mnc61
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Hi,

Around a month ago I had completed my set GCSE exams and I am now preparing to enter a sixth form and study A-levels.; I am planning to study Biology, Chemistry and Maths.

Therefore how can I study or prepare for A-levels in advance so that I can be ready?
And should I fully revise my GCSEs (science core and additional and Maths) again during the summer holidays and before September.

P.S For those who are studying/studied Maths, are the basics of A-level Maths A/A* topics of GCSE Maths

Thanks you very much
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Kill3er
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(Original post by mnc61)
Hi,Around a month ago I had completed my set GCSE exams and I am now preparing to enter a sixth form and study A-levels.; I am planning to study Biology, Chemistry and Maths.Therefore how can I study or prepare for A-levels in advance so that I can be ready?And should I fully revise my GCSEs (science core and additional and Maths) again during the summer holidays and before September.P.S For those who are studying/studied Maths, are the basics of A-level Maths A/A* topics of GCSE MathsThanks you very much
Just finished A2, i did those 3 subjects
I personally wouldn't bother going over GCSE stuff.

http://www.examsolutions.net/

Great place to start for A-level Maths.
Pick your exam board and have a look at C1 and C2.

Yes, C1 builds upon GCSE knowledge.
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mnc61
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(Original post by Kill3er)
I personally wouldn't bother going over GCSE stuff.

Pick your exam board and have a look at C1 and C2.
Thanks for the reply

Since I am not aware of what exam board I going to take, do you think it would be best if I revise my science GCSEs. What did you do before your first year and did it affect the outcome of your first year?
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OrionMusicNet
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(Original post by Kill3er)
Just finished A2, i did those 3 subjects
I personally wouldn't bother going over GCSE stuff.

http://www.examsolutions.net/

Great place to start for A-level Maths.
Pick your exam board and have a look at C1 and C2.

Yes, C1 builds upon GCSE knowledge.
Listen to this guy but I would also say to not do too much work in the summer holidays because next year when AS level finishes you first have to go back to school after exams and then when you finally go on holiday you will have to be starting things like your personal statement, possibly driving,work experience, catching up in subjects if you missed lessons and all sorts of other stuff. What I am basically saying is enjoy this summer holidays because the next is likely to be jam packed with other stuff and whilst it is still a holiday it may not be a great one depending on how much stuff you have to do.
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Kill3er
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(Original post by mnc61)
Thanks for the reply

Since I am not aware of what exam board I going to take, do you think it would be best if I revise my science GCSEs. What did you do before your first year and did it affect the outcome of your first year?
I did nothing, don't worry about AS. If you're doing good in your GCSE's (A's/A*'s) then AS will be fine.
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UnicornSparkle13
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Don't study now. Seriously, enjoy your summer. You will have lots of time for studying after, and you'll spend the summer between AS and A2 studying anyway.
I can verify that it's okay to relax now. My A-levels were actually very good, and I enjoyed my summer after year 11.
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minibren
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Revising your science GCSE's will have very little benefit if any IMO.
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mnc61
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I am not worried but I have a very slight concern about jumping from GCSEs to A-levels (as most people say its a different level). Therefore I feel that I must revise at least a thing or two to prepare for it, just like you would prepare for a job. I want to do Maths at A-levels but I am not too great at Maths, hence why I am hoping to scrape an A at GCSE. Are the basics of A-level Maths like A* in GCSE Maths, and if so then I may be able to boost myself before starting this September. And also since I have not revised or studied in 2 months, I feel that I need to get back to the mood and life of studying or otherwise I may struggle at college (maybe for the first few weeks).
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dlwilson97
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(Original post by mnc61)
I am not worried but I have a very slight concern about jumping from GCSEs to A-levels (as most people say its a different level). Therefore I feel that I must revise at least a thing or two to prepare for it, just like you would prepare for a job. I want to do Maths at A-levels but I am not too great at Maths, hence why I am hoping to scrape an A at GCSE. Are the basics of A-level Maths like A* in GCSE Maths, and if so then I may be able to boost myself before starting this September. And also since I have not revised or studied in 2 months, I feel that I need to get back to the mood and life of studying or otherwise I may struggle at college (maybe for the first few weeks).
Sorry to break it to you but the jump between GCSE and AS Maths is huge, as is the jump between AS and A2. The best thing you can do to prepare is buy the C1 textbook online asap and start teaching yourself some of the chapters. I used the textbooks to teach myself throughout the whole of A2 as I didn't go into lessons (crap teachers) and it worked perfectly fine. Also the stuff you learn in C1 is used in C2, C3 and C4 as well as M1 and S1 etc. so it's important that you practise it over and over again until it becomes second nature.

