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    I'm studying Edexcel AS-level Biology (new 2015 syllabus) and have been doing past papers, but I feel like the questions are much harder than the endorsed textbook prepares you for!! How can I improve my exam technique? Shall I just keep doing past papers in hope to learn the mark schemes?
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    I have the same problem. I just generally find the subject quite hard, its definitely the most difficult out of my three Knowing the mark scheme might help a bit but I think your best bet is to do more past papers and whatever you get wrong or are unsure of check with your teacher. Then stick notes and posters around your bedroom and even the toilet or bathroom door (trust me it works!)
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    (Original post by beccacylx)
    I have the same problem. I just generally find the subject quite hard, its definitely the most difficult out of my three Knowing the mark scheme might help a bit but I think your best bet is to do more past papers and whatever you get wrong or are unsure of check with your teacher. Then stick notes and posters around your bedroom and even the toilet or bathroom door (trust me it works!)
    Thank you. It's just so intimidating knowing how much we need to remember for Biology!! Are you on the new Edexcel spec too?
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    (Original post by Philip-flop)
    Thank you. It's just so intimidating knowing how much we need to remember for Biology!! Are you on the new Edexcel spec too?
    I'm on the new AQA spec, but it's similar I think & I agree, there's just so much to learn and the mark schemes are so specific I lose marks so easily! Hoping for a B at the end of next year, don't want to get me hopes up lol
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    (Original post by beccacylx)
    I'm on the new AQA spec, but it's similar I think & I agree, there's just so much to learn and the mark schemes are so specific I lose marks so easily! Hoping for a B at the end of next year, don't want to get me hopes up lol
    Yeah I think both boards are very similar. If I don't get at least a B/C at AS I doubt I will carry on to A2
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    This was exactly me last year. Getting u's in papers and voila, 90% ums in the real thing. Although your syllabus has changed, some things like knowing your definitions word by word (from the glossary of your text boom) will help you get those marks. All the definition questions in the paper can total to over 10 marks = grade boundary. Don't just memeorise the concept but really understand it. Revise key concepts like active transport and osmosis as that will form your answer in questions like lungs. It is definitely possible. Use our past papers as I used the papers from the 2002-2007 spec to help me answer every possible question. You can all do it! Good luck

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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    This was exactly me last year. Getting u's in papers and voila, 90% ums in the real thing. Although your syllabus has changed, some things like knowing your definitions word by word (from the glossary of your text boom) will help you get those marks. All the definition questions in the paper can total to over 10 marks = grade boundary. Don't just memeorise the concept but really understand it. Revise key concepts like active transport and osmosis as that will form your answer in questions like lungs. It is definitely possible. Use our past papers as I used the papers from the 2002-2007 spec to help me answer every possible question. You can all do it! Good luck

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    Wow, you sound very inspirational!! How many hours of work each day did you put into AS Biology this time last year? Did you literally just read through your notes and keep attempting past papers? Also did you do Edexcel cos I don't know much about the core practicals
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    (Original post by Philip-flop)
    Wow, you sound very inspirational!! How many hours of work each day did you put into AS Biology this time last year? Did you literally just read through your notes and keep attempting past papers? Also did you do Edexcel cos I don't know much about the core practicals
    Thank you! In January we did our mocks and I got the lowest, a D! (There was 5 of us doing a level bio) and that was the moment I got a tutor (all from my own wages) and did past paper after past paper. I do OCR so I used the OCR endorsed textbook. I used a whiteboard and pen and in all seriousness I revised the whole text book. It was only until I did past papers where the things I memorised in the textbook made use so I forgot about the unnecessary things in the text book and formed model answers. Ie if there was an 6 marker on explaining translocation, I made sure that words I put in there like 'active transport' had an explanation 'using atp, area of low conc to high conc' etc. Using scientific terms like xylem, will honestly bag you all the marks. I ordered my papers back and the ticks were next to key words. Key words are so important as well as understanding concepts. I'm a repetitive learning so cue cards with keywords and a whiteboard and pen were useful. I had no notes for biology last year but that's just the way I learn. In the end I got a B (E in the coursework oh my). Whereas my peers got D, E, E, U. Biology was the subject I put my heart and soul in and it showed (minus the coursework lol)

    I'm not sure about edexcel, but I did edexcel SNAB for 6 months before I was pulled out of my first year doing AS for being too ill to do exams but from what I remember you have to learn a number of core practicals for your exam right? I think my class memorised them but don't hold me to that but for edxecel it's not memorising it and putting it back on paper, edexcel really want you to apply your knowledge with things you never heard of (if that makes sense). Get the edexcel book, past papers (do all of them at least twice), get your key words written out on cue cards, join the edexcel thread with other biologists, and when your past paper marks are C/B/A's, ask your teacher for the 2015 paper and do it under exam conditions and see what you get. If you do a past paper now and get a U, DON'T WORRY. Trust me

