Hamzahali
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Like many other's, im hoping to go onto Sixth form! I wish to study Biology (AQA), Chemistry (OCR), Physics (AQA) and Maths (Edexcel). As none of my family have ever been through sixth form, I was wondering for any advice you guys could give to me. What textbooks should I buy? What notepads should I take to college? Best way to make constructive and useful notes? Thanks ^-^
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rxns_00
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Like many other's, im hoping to go onto Sixth form! I wish to study Biology (AQA), Chemistry (OCR), Physics (AQA) and Maths (Edexcel). As none of my family have ever been through sixth form, I was wondering for any advice you guys could give to me. What textbooks should I buy? What notepads should I take to college? Best way to make constructive and useful notes? Thanks ^-^
That's what I did.
You shouldn't need to buy textbooks as they'll be provided to you by the school (they should be, at least). The only thing you really need is a folder for each subject and just like a refill pad of lined paper. Buy a pencil case with all your normal stationary in too, and a scientific calculator. It's pretty much like GCSE but you use folders instead of books and you have some free lessons to do work in (homework). Best way to do notes is make sure you write down everything you need to know (ie what is on the spec and whatever the teacher says you should also know), especially bullet form will help you memorise the content. With sciences you should know all the theory but with the mathsy subjects you need to practice actual questions as much as you can
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mjrd
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Like many other's, im hoping to go onto Sixth form! I wish to study Biology (AQA), Chemistry (OCR), Physics (AQA) and Maths (Edexcel). As none of my family have ever been through sixth form, I was wondering for any advice you guys could give to me. What textbooks should I buy? What notepads should I take to college? Best way to make constructive and useful notes? Thanks ^-^
I cant help much as i dont do those A levels but what i can tell you is to be prepared and organised. Start NOW! Read ova all exam board subject specs, examiner reports and print off as many past paper and mark schemes as you can. Also on the website it will give you a suggested book list you can read if you want. I would read them Now as you wont have much time when you get to coll and you have picked hard subjects so be prepared to work hard. After you finish each topic in class spend a weekend concising your notes down and put into a revision file and try to fill in all the past papers and put in the file too and read over all your notes as much as possible. The more you can do now and throughout the year the less cramming you need to do for the exams. All yours are on new specs too so your exams will be at end of yr2 so keep reading over your notes each month then you will remember yr1 work easily.
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by RonnieRJ)
That's what I did.
You shouldn't need to buy textbooks as they'll be provided to you by the school (they should be, at least). The only thing you really need is a folder for each subject and just like a refill pad of lined paper. Buy a pencil case with all your normal stationary in too, and a scientific calculator. It's pretty much like GCSE but you use folders instead of books and you have some free lessons to do work in (homework). Best way to do notes is make sure you write down everything you need to know (ie what is on the spec and whatever the teacher says you should also know), especially bullet form will help you memorise the content. With sciences you should know all the theory but with the mathsy subjects you need to practice actual questions as much as you can
Thanks
Wouldnt your own textbooks be useful instead of the crappy ones the school provide you with? Im not one of them "folder-kinda guys" lmao ygm? So would it be useful for someone like me to take notepads instead? In terms of difficulty, how hard are the subjects that I have opted for?
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by mjrd)
I cant help much as i dont do those A levels but what i can tell you is to be prepared and organised. Start NOW! Read ova all exam board subject specs, examiner reports and print off as many past paper and mark schemes as you can. Also on the website it will give you a suggested book list you can read if you want. I would read them Now as you wont have much time when you get to coll and you have picked hard subjects so be prepared to work hard. After you finish each topic in class spend a weekend concising your notes down and put into a revision file and try to fill in all the past papers and put in the file too and read over all your notes as much as possible. The more you can do now and throughout the year the less cramming you need to do for the exams. All yours are on new specs too so your exams will be at end of yr2 so keep reading over your notes each month then you will remember yr1 work easily.
It was very helpful thanks! What do you mean by on the website will have a suggested book list? I have started now by looking over the specification and preparing myself with what is coming! Maths isnt Linear, its still modular I was always considering to do maths at AS Level only
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cp1996
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Like many other's, im hoping to go onto Sixth form! I wish to study Biology (AQA), Chemistry (OCR), Physics (AQA) and Maths (Edexcel). As none of my family have ever been through sixth form, I was wondering for any advice you guys could give to me. What textbooks should I buy? What notepads should I take to college? Best way to make constructive and useful notes? Thanks ^-^
Your sixth form should give you a list of textbooks to get, second hand might be the way to go considering you'll only probably need them for a year. Try and save past papers and stuff until later in the year, make sure you learn all the content as early as possible because you want enough time to familiarize yourself with exam technique, timing etc...
Might wanna get lined paper- A LOT of it
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mjrd
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
It was very helpful thanks! What do you mean by on the website will have a suggested book list? I have started now by looking over the specification and preparing myself with what is coming! Maths isnt Linear, its still modular I was always considering to do maths at AS Level only
Yes the website should have a suggested reading list. Also check out the specs and check out related books on amazon. I buy all the 2nd hand books and get most for 1p plus post n pack so £2.81 in total. The books have been useful for extra reading and understanding and quality has been fine. Its not completly needed but depends on your work ethic, i prefer myself to know as much as i can, its helped me.
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by cp1996)
Your sixth form should give you a list of textbooks to get, second hand might be the way to go considering you'll only probably need them for a year. Try and save past papers and stuff until later in the year, make sure you learn all the content as early as possible because you want enough time to familiarize yourself with exam technique, timing etc...
Might wanna get lined paper- A LOT of it
aaah yes ive heard about this a lot that I should familiarise my self with the content as quick as I can and then work on techniques and so forth! yeah dw ill be getting plenty lined paper
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rxns_00
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Thanks
Wouldnt your own textbooks be useful instead of the crappy ones the school provide you with? Im not one of them "folder-kinda guys" lmao ygm? So would it be useful for someone like me to take notepads instead? In terms of difficulty, how hard are the subjects that I have opted for?
Not really because the ones given to you by the school are the official ones from the exam board and contain all the content you need. Sure you can buy revision guides and god knows what but I can already tell you they're pretty useless. Anyone in my class that bought them ended up using the original textbook instead. And also I don't think it matters if you're not that kind of guy - you picked subjects that are theory/practice heavy and you won't be able to contain all the pieces of paper given to you by teachers, exams papers, mocks, revision notes etc. I ended up with two folders for each subject. If you don't want to take them into college and use notepads or whatever, fair enough, but for your own sake keep them at home at least as it will majorly help you.
Also the sciences aren't as hard as everyone makes them out to be. In fact o found maths particularly easy as it pretty much just builds up on GCSE (does get harder at A2). The subjects are very objective so if you know your theory and have practiced questions then they'll become quite easy for you.
Also I've noticed people telling you to start now... You certainly don't need to. For humanities, yeah maybe it would be good starting eg books for English lit, but honestly the most you can do is print of the spec and even then you won't have a clue about most of the things on it. Also the schools should give you past exam papers, and if they don't then you can definitely print them on later on once you learn something. I would also say there aren't any books other than the textbooks that will help you in sciences. Honestly, coming from a person that did nothing in the summer after GCSEs, and was still predicted straight As throughout the year - just chill until September
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TajwarC
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Like many other's, im hoping to go onto Sixth form! I wish to study Biology (AQA), Chemistry (OCR), Physics (AQA) and Maths (Edexcel). As none of my family have ever been through sixth form, I was wondering for any advice you guys could give to me. What textbooks should I buy? What notepads should I take to college? Best way to make constructive and useful notes? Thanks ^-^
What I would strongly suggest is towards the end of summer (or maybe even now) start to teach yourself maths. It's the easiest out of the 4 to self teach as there are many useful resources available to you. Your course will consist of 3 modules, C1, C2 and an applied module (S1/M1/D1). Some of C1 you might be familiar with from GCSE. Find a copy of the textbook (either buy it for find a PDF version online), and begin to learn it. Copy out the examples and understand what's going on and then answer as many questions as you can on each page.

