Why your mock exams still matter

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So, you’ve probably heard that your AS Levels no longer count towards your final A Level grade (unless you’re still studying an old-style A Level). On the other hand, your teachers might be getting you to revise for mock exams – which don’t affect your final grade either.

So why bother putting in too much effort? Well despite how it sounds, AS and mock exams are still an important area for your grades and a necessary indicator to yourself and universities of how you’re doing. Here’s why.

They help you measure how you’re progressing

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A mock exam (or your AS exam if you're taking it), allow you to receive your predicted grades and tell you if you’re on the right track, they’re also useful for letting you know what you might need to revisit before moving on to A2.

AS has critically been what it has always been – your first year, where you rise to the challenge of studying A Levels. Whether or not your AS results go towards your final grade, that foundation-level knowledge is still absolutely necessary to your education.

Your university choices will be able to see your results

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You’ll most likely have to declare your AS or mock exam results on UCAS Apply. Like your teachers, universities will use your AS and mock exam results as an indicator of the final result you’ll receive at the end of your A Levels. As they’re the university’s most recent record of your performance, they may influence the university’s decision about your conditional offer.

You’re actually lucky if you get to take an AS Level exam

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AS exams are being phased out over the next two to three years. This means that if you get the chance to take an AS exam, you’ll be one of the last intakes of students that have this handy measure of your progress. Having AS exam results also makes it much easier for universities to make their decisions, because they are an easy way of predicting your final grade.

Don’t despair if you can’t take an AS exam!

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That doesn’t mean you’ll be at a disadvantage if you don’t have the option of an AS exam. Your teacher’s predictions, your GCSEs and any mock exams you’ve taken will all be assessed by your university choices. This means that your first year performance is still taken into account, as your effort and progress will still be measured.

AS examinations are likely to be phased out completely over the next two to three years, so you’re not being cheated – you’re just one of the first to go through a new system.

Any exam is an opportunity to improve

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Answering questions under pressure and testing your knowledge of a subject is great practice and will help you improve your exam technique Exams suck and everyone knows it, but they’re a challenge to beat rather than a task to avoid. If you’re having trouble getting your revision head on, we’ve got plenty of tips and tricks in our exams and revision section.

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