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Academic coach Lucy Parsons explains why you shouldn’t let your predicted grades hold you back and to always work towards your ambitions.

“You are not a robot. You’re a living, breathing human being. But you wouldn’t know it from the way that schools behave. They’re crazy about data; it’s like they’re running a factory full of robots, rather than educating actual human beings. All your target grades are based off data, or supposedly they are. Sometimes it’s possible to persuade a teacher to nudge your target grade up one to give your UCAS application a bit of a boost. However, there’s another set of target grades. The ones that are in your head. These ones should reflect your ambition, not your track record.

Well, when I was at school I wanted to go to Cambridge University. I was a good student but I wasn’t the top student in my year. I needed to get at least AAB to get into Cambridge (that was back then, things have changed now). I set myself the goal of getting straight As to make sure that my ambition came true. I think you should do something very similar.

Find a course that you love at a university where you’d desperately love to study. When you’ve found the course that is really calling you check out the grade requirements. Make those grades your personal targets.”

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