If you need any more advice let me know, I got A* at GCSE, A at FSMQ, A at AS and hopefully A* at A2 so I can give you a hand if you get stuck. All the best!
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vd12345
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(Original post by dlwilson97)
Sorry to break it to you but the jump between GCSE and AS Maths is huge, as is the jump between AS and A2. The best thing you can do to prepare is buy the C1 textbook online asap and start teaching yourself some of the chapters. I used the textbooks to teach myself throughout the whole of A2 as I didn't go into lessons (crap teachers) and it worked perfectly fine. Also the stuff you learn in C1 is used in C2, C3 and C4 as well as M1 and S1 etc. so it's important that you practise it over and over again until it becomes second nature.

If you need any more advice let me know, I got A* at GCSE, A at FSMQ, A at AS and hopefully A* at A2 so I can give you a hand if you get stuck. All the best!
I don't feel like gcse to AS is a big jump? At least not gcse to C1
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as421
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I wouldn't go over GCSE notes if I were you. GCSE science is nothing on AS level Biology and Chemistry not in terms of difficulty, but in terms of content. The AQA and OCR exam boards I was on focused on specific areas of GCSE and then went into those in more depth, especially in Biology. In Chemistry they introduced some new concepts. GCSE notes are quite brief, so they won't really be that helpful.

There's no need to start revision now, as long as you keep up when you start AS or you catch up every now and then, you should be fine.

Be sure to have the textbooks for the subjects so you can follow them through during lesson time. It's easier going over things once you've learnt them rather than trying to revise things beforehand that you've not come across before.
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dlwilson97
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(Original post by vd12345)
I don't feel like gcse to AS is a big jump? At least not gcse to C1
No not C1, more like differentiation and integration in C2 and then C3 and C4. I was more basing it on the fact he said he was hoping to "scrape an A", hope you agree?
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123456789012
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(Original post by mnc61)
Hi,

Around a month ago I had completed my set GCSE exams and I am now preparing to enter a sixth form and study A-levels.; I am planning to study Biology, Chemistry and Maths.

Therefore how can I study or prepare for A-levels in advance so that I can be ready?
And should I fully revise my GCSEs (science core and additional and Maths) again during the summer holidays and before September.

P.S For those who are studying/studied Maths, are the basics of A-level Maths A/A* topics of GCSE Maths

Thanks you very much
Like it's been said before, there's no need for you to start revising for A-Levels just yet. Your college should, hopefully, make the transition from GCSE to AS less daunting during the first few weeks. That being said, you may want to do some light reading of C1 Maths and Unit 1 for Bio and Chem. This will give you foresight into the subjects and could also, perhaps, guide you in deciding if you'd actually want to do that specific subject at A-Level. But don't get flustered if you come across topics you don't get (this is what happened to me when I started reading AS Chem before starting college). Bear in mind, however, you don't want to revise GCSE again as quite a bit of what you're taught at GCSE is false, and you may have a wrong picture of certain topics in your mind. For example, you're taught at GCSE that electrons orbit the nucleus like planets orbit the sun, which is not true. Hence, I'd advice don't read up GCSE Chem and Bio. Reading up on GCSE Maths may come in handy, but I wouldn't bother as, like I've said before, your college should help you with it.

And yes, C1 Maths is GCSE A/A* standard work, maybe even slightly harder. Don't worry though - it should turn out to be pretty manageable as you're primarily revisiting topics you would have learnt at GCSE.
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wannabe_lawyer
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Question: what subject do you think is better in terms of actually being effective in opening doors and getting a job, physics or chemistry?
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mnc61
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(Original post by dlwilson97)
I used the textbooks to teach myself throughout the whole of A2 as I didn't go into lessons (crap teachers) and it worked perfectly fine. Also the stuff you learn in C1 is used in C2, C3 and C4 as well as M1 and S1 etc. so it's important that you practise it over and over again until it becomes second nature.

If you need any more advice let me know, I got A* at GCSE, A at FSMQ, A at AS and hopefully A* at A2 so I can give you a hand if you get stuck. All the best!
Thanks for the reply!

