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The Big A-Level Tips thread! - - 2 pages of tips in first post watch

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    So I saw The Big GCSE Tips thread! and I thought what's stopping us making a A-Level tips thread for all the all the end of Year11s wondering how they should approach the A-Levels?

    So, post all your tips for coping and getting top grades during AS/A2, whether you've learned from your mistakes or you just found a magical routine to help you get all As in your exams, share the wealth of information

    And because it differs between subject, do it in this format:
    A-Level [subject] - [tip]

    If it's a general tip that can be applied to any subject, in this format:
    General Tip - [tip]

    That's it, happy posting guys! :woo:

    --- --- ---

    I've added all the responces into an expand field below so it should be easy for anyone who finds this thread to get advice from any area without having to trawl through the entire thread :yep:
    Responses
    General Tips
    Goldsilvy
    Tip - Remember to hand in homework, coursework, essays etc. before the deadline. It saves some trouble, it really does.

    Jamstar
    Tip - Think of A-levels as a race of endurance. Make sure you don't slack off and fall behind the group. Even doing so a bit can set you back significantly, as you need to catch up and you'll likely jeopardise the final result. Of course, if the group is going too slowly for you, feel free to pick up the pace a bit and get ahead. At the same time, make sure you don't exhaust and go a sustainable pace, so that you can go for the sprint finish during your final weeks of revision.

    Also, make sure you've perfected your technique. Get a good start and when you're coming to the finish line, make sure you... uhh, dip your head.

    It may feel like you’re only racing against those in your class, but you're essentially racing against everyone sitting that exam. Some of them might have it a bit easier if they've got... privately manufactured trainers or something, but that doesn't mean the race is over!

    sarsi
    Tip - Become independent and start revising early. Don't start the year thinking A-levels are so much harder than GCSE's, even though they are . Be confident from the start and motivate yourself throughout the whole year. However much work you need to put in each subject you yourself know, the classic 1-hour of homestudy for every class is crap in my opinion. It also helps if your school does exams in January and June, that way there is not a ton of work load to do before exams in June and you get the chance for resits from the January exams. But try to avoid resits in the first place by doing the work before.

    Simplyobsessed
    Tip - If you need to do a resit, get a remark or request a photocopy of your exam paper, it is more than likely that you need to pay for it yourself. Do not miss the deadline for this.

    Zerodos
    Tip - Get it right first time – Resits take the piss!

    Explosive Muffin
    Tip - For almost any subject (perhaps not ones like art though), do loads of past papers and learn how to play the exam game. You can know everything there is to know about the human body but if you don't know how to play the biology exam game then you won't do nearly as well!
    Tip - Make sure you understand how UMS points work so you can calculate how many points you are off a certain grade (this becomes most useful coming up to your summer exams at A2)!

    OL1V3R
    Tip - If you're doing 3 A-Level subjects, do 15 hours a week of independent study (outside of class). Do 20 hours a week if you're doing 4 subjects. If you use as many 'free periods' as possible to study, then you won't have to do as much at home.

    vgstrat
    Tip - Work hard. DO question papers + exercises from books (it really helps..). Stay motivated. Make revision notes early, it will make revisions very easy.. And maintain a schedule...

    clark.robertson
    Tip - Try as hard as you can in the first year. The exams are so much easier than in the second year , and by doing well in the first year will make the second alot easier for you.

    Zirakzigil
    Tip - Work hard from the start, resits mess everything up.

    Even on modules that are easy revise lots. I got 76/100 on c1 maths due to the fact it was relatively easy so i didnt revise. I then went and got low a's on the rest of the modules and another 76 on core 3 and missed an a by a couple of marks, would have got an a if i revised properly for c1.

    Work hard at coursework. Exams are easy to mess up, even if it is just a few marks lower than you expected. Good coursework could mean a lot, work hard to get every last mark, don't just settle for the grade you want at the end of the year, it is the only time that you can get some help from your teacher and others make use of this.

    c0nfus3d
    Tip - give all homework in on time and stay motivated. I know plenty of people who simply aced their GCSE's and when it came to as-levels, they only got C's, D's E's and even U's. Don't get complacent and too over-confident. Don't revise at the last minute and revise along the way, however boring and tedious, and unsociable it may sound- it helps tons during exam time when you've got lots of revision. Learning along the way helps especially for fact-based subjects, such as Biology, (I haven't done this subject but my friends have told me there's loads to remember!) and Psychology, (which I do) can be aced if everything is remembered and regurgitated in the exam- well, that's my opinion. Oh yes, work hard and play hard! get as many extra-curriculars done as you can. It'll pay off!!

