Self-teaching Chemistry A-level (as a private candidate)?

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Rascacielos
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To cut a long story short, I'm considering applying for graduate medicine. As a law student, I don't have the required Chemistry A-level (nor Biology/Physics). I want to sit it as an external candidate, but can't afford to do the whole distance-learning-with-a-tutor business. I would need to self-teach.

To anybody who has experience of self-teaching Chemistry at A-level: is it do-able and how long did it take you? I have A*s in 3 sciences at GCSE and close on 100% in all of them, so science isn't (or at least, never used to be) something I struggled with.

Advice in this respect for biology, human biology and physics too would be appreciated, as I need to choose one of those alongside Chemistry. Do any of the three stand out as being more difficult than the rest?

Also, on a side note, are there any Chemistry/Biology/Physics A-levels which don't have practical exams, or do all exam boards require them? Much as practicals sound fun, they are also expensive to take as an external candidate so I'd rather avoid them if possible.
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spwills
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I am currently doing A2 English Lit, A2 French, AS English Language and A2 English Language with a distance course, but now I am at the revision stage I have realised that I could have taught myself everything with the AQA Revision Guides.

It's definitely possible, although I can't give you any advice about Chemistry, sorry :/. I thought I'd just let you know that you could do it

Remember, as a private candidate you need to organise your own exam centre place and send in the right forms etc. You''ll probably find everything you need to know on the AQA website.
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Rascacielos
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(Original post by spwills)
I am currently doing A2 English Lit, A2 French, AS English Language and A2 English Language with a distance course, but now I am at the revision stage I have realised that I could have taught myself everything with the AQA Revision Guides.

It's definitely possible, although I can't give you any advice about Chemistry, sorry :/. I thought I'd just let you know that you could do it

Remember, as a private candidate you need to organise your own exam centre place and send in the right forms etc. You''ll probably find everything you need to know on the AQA website.
Thanks. That's impressive - how long did it take you to do all of those?
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DoeADeer
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
To cut a long story short, I'm considering applying for graduate medicine. As a law student, I don't have the required Chemistry A-level (nor Biology/Physics). I want to sit it as an external candidate, but can't afford to do the whole distance-learning-with-a-tutor business. I would need to self-teach.

To anybody who has experience of self-teaching Chemistry at A-level: is it do-able and how long did it take you? I have A*s in 3 sciences at GCSE and close on 100% in all of them, so science isn't (or at least, never used to be) something I struggled with.

Advice in this respect for biology, human biology and physics too would be appreciated, as I need to choose one of those alongside Chemistry. Do any of the three stand out as being more difficult than the rest?

Also, on a side note, are there any Chemistry/Biology/Physics A-levels which don't have practical exams, or do all exam boards require them? Much as practicals sound fun, they are also expensive to take as an external candidate so I'd rather avoid them if possible.
Hi, I'm basically teaching myself my A levels as the college I go to are so awful at teaching it. I'm predicted an A, which hopefully I'll get D: I've just used the CGP books to teach myself it all haha...

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Aidanb90
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I'm doing AS chemistry this year and decided to go ahead in the book to get a head start, so I was basically self teaching, I also do biology. Chemistry is difficult to learn by your self so prepare to be confused, but it is possible. Biology is easy to self teach as its just memorizing phrases etc, I guess physics will be harder than biology. I think you will have to do practical assessments somehow because I think they are compulsory to get an A level.
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spwills
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
Thanks. That's impressive - how long did it take you to do all of those?
A year


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Midlander
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As others have said, how do you plan on doing the practical components?
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tara121kool
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I think edexcel do a version of their a level course in which you do course work which is research based instead of the practical assesments.
I hope all goes well and good luck!!!
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Magzter
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I'm home studying biology, physics, chemistry and maths. I got AAAB in January with 1 mark away from am A in maths but I think I caught up in the May exams. You don't need to pay for distance learning courses they seem like a total waste of money as there are so many amazing resources online for free. The distance learning courses don't even set you up with exam centres so you'll still be completely on your own to organise them.

