Autumn Exam Series for GCSE, AS and A level

The autumn exam series is an opportunity for students who either were unable to receive a calculated grade in the summer, or who want to try to improve their grade, to sit their exams. You should speak to your school or college if you want to enter for the autumn exam series.

1. Do I have to sit exams in all of my subjects?

No. You can choose take as many subjects in the autumn as you want to. But if you want to take a particular subject, you will need to take all the exam papers in that subject.

2. Which grade will stand if I sit the exams?

If you choose to take exams in the autumn or next summer and achieve a different grade from the grade you received this summer, you will be able to use the higher of the 2 grades to show to universities, colleges and employers in future.

3. Will the number or format of the exam papers be different?

No. You will have the same number of exams in each subject and they will be in the same format as the summer 2020 exams would have been. However, there will not be any non-exam assessment, except in art & design.

4. Will the non-exam assessment I have done count towards my grade?

No. The autumn results will be based on your exam performance alone, there will be no non-exam assessment and results from previous non-exam assessment will not carry over. In art & design, grades will be based on your performance in a new task, set and marked by the exam board and taken under the normal supervised conditions.

5. Who will enter me for the exam?

The Department for Education has confirmed that the school or college that entered you for exams in the summer is responsible for entering you in the autumn. This includes private candidates (where they made summer exam entries by 20 March). But if this is not convenient (for example, if you’ve moved to another part of the country), your school or college can agree other arrangements on your behalf.

The exception to this is if you are moving school or college in the autumn and will be continuing to study English or maths because you achieved a grade 3 or below. In that case you should speak to your new school or college who will arrange entries for you.

6. Can I enter the autumn series if I wasn’t entered this summer?

No. Only students who had entered for the summer exams and students who the exam board believes had intended to enter for those exams can enter in the autumn series. Students who would normally be entitled to take GCSEs in English language and maths in November (usually resitting students) will also be able to take exams in those subjects.

7. If I take exams in the autumn will I still be able to start my college or university course?

You should speak to the relevant institution directly as they make their own admission decisions. In many cases, students who sit these examinations will be looking at starting their college or university studies in the following autumn - 2021. An exception to this is where a course has a January or February start date and, in this case, you may be able to start right away. The best advice is to contact the university or college for specific information.

8. I am disabled and need reasonable adjustments to sit my exam in the autumn - how do I request these?

The normal range of reasonable adjustments should be available for disabled students who take choose to take exams in the autumn. The school or college that enters you for the exams will be able to advise you.

9. Deadlines for entry

AS & A levels: 4 September 2020

GCSEs except English language and maths: 18 September 2020

GCSEs in English language and maths: 4 October 2020

10. Exam dates

AS & A levels: 5 October to 23 October 2020

GCSEs: 2 November to 23 November 2020

See Also

Guide to 2020 Exam Results

This year, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, exams have been cancelled. In their stead, a set of rigorous grade calculation methods will ensure that post-16 students can progress further with their education and employment.