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Journey to Higher Education – Year 9

Although you don’t apply for higher education until you are 18, there are some decisions you can make earlier in life to help you through your education and take steps towards your goals. We’ve outlined some of the things you might want to start thinking about in Year 9 but remember there is lots of help available along the way. 

Choosing your Options

You may already have selected your options in Year 8, but if your school asks you to choose in Year 9 there are some points to consider. Your teachers will be able to give you some advice on how to chose subjects and it is important that you make the right choice for you. Here are some of our tips on how to pick GCSE choices (and how not to): 

Good reasons to choose a subjectBad reasons to choose a subject 
You enjoy it
You are good at it 
You want to take it further in the future 
You might like a job in that subject
The learning and assessment methods suit your preferred way of working
All your friends want to do it (but secretly you don’t enjoy it) 
You think it’ll be ‘easier’ than other subjects on offer 
You like the teacher, but not the subject (sorry Miss/Sir!)

What do you do at the end of the day? 

When it comes to applying to courses and jobs in the future you will need to provide evidence of the skills and experience you have. A great way to start building these skills is to get involved in extra-curricular and voluntary opportunities. Think about what you enjoy and find opportunities, e.g., your school may have a student council, sports teams or performing arts clubs to get involved in. 

Think about your future

You may not have thought about the job you’d like in the future, and that’s ok, however it can be really useful to start thinking about these options early. It may help guide your GCSE option choices. Try to investigate the different career options available to you with the subjects you most enjoy.