This post is really for students who have just finished the IB, although those that are half way through would do well to ‘take note’.

I have just finished remarks for Physics HL – I will be honest in saying that it feels a bit strange to be doing remarks so long after the actual exams – what is going on? Why would it take so long (four weeks) to decide that you are not happy and think there has been a mistake made with your paper?

Anyway, having completed your diploma, hopefully got the results your hard work deserved, and learnt a lot about yourself along the way, you are now looking at university places. If you made your offer, well done. If not then by now, you should have looked at your marks, identified where you may be on the edge of a grade boundary and asked for remarks where appropriate. And honestly, (ignoring my comments above) this should be sorted out by now.

For those that are now having to look again at places, because you did not make the conditional offer, do not worry. If you did not make the grade, this is not a disaster – it just means that your path is not quite the one you thought it would be. You should be considering if you are still happy with the degree you said you wanted to do. If not, then review and decide again what you wish to do. If you know what you want, then you need  a list of universities that you are happy to go to and you need to start contacting them and telling them your grades, and asking if they will give you a place. In the UK system, you still have a week or so before the A-Level results come out – the university may wish to wait, or they may give you a place now.

For all those that have secured their place at university, you should be taking a well-earned rest, but also spending a little time ensuring that your accommodation has been sorted, or is in the process of being sorted. Have you organise where you will get money to pay for tuition fees and to live? And finally, you should be thinking about any course books you might need – so it is not over yet! Get the recommended reading list for your course and start looking for some of the books on eBay and Amazon marketplace. Also, some may be available from the web  for free – find them, get them. It is easier to get a bargain now, rather than when you have started and course and you MUST have the text book – and remember, text books are very expensive, so you could be saving a lot of money doing this now.  As a last resort for books you could not get, go to the library at the university or in the city, and borrow them – many libraries will have an ‘extended loan’ system, where you can renew your borrowing by email or phone – to make it easier for you.

A final point. Whatever has happened with your results, remember that you are not a collection of numbers on a piece of paper – you are far more important than that. If things did not go as planned, this is OK – it just means you need to modify your plan. Whatever you do, you will still have a great time, meet people, your parents will be proud of you, etc. So do not worry, but be proactive about your future, your life – it is all good.