Private Candidates

Private Candidates are students who have opted to learn and study A Levels independently. This can be either entirely self study, using textbooks and online resources. Or, studying a specially written online A Level course with the help of a tutor and learning provider. There are no restrictions or specific requirements for being a Private Candidate, but if a student is of school age, then it will need to be registered with the local authorities.

The flexibility of study for Private Candidates can be very appealing. As a Private Candidate, you can study as and when you want, where you want and how you want. The only restrictions you have, are when you have to take your examinations and submit any coursework. With this in mind, it’s easy to see why studying this way appeals to recent school leavers and mature students.

How do I register at an Examination Centre?

Examinations for Private Candidates work in almost exactly the same way as for regular students. You will need to attend an exam centre to sit your exams along with all the other students taking the A Level. In order to be able to attend the examinations, you will need to register at an examination centre as a Private Candidate. This is a very simple process and finding a centre can be done through the Awarding Body website.

How do I Complete Coursework as a Private Candidate?

Certain A Level subjects come with a coursework element (also known as NEA). These courses, English and History, will require some additional assessments on top of the usual written examinations. Provided you have a tutor helping you with your studies, then you can complete the coursework element without issue. Your tutor will have to rough mark and authenticate your work ready for the exam centre to submit it with your written papers.

If you have opted to self study your courses, then you may have to find a private tutor to help you with completing your coursework element, as this much be checked and verified as you work by a professional before being submitted.

How much does it cost to be a Private Candidate?

The cost of studying as a Private Candidate can vary massively and so it’s good to do your research. Generally, to study an A level course online with a learning provider is around £380 for the whole course. When it comes to the examinations, again, the fees for this do vary and can range between £60 and £250.

It is worth noting that if you have recently left school or college, it is definitely worth speaking to the Exams Officer to see if you can attend there to sit the exams as a Private Candidate.