    Maxximus
    Tip - Become an exam pro. Not only do ALL the practice papers available, search outside the box for questions. Also, get into a good regime early. For me I made sure I got enough sleep before morning exams. When I felt a dip in energy when revising I ate energy bars to keep me going. If all else fails, retake anything you don't do well on, managed to pull my grades up from ABBC at AS to AAAB at A2 (History, English Lit, Biology, Chemistry).

    Dadeyemi
    Tip - Try as hard as possible at AS modules as they are weighted equally to A2 but a lot easier!
    Tip - Don't give up... esp towards the end. Sometimes you are going to want to just give up and burn every book you have but don't, you can do it, it's worth it in the end. AND don't throw away your rev notes after the exam... you may need them for retakes.

    lozz2601
    Tip - for goodness sake, do the work! you may think you understand it as well as you can possibly, but you don't. Don't assume that because you've been doing well all year, it means you don't have to revise for it, either. :|

    fallen angel9
    Tip - Try your best in your coursework ALWAYS. It's one of the easiest things to do well in if you are willing to put in the work.
    Tip - Do pay attention in classes.
    Tip - Learn to master the exam technique in your subjects!
    Tip - If you're doing essay subjects (I did English Literature, Religious Studies and History) practice writing essays in timed conditions and then give them to your teacher to mark!
    Tip - Work hard in AS as it makes it easier for going into year 13
    Tip - If you don't get such great ASs resits are your answer! They can pay off tremendously and you can improve eg I have a friend who got a D in History As and moved up to a B. I know someone who moved up from a U in an English module to an A.
    Tip - Find out what revision method works for you early on. If you liked coloured revision cards in GCSE and they worked for you carry on using them!.
    Tip - Pukka Pads can be your best friend.
    Tip - Finally revisie as you see fit, just because someone else like revising a week before the exams it doesn't mean it'll work for you.
    Tip - Make sure you get along with your teachers, they'll be more willing to write you a lovely reference !
    Tip - Try not to neglect some subjects in favour of others which you prefer. I loved revising for History but revising for English made me feel physically sick but it had to be done!
    Tip - Ermm work hard! I found it a huge jump at first but I gradually got used to it.

    Jessaay!
    Tip - Remember, it's a few months of your life for what may give you a better future. You won't look back when you're much older and regret not watching that TV programme and not going for that single day trip out with friends, however, you may regret not studying your hardest for your exams and subsequently missing out on the opportunity to do something you may love with your life.
    Tip - Don't waste countless hours doing beautiful revision notes- especially if you're running out of time. Summarise the information in a quick way and a way that is understandable to yourself. The actual learning of the notes is important, not the creating. You won't believe how many people I've seen sat in the library or at the computers at college decorating their notes with word art or beautiful images. Maybe it looks pretty, but it's effectively useless. Using colour on your notes can help you remember it, but don't spend a ridiculous amount of time doing this.
    Tip - Please make sure you learn the entire syllabus for a subject, there is no use in cutting corners because a certain topic never comes up in the exam or it came up in the last exam, you just can't guess, and it'd be a shame to waste all the rest of the work you did to get a good grade just because you can't answer questions on one topic.
    Tip - Do past exam papers for practice, and actually pay attention to what it says in the mark scheme. Doing the papers is always good for getting exam technique etc, but the mark scheme is important to make sure you're hitting the marks because often it's just a matter of phrasing that people lose marks on. Especially in science subjects (you have to be very precise).
    Tip - Listen to your teacher, but also listen to yourself. I've had many teachers on my back about the way I learn, saying I should do it another way. However, I listen to them, but also know the way I learn. I'm not condoning not doing homework, but if I had something more important I needed to do, for example, doing the revision, I would maybe hand it in later. I am a firm believer that your own learning of the subject is more important than doing some of the pointless projects they ask you to do, however, often some of the projects aren't pointless and I'd realise this and do them.
    Tip - For class tests, practice essays and practice exam papers, I'd always do my best. I think this is one of the keys to good grades. If you try your hardest throughout, you will succeed and improve and class assessments are a good way of measuring your performance throughout the year and evaluating your work and what you need to improve on.

