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How to become Great at chemistry?

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    I really like chemistry, its any enjoyable subject, trouble is i'm not that good at it. I got a B for it at GCSE level and I'm not that good at maths.
    How can you get round the mathematical aspect of chemistry, How can you become good at chemistry.
    Please suggest study hours/ways of revision/frequency of revison.
    I have the determination to beome good at chemistry
    I am doing AS chemistry salters(OCR)
    Many thanks.
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    another OCR salters student! i'm on salters aswell, what do you think of it?

    the way to become good at chemistry is to work very hard. that's it, basically
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    I do AS chemistry so far the maths is just basic maths that you can do easily on a calculator. Don't worry too much about it.

    I found that doing lots and lots of practice questions helps a lot, and you should always check the criteria sheet on what you need to learn, and make sure you learn everything on that sheet.

    EDIT:what the hell is salters?
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    (Original post by baedalores)
    I really like chemistry, its any enjoyable subject, trouble is i'm not that good at it. I got a B for it at GCSE level and I'm not that good at maths.
    How can you get round the mathematical aspect of chemistry, How can you become good at chemistry.
    Please suggest study hours/ways of revision/frequency of revison.
    I have the determination to beome good at chemistry
    I am doing AS chemistry salters(OCR)
    Many thanks.
    How to get an A in Salter's AS Chemistry (OCR):

    Right I did this course, and dropped 20 out of 300 marks for AS level, not bragging, just saying trust me please.

    Get this: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Revise-AS-Ch.../dp/0435583468

    Eat every page, the way you do it is by remembering what the book says, don't spend ages trying to understand it as such, as then it takes ages and seems impossible.

    You know the chemical ideas and storylines books? forget them, never look at them for revision, that book is all you need.

    Eat the book over and over, more by remembering than understanding.

    Ok with the maths part, for chemistry of natural resources, don't bother learning all the equations, don't bother reading the questions. Just look at the numbers and the units of them in the question. Look at the units, and by that, find the answer, you'll understand this when you get onto it.
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    (Original post by ElvisAint-Dead)
    I do AS chemistry so far the maths is just basic maths that you can do easily on a calculator. Don't worry too much about it.

    I found that doing lots and lots of practice questions helps a lot, and you should always check the criteria sheet on what you need to learn, and make sure you learn everything on that sheet.

    EDIT:what the hell is salters?
    I don't know what salters is, its just the name of the course:p:
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    Live, eat and breathe chemistry.
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    Defiantly don’t be afraid to ask your teacher! I think you should have a good look through chemical ideas while you’re studying a topic but come revision just stick to the revision guide and ALOTS of past papers. Also Storylines is pretty pointless really, unless you’re interested about that stuff - I’m pretty sure most of the stuff is abit outdated tho.. (Don’t quote me on that tho!)
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    Hey, I'm a fellow Salters' Chemistry AS pupil now, and my advice for the maths bit is simply to keep practising questions over and over, I can't give you a length in time, but just as long as you need to be completely at ease with any calculation they throw at you - this can take from a couple of hours before the exam or several hours a week every week from now!

    As for definitions, learn them word perfect as that is an easy 20% of the marks not worth losing.

    Oh and do actually read chemical storyline, I looked at the specimen paper and there are some questions about the application of certain things in industry which they don't tell you in chemical ideas - but yeah I agree that the thin revision guide is the best. I can see why an earlier poster only lost 20 UMS throughout - it's a very thorough book.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by Snobpence17)
    How to get an A in Salter's AS Chemistry (OCR):

    Right I did this course, and dropped 20 out of 300 marks for AS level, not bragging, just saying trust me please.

    Get this: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Revise-AS-Ch.../dp/0435583468

    Eat every page, the way you do it is by remembering what the book says, don't spend ages trying to understand it as such, as then it takes ages and seems impossible.

    You know the chemical ideas and storylines books? forget them, never look at them for revision, that book is all you need.

    Eat the book over and over, more by remembering than understanding.

    Ok with the maths part, for chemistry of natural resources, don't bother learning all the equations, don't bother reading the questions. Just look at the numbers and the units of them in the question. Look at the units, and by that, find the answer, you'll understand this when you get onto it.
    If you want to become good at chemistry, do NOT do this. If you want to pass the exam then thats fair enough, but the two are being confused here. If you want to take it any further or want anything other than the grade, then understanding is key.
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    (Original post by Snobpence17)
    How to get an A in Salter's AS Chemistry (OCR):

    Right I did this course, and dropped 20 out of 300 marks for AS level, not bragging, just saying trust me please.

    Get this: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Revise-AS-Ch.../dp/0435583468

    Eat every page, the way you do it is by remembering what the book says, don't spend ages trying to understand it as such, as then it takes ages and seems impossible.

    You know the chemical ideas and storylines books? forget them, never look at them for revision, that book is all you need.

    Eat the book over and over, more by remembering than understanding.

