What should I do if I have failed matric?

What should I do if I have failed matric?

What should I do if I have failed matric?

Here is a guide for what you should do after failing matric: 

  • Be positive 
  • Remember that you are not alone 
  • Upgrade your matric 
  • Repeating the year
  • Consider another course
  • Vocational training 
  • Re-marking or Re-checking

Be positive

Thinking positively will allow you to explore other options without feeling bad for yourself. 

It is important that you always try to think positively, instead of focusing on how you have failed, think of what you can gain from trying again.

Remember that you are not alone

You are not the first or the last person to fail.  Failing can also be a good thing as it teaches us the importance of getting up and trying again. 

Upgrade your matric

You can apply for a matric upgrade.  A matric update allows you to rewrite your matric exams, with the aim of improving your results. 

The good thing about a matric upgrade is that you do not have to rewrite all of your matric subjects, you can focus on the subjects you are unhappy about.

Repeat your matric year

You have the opportunity to repeat your matric year at school.  This way you have a second chance to cover the topics that you might have struggled with. 

Consider another course

You can choose to study a course that does not require you to have a matric certificate. There are a variety of courses to choose from across different fields.  To view your course options, click here.

Vocational training

TVET colleges allow students who have not passed Matric to receive a vocational or occupational qualification. TVET stands for Technical and Vocational Education and Training. 

This means that you will receive education and training towards a specific career field.

Re-marking or Re-checking

A re-mark or a re-check will help you gain certainty on your matric results.


Choosing a re-mark means that an examiner will mark your paper for the second time to see if you can get any extra marks.  Getting a re-mark often only helps if you need a few marks to pass the paper. 

Each re-mark will cost about R112 rand. Apply for a remark as soon as you get your results so that you do not miss the deadline. 


A re-check is similar to a re-mark although here, the examiner goes through your paper to make sure all the marks were counted and the overall mark was correct. 

Again, this will only help if you need a few extra marks to pass.  A re-check costs R27 for each paper. 

Author: Omega Fumba 

Published: January 14, 2021


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