    lotusx
    Tip - If you're one of those people who can juggle a dazzling social life and still get the grades, good on you. You're a minority. If you're not, don't try and kid yourself that you are-do what the rest of us did and knuckle down when you have to.
    Tip - Don't be daunted by the step between GCSE/AS and AS/A. Everyone else is probably feeling the same.
    Tip - Fair enough, AS/A levels are two extremely important years (and A level year is even mroe of a hassle because you've got UCAS applications to deal with). But don't let yourself get tooooo overwhelmed-it's your last year in school, after all-you need some good memories!

    Becky21
    Tip - Nobody warned me that A Levels need so much more work than GCSEs. I got 10A* at GCSE with barely any work so I though A Levels would be a breeze. WRONG!!!
    Seriously, read through textbooks/notes after every lesson, even if you think you understand it. I know that sounds really geeky, but please do it!!! I got results that I am fairly happy with, after realising half way through the year that I needed to work harder, but it was so late by then that I was working every minute of the day that I was awake and I know I could have done better in couple of maths modules.
    -
    Anyway, I can't stress enough that you need to work hard, I wish someone had let me know.

    angel_night
    Tip - Use your frees! I used them a little bit in y12, but not enough, so I did do quite a bit of work outside of school. When I got to y13 I decided to rectify this and use my frees to my advantage. I completed all my homework and coursework in school time as a result, which meant I had time for work, college and also a social life. It also meant that I had quite a few of ym revision notes ready for my exams before we even started study leave.
    Tip - Don't leave things to the last minute. This will almost inevitably happen, but try to avoid it if you can. The relief that comes with it is so so good and you'll feel much better for it. Being able to take your time over things as well is useful, and you can cocnerntrate mroe on what you need and what you don't!
    Tip - Check out examination reports and specifications. Knowing what an examiner wants is always beneficial and will help you loads! Also check out past paper questions. There are usually questions that come up quite a lot, so make sure you know the topics of popular questions! Though always revise everything thoroughly.
    Tip - Write Revision Notes Before It's Too Late! Making revision notes is probably the most tiem consuming part of revision. It took me a long time to make proper notes that had all the information on them and were in a good format. If you do these before you need to start hardcore revision you'll be ahead of the game! Making them as well also drums some information into your head; they're very worthwhile!
    Tip - DO have a social life! Dpnt just sit around studying all day. Studying is good and I;m certainly not telling you to not do it! But you need a balance of will just end up beign drained and friendless. You need friends there to celebrate with you or commiserate with you at the end. Sixth form and going out with friends also made me develop a lot more asa person; confidence wise and with social skills.
    Tip - Pariticipate in things within your school/college. Don't just sit on the side. Pariticpating in activites, becoming a prefect or anything like that will help ypou as a person, an will also improve your personal statement and reference!

    donks169
    Tip - DO THE WORK that you get told to do, and revise a lot earlier than you did for GCSE's, almost no one does as well as they could in the AS year because they think it'll be as simple as GCSE's!
    Just enjoy it! It could be the last two years before you're thrown into the working world!


    Maths and Further Maths
    19becky91
    Tip - You need to have a real grasp of GCSE mathematics to really succeed at A-level in Maths (I'd recommend at least a B). Further Maths you really do need to be capable of an A* at GCSE, I know people who got A's at GCSE in maths, and got A at A-level, but they should have got an A* at GCSE (laziness). For both subjects you really need to be passionate about maths, it is quite a hard subject so don't take it because you think you should. However, saying that Maths is probably the most useful subject to have for all degrees. My top-tip for maths - love the subject, then it will become easier, sounds stupid I know, but you'll do better in a subject you enjoy!

    sarsi
    Tip - (Maths) Don't worry too much about maths AS. Core 1 is only slightly harder than A* level maths at GCSE and Core 2 gets a bit harder than Core 1. Do as many past papers as possible.
    Tip - (Further Maths) It is basically just more maths modules but they are generally harder, especially the FP modules (apart from the odd edexcel 2009 june FP1 exam). I think for edexcel you have to do FP1 (pure maths module) and two other applied maths modules (could be mechanincs, statistics, decision or a combination of them) for the AS year.

    samiz20891
    Tip - Do as many questions + exam papers as you can as when you grasp the concepts... maths seem a lot more easier.


