Students collect their results from their school or receive them in the post if they’ve requested this option in advance.
It’s important parents are prepared to deal with different outcomes on the day, whether their teenagers are keen on heading to university, want to take up an apprenticeship or get started in the world of work.
“We take calls from students who are panicking that they haven’t got the results they need and the first thing we tell them is to try to stay calm - this goes for parents too,” said Exam Results Helpline careers adviser, Iwan Williams.
“If you can try not panic, it will really help your teenager,” Williams continued.
“Encourage them to take a deep breath and keep a clear head as it will be much easier to think through their next steps if they are thinking clearly.”
Williams offered his top tips on how else parents can be there for their child on A Level results day.
1. Be prepared for plan B.
If your teenager is set on going to university, encourage them to start thinking about other courses and universities they’d be prepared to consider if they don’t get the results they need.
2. Remember to reassure them.
Whether you’re feeling the nerves too or not, try to remain positive whatever the results.
“Your child may need reassurance from you that everything will work out and it will all be ok,” said Williams.
3. Don’t rush to make decisions.
“Time is on your side,” said Williams. “There is no rush to make any quick decisions.”
If your child hasn’t been able to get in to their chosen university, they can call ‘Clearing’ (where universities fill places they still have on their course) when they have made their decision.
4. Open your mind about taking a gap year.
Taking a gap year could be an effective way for your child to take time to think about all of their options, Williams advised.
It can look good on a CV and provide an opportunity to gain some work experience, making teenagers more of a valuable contender for university the following year.
5. Consider earning while learning.
If your teenager knows what they want to do in their career, have they considered an apprenticeship?
It gives them the opportunity to earn while they learn and get on the career ladder at a younger age. Find out more about what apprenticeships are available to them with the grades they get, here.
6. Remember there are re-takes.
If your child thinks that they could have got a better grade in specific subjects or modules, it might be possible to re-sit the exam and reapply for university next year.
Williams said your child will need to speak with their school about this as soon as possible after receiving their results.
“Be prepared that occasionally some universities look for higher grades from re-sit students so they may need to check specific universities views on re-sit candidates,” he added.
7. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone.
If you want to find out more information, support or advice, the UCAS exam results helpline is available for parents as well as students on 0808 100 8000.