Thursday, 14 August 2014

A level results outside of the classroom

Above: members of the NEC staff wishing students everywhere the best of luck on their A level results day

The attention today on A level results is focussed on 18-year-olds in schools and colleges. But there are also thousands of adult and young learners who have studied as private candidates and are waiting anxiously for that important message. Many of these private candidates have studied with the National Extension College (NEC).

NEC students come from all walks of life, and range from home educated youngsters to adults taking a second chance on their education. A student with NEC could be an officer in the Royal Navy, serving a custodial sentence or even travelling the world with their family.

One thing they all have in common is hard work and dedication. A level Course Co-ordinator Rosanna sees this dedication first hand throughout the year. ‘It is wonderful to see so many of the students who I talk to on a daily basis thrilled with their results,’ she says. ‘The amount of effort they put in is quite inspirational, and I’m so pleased to see their hard work pay off.’

Often fitting study in around family commitments, or an illness, perhaps a job or two or even a prison sentence, studying at a distance is not easy. It’s testament to our students that they often achieve higher than the national average.

We’re delighted that this year’s reported increase in A* grades has been mirrored in our own students, particularly in Biology which is one of our most popular subjects. A phenomenal 14.3% of our A level Biology students achieved an A* compared to the national average of 9.4% (data from the JCQ).

26-year-old Jessica chose to study Biology with NEC because the course was well structured and flexible. She was delighted to see that her hard work resulted in an A*. Jessica has been accepted to study Medicine at Hull York Medical School, and will be starting there in September.

History students have also performed well this year, with 100% of NEC students passing the A level. One of these learners is 55-year-old Chris, who is taking a second chance at his education. As well as History, Chris also took Philosophy and English Literature A levels this year with NEC. He told us this morning, ‘I have had confirmation from Anglia Ruskin and I will be starting a three year degree course in English Literature this September. I am very excited at the prospect!’
‘I would like to thank the NEC for such a wonderful couple of years studying for my A levels. The coursework materials, tutorial and administration support provided have been fantastic and it has truly been both a challenging yet always pleasurable experience for which I am eternally grateful.’

Chief Executive of NEC, Ros Morpeth, says, ‘I am very proud of all of our students. They are often studying against all odds and still manage to achieve excellent grades. Gaining a qualification can transform lives, and we are delighted to help them on the path to achieving this. The ambition of many NEC students is to go on higher education. They represent the increasingly ‘endangered species’ of the mature student. They deserve our admiration and congratulations.’

To find out more about NEC, our learners, and our wide range of flexible distance learning courses, visit our website. You can keep up with all the latest NEC news and events by subscribing to our email newsletter or following our blog. We can also be found on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook.

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