    Biology
    19becky91
    Tip - Ah biology, claimed to be the easiest science, and out of physics and chemistry that is probably true. However, that's not to say it isn't hard. It involves quite a bit of memorizing and a firm grip on chemistry, so if you have chosen biology because you want to do a science, but want an easy subject, tough - because there isn't one. I would highly recommend doing chemistry with biology, it will make your life so much easier! Another things is for PE students, you need to be aware that in biology you learn things/new words that you haven't used in PE before, you must use this in the exam, not the PE stuff or you won't get the mark, e.g. bundle of his, is infact the Purkyne tissue! My top-tip for biology is read around the subject, learn new impressive words, e.g. epitopes (immune system)!

    sarsi
    Tip - I had to spend alot of time doing biology! In fact I spent more time than all my other subjects combined. It's mainly reading through the book and memorising facts. However, it is also about applying these facts to unfamiliar questions in the test, most of the questions are really specific and require keywords to get the top marks. There are not many past papers for this because of the new spec.


    Chemistry
    19becky91
    Tip - My fave subject now, but I hated it at GCSE! Once you begin A-levels they stop treating you like a baby and actually start to explain things. The great thing about chemistry is it is the 'theory' of science and then you can apply things in biology and physics. However, you need to be confident with maths and equations. Again, you need to memorize a lot of stuff for the exams, but it's worth it! My top-tip for chemistry is make revision notes as you go through the school year, it makes it so much easier to revise!

    sarsi
    Tip - For me this was the hardest A-level I did. If you do not practice and prepare well before the tests you are screwed. I found chemistry to be a mix of biology, physics and maths! Which is why they call it the 'fundamental' science. It is very conceptual and there quite a few facts to learn. Some of the stuff is tricky and there are always exceptions to some rules. You really have to understand in depth and practice questions in the book to do well.


    Physics
    sarsi
    Tip - Surprisingly physics is the science subject with least A's in our year . It's not so much as learning the book but understanding and applying that knowledge in different situations. You have to manipulate formulae and know how to convert between basic units in your head. I'm studying salters horners physics (edexcel) and some of the questions in the tests are now more wordy. There's alot of understanding and calculations in it.

    samiz20891
    Tip - Unlike Chemistry and Biology in Physics it more important to apply your knowledge to different theoretic situations. So if you enjoy just learning a subject and just reading and not sure the information, physics may seem a lot harder.


    English
    herzblut
    Tip - Read the bloody set texts before you do the exam. [you will be surprised at the number of people who don't] you can pretty much ignore your teacher, you should be analysing the texts in depth by yourself, the teacher on plays a vital role when it comes to practice essays and even then you should be able to spot a good A level essay after a few peer marking exercises. For synoptic units, I cannot stress the importance of wider reading. The key is not reading whole books [you only need to read one or two] but rather extracts and knowing the context around them. To revise for the war unit this year I used the extracts given in past papers and a selection of poems. Also for essays remember context---literary techniques---character analysis---meaning. I didn't find it that different from GCSE, you just need to go into more detail.

    Zirakzigil
    Tip - People seem to find this subject really tough. I have always found essay writing really easy which I guess gives you more time for planning, and coming up with good quotes etc. I think my advice would be just to do every piece of homework that you are set to the best of your ability. Writing lots of good quality essays improves your writing style and if you include lots of quotes you will remember them for the exam. Also i would advise when revising for the final a2 exams not trying to remember every line in the book, you need a lot of quotes but pick ones that fit well with certain themes and characters, perhaps some that fit with more than one theme and character so rather than remembering say three you only need that one.

    cheekygirl11
    Tip - (any exams where you have a choice of questions) - READ THE INSTRUCTIONS... the amount of people who do both questions when they are only asked to do one...
    it sounds silly but it happens. and choose carefully. Just take a few minutes out to decide which is the better choice for you and to make sure you have enough info to write a whole essay and not just the first paragraph.

    fallen angel9
    Tip - Read the texts (although I knew people who didn't and still managed to get As. :dontknow:


    Textiles
    herzblut
    Tip - Not as free as you think it would be. To get a B in your cwk do the following on repeat for several months. observational drawing---> explain---->sample based on observational----> explain--------> repeat process with linked observational drawing ad infinitum. Just make sure everything is explained in excruciating detail and that everything is linked and has a reason. I leant the hard way that it doesn't matter how good your final piece is, if the book work isn't there, done the way they like it, you're screwed


    Art
    herzblut
    Tip - You can goof off and still get a C at AS just make sure you explain everything you do in depth. Even if you suck at drawing by the end of AS you will be amazing by the end of the year if you are drawing regularly.