So if I learn C1 before starting A-levels, it will make it easy for me to proceed into C2,C3 etc at AS, which means that C1 builds up the whole of AS right?

Also, since you achieved A* in Maths, I don't think you revised it again before starting your AS, however, I am not too great at maths (i am more like an average B grade student hoping to get an A for GCSE), therefore should I LEARN the hardest topics in GCSEs before I start C1,,,does GCSE knowledge BUILD up Maths A-level?
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Velocity_
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(Original post by mnc61)
I am not worried but I have a very slight concern about jumping from GCSEs to A-levels (as most people say its a different level). Therefore I feel that I must revise at least a thing or two to prepare for it, just like you would prepare for a job. I want to do Maths at A-levels but I am not too great at Maths, hence why I am hoping to scrape an A at GCSE. Are the basics of A-level Maths like A* in GCSE Maths, and if so then I may be able to boost myself before starting this September. And also since I have not revised or studied in 2 months, I feel that I need to get back to the mood and life of studying or otherwise I may struggle at college (maybe for the first few weeks).
Tbh for me it - bigger jump from AS to A2
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mnc61
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(Original post by 123456789012)
Bear in mind, however, you don't want to revise GCSE again as quite a bit of what you're taught at GCSE is false, and you may have a wrong picture of certain topics in your mind. For example, you're taught at GCSE that electrons orbit the nucleus like planets orbit the sun, which is not true.
I agree because I heard that Meiosis and mitosis is false at GCSE, its not really hoow it is in A-levels


(Original post by 123456789012)
And yes, C1 Maths is GCSE A/A* standard work, maybe even slightly harder. Don't worry though - it should turn out to be pretty manageable as you're primarily revisiting topics you would have learnt at GCSE.
And finally someone has told me that AS Maths builds up on GCSE knowledge as I was told that C2, C3, C4 builds up on C1 knowledge, and C1 knowledge builds up on some GCSE knowledge...am I right?

So it wouldn't be necessary to revise A* GCSE maths before starting AS when AS only builds up on C1, so therefore should I just do C1?
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123456789012
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(Original post by mnc61)
I agree because I heard that Meiosis and mitosis is false at GCSE, its not really hoow it is in A-levels




And finally someone has told me that AS Maths builds up on GCSE knowledge as I was told that C2, C3, C4 builds up on C1 knowledge, and C1 knowledge builds up on some GCSE knowledge...am I right?

So it wouldn't be necessary to revise A* GCSE maths before starting AS when AS only builds up on C1, so therefore should I just do C1?
Yeah, in C1 you will cover topics like surds, indices, simultaneous equations, quadratic equations, basics of integration and differentiation, etc. In C2, you will learn trigonometry, circles, logarithms, trapezium rule, more integration. And in C3 and C4, you will essentially build upon what you'd have done in C1/2.

Read through the C1 textbook to get an idea of what sort of questions you could be asked in the exam.
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dlwilson97
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(Original post by mnc61)
Thanks for the reply!

So if I learn C1 before starting A-levels, it will make it easy for me to proceed into C2,C3 etc at AS, which means that C1 builds up the whole of AS right?

Also, since you achieved A* in Maths, I don't think you revised it again before starting your AS, however, I am not too great at maths (i am more like an average B grade student hoping to get an A for GCSE), therefore should I LEARN the hardest topics in GCSEs before I start C1,,,does GCSE knowledge BUILD up Maths A-level?
Yeah there's no harm in starting C1 now to get a head start. As a few people have said, the bigger jump is from AS to A2 so don't start anything on C3 or C4 yet as you might decide to drop it after this year if it doesn't float your goat.

In terms of GCSE material, I would put it all behind you and look at C1. Maybe the topics are similar e.g. indices, sequences but they're more advanced at A Level and often come with different methods of doing things. My biggest tip is to try to get your head around C1, ideally 90%+, becauae C1 pops up in all the other units so you need to get it right.
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(Original post by wannabe_lawyer)
Question: what subject do you think is better in terms of actually being effective in opening doors and getting a job, physics or chemistry?
Definitely Chemistry. You can apply for courses like pharmacy, dentistry and medicine if you have A-Level Chemistry. However, you can only really apply for engineering if you've done Physics. Chemistry is also considered to be the 'central' science as it entails some topics from Biology, Physics and Maths.
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