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    (Original post by Platopus)
    Hmm well ok. Good luck to you, but I honestly believe you can get those A*s without sacrificing any of your precious holiday. At the end if the day, I did not revise in the summer between A2 and AS. I am currently awaiting my A2 results and, while I do not believe I got A*s, I know that by the time it came to the exams I was so well revised that no amount of extra revision would have altered my performance. Not another day, not another 2 months. Hell, not another year.
    Oh I'm not at all saying that revising over summer is a prerequisite for getting an A*. In fact the majority of what I've written has very little to do with the A* mentality (and it was certainly never brought up in the original post).

    While you might be right saying any extra revision wouldn't have gotten you anywhere, that's not entirely what I'm suggesting. Would glancing through the syllabus over your holiday and getting together a few questions on things you didn't understand have helped? Even if it didn't change your grade would it have made the lessons easier? Would you have had more time in those lessons to focus on other stuff, which potentially does then alter your grade? Maybe the answer is no. That's totally fine. For some people the answer might be yes.

    I do want to bring up the idea of your "precious holiday" though. Younger people (what am I saying, I'm only 21 and I'll have this holiday myself for a few years at uni) tend to look at their summer holiday as a very precious thing. And it is. But in the grand scheme of things the time is no more or less useful than any other time. It just so happens that you don't have school/college/uni, etc to attend. Some people fill it with work, others with holidays, time with friends, browsing Facebook, gaming, whatever. There's no right or wrong way to spend your summer.

    But you know what got me in the original post? The word bored. The idea that as a result of boredom someone wants to start looking at their course content for next year. To extrapolate, someone wants to improve themselves (through education) because they're bored.

    The best use of time is doing things that will improve yourself and make you a better person. That can be anything from learning a new skill, going out with friends, having fun and building social skills to furthering your education.

    The entire notion that summer is so precious you cannot (or even worse, should not or don't need to) spend it bettering yourself is ridiculous. As is the idea it's a sacrifice. Since when is spending a little time on bettering yourself a sacrifice? If it's a one off then great. If that half an hour of studying something each day stays with you for the next 20, 30 or 50 years how far do you think you would go?
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    (Original post by OrionMusicNet)
    With the sort of attitude you have, you are probably going to achieve a lot in your life (probably already have lol). It's rare to see people who really care about this sort of stuff (especially self-help), but it can really have a huge impact on your life when you start taking it seriously. I know it's had a huge impact on mine over the past year.
    Thank you for the kind words, although I can't say I'm saying a massive impact just yet.

    Self help gets a bad rep and yet serious self improvement, dedication and development does, as you say have a huge impact.

    Sometimes people just need a little push.
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    (Original post by Acsel)
    Oh I'm not at all saying that revising over summer is a prerequisite for getting an A*. In fact the majority of what I've written has very little to do with the A* mentality (and it was certainly never brought up in the original post).

    While you might be right saying any extra revision wouldn't have gotten you anywhere, that's not entirely what I'm suggesting. Would glancing through the syllabus over your holiday and getting together a few questions on things you didn't understand have helped? Even if it didn't change your grade would it have made the lessons easier? Would you have had more time in those lessons to focus on other stuff, which potentially does then alter your grade? Maybe the answer is no. That's totally fine. For some people the answer might be yes.

    I do want to bring up the idea of your "precious holiday" though. Younger people (what am I saying, I'm only 21 and I'll have this holiday myself for a few years at uni) tend to look at their summer holiday as a very precious thing. And it is. But in the grand scheme of things the time is no more or less useful than any other time. It just so happens that you don't have school/college/uni, etc to attend. Some people fill it with work, others with holidays, time with friends, browsing Facebook, gaming, whatever. There's no right or wrong way to spend your summer.

    But you know what got me in the original post? The word bored. The idea that as a result of boredom someone wants to start looking at their course content for next year. To extrapolate, someone wants to improve themselves (through education) because they're bored.

    The best use of time is doing things that will improve yourself and make you a better person. That can be anything from learning a new skill, going out with friends, having fun and building social skills to furthering your education.