I did this for C3 and found it useful because not only was I ahead when I started, it gave me time to concentrate more on other subjects. My maths teacher set exercises from the textbook as homework meaning I had already finished them before I even got set it - Massive advantage!

And before anyone says "just enjoy your summer" etc - you can do both! All it takes is an hour or so a day.

Let me know if you have any more questions, I did all the subjects you're doing
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by RonnieRJ)
Not really because the ones given to you by the school are the official ones from the exam board and contain all the content you need. Sure you can buy revision guides and god knows what but I can already tell you they're pretty useless. Anyone in my class that bought them ended up using the original textbook instead. And also I don't think it matters if you're not that kind of guy - you picked subjects that are theory/practice heavy and you won't be able to contain all the pieces of paper given to you by teachers, exams papers, mocks, revision notes etc. I ended up with two folders for each subject. If you don't want to take them into college and use notepads or whatever, fair enough, but for your own sake keep them at home at least as it will majorly help you.
Also the sciences aren't as hard as everyone makes them out to be. In fact o found maths particularly easy as it pretty much just builds up on GCSE (does get harder at A2). The subjects are very objective so if you know your theory and have practiced questions then they'll become quite easy for you.
Also I've noticed people telling you to start now... You certainly don't need to. For humanities, yeah maybe it would be good starting eg books for English lit, but honestly the most you can do is print of the spec and even then you won't have a clue about most of the things on it. Also the schools should give you past exam papers, and if they don't then you can definitely print them on later on once you learn something. I would also say there aren't any books other than the textbooks that will help you in sciences. Honestly, coming from a person that did nothing in the summer after GCSEs, and was still predicted straight As throughout the year - just chill until September
I was considering doing maths at only AS but carrying all all other sciences throughout as they're linear.
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by TajwarC)
What I would strongly suggest is towards the end of summer (or maybe even now) start to teach yourself maths. It's the easiest out of the 4 to self teach as there are many useful resources available to you. Your course will consist of 3 modules, C1, C2 and an applied module (S1/M1/D1). Some of C1 you might be familiar with from GCSE. Find a copy of the textbook (either buy it for find a PDF version online), and begin to learn it. Copy out the examples and understand what's going on and then answer as many questions as you can on each page.