    Economics
    samiz20891
    Tip - This is one of the subjects where you opinion and reasoning is crucial. As you will only get the higher grades if you explain/evaluate your own point of view. Reading around the subject is also important.

    Foreign Languages
    fallen angel9
    Tip - Italian or any other language- Listen to foreign radio over the Internet, watch youtube clips in the language and read the news in that language. The more practice the better. If you can go to that country if your school offers trips or whatever. I went to Italy twice during my year and year 13 and my speaking and listening skills improved tremendously.

    herzblut
    Tip - Don't forget the simple things. The subjonctif is not as big a deal as your french teacher will make it out to be, it is easy. Read the paper online in french [ libération ftw]. Practice speaking as much as possible. Learn French slang/ swear words. The essay paper is a *****.
    Pages 1&2 added.
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    General tip - remember to hand in homework, coursework, essays etc. before the deadline. It saves some trouble, it really does.
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    Mathematics and Further Maths - You need to have a real grasp of GCSE mathematics to really succeed at A-level in Maths (I'd recommend at least a B). Further Maths you really do need to be capable of an A* at GCSE, I know people who got A's at GCSE in maths, and got A at A-level, but they should have got an A* at GCSE (laziness). For both subjects you really need to be passionate about maths, it is quite a hard subject so don't take it because you think you should. However, saying that Maths is probably the most useful subject to have for all degrees. My top-tip for maths - love the subject, then it will become easier, sounds stupid I know, but you'll do better in a subject you enjoy!

    Biology - ah biology, claimed to be the easiest science, and out of physics and chemistry that is probably true. However, that's not to say it isn't hard. It involves quite a bit of memorizing and a firm grip on chemistry, so if you have chosen biology because you want to do a science, but want an easy subject, tough - because there isn't one. I would highly recommend doing chemistry with biology, it will make your life so much easier! Another things is for PE students, you need to be aware that in biology you learn things/new words that you haven't used in PE before, you must use this in the exam, not the PE stuff or you won't get the mark, e.g. bundle of his, is infact the Purkyne tissue! My top-tip for biology is read around the subject, learn new impressive words, e.g. epitopes (immune system)!

    Chemistry - my fave subject now, but I hated it at GCSE! Once you begin A-levels they stop treating you like a baby and actually start to explain things. The great thing about chemistry is it is the 'theory' of science and then you can apply things in biology and physics. However, you need to be confident with maths and equations. Again, you need to memorize a lot of stuff for the exams, but it's worth it! My top-tip for chemistry is make revision notes as you go through the school year, it makes it so much easier to revise!

    Good luck everyone!!!
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    General Tip - Think of A-levels as a race of endurance. Make sure you don't slack off and fall behind the group. Even doing so a bit can set you back significantly, as you need to catch up and you'll likely jeopardise the final result. Of course, if the group is going too slowly for you, feel free to pick up the pace a bit and get ahead. At the same time, make sure you don't exhaust and go a sustainable pace, so that you can go for the sprint finish during your final weeks of revision.

    Also, make sure you've perfected your technique. Get a good start and when you're coming to the finish line, make sure you... uhh, dip your head.

    It may feel like your only racing against those in your class, but you're essentially racing against everyone sitting that exam. Some of them might have it a bit easier if they've got... privately manufactured trainers or something, but that doesn't mean the race is over!

    ... Why on earth did I decide to do that all in a racing metaphor :confused:
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    (Original post by Jamstar)
    General Tip - Think of A-levels as a race of endurance. Make sure you don't slack off and fall behind the group. Even doing so a bit can set you back significantly, as you need to catch up and you'll likely jeopardise the final result. Of course, if the group is going too slowly for you, feel free to pick up the pace a bit and get ahead. At the same time, make sure you don't exhaust and go a sustainable pace, so that you can go for the sprint finish during your final weeks of revision.

    Also, make sure you've perfected your technique. Get a good start and when you're coming to the finish line, make sure you... uhh, dip your head.