    The entire notion that summer is so precious you cannot (or even worse, should not or don't need to) spend it bettering yourself is ridiculous. As is the idea it's a sacrifice. Since when is spending a little time on bettering yourself a sacrifice? If it's a one off then great. If that half an hour of studying something each day stays with you for the next 20, 30 or 50 years how far do you think you would go?
    I suppose if working makes you happy then I can't argue with you. But for me personally, working does not make me happy. I could have worked over the summer in order to get good grades, in order to go to a good uni, in order to get a good job and perhaps I would have achieved all that. But at the end of the day, when I looked back on it all, what would I have achieved? None of that, would have made me happy. Being happy in each moment, instead of constantly working towards some goal in the future is what makes me happy. And to that end, having a stress and work free holiday enables me to have a truly happy and fulfilling life.
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    (Original post by Platopus)
    I suppose if working makes you happy then I can't argue with you. But for me personally, working does not make me happy. I could have worked over the summer in order to get good grades, in order to go to a good uni, in order to get a good job and perhaps I would have achieved all that. But at the end of the day, when I looked back on it all, what would I have achieved? None of that, would have made me happy. Being happy in each moment, instead of constantly working towards some goal in the future is what makes me happy. And to that end, having a stress and work free holiday enables me to have a truly happy and fulfilling life.
    I agree, but i need to find what i like to do

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    (Original post by Fish40)
    I agree, but i need to find what i like to do

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    As I said, if working truly makes you feel happy and fulfilled then do it. You are one of a fortunate minority.
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    Hi everyone,
    thanks for all of the advice!

    Just to clarify, I have completed my first year of A levels (AS) and I started doing some year 13 work in school lessons a few weeks ago.

    I have read everyone's posts and I have found it very useful. I am planning on chilling a lot of the time, meeting up with friends etc. as well as doing a bit of volunteering. I am also going to start drafting my personal statement and doing more research into differerent uni's.

    I think I will probably do a really small amount of revision so when I start back in september it doesn't seem as so much of a shock which will be important. When I say a small amount, I mean like 2 hours max. a day and I will adapt this depending on how I am feeling-if I am not feeling motivated/I have planned to do something else/I feel stressed about it, I won't do any more work until I feel ready for it.

    I am not planning on doing very intense studying as in 8 hours a day as I do want to relax as well. I think I will revise just a small section of my work in a more relaxed way so that I feel more prepared and positive in September. I think I won't really miss roughly an hour of my time each time (considering I will relax the rest of the time), but I think it will hopefully make a difference in the long run.

    Thank you everyone for replying,
    Alice x
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    Wow, so these posts are actually brilliant. Thank you all for your amazing contributions to this discussion. I'm definitely going to invest half an hour a day studying, and half an hour practising the piano to get better at it. Thank you.
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    (Original post by Acsel)
    It amazes me that so many people are being narrow minded and saying it's a bad idea. There are loads of benefits to studying over summer. But first I want to address something in the original post. Alice mentioned revising. Revising suggests you've already learnt the content which I feel is unlikely to be the case. So from here on out I'll use the term studying and go on the assumption that you want to actually learn the content. Much of the same is true though if you are just revising.

    First benefit: Pretty obvious one, that start back in September doesn't feel so bad. Having 6-10 weeks of not doing any work makes getting back into the habit of studying difficult. Maintaining a schedule over summer makes the drop into education again that much easier. As an added bonus you set yourself up for independent study later in life, such as at university. It makes that jump much smaller as well.

    Second benefit: You get to try your course. Usually in September when you start your course you'll have a period of a few weeks to switch courses if you find it isn't for you. By trialing the content over summer you will know whether or not you like it. If not you can switch before even starting the course. If you do enjoy it you can focus on getting into it straight away.

    Third benefit: There's an expectation that you'll be doing extra work in your own time to supplement your course. By doing some of that work over summer there's less to do later on. Or alternatively you'll put in that bit more work than everyone else by starting early which will show later on.

    Fourth benefit: Reinforcement. When you're in the classroom and everyone else is seeing the material for the first time, you'll already have a brief idea what's being shown. It's proven that repetition aids memory and when everyone else is seeing something new you'll be seeing something you've seen before. It's more likely that you'll understand it later on. Furthermore...

    Fifth benefit: Finding what you struggle with. If you struggled with something over summer you can come back with questions. Normally the topic starts, you learn some stuff and find you have some questions after a lesson. You now need to contact a teacher for help, outside the normal lesson hours, or wait until the next lesson. By coming into that lesson with questions, or even just knowing you struggled with a topic before you set yourself up to overcome it far more easily. Excellent students know what they know and know what they need to work on.

    Little disclaimer to add in here (wasn't really sure where to throw this). Be extremely careful what you're teaching and how. If you learn something wrong you'll have a hell of a time undoing the damage. Seek help when necessary and don't try to muddle through it if you really don't understand. You'll end up with the wrong picture and the content will make even less sense.

    Now I could go on but I'll look at the biggest counter argument posted here. It's not worth it, AS isn't hard and you should enjoy your summer. That's partially right. I'll look at each individual point.