    If results day comes round and you don't get the grade you want, DON'T WORRY AGAIN, there's no shame in resitting a subject or all your subjects
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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    Thank you! In January we did our mocks and I got the lowest, a D! (There was 5 of us doing a level bio) and that was the moment I got a tutor (all from my own wages) and did past paper after past paper. I do OCR so I used the OCR endorsed textbook. I used a whiteboard and pen and in all seriousness I revised the whole text book. It was only until I did past papers where the things I memorised in the textbook made use so I forgot about the unnecessary things in the text book and formed model answers. Ie if there was an 6 marker on explaining translocation, I made sure that words I put in there like 'active transport' had an explanation 'using atp, area of low conc to high conc' etc. Using scientific terms like xylem, will honestly bag you all the marks. I ordered my papers back and the ticks were next to key words. Key words are so important as well as understanding concepts. I'm a repetitive learning so cue cards with keywords and a whiteboard and pen were useful. I had no notes for biology last year but that's just the way I learn. In the end I got a B (E in the coursework oh my). Whereas my peers got D, E, E, U. Biology was the subject I put my heart and soul in and it showed (minus the coursework lol)

    I'm not sure about edexcel, but I did edexcel SNAB for 6 months before I was pulled out of my first year doing AS for being too ill to do exams but from what I remember you have to learn a number of core practicals for your exam right? I think my class memorised them but don't hold me to that but for edxecel it's not memorising it and putting it back on paper, edexcel really want you to apply your knowledge with things you never heard of (if that makes sense). Get the edexcel book, past papers (do all of them at least twice), get your key words written out on cue cards, join the edexcel thread with other biologists, and when your past paper marks are C/B/A's, ask your teacher for the 2015 paper and do it under exam conditions and see what you get. If you do a past paper now and get a U, DON'T WORRY. Trust me

    If results day comes round and you don't get the grade you want, DON'T WORRY AGAIN, there's no shame in resitting a subject or all your subjects
    Yeah I've made notes as well as making flash cards which closely follow the given specification for Edexcel Bio. I think it's literally just a case of me going through them a thousand times and doing past papers right up until my actual exams. Just need to make everything stick in my head (easier said than done though!). And yeah, for Edexcel they can examine you on practicals which I haven't covered but have managed to find some notes about them on TSR. The panicking is really starting to kick in now though
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    (Original post by Philip-flop)
    Yeah I've made notes as well as making flash cards which closely follow the given specification for Edexcel Bio. I think it's literally just a case of me going through them a thousand times and doing past papers right up until my actual exams. Just need to make everything stick in my head (easier said than done though!). And yeah, for Edexcel they can examine you on practicals which I haven't covered but have managed to find some notes about them on TSR. The panicking is really starting to kick in now though
    That's good! Be sure to know your core practicals well and if not go to your teacher after school or something. The knowledge will stick in your head when you do your past papers I panicked SO much last year (had to go to the hospital after one of my exams loool) and trust me, it isn't worth panicking over
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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    That's good! Be sure to know your core practicals well and if not go to your teacher after school or something. The knowledge will stick in your head when you do your past papers I panicked SO much last year (had to go to the hospital after one of my exams loool) and trust me, it isn't worth panicking over
    OMG!! Did you have a panic attack over your exam or something? :/
    Unfortunately I'm self-taught so don't have any teachers to ask if I need help (which is why I haven't covered any of the practicals)
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    (Original post by Philip-flop)
    OMG!! Did you have a panic attack over your exam or something? :/
    Unfortunately I'm self-taught so don't have any teachers to ask if I need help (which is why I haven't covered any of the practicals)
    yes it was very bad and included a bit more than a panic attack but looking back I sort of laugh at it as I ended up with a B in philosophy and ethics any way haha. Ah I pretty much self-taught all of my subjects (apart from English, that subject suckedddd) and I barely went to school either but you're gonna have to know the core practicals some how
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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    yes it was very bad and included a bit more than a panic attack but looking back I sort of laugh at it as I ended up with a B in philosophy and ethics any way haha. Ah I pretty much self-taught all of my subjects (apart from English, that subject suckedddd) and I barely went to school either but you're gonna have to know the core practicals some how
    Oh wow, That sounds horrible. Glad you can see the good side to it now. No point letting exams affect you mentally like that tbh :/

    Yeah I've found notes about the core practicals but there is so much terminology and equipment that I am unsure about
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    Hey. If this makes it any better, there seem to be so many people that are struggling with exam technique - it's not just you!! I'm struggling too. I personally think that as there are no past papers that are exactly like the paper that we will sit and so no one knows quite what to expect, the grade boundaries will be quite low. Just keep trying your best
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    (Original post by ThatIzziGirl)
    Hey. If this makes it any better, there seem to be so many people that are struggling with exam technique - it's not just you!! I'm struggling too. I personally think that as there are no past papers that are exactly like the paper that we will sit and so no one knows quite what to expect, the grade boundaries will be quite low. Just keep trying your best
    Printing out the specification and going through it helps a long way as they can't ask you things not on the spec

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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    Printing out the specification and going through it helps a long way as they can't ask you things not on the spec

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    Thanks!!! Yeah, I've already done that. I just find the syllabus sooooo overly specific
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    (Original post by ThatIzziGirl)
    Thanks!!! Yeah, I've already done that. I just find the syllabus sooooo overly specific
    Better than being vague right? don't panic and just keep working hard

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    (Original post by Hunnybeebee)
    Better than being vague right? don't panic and just keep working hard

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    Oops, I meant to say the mark scheme. So, I feel as if they ask a question and one could give a perfectly valid response, but the mark scheme says a particular answer that is difficult to understand from the question.
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    Hey guys! Anyone here doing AS AQA biology on the 26th??


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    Got AQA unit 6 biology practical in 2 days
    it is on Reflex, synaptic transmission and the nervous system

    any help on what to revise and focus on will be great help

    also 2015 past paper is not available online anywhere
    anyone know why??

    thanks
 
 
 
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