If you have money there's 3ATutors in Bristol that do practicals at £300 a pop, I know a place where you can do it for £100 so pm me if you want that info. As for the whole learning process here are some amazing resources (AQA focussed):

Chemguide.co.uk
http://www.amazon.co.uk/AQA-Chemistr...a+as+chemistry
http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=1288539
http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/scien...d-mark-schemes
http://www.freeexampapers.com/

All you need to actually buy is the book and there's enough info here to get you 100% if you pay close enough attention to the syllabus and mark schemes.
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Rascacielos
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(Original post by Midlander)
As others have said, how do you plan on doing the practical components?
You can sit the practical components externally too, but they're expensive.

(Original post by tara121kool)
I think edexcel do a version of their a level course in which you do course work which is research based instead of the practical assesments.
I hope all goes well and good luck!!!
Thanks, I'll look into that.
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Rascacielos
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Does that include the AS as well? Are you just taking the A2 exams?
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spwills
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
Does that include the AS as well? Are you just taking the A2 exams?
The whole English Language A Level in a year, and just A2 for French and English Lit.


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Rascacielos
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(Original post by spwills)
The whole English Language A Level in a year, and just A2 for French and English Lit.


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Okay, so did you take just the one exam or both the AS and A2 in the same year?
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spwills
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In one year, I'm doing them now, so taking the AS on Friday and the A2 on the 3rd June


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ambbs
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Also, on a side note, are there any Chemistry/Biology/Physics A-levels which don't have practical exams, or do all exam boards require them? Much as practicals sound fun, they are also expensive to take as an external candidate so I'd rather avoid them if possible.
Edexcel physics allows international candidates (and I presume private candidates too?) to sit an extra paper (can link you if you want to look it up) based on experimental techniques, rather than doing the practical based coursework. I don't know about other boards but I imagine that you will be able to find one to suit your needs for all three :-)



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MarshmallowBob
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
To cut a long story short, I'm considering applying for graduate medicine. As a law student, I don't have the required Chemistry A-level (nor Biology/Physics). I want to sit it as an external candidate, but can't afford to do the whole distance-learning-with-a-tutor business. I would need to self-teach.

To anybody who has experience of self-teaching Chemistry at A-level: is it do-able and how long did it take you? I have A*s in 3 sciences at GCSE and close on 100% in all of them, so science isn't (or at least, never used to be) something I struggled with.

Advice in this respect for biology, human biology and physics too would be appreciated, as I need to choose one of those alongside Chemistry. Do any of the three stand out as being more difficult than the rest?

Also, on a side note, are there any Chemistry/Biology/Physics A-levels which don't have practical exams, or do all exam boards require them? Much as practicals sound fun, they are also expensive to take as an external candidate so I'd rather avoid them if possible.
It is quite doable. Self studying shouldn't be too big of an issue especially since your already at university. As an A-level(edexcel) student who is currently self studying I would highly recommend getting the CGP study guides, and just memorize them inside out.
edexcel offers an alternative to practical paper, that all international students have to take. you might want to look in to that.
hope I helped
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Rascacielos
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(Original post by MarshmallowBob)
It is quite doable. Self studying shouldn't be too big of an issue especially since your already at university. As an A-level(edexcel) student who is currently self studying I would highly recommend getting the CGP study guides, and just memorize them inside out.
edexcel offers an alternative to practical paper, that all international students have to take. you might want to look in to that.
hope I helped
Thanks. Unfortunately the alternative paper, so I understand, is only for international students which seems a bit unfair, but there it is!
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bectabex
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
Thanks. Unfortunately the alternative paper, so I understand, is only for international students which seems a bit unfair, but there it is!
I just finished edexcel biology and am sitting OCR chemistry now for graduate medicine requirements, self taught both - pm me if you want any info
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ninah1995162
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(Original post by bectabex)
I just finished edexcel biology and am sitting OCR chemistry now for graduate medicine requirements, self taught both - pm me if you want any info
Hey I wanted to know where u took the chemistry ocr practical, the centre and how much it was. Ur answer
Would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
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Mary20013
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Hi I would like to do my biology, physics and chemistry a levels externaly, just studying myself. Could you please tell me how did you sort out the course work? by the way I live in manchester do you know any centre where I can register? And one more question about your exams was it modular or linear?
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