    Point 1: It's not worth it. This is rubbish. The entire notion that some form of education "isn't worth it" is ridiculous. Furthering your education is always a good idea and if you have the opportunity to do so then you should. Truly brilliant people never stop learning and never settle for good enough. If you decided that learning about something you're interested in isn't worth it and won't benefit you later then you should resign yourself to mediocrity now. Yes there are exceptions. An extreme example, paying £1000 for a course to teach you your 7 times tables isn't worth it. In this case the cost vastly outweighs the benefit. So the upshot here is that you need to decide whether the cost of furthering your education in this way is worth the benefits later on. And that depends on you as an individual and how much you value things. If your free time and summer holiday is more important to you than your education then you'll naturally decide it isn't worth it.

    Point 2: AS isn't hard. This is subjective. Some people will struggle and others will not. Studying early sets you up to have fewer problems later on. Something you might have later struggled with could be easy due to your early studying. Or maybe you can go straight in and pass it all without putting the effort in. That's great and in the short term maybe you didn't need to study your AS topics. But look at the long term. You'll have developed the self control to study by yourself, without anyone telling you to and that alone will help you massively at university. The tangible benefits in the short term may be small but in the long term you'll see results. Maybe studying this year means you learn your A2 next year which results in an A* instead of an A. Or you learn some of your uni content early and get a First instead of a 2:1. Maybe the fact you had the motivation to study and learn in your own time is what gets you into your first choice university over another candidate. Or maybe by asking questions about something you didn't understand you meet a group of people and develop new friendships. The possibilities and potential benefits here are endless.

    Point 3: You should enjoy your summer. Absolutely true. Go out and do as much as you can, while you can. Because assuming you spend 2 years at college and 3 at University you might only have 5 more summers to enjoy. At this age it's important to enjoy it, be social and do the things you love. In no way whatsoever does studying impact your ability to enjoy summer. Lets assume you have 6 weeks. That's 42 free days. Maybe you have 10 hours a day of what amounts to free time and say you dedicate 30 minutes a day, Monday to Friday studying. That's 15 hours of extra study. 15 hours of a potential 420 free hours. You still have over 400 hours to spare and do what you want. But an extra 15 hours of study may be the equivalent of 3/4 weeks extra teaching time at college (assuming your course is an average of 4/5 hours scheduled per week). And honestly you probably have more free time than 6 weeks at 10 hours a day. So studying does not in any way impact you having fun unless you allow it.

    I'm going to put this one into a different perspective. Lets say you can read at a rate of 1 page per minute. Therefore at 30 minutes per day you can read 30 pages per day. 60 pages an hour, over 15 hours is 900 pages. Or around 4 books (200ish pages average). How much better would you be if you read 4 good books, maybe self development books? How much would you change? Imagine reading 4 books that completely changed your outlook on life. That would absolutely be worth half an hour a day right? So turn that back into studying. How much better would you be if you studied for half an hour a day?

    And that's not even taking it seriously. Half an hour a day, 5 days a week is nothing. You could quite happily study an hour a day, 5-7 days a week and rack up 30-42 hours. That's 1800-2520 pages of reading. Or 9-12 books. Imagine how much you'd gain reading a dozen books over 6 weeks on your favourite topics. Or imagine how much you'd learn studying.

    At this point I'm on a slight tangent so lets stick with it. Forget AS studying. You've set yourself up to study whatever you want. Maybe you want to be better at drawing, or learn a new language, or play an instrument or whatever. So you spend an hour a day doing it. Once you get into it you'll develop the habit and all of a sudden you've developed the same sort of habits as truly brilliant people. Pick anything you want to do. Imagine yourself a year from now, having studied that thing for 1 hour a day. How much would you have improved? Using that reading example, 52 hours of reading a year amounts to 3120 pages. Lets say 15 books. Now fast forward 5 years. You've just finished university. How different do you think you'd be if you kept up that 1 hour a day of reading? 5 years and 15 books a year? 75 books read. Just how much of an impact do you think that will have? 52 hours over 5 years, 260 hours dedicated to something. How great will that something be? If that something is your education, what will that mean in the future for jobs?

    So to take this back to studying for AS levels, can you really say you're losing out on time? Even half an hour a day leaves you plenty of time to enjoy yourself. The benefits and especially what happens in the long run are amazing and it's the sort of behaviour that turns you into someone really spectacular. Of course if you're happy settling for mediocre then forget everything I just said.

    So to close off this excessively long rant (I apologise) what do you stand to lose? Maybe half an hour to an hour a day. You already mentioned this as a method to prevent you from being bored and as a result probably have the time to spare. Is that half an hour really going to go to good use? Maybe you spent an extra half hour with your friends that day, or an hour browsing social media. That's great if that's what you value. But what do you have to gain? If you keep it up and turn it into something more than just a bit of studying you stand to gain everything.

