10 Things You Should Do After Failing Matric

Getting your results and finding out you have failed may be extremely depressing.  It may even be shocking and unexpected.  You may feel your world is crumbling around you and you have nowhere to go. While your friends move on to better things, you feel like you’re left behind trying to pick up the pieces. Failing Matric can be a slap in the face, but it’s really not the end of the world.  There are steps you can take to move forward and upward.


Options available to learners who did not do as well as they hoped, include:

1. Be positive

The first thing you need to do is change your attitude. You need to put yourself and your future first. The decisions you make now will affect the rest of your life.  Messing about until you’re almost 30 will make it a lot harder or even impossible to try and make a good life for yourself.

2. Remember that Other People Fail Too

Most people don’t talk openly about their failures. They’ll tell you about that great new contract they signed … not that deal they worked on for months, only to have it slip through their fingers.

3. Writing supplementary exams

Here, consultation with the school is best as there are very limited circumstances under which these are available for matriculants, but where they do exist, they must obviously be leveraged.

4. Repeating the year

Where the gap between what you want to do and how well you did is so big that the doors are all closed, repeating the year is an option. There are things to take into consideration though. The second thing is to understand that if you are going to repeat the year, you must know exactly what you need to achieve.

5. Think about where and how you are going to repeat.

“Depending on your age and school policy, you could return to the school you have just left; or you could enroll full or part time in a school focused on either matric or the last few years of schooling. “Alternatively, you could enroll as a distance learner and study alone, with a tutor or online. Or you could consider a combination. Once again – it is about doing your homework.”

6. Consider another higher education institution

Coughlan says that if learners did not do well enough to be accepted for their chosen studies at their preferred institution, they should examine all the other options out there. “These should include both private and public institutions.

7. Consider a different course or part-time study

While it may be too late to register at a public institution, private institutions often continue to accept enrolments if they have space left, and they generally offer a range of exciting degree, diploma and certificate courses.

8. Vocational training

Another option available to you is to consider vocational training. TVET colleges allow students who have not passed Matric to receive a vocational or occupational qualification. What this means is that you will receive education and training towards a specific range of jobs or employment possibilities. 

9. Re-marking or Re-checking

If you feel that your exam has been unfairly marked, and you are certain that if it were re-marked you would achieve a higher result, you can apply and pay a fee towards having your exam paper or papers re-marked.

10. Failing Matric is not the end of the world

It really isn’t.  It will just take you slightly longer but you can improve your position.  You have many options.

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