    It may feel like your only racing against those in your class, but you're essentially racing against everyone sitting that exam. Some of them might have it a bit easier if they've got... privately manufactured trainers or something, but that doesn't mean the race is over!

    ... Why on earth did I decide to do that all in a racing metaphor :confused:
    That was a pretty awesome metaphor though
    "privately manufactured trainers" - xD
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    I will begin my A2 year this September.

    A-level [Maths] - Don't worry too much about maths AS. Core 1 is only slightly harder than A* level maths at GCSE and Core 2 gets a bit harder than Core 1. Do as many past papers as possible.

    A-level [Biology] - I had to spend alot of time doing biology! In fact I spent more time than all my other subjects combined. It's mainly reading through the book and memorising facts. However, it is also about applying these facts to unfamiliar questions in the test, most of the questions are really specific and require keywords to get the top marks. There are not many past papers for this because of the new spec.

    A-level [Chemistry] - For me this was the hardest A-level I did. If you do not practice and prepare well before the tests you are screwed. I found chemistry to be a mix of biology, physics and maths! Which is why they call it the 'fundamental' science. It is very conceptual and there quite a few facts to learn. Some of the stuff is tricky and there are always exceptions to some rules. You really have to understand in depth and practice questions in the book to do well.

    A-level [Physics] - Surprisingly physics is the science subject with least A's in our year . It's not so much as learning the book but understanding and applying that knowledge in different situations. You have to manipulate formulae and know how to convert between basic units in your head. I'm studying salters horners physics (edexcel) and some of the questions in the tests are now more wordy. There's alot of understanding and calculations in it.

    A-level [Further Maths] - It is basically just more maths modules but they are generally harder, especially the FP modules (apart from the odd edexcel 2009 june FP1 exam). I think for edexcel you have to do FP1 (pure maths module) and two other applied maths modules (could be mechanincs, statistics, decision or a combination of them) for the AS year.

    General Tip - Become independent and start revising early. Don't start the year thinking A-levels are so much harder than GCSE's, even though they are . Be confident from the start and motivate yourself throughout the whole year. However much work you need to put in each subject you yourself know, the classic 1-hour of homestudy for every class is crap in my opinion. It also helps if your school does exams in January and June, that way there is not a ton of work load to do before exams in June and you get the chance for resits from the January exams. But try to avoid resits in the first place by doing the work before.

    A final note, don't do general studies!

    Extra Tip: Make sure you read the questions properly and understand what answer you must give, especially with biology and chemistry, e.g. Describe, Explain, Evaluate, Calculate, Discuss etc, are all at the start of the questions and you must answer as the question asks to get the marks. Also check every page after the test if you have time to make sure you have not missed out any questions (includes back page).
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    General - If you need to do a resit, get a remark or request a photocopy of your exam paper, it is more than likely that you need to pay for it yourself. Do not miss the deadline for this.
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    Get it right first time- Resits take the piss!
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    General Tip - For almost any subject (perhaps not ones like art though), do loads of past papers and learn how to play the exam game. You can know everything there is to know about the human body but if you don't know how to play the biology exam game then you won't do nearly as well!

    General Tip - Make sure you understand how UMS points work so you can calculate how many points you are off a certain grade (this becomes most useful coming up to your summer exams at A2)!
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    (Original post by sarsi)
    the classic 1-hour of homestudy for every class is crap in my opinion.
    Do you mean that you should be doing more or less than an hour?
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    (Original post by chebanana)
    Do you mean that you should be doing more or less than an hour?
    Less, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't be working at all.
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    Hmmm...I was just planning on writing notes on revision cards every night and going over them, doing a ton of past papers and of course, practising for the ELAT As if it wasn't hard enough...
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    (Original post by chebanana)
    Do you mean that you should be doing more or less than an hour?
    I don't like to dictate how long really :p: Only you should be doing the amount of work that is right for you, that satisfies you and your targets. If you think about it, you could have 4 lessons a day, which according to some teachers is 4 hours homestudy later in the day...far too much.
    Personally, I spent about an average of 1/3 of an hour of homestudy compared to one hour of class time. But I drained a lot more time doing biology rather than maths.
    I also think that doing the Arts subjects are more demanding although not as difficult (although I would crumble in the face of an English literature paper).
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    General tip: If you're doing 3 A-Level subjects, do 15 hours a week of independent study (outside of class). Do 20 hours a week if you're doing 4 subjects. If you use as many 'free periods' as possible to study, then you won't have to do as much at home.
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    General - Work hard. DO question papers + exercises from books (it really helps..). Stay motivated. Make revision notes early, it will make revisions very easy.. And maintain a schedule...
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    Try as hard as you can in the first year. The exams are so much easier than in the second year , and by doing well in the first year will make the second alot easier for you.
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    French: Don't forget the simple things. The subjonctif is not as big a deal as your french teacher will make it out to be, it is easy. Read the paper online in french [ libération ftw]. Practice speaking as much as possible. Learn French slang/ swear words. The essay paper is a *****.