    But maybe that isn't for you. Not everyone wants that way of life and that too is fine. Go out, enjoy summer, study a little if you want and reap the benefits at college, even if you don't chose to take it further.

    If anyone wishes to discuss this further or in more detail I'm always available via PM. If you read this far and feel like anything I've said really resonates with you I'd love to know. And if the ideas I introduced excite you then please take the plunge and go for it.

    Yours sincerely
    An avid reader and someone aiming for success

    P.s. did I mention, I spent the whole of my summer holiday between AS and A2 learning my A2 subjects. Only spent maybe half an hour to an hour a day, on and off so not all that regularly. When I started A2 I'd covered all the content for one of my courses (Computing) and didn't need teaching for the year while another course (Psychology) was substantially easier (we had to learn 52 studies, it was a lot of content). So even minor amounts of studying can have huge benefits.

    EDIT: Forgot to mention the tons of other stuff you can focus on like Uni prep. But this post is nearly 2000 words and I doubt anyone wants it to get longer.

    Also if quoting, please quote specific parts of snip the post. Don't quote directly as the thread will end up with excessive amounts of scrolling. I've done enough damage without anyone quoting me fully...
    I'll keep a note of this since this will be very useful. Thanks.
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    (Original post by Platopus)
    I suppose if working makes you happy then I can't argue with you. But for me personally, working does not make me happy. I could have worked over the summer in order to get good grades, in order to go to a good uni, in order to get a good job and perhaps I would have achieved all that. But at the end of the day, when I looked back on it all, what would I have achieved? None of that, would have made me happy. Being happy in each moment, instead of constantly working towards some goal in the future is what makes me happy. And to that end, having a stress and work free holiday enables me to have a truly happy and fulfilling life.
    Oh absolutely, I wouldn't recommend it if you didn't enjoy it. Although at that point you'd have a bigger problem of why you don't enjoy what you're doing. Everyone should work towards what they want to work towards, whether that's the best they can be or not. Most people have the chance to be great and do great things but at the end of the day only a handful can succeed. Which is fine, the world runs on mediocrity. Without it we wouldn't have a functioning society.

    Be aware though that your stress and work free holidays won't last forever. At some point things will have to change, whether you like it or not.
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    (Original post by Niyi Aderounmu)
    I'll keep a note of this since this will be very useful. Thanks.
    Thank you
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    (Original post by Alicemidgetgem)
    Hi everyone,
    thanks for all of the advice!

    Just to clarify, I have completed my first year of A levels (AS) and I started doing some year 13 work in school lessons a few weeks ago.

    I have read everyone's posts and I have found it very useful. I am planning on chilling a lot of the time, meeting up with friends etc. as well as doing a bit of volunteering. I am also going to start drafting my personal statement and doing more research into differerent uni's.

    I think I will probably do a really small amount of revision so when I start back in september it doesn't seem as so much of a shock which will be important. When I say a small amount, I mean like 2 hours max. a day and I will adapt this depending on how I am feeling-if I am not feeling motivated/I have planned to do something else/I feel stressed about it, I won't do any more work until I feel ready for it.

    I am not planning on doing very intense studying as in 8 hours a day as I do want to relax as well. I think I will revise just a small section of my work in a more relaxed way so that I feel more prepared and positive in September. I think I won't really miss roughly an hour of my time each time (considering I will relax the rest of the time), but I think it will hopefully make a difference in the long run.

    Thank you everyone for replying,
    Alice x
    This sounds like a solid plan and I see nothing wrong with it. 2 hours maximum seems like a reasonable amount, with a more regular amount like an hour a day being feasible. You'll benefit from it in some way.

    And if your lesson lengths are anything like mine were (4-5 hours in class per subject per week) then 1 hour a day will equate to an extra week of time for a subject or two. But you'll get more content covered yourself since you won't have a class to worry about. An hour at home probably equates to two in a classroom.
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    (Original post by Acsel)
    Oh absolutely, I wouldn't recommend it if you didn't enjoy it. Although at that point you'd have a bigger problem of why you don't enjoy what you're doing. Everyone should work towards what they want to work towards, whether that's the best they can be or not. Most people have the chance to be great and do great things but at the end of the day only a handful can succeed. Which is fine, the world runs on mediocrity. Without it we wouldn't have a functioning society.

    Be aware though that your stress and work free holidays won't last forever. At some point things will have to change, whether you like it or not.
    Of course. But I hope that I will work doing something that I enjoy.
 
 
 
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