Are you considering retaking your GCSEs or want to get back into education? Well, you don’t have to re-enrol or go to college to get the qualifications that you want. In fact, you can join the tens of thousands of adults who have chosen to take their GCSEs privately.

What does taking exams privately involve?

Most people who choose to do private examinations are mature students, however this definition can also be applied to those who have been home-schooled, privately tutored or whom are self-taught, and whom want to officially earn their GCSEs.

In turn, you may choose to take your exams privately if you’re wanting to return to education, upskill for your career, or if you’re from another country and they could not provide you with an equivalent educational qualification.

What do you need to take GCSEs?

 Unlike most qualifications i.e. A-Levels, Degrees, etc. where you can only enrol if you’ve got enough points, GCSEs themselves have no formal entry requirements or educational prerequisites. Instead, teenagers between the ages of 14 to 16 are expected to take these upon completion of their secondary school education. In truth, they spend years preparing for these exams and are taught how to handle them in their syllabus.

Yet, this doesn’t mean you have to be in secondary school in order to take them. Anyone can take GCSEs and harness these qualifications to improve their circumstances.

How can you take GCSEs privately?

  • Step One: Book onto a GCSE preparation course – you can do this through online courses or by enrolling with a college;
  • Step Two: Pick where you want to sit your exam – you should have a choice of centres around you, however you may find that some centres will only let you sit certain subjects so you may have to go to more than one;
  • Step Three: Find out when they will take place so you can get your spot booked in advanced. Exam dates are set at a national level, so you will discover that they can quickly fill up. We suggest booking at least 6 months in advance.
  • Step Four: If you cannot find a time or location online that works for you, call the exam boards directly as sometimes there are exams that are scheduled which aren’t listed online. Similarly, you can call local colleges/schools to see if they will allow you to privately sit the exam on-site.
  • Step Five: Pay your fees – as you are sitting them privately, these exams won’t be free and you’ll be expected to pay for each one at the time of booking. Costs do vary, but they are usually around £100 per exam. NOTE: they aren’t usually refundable/changeable, so make sure you book the correct time and date.
  • Step Six: Make sure you have got all the right information to hand e.g. your name, date of birth, your address, your phone number, your Unique Candidate Identifier (UCI) and the correct exam code for the course.
  • Step Seven: Make sure that you arrive at the exam on time and that you have brought the essentials with you e.g. photo ID, black pens, pencils, rubbers, sharpeners, transparent pencil case, bottle of water, a calculator and appropriate maths equipment (if you are doing Maths GCSE).

Upskilling or improving your current GCSE grades doesn’t have to be daunting. In fact, taking them privately is well within your grasp.

If you’re interested in completing a GCSE, then why not take a look at our range of online GCSE courses? With test centres across the country, you can soon boost your credentials.

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