    Textiles: Not as free as you think it would be. To get a B in your cwk do the following on repeat for several months. observational drawing---> explain---->sample based on observational----> explain--------> repeat process with linked observational drawing ad infinitum. Just make sure everything is explained in excruciating detail and that everything is linked and has a reason. I leant the hard way that it doesn't matter how good your final piece is, if the book work isn't there, done the way they like it, you're screwed

    English:
    read the bloody set texts before you do the exam. [ you will be surprised at the number of people who don't] you can pretty much ignore your teacher, you should be analysing the texts in depth by yourself, the teacher on plays a vital role when it comes to practice essays and even then you should be able to spot a good A level essay after a few peer marking exercises. For synoptic units, I cannot stress the importance of wider reading. The key is not reading whole books [ you only need to read one or two] but rather extracts and knowing the context around them. To revise for the war unit this year I used the extracts given in past papers and a selection of poems. Also for essays remember context---literary techniques---character analysis---meaning. I didn't find it that different from GCSE, you just need to go into more detail.

    Art: you can goof off and still get a C at AS just make sure you explain everything you do in depth. Even if you suck at drawing by the end of AS you will be amazing by the end of the year if you are drawing regularly.
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    Work hard from the start, resits mess everything up.

    Even on modules that are easy revise lots. I got 76/100 on c1 maths due to the fact it was relatively easy so i didnt revise. I then went and got low a's on the rest of the modules and another 76 on core 3 and missed an a by a couple of marks, would have got an a if i revised properly for c1.

    Work hard at coursework. Exams are easy to mess up, even if it is just a few marks lower than you expected. Good coursework could mean a lot, work hard to get every last mark, don't just settle for the grade you want at the end of the year, it is the only time that you can get some help from your teacher and others make use of this.

    English lit - people seem to find this subject really tough. I have always found essay writing really easy which i guess gives you more time for planning, and coming up with good quotes etc. I think my advice would be just to do every piece of homework that you are set to the best of your ability. Writing lots of good quality essays improves your writing style and if you include lots of quotes you will remember them for the exam. Also i would advise when revising for the final a2 exams not trying to remember every line in the book, you need a lot of quotes but pick ones that fit well with certain themes and characters, perhaps some that fit with more than one theme and character so rather than remembering say three you only need that one.

    And just generally during your a levels get involved in stuff going on around your college, everything you do can help with your personal statement if you are thinking of uni. And it will help with your confidence if you are a little shy.
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    General Tip- give all homework in on time and stay motivated. I know plenty of people who simply aced their GCSE's and when it came to as-levels, they only got C's, D's E's and even U's. Don't get complacent and too over-confident. Don't revise at the last minute and revise along the way, however boring and tedious, and unsociable it may sound- it helps tons during exam time when you've got lots of revision. Learning along the way helps especially for fact-based subjects, such as Biology, (I haven't done this subject but my friends have told me there's loads to remember!) and Psychology, (which I do) can be aced if everything is remembered and regurgitated in the exam- well, that's my opinion. Oh yes, work hard and play hard! get as many extra-curriculars done as you can. It'll pay off!!

    Hope I helped and all the best to those who have read this.
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    General Tip
    Become an exam pro. Not only do ALL the practice papers available, search outside the box for questions. Also, get into a good regime early. For me I made sure I got enough sleep before morning exams. When I felt a dip in energy when revising I ate energy bars to keep me going. If all else fails, retake anything you don't do well on, managed to pull my grades up from ABBC at AS to AAAB at A2 (History, English Lit, Biology, Chemistry)
 
 
 

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