    Ok with the maths part, for chemistry of natural resources, don't bother learning all the equations, don't bother reading the questions. Just look at the numbers and the units of them in the question. Look at the units, and by that, find the answer, you'll understand this when you get onto it.
    Sorry but I disagree with this. The revision guide mentioned is good but I find it lacks detail so wouldn't revise from that alone, I also used Chemical Ideas and Storylines, the CGP revision guide which is excellent, and lots of past papers and mark schemes. Re. maths, it's not difficult but do read the questions or you could lose easy marks. If you want to become good at chemistry, don't just memorise the revision guide but put in the effort try to understand what you learn and don't be afraid to ask for help.
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    (Original post by Helen1991)
    Sorry but I disagree with this. The revision guide mentioned is good but I find it lacks detail so wouldn't revise from that alone, I also used Chemical Ideas and Storylines, the CGP revision guide which is excellent, and lots of past papers and mark schemes. Re. maths, it's not difficult but do read the questions or you could lose easy marks. To become good at chemistry, don't just memorise the revision guide but put in the effort try to understand what you learn and don't be afraid to ask for help.
    I suppose it depends on the person, out of the four of us who were heavily based around therevision guide, 2 got high A's and 2 got mid B's. For me, CGP is a waste of time as it strays off too much and doesn't narrow down the information enough and seems between GCSE and AS-level in the standard it teaches.

    But yeah, if you're struggling with a topic, chemical ideas is a good one to look at as it analysis it in great detail and gives examples, good for say oxidation states or ionic equations, but not good for teaching you concise points about polymers which will gain marks, don't use chemical ideas for memorising chunks of text, unless you don't like having a social life! :p:

    Chemical storylines is a silly story book in my opinion, I don't get why it's given to us, If I ate that book I don't think I'd gain any marks in the exam from it.

    And person I'm quoting, I'm not being arsey with you by the way, it's hard to tell over the internet, but it's important for the OP to have different views.
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    That's ok, sorry if I sounded 'off' with you too, was just giving my opinion. I agree with some of what you're saying though. Chemical ideas is good for explaining concepts but it doesn't tell you exactly what to write in the exam to get the marks, Storylines is a funny one because much of it is irrelevant but you do get the odd question on it. I guess it does depend on the person so you need to find which books and style of learning and revising suit you. We got exactly the same mark btw which is pretty cool.
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    Eat EiervonSatan's brain? :p:
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    (Original post by Sanjetti)
    Eat EiervonSatan's brain? :p:
    Like on Heroes. :p:
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    A good revision guide helped me loads. When I started AS Chemistry we did a test and I got a U and thought "I should just give up now" but I kept at it and eventually had a break through.
    I did lots of work outside of class using the revision guide. Once I was good at the basics, the rest kind of falls into place. It takes hard work but once it all makes sense I found it really interesting.
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    I found chemical ideas very useful, also using as many other random chemistry books as I could blag/buy/find etc. This way the same concept will be explained in different ways.
    Certainly for formulae understanding is key, if you know intuitively what's going to happen and how different variables affect it then you almost don't need to remember the equations/formulae.
    The only things that seemed vaguely relevant in storylines were about polymers discovered by accident, some of the genetic engineering stuff and definitely some of the environmental stuff as they always seem to ask about that.
    I think the only non-gcse maths you will use is logs for PH calculations in A2. It's very simple stuff for people with AS maths but otherwise it's probably worth getting somebody (chem teacher/maths teacher/fellow student) to explain it in detail when you come to it.
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    (Original post by lucyhol1012)
    A good revision guide helped me loads. When I started AS Chemistry we did a test and I got a U and thought "I should just give up now" but I kept at it and eventually had a break through.
    I did lots of work outside of class using the revision guide. Once I was good at the basics, the rest kind of falls into place. It takes hard work but once it all makes sense I found it really interesting.
    I just had an end of unit Chem test that I'm sure I failed! How exactly did you get better at it? Through note-taking? Background reading? I'm worried I'm going to fail the whole thing now!
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    (Original post by diamonddust)
    I just had an end of unit Chem test that I'm sure I failed! How exactly did you get better at it? Through note-taking? Background reading? I'm worried I'm going to fail the whole thing now!
    Seriously, its not good to panic (like I did)
    I got myself a revision guide quite early on. Around about this time and went through everything from the beginning. I bought an exercise book and wrote everything out from the revision guide in my own way and made diagrams and other things to make me remember. I didn't go ahead of what was going on in class so I had the basic understanding. I did A LOT of practice exam questions and its all about how you answer it. Once you've done a few of the same you'll know what its asking for and it becomes second nature
    What board are you doing? If you're on OCR, then the "Revise AS Chemistry for OCR" revision books are really good.

    good luck!
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    (Original post by Draconis)
    Like on Heroes. :p:
    No way! That would be disgusting Draconis...:p::p:
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    Titrate stuff :yep: Loadsa stuff.
Updated: October 11, 2008
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