Getting your exam results and assessment feedback can bring up many emotions, anxieties, and worries. For some getting the results they were predicted or even surpassed, is a great time but for others the disappointment of not achieving what you expected can be really hard to manage. To help, we’ve put together this guide about how to deal with your exam results if they weren’t what you wanted, and to remind you that you’re so much more than your grades.
Be kind to yourself
Firstly, it’s important to take care of yourself and not tell yourself off for how you did or didn’t revise and what you think you could have done differently in the past. The kinder to yourself you are about the results, the more it will help you move forward positively and learn from your mistakes.
It’s easy to lose perspective in exam season but if you’re disappointed with your results, try to stay grounded and remember that your grades are just one part of your life at university. Take a break and do an activity you enjoy, that might be a sports club, hanging out with mates or going for a walk to clear your head. This will help you gain some perspective and get clear on what steps you need to take next.
Once you’ve come to terms with your results, it’s time to think about where you go from here.
Speaking to your tutors is a great first step to help you understand why you got the result you did, and what you can do to improve. When getting feedback remember to try and have a healthy distance between your work and your self-esteem. How you perform academically isn’t a marker of how successful you are, or will be, or more importantly, of who you are. Try to be open when receiving feedback and take a practical approach to help you put it into action.
Make sure to read through the comments and feedback on your work to try and understand where you missed marks and put an action plan in place to help you achieve your goals. Whether that’s making a more robust revision schedule or attending free study workshops at the library – figure out what support you need and start to put it in place.
Talk to your friends
Sometimes you just need to talk it out! Have a chat with your friends or coursemates and let it out. It might help to talk about what they did differently so you can learn from each other. We understand that there’s lots of competing pressures whilst you’re at uni so talking to someone who understands your situation might help.
If you’re feeling low or down make sure to talk to someone you trust about it; be that a friend, family member or tutor. Often just talking through something can lessen the load and it makes it easier to make a plan for getting back on track.
Get extra support
If you are struggling to cope, please reach out and speak to someone. The Counselling and Mental Health Service offer lots of support, from individual appointments to group sessions and workshops. Please let the team know if you are in need of immediate support.