OCR AS Biology Specification confusion

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jshark97
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Hello I'm in year 12 revising over easter for the OCR AS Bio exams. My teachers tell me there is no book that will cover all info needed for the AS spec. I bought a CGP book that says it does cover everything, and it also misses some stuff my teachers say is required. I emailed CGP and they told me the stuff my teachers mention isn't required. This includes: active loading process in phloem, calculating species frequency/density, naming 5 organizations that protect endangered species, allopatric & sympatric speciation and definitions such as "population" and "community".

Could anyone confirm if there is/are a book(s) covering the whole spec, and if CGP or my teachers are incorrect? I would really like to know so I can revise as best as I can for the exams!

Thank you
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Samiz
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I could be wrong because I'm on the WJEC board, but CGP revision books are the best you can get. They cover everything you need to know, nothing more, nothing less.

Also sometimes in the CGP guides there a a few side notes that are tiny but still have information you need.

I'd say either try to find the official spec, or ask another teacher, BUT I would trust a CGP guide over one teacher.
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FemaleBo55
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What is wrong with the OCR AS biology textbook itselfit covers sufficient amount of content for the spec and topics are that you feel have not a lot of detail use the internet. What I am planning to do is learn model answers for the long answer questions from mark schemes
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Samiz
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(Original post by Elhamm)
What is wrong with the OCR AS biology textbook itselfit covers sufficient amount of content for the spec and topics are that you feel have not a lot of detail use the internet. What I am planning to do is learn model answers for the long answer questions from mark schemes
Textbooks are obviously good but usually they contain way more information than is needed.

The CGP guides are so popular because it's everything you need but really concise and in note form, so it's nowhere near as lengthy as proper textbooks but ultimately has everything you need.
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loperdoper
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I personally used the Heinemann textbook and then the Student Book from CGP. The Student Book is slightly thicker than the revision guide (and is more expensive), but I personally found it was really useful. I went over content once with the textbook, and then when it came to revise I relied on the Student Book.

The Student Book also lists what parts of the spec it covers on each page, so you can download the actual spec from the OCR website and check to see if it's missing anything.
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nurav11
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(Original post by jshark97)
Hello I'm in year 12 revising over easter for the OCR AS Bio exams. My teachers tell me there is no book that will cover all info needed for the AS spec. I bought a CGP book that says it does cover everything, and it also misses some stuff my teachers say is required. I emailed CGP and they told me the stuff my teachers mention isn't required. This includes: active loading process in phloem, calculating species frequency/density, naming 5 organizations that protect endangered species, allopatric & sympatric speciation and definitions such as "population" and "community".

Could anyone confirm if there is/are a book(s) covering the whole spec, and if CGP or my teachers are incorrect? I would really like to know so I can revise as best as I can for the exams!

Thank you
Hmm I'm not sure about what CGP are telling you is accurate :/, active loading in the phloem came up as a fairly large question in last year's paper (we did it as a mock), our teacher has also told us that the 5 organizations are definitely something that could be asked. Not fully sure about the other topics. Tbh I prefer the textbook so much more as it covers the whole spec (and a bit more but you can check exactly what you need to know with the bullet points at the top of each spread).

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zanab_98
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I'm doing the OCR AS Biology exam too and I also revised from the CGP book and I got D's and E's which iss obviously not very good, and I found that the CGP revision guides condenses a lot of the information therefore when it comes to 5 and 6 markers you don't really have much to write so I've started to use the actual OCR textbook and my grades have boosted to B's and that's only with little revision so it could easily be A's with proper revision. I personally recommend you just revise from the actual text book.

Hope that helped...
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Solarburst
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(Original post by jshark97)
Hello I'm in year 12 revising over easter for the OCR AS Bio exams. My teachers tell me there is no book that will cover all info needed for the AS spec. I bought a CGP book that says it does cover everything, and it also misses some stuff my teachers say is required. I emailed CGP and they told me the stuff my teachers mention isn't required. This includes: active loading process in phloem, calculating species frequency/density, naming 5 organizations that protect endangered species, allopatric & sympatric speciation and definitions such as "population" and "community".

Could anyone confirm if there is/are a book(s) covering the whole spec, and if CGP or my teachers are incorrect? I would really like to know so I can revise as best as I can for the exams!

Thank you
Why don't you print off the specification and look yourself.
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nurav11
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(Original post by zanab_98)
I'm doing the OCR AS Biology exam too and I also revised from the CGP book and I got D's and E's which iss obviously not very good, and I found that the CGP revision guides condenses a lot of the information therefore when it comes to 5 and 6 markers you don't really have much to write so I've started to use the actual OCR textbook and my grades have boosted to B's and that's only with little revision so it could easily be A's with proper revision. I personally recommend you just revise from the actual text book.

Hope that helped...
Yep agree with you 100%, think same thing goes for the OCR revision guides which are also incredibly condensed compared to textbook.

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zanab_98
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Oh, I've never tried the OCR revision guides but yes I'm sure they're the same, an I've also noticed that these revision guides don't use scientific terminology which could give us extra marks as they condense everything into baby words if you like...lol
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nurav11
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(Original post by zanab_98)
Oh, I've never tried the OCR revision guides but yes I'm sure they're the same, an I've also noticed that these revision guides don't use scientific terminology which could give us extra marks as they condense everything into baby words if you like...lol
Yep haha, our teacher told us that if we only used the OCR revision guides we'd be guarenteed a straight B and you could only get an A from the textbook :P. Pretty sure it was an exaggeration but you get the picture, definitely doesn't have the scientific basis that OCR mark scheme want.

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jshark97
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(Original post by Samiz)
Textbooks are obviously good but usually they contain way more information than is needed.

The CGP guides are so popular because it's everything you need but really concise and in note form, so it's nowhere near as lengthy as proper textbooks but ultimately has everything you need.
This was very much what I was thinking, as I really find the CGP textbook easier to learn from than the heinneman etc, and judging off their reputation and how well they did GCSE and how all the information really does not seem to waffle I was sure it'd be fine. However my teachers have said the CGP book only offers a 'basic understanding', and a lot of the past papers we do contains stuff the book doesn't cover. However, I am aware the OCR spec is prone to change a lot, so I'm thinking the reason this is is due to out dated questions. Does this make it difficult to revise via ppqs if this is the case,though?
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nurav11
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(Original post by jshark97)
This was very much what I was thinking, as I really find the CGP textbook easier to learn from than the heinneman etc, and judging off their reputation and how well they did GCSE and how all the information really does not seem to waffle I was sure it'd be fine. However my teachers have said the CGP book only offers a 'basic understanding', and a lot of the past papers we do contains stuff the book doesn't cover. However, I am aware the OCR spec is prone to change a lot, so I'm thinking the reason this is is due to out dated questions. Does this make it difficult to revise via ppqs if this is the case,though?
The difference between GCSEs and ASs is that GCSE questions tend to be really formulaic and easy to get the marks but in ASs, they do throw in a lot more 'curveball' questions which are meant to test your application, I.e stuff not directly on the textbook. Therefore I don't think revising through ppqs is a great thing to do. But definitely look at the mark schemes and see what they are looking for. I always found the best way to revise was from comparing textbook to spec, but good luck in however you revise!

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