea of what the new grades really mean.

2017 brought the start of the new Maths and English gradings, while 2018 brought Science to the same level.

What if I got the GCSE results I was expecting?

If you have reached the grades that you were hoping for, then the first thing you will want to do is celebrate.

However, you will need to think about more practical things first, and decide on your next step. If your grades are what you hoped for, then it is probably as simple as confirming a place on a course or at college.

If you haven’t thought about what you would like to do, then the good news is that there are lots of doors open to you if you have good grades.

A levels are a good choice, but there are lots of other options that may allow you to work alongside studies if you would prefer.

These include apprenticeships, vocational qualifications, taking a gap year, starting your own business, and even joining the Army!

But there’s no need to decide for sure on that day – the world is your oyster, so take a little time to think.

What do I do if my results are not as I expected?

It can be incredibly frustrating to open your envelope and find that you haven’t got what you were hoping for – particularly if you studied hard.

However, this doesn’t mean that all is lost. Although you will have been given a list of requirements needed to make the next stage of your education, there is always some leeway.

If lots of people didn’t make their grades, or if some people decided not to take their place, then your grades may still be good enough to allow you entry.

It is always worth getting in touch with where you have applied to and asking whether you could still study there, as you may be pleasantly surprised. If you don’t ask, you don’t get!

What if I missed a GCSE due to illness?

If you missed an exam due to being unwell, then paperwork needs to be completed in order to ensure you still receive a grade.

If it was due to long covid, they may be allowed special consideration depending on whether or not their condition has worsened during the exam period.

More information and guidance about illness and exams can be found at the government website.

What happens if my marks are really poor?

Not everyone is academic – and GCSE exams do favour those who are. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t options for those who didn’t perform well.

There are many vocational courses available at local colleges that teach you useful skills – and in many ways it is a better way to secure future employment, as an apprenticeship for example often leads directly into a job.

You may also wish to consider a career in the Army or setting up your own business.

You may never have studied in this way before, but there is a chance that it might suit you. Everyone has their niche, and a vocational course such as a BTEC or NVQ could be yours.

If you found that sitting and learning in a classroom bored you, then it is something to investigate.

Can I get my GCSE papers remarked?

Normally, if your results were not what you were hoping for, you can request that the exam board completes a priority remark.

If you don't have a college or sixth-form place pending, then you can request a copy of the marked paper, or a clerical check, or a review of marking. We recommend you speak with your teacher first to check that a remark makes sense, and if so, the school will be able to arrange this for you with the appropriate exam board.

You can also get in touch with the exam boards using the following links:

What happens during my exam review?

A review is sometimes called a “re-mark”. When reviewing any exam, the board must arrange for a reviewer to consider whether the original marker made any errors.

If the reviewer finds a marking error, the reviewer’s mark will replace the original mark and the exam board must change the grade if necessary.

Any new mark and grade awarded after the review could be higher or lower than that originally given. If the reviewer does not find a marking error, the original mark must not be changed.

What do exam boards charge? 

Exam boards can charge a fee for reviewing papers and for considering an appeal.

They have to publish the fees they charge and be clear about any circumstances in which they will not charge (for example, some boards won’t charge if the review results in a grade change).

What happens if I need to retake an exam? 

Current arrangements for resits are being developed.

We suggest that you check with your school or college for exact resit options for your specific subject as these will be different for each examining group.

Finally...

If you got the results you were aiming for, well done! If you didn’t, try not to panic.

It’s not the end of the world, and there are options open to you. It may not have been the path you’d planned to go down, but down every new path there are doors to open – and you might even find that you have a skill that you didn’t even know about.

Try to stay open minded and see what’s available for you.

Talk to your teachers, career advisor, friends and family for advice before taking your next steps, and remember that there is a path for everyone!

Further information

For more tips and advice on GCSE results day and next steps, please see: