A Level students at The Sheffield College have maintained the highest ever pass rate in their results today – August 10th, 2021.

The pass rate for all students, including those aged 19-plus, is 98% this year – which is the same as last year and was the College’s highest ever results.

This year, there were 266 exam entries and 66% of students have achieved at least one A* to B grade. The majority of A Level subject areas achieved a 100% pass rate.

Anita Straffon, deputy chief executive, The Sheffield College, said: “It’s fantastic to see our A Level provision going from strength to strength with another set of excellent results this year.”

She added: “Our students have worked really hard, adjusted to new ways of learning and succeeded in the face of considerable challenges from the pandemic. I am extremely proud of our students, and our amazing staff who have supported them, and we wish them every success for their next steps.”

The majority of students are going onto university including red brick Russell Group institutions such as the University of Bristol, University of Cambridge, University of Durham, University of Leeds, University of Manchester, University of Loughborough, University of Newcastle, University of York and the University of Sheffield.

The degree subjects that students have received offers for include archaeology, biomedical science, dentistry, law, medicine, midwifery, optometry, pharmacy, psychology, sustainability and environmental management.

Case study – Tom Robson

Top performing student Tom Robson is celebrating after getting into the University of Cambridge. The 20-year-old has just achieved three A* grades in A Level English literature, history and sociology.

Tom said: “I feel very happy with my grades. It all feels a bit surreal. It’s great to finish on such a positive note.” Now he is going on to the University of Cambridge to study a Degree in History and Politics.

He hasn’t decided on a career path yet but is interested in political strategy and communications or journalism. On balance, he says that his learning experience at the College has been very positive despite the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

Tom said: “During the last two years I’ve matured as a person and gained in confidence and the College has had a direct influence in this.  At the College you’re introduced to a variety of people from various areas and of different ages and I think that has a positive impact helping you to mature in social settings.”

He explained: “Although the lack of social interaction with teachers and peers was tough because of the pandemic, I enjoyed learning during lockdown. During the time that would usually be spent travelling, and during free periods, I used to read and study instead.

“I read more during lockdown than I have in my previous 19 years, which definitely had a positive impact on my studies. Without the time lockdown granted me I would not be the same person I am now, and I am not sure that I would have had the same university offers.”

“The lecturers prior to, throughout lockdown and after it, ensured lessons were engaging and interactive once the initial teething problems of online learning were overcome. The most impactful aspect has been from the initial interest certain periods of history sparked within me and I am really looking forward to exploring that further as part of my degree.”

Case study – Alanna Hurman

Ambitious Sheffield College student Alanna Hurman is looking forward to a career in the legal profession after achieving top A Level results.

Alanna has achieved three A Levels gaining two A* grades in history and sociology and an A grade in English literature.

She said: “I am so happy with my grades, there aren’t the words to describe how I feel right now. I can’t wait to celebrate! Studying at The Sheffield College has been a very positive and rewarding experience. I am really excited about the next chapter of my life.”

The 18-year-old is planning to move to Leeds to study a Bachelor of Laws Degree at the University of Law.  Her goal is to train as a barrister in criminal law with a long term ambition to become a coroner, whose role is to investigate deaths where the cause is unknown.

The University of Law is Alanna’s first choice destination, even though she received offers from top Russell Group universities. Her priority is to develop professional practice skills.

Alanna is looking forward to developing her advocacy skills in the University’s accredited courtroom on campus and hopes to gain experience of the legal field during her studies by being involved in pro bono work.

As she looks back on the last two years and the impact of the pandemic, Alanna acknowledges that it has been tough however, there have been some positives.

She said: “Lockdown learning was hard work and stressful. At times, I struggled with motivation and my mental health. However, it has been a rewarding experience to get through those times and having to adapt has made me a more independent learner.

“I would like to thank my lecturers, tutor mentors and the careers team for their incredible support throughout my studies. They have been amazing including helping me reach the interview stage at the University of Cambridge, which was a valuable experience. My sights now, however, are firmly set on the University of Law in Leeds. I can’t wait to start!”