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    Hi everyone,

    So recently I have picked to do the following IGCSE's

    ENglish lit. (comp.)
    English Lang. (comp.)
    Maths (comp.)
    Add. Maths
    Bio
    Chem
    Physics
    Geography
    History
    Spanish

    I feel like I have picked a set of hard IGCSE's, especially with history, add. maths and all 3 sciences. Am I right? And if so, do you think that I should have a special revision way etc. or is it normal? I consider myself to be smart, and I really want to get into a good uni (very good Russel group or oxbridge), and I am afraid that the thing that will drag me down, in terms of time consumption and level is history. I also have until the 1st week of term, to if I want to, change from History to Business Studies if it is easier. Although I'm quite embarrassed to ask my deputy head, because I've already asked him to change from Drama to physics (which has been ok'd).

    Thanks
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    Business Studies is so BORING and a waste of time, history is more respected by colleges/6th forms/unis. Universities don't really care about what gcses you have as long as you have 5A*-C including english and maths. A-levels is what universities look at.
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    (Original post by unbelievable32)
    Hi everyone,

    So recently I have picked to do the following IGCSE's

    ENglish lit. (comp.)
    English Lang. (comp.)
    Maths (comp.)
    Add. Maths
    Bio
    Chem
    Physics
    Geography
    History
    Spanish

    I feel like I have picked a set of hard IGCSE's, especially with history, add. maths and all 3 sciences. Am I right? And if so, do you think that I should have a special revision way etc. or is it normal? I consider myself to be smart, and I really want to get into a good uni (very good Russel group or oxbridge), and I am afraid that the thing that will drag me down, in terms of time consumption and level is history. I also have until the 1st week of term, to if I want to, change from History to Business Studies if it is easier. Although I'm quite embarrassed to ask my deputy head, because I've already asked him to change from Drama to physics (which has been ok'd).

    Thanks
    If you are sensible, diligent and conscientious about doing your work on time, revising to an appropriate level, and managing your time well then 10 IGCSEs shouldn't be too much. You options probably are more difficult than most students, but they are not that unusual and they have definitely been done before, and done well.

    However, in all honesty, in terms of Universities (Oxbridge, Russel Group, etc.); none will be overly concerned about the odd GCSE detail. So if you decided to do 9 instead of 10 that probably wouldn't make much difference. Likewise if you decided to do Business instead of History that would not make much difference. It would only be a problem if you wanted to apply for History.

    Furthermore, in my opinion you should be going for quality over quantity. Getting 9A*s looks better than 9A*s and 1A IMO. So if you are genuinely concerned about how well you will do in History, then my advice would be to not sit it and take up another subject instead. But I don't think you should drop it just because you are worried about the extra work.


    Either way, you shouldn't let anxiety over talking to the Dep. Head be a factor in your decision. It is their job to make sure you pick the right subjects - so by all mean be a bit of a pain and ask them again if you think that is best.
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    (Original post by unbelievable32)
    Hi everyone,

    So recently I have picked to do the following IGCSE's

    ENglish lit. (comp.)
    English Lang. (comp.)
    Maths (comp.)
    Add. Maths
    Bio
    Chem
    Physics
    Geography
    History
    Spanish

    I feel like I have picked a set of hard IGCSE's, especially with history, add. maths and all 3 sciences. Am I right? And if so, do you think that I should have a special revision way etc. or is it normal? I consider myself to be smart, and I really want to get into a good uni (very good Russel group or oxbridge), and I am afraid that the thing that will drag me down, in terms of time consumption and level is history. I also have until the 1st week of term, to if I want to, change from History to Business Studies if it is easier. Although I'm quite embarrassed to ask my deputy head, because I've already asked him to change from Drama to physics (which has been ok'd).

    Thanks
    I think you have a good set of GCSEs there - they are versatile and will let you take pretty much any course you want to take for a level (provided it isn't art or something!) Swapping from drama to physics was the right decision, trust me!
    I do history and I would definitely recommend taking it - it is far more respected than business studies and you learn more skills that would be more useful (essay writing, how to argue a point, how to time yourself etc). I would say it is a time consuming course because there is a lot to learn and techniques to master, but once you've got the hang of how to answer the questions (there is a knack to answering a 7 mark question for example) all you need to learn is the facts. It will get easier.
    I'm doing 12 GCSEs at the moment but I think this is universal regardless of how many subjects you're doing - learn and revise as you go; even though it's boring and irritating, it's worth it in the long run as all your friends will be panicking that they haven't learned what momentum is and you're there revising half the amount they are. Plan your time efficiently and you'll get through these exams. Assuming you have exams in year 10 as well it will give you time to work out how much time you need to spend revising each subject. You don't want to revise anything you don't need (e.g. pictograms in maths - you learn about those when you're seven!)
    Anyway, sorry for the very long answer but hope it helped!
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    As long as you're intelligent, organised and concentrate in class, it shouldn't be a problem. A lot of people take a lot of (arguably) difficult GCSEs and do well with normal revision so you're not on your own. Business Studies will probably be easier than History but everything I've heard about it indicates that it's dull, boring and not worth taking. History is hard, I'm happy to admit that, but it's rewarding.
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    Thanks for the replies everyone,