I did this for C3 and found it useful because not only was I ahead when I started, it gave me time to concentrate more on other subjects. My maths teacher set exercises from the textbook as homework meaning I had already finished them before I even got set it - Massive advantage!

And before anyone says "just enjoy your summer" etc - you can do both! All it takes is an hour or so a day.

Let me know if you have any more questions, I did all the subjects you're doing
Could you please briefly explain these different modules? Ive tried looking them up but im not sure what they're all about! Personally, how did you find all of these topics? Difficulty scale out of 10? And if I have any questions when im doing my course ill PM you regrading the topics im struggling with if thats okay with you
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rxns_00
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
I was considering doing maths at only AS but carrying all all other sciences throughout as they're linear.
Yeah you can deffo do that, the sciences don't get much harder at A2. It is hard obv, but you won't feel the step up much
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username1333513
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go through the spec and makes notes, buy at least 2 folders for each subject, don't rely on one. and do a lot of past papers so you know what kind of exam you're walking into!


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TajwarC
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
Could you please briefly explain these different modules? Ive tried looking them up but im not sure what they're all about! Personally, how did you find all of these topics? Difficulty scale out of 10? And if I have any questions when im doing my course ill PM you regrading the topics im struggling with if thats okay with you

C1 is supposedly the easiest module. It's a non calculator module and builds upon GCSE work. My main advice here is get really good at indicies and be confident with your mental maths. The first chapter is indicies if I remember correctly, you then go onto surds, sequences, coordinate geometry and some simple integration and differentiation.

C2 builds upon C1 however you can use a calculator. The new stuff you will learn is for the most part extension from C1 along with logarithms and trigonometry

C2 is more difficult than C1 but I somehow did better in C2. I can't really give a value out of 10 as it is subjective, loads of people will tell you loads of different things but at the end of the day maths is one of those subjects which is difficult but is by far the easiest to become really good at, really quickly. All you need to do is practice (my teacher always recommended answering every question in the book, which is why I advised starting early)

Your third module will most likely be your least favourite, it's an applied module. This will be probably chosen by your school. You either do Mechanics, Statistics or Decision. If you get the choice, I would advice against Decision...


Take a look at examsolutions.net - he has made multiple tutorials for every topic for all of A-Level maths along with past paper video solutions, trust me you will find these such a life saver when it comes close to your exams
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by RonnieRJ)
Yeah you can deffo do that, the sciences don't get much harder at A2. It is hard obv, but you won't feel the step up much
All of your advice has been extremely useful! Good luck in your exams and I hope you do well in your exams, achieving the grades you require
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by TajwarC)
C1 is supposedly the easiest module. It's a non calculator module and builds upon GCSE work. My main advice here is get really good at indicies and be confident with your mental maths. The first chapter is indicies if I remember correctly, you then go onto surds, sequences, coordinate geometry and some simple integration and differentiation.

C2 builds upon C1 however you can use a calculator. The new stuff you will learn is for the most part extension from C1 along with logarithms and trigonometry

C2 is more difficult than C1 but I somehow did better in C2. I can't really give a value out of 10 as it is subjective, loads of people will tell you loads of different things but at the end of the day maths is one of those subjects which is difficult but is by far the easiest to become really good at, really quickly. All you need to do is practice (my teacher always recommended answering every question in the book, which is why I advised starting early)

Your third module will most likely be your least favourite, it's an applied module. This will be probably chosen by your school. You either do Mechanics, Statistics or Decision. If you get the choice, I would advice against Decision...


Take a look at examsolutions.net - he has made multiple tutorials for every topic for all of A-Level maths along with past paper video solutions, trust me you will find these such a life saver when it comes close to your exams
I was gonna opt for mechanics as im doing physics as well, if I had a choice! I had a brief look at the site, at AS do we only go up to c2? and with the third module how many do we do like mechanics 1, 2 and 3? im assuming we only do the first 2?
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TajwarC
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
I was gonna opt for mechanics as im doing physics as well, if I had a choice! I had a brief look at the site, at AS do we only go up to c2? and with the third module how many do we do like mechanics 1, 2 and 3? im assuming we only do the first 2?
It depends.

For AS you will do C1/C2/applied

For A2 you will do C3/C4/applied

if you do M1 this year you could do either M2, S1 or D1 next year. For A-Level maths you only do a total of 2 applied modules, and a total of 4 core modules.

Only people doing further maths take more applied modules along with further pure modules
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rxns_00
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(Original post by Hamzahali)
All of your advice has been extremely useful! Good luck in your exams and I hope you do well in your exams, achieving the grades you require
Aw I'm glad it has been! And thanks so much hopefully haha good luck to you too!
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Hamzahali
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(Original post by TajwarC)
It depends.

For AS you will do C1/C2/applied

For A2 you will do C3/C4/applied

if you do M1 this year you could do either M2, S1 or D1 next year. For A-Level maths you only do a total of 2 applied modules, and a total of 4 core modules.

Only people doing further maths take more applied modules along with further pure modules
Aaah right I understand now, thanks for your help
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