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News: It’s never too late to learn!

Please note: This news story may contain information that is no longer current or up to date.
Students standing outside the Adams Building holding their results with a yay baloon

Did you know that if you don’t have a pass in certain GCSE subjects such as Maths and English, they are free of charge for adult learners at Nottingham College? GCSEs are a lifelong ambition for many people, whether you want to use them as a stepping stone into a new career or whether you have future goals you want to reach.

Many of our adult learners have had success in achieving their GCSEs with us. These are some stories from people who realised it wasn’t too late to study their GCSEs.

After losing her husband, 60-year-old Debs from Sneinton wanted to get out and try something new. After realising her passion for writing during the course, Debs is now using her grade 6 in English to progress to a Creative Writing course. 

Charlie and Debs holding their results

I can honestly say that my teacher Ryan is the best teacher I’ve ever had. He really encouraged me to write stories during the course and it sparked a real interest for me. 

I currently run my own recruitment business but now I’m considering a complete career change. I’m so pleased that Charlie and I were able to encourage and support each other, and to both get the grades we wanted feels like such an achievement. 

 — Debs, 60

Suha Ali completed her GCSEs with us when she was 17 after moving back to the UK from Saudi Arabia. As she didn’t have the chance to study for her GCSEs at school she took the full-time GCSE programme at Nottingham College, which meant studying and taking her GCSEs in just one year!

Suha holding their results outside the Adams Building

I got 7s in Biology, Maths, Physics and English Language, and a 6 in Chemistry. My results mean I can move onto A Levels and I would like to work in healthcare one day. 

I’m excited for a new chapter, and it’s been a good year. It’s been hard, but I’m happy. 

 — Suha, 17

Will completed his GCSEs with us as part of our Pre-16 Programme after wanting to study in a different environment to school. 

After working hard in his exams, he got the grades he needed to start his A Levels at our High Pavement Sixth Form!

Will with his results

I was looking for something that was different to school for my GCSEs. I found the GCSEs at Nottingham College a lot more relaxed than school. It wasn’t easy, but just different. 

 — Will

32-year-old Bisma did part-time GCSE English Language and Maths to help her get to university. 

She said: My experience of GCSES at Nottingham College was good. I got a grade 8 in English Language and a 5 in Maths, and now I can finally go to university! 


It was my first time studying UK GCSEs! But my tutor was patient and explained it all to me (as someone who didn’t know about GCSEs). He taught us how to sit an exam, as well as teaching us the English, which was helpful. 

I’m a parent and I did the first term while heavily pregnant. I gave birth in November, and I also already have young children. I think it’s daunting at first as a parent, but the staff are so helpful! 

 — Bisma, 32

Whether you’re looking to learn something new, upskill, return to education, or train for a new career, we’re here to help.

You can choose from lots of courses that welcome adults aged 19+, including: 

  • Part-time and full-time vocational (career-focused) study 
  • Online courses
  • Courses in the community 
  • Access to Higher Education courses and university-level study 

We have many part-time and online courses starting throughout the year, not just in September. 

If you don’t already have GCSE English Language and Maths at grade 4/​grade C or above, one or both will be included in your options. These two GCSEs are often specifically required by universities and employers and will help set you up for any future career. 

Funding is available to support eligible adult students on many of our courses, and depending on your circumstances and the course chosen, you could have your course fees waived*. 

Choose from courses on campus, in the community or online. 

Browse our adult learning options to find the right fit for you. 

*Please visit our funding page to see if you are eligible for support on full-time or part-time courses with us. 

Published on:
  • 24th August 2022 (12:30 PM)
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