    For those who have done history, did you feel that you had to learn an awful lot of facts for the exam? I mean, does the revision take longer than revising, for let's say, business?
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    (Original post by unbelievable32)
    Thanks for the replies everyone,

    For those who have done history, did you feel that you had to learn an awful lot of facts for the exam? I mean, does the revision take longer than revising, for let's say, business?
    For history - yes, there are a lot of facts that you will be taught but you won't get questions in the exam that say 'on what day was the treaty of trianon signed?' (for the record, it was 4th June 1920).

    History exams are often structured like this: you'll get a question in 3 parts - one question worth 5 marks, where you basically write 5 facts about something (e.g. what were the effects of WW1 on Germany?). The second part is worth 7 marks, where you have to explain something, e.g. Why did Hitler try to change the role of women? The last part is worth 8 marks and you have to justify your conclusion by saying something like 'how far' or 'to what extent' etc. For example: 'how successful was the League of Nations in the 1920s?'

    For these sorts of essay questions, there isn't really a right or a wrong answer (well, there is, but only up to a point. For my last example, the 8 mark question, you could argue either that the League was successful or that it was unsuccessful but you would have to justify that.) My point is that you learn facts in order to understand and back up what you say in response to essay questions you will get in the exam. The hardest part of history I think is to get the technique right on these questions. You may know all the facts but you need to utilise them to answer the question.

    I haven't done business studies so I can't give you much advise on that but take history - it's much more respected and a really, really interesting topic that is valued more at universities anyway.
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    Don't worry about the iGCSEs, it's great you've taken them because they'd be a great help for your A-Levels, I think Michael Gove is right when he says our normal GCSEs and "dumbing" people. So yeah, just be confident and have a folder for each subject with notes, past papers in them. Make sure you that when you do a chapter, you do it very well so it doesn't stress you out in the end. Have the specification printed out, and keep referring to the textbook, it's very important. It's easy peesy, don't worry about it. If you be confident about it it'll all be find. Good luck!


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    you'll be fine.

    history definitely over business-studies. Although I havent done Business myself, it has too much pointless work from what I remember seeing my friends did.

    And history isn't too difficult to revise for. Of clurse, that depends on the individual, but as someone said before, you aren't required to know very minute, specific details.

    In terms of uni, GCSEs don't matter as much as your A-Levels will. You do need to have a certain minimum number of good GCSEs, but more often than not, unis would take someone with, say, triple A*'s with 4 fewer GCSEs over someone with AAB with a million A*s at O-lvl.
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    thats not alot of gcses thats how many gcses everyone in our skwl does
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    Thanks, one more quick question.

    When we learn all the topics in history. Do we go into the exam knowing what it is the topic that we are going to write about? I mean, we learn about so many things, so are we expected to know all of them come exam time, or do we choose, or do we know from before what the main topic of the exam is?

    Thanks
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    (Original post by unbelievable32)
    Anyone?
    Hey I'm in year 10 now and I'm doing the same GCSEs that you have picked (apart from I'm doing French instead of Spanish). Come exam time you'll know what know what topics are going to be in the exam you're about to sit. Don't change history to business studies. Because IMO history is probably one of the most interesting subjects you can take. And anyway business studies is pretty easy IMO.
    Good Luck!!
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    (Original post by MoneypennyLyon)
    Hey I'm in year 10 now and I'm doing the same GCSEs that you have picked (apart from I'm doing French instead of Spanish). Come exam time you'll know what know what topics are going to be in the exam you're about to sit. Don't change history to business studies. Because IMO history is probably one of the most interesting subjects you can take. And anyway business studies is pretty easy IMO.
    Good Luck!!
    Good subject choice Anyway Thanks for the reply. When you said that come exam time you will know what topics will be in the exams you are about to do, do you mean just for history or for all subjects.

    Thanks
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    (Original post by unbelievable32)
    Good subject choice Anyway Thanks for the reply. When you said that come exam time you will know what topics will be in the exams you are about to do, do you mean just for history or for all subjects.

    Thanks
    It varies quite a lot. For History and Geography you can practically enter the exam room with the answers in your head. For the sciences it's a lot harder to guess. For english and maths its hard to know what they are going to ask.
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    Those are good option choices but they're not hard, your GCSE choices are typical of anything doing their GCSEs. The only real difference with yours is you're not doing any subjects such as Computing or Religious Studies but instead doing Additional Maths and 2 Humanities rather than 1, where as most people do 'bolt on' subjects like RS and ICT, almost no students do Additional Maths and only choose either Geography or History and not both.
 
 
 
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