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    So, I want to take Chemistry A Level. My teacher said it was one of the HARDEST A levels and didn't recommend it.
    (My other 3 options are English, psychology and Maths)

    Yet she suggested I take biology instead. I'm confused though, surely Biology, as a PURE science, would be just as hard as Chemistry?

    What's the real differences between them both, and which would you say is the "easier" one?
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    I am currently an A2 student studying Biology (OCR), Chemistry (OCR) and Mathematics (OCR).
    I would say it depends on what type of learner you are. Many people will agree with me that biology requires a good memory as there are specific ideas and concepts that you need to memorise across many different areas along with of key vocabulary.
    For chemistry, personally I have found chemistry to be relatively straightforward, but you will need to be confident in applying your knowledge to new scenarios that you won't have studied and be a logical thinker. A classic example is when you study analysis of organic chemistry, you will need to think logically about evidence you are presented with (Mass spec, IR, molecular formula etc...) to find a suitable answer.
    Therefore, chemistry is generally considered the harder one and biology the easier however biology demands more revision time than chemistry based on the whelp of information you have to learn.
    I assume you are studying at GCSE level at the moment, if you are getting B-A* in triple award or A-A* in dual then I have full confidence you could managed both biology and chemistry at AS and A2 standard.
    Hope this was helpful, and good luck
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    If you are good at memorising stuff then choose biology. If you are more of a understanding kind of person then choose chemistry. Personally i find chemistry much easier than biology
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    (Original post by ErraticPhysicist)
    I am currently an A2 student studying Biology (OCR), Chemistry (OCR) and Mathematics (OCR).
    I would say it depends on what type of learner you are. Many people will agree with me that biology requires a good memory as there are specific ideas and concepts that you need to memorise across many different areas along with of key vocabulary.
    For chemistry, personally I have found chemistry to be relatively straightforward, but you will need to be confident in applying your knowledge to new scenarios that you won't have studied and be a logical thinker. A classic example is when you study analysis of organic chemistry, you will need to think logically about evidence you are presented with (Mass spec, IR, molecular formula etc...) to find a suitable answer.
    Therefore, chemistry is generally considered the harder one and biology the easier however biology demands more revision time than chemistry based on the whelp of information you have to learn.
    I assume you are studying at GCSE level at the moment, if you are getting B-A* in triple award or A-A* in dual then I have full confidence you could managed both biology and chemistry at AS and A2 standard.
    Hope this was helpful, and good luck
    Well, they both look quite interesting so I'll bear this in mind!
    Thank you very,very much for this - it was very helpful. (-:
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    I do them both. Personally, me and most of my class hate biology. A good number of us do chemistry and it's so much easier. The content difficulty is not that different - you have to memorise a lot is stuff for both but there is a lot more maths involved in chemistry.

    The exams are the hard bit - chemistry is relatively straightforward. You learn the stuff, get asked the question and answer it. There's not really any major application of knowledge and if there is its relatively easy.

    Biology exams are on a whole different level. You learn the whole course back to front and word perfect but the exam is so much more difficult because of the nature of the questions. Some of them are so arbitrary - interpreting graphs, analysing data and suggesting stuff that takes a lot of thinking about. You have to think like the exam board to do well because a lot of the marks are very specific.

    Have a quick look at some practice papers. Don't be scared off by it because you will learn the stuff but you will automatically see the difference - biology has graphs and a load of 'suggest' questions in comparison to a very minor amount in chemistry.

    Good luck in your GCSE's!


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    (Original post by Clintbarton)
    I do them both. Personally, me and most of my class hate biology. A good number of us do chemistry and it's so much easier. The content difficulty is not that different - you have to memorise a lot is stuff for both but there is a lot more maths involved in chemistry.

    The exams are the hard bit - chemistry is relatively straightforward. You learn the stuff, get asked the question and answer it. There's not really any major application of knowledge and if there is its relatively easy.

    Biology exams are on a whole different level. You learn the whole course back to front and word perfect but the exam is so much more difficult because of the nature of the questions. Some of them are so arbitrary - interpreting graphs, analysing data and suggesting stuff that takes a lot of thinking about. You have to think like the exam board to do well because a lot of the marks are very specific.

    Have a quick look at some practice papers. Don't be scared off by it because you will learn the stuff but you will automatically see the difference - biology has graphs and a load of 'suggest' questions in comparison to a very minor amount in chemistry.

    Good luck in your GCSE's!


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    Thank you so much for this! Very helpful!

    I saw exactly what you meant - I checked out both the Biology and Chemistry A Level exam q's. The number of "suggest" questions I saw in the biology exam was unbelievable.
    thanks a lot, anyway (-:
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    I would recommend chemistry as it is easier and more interesting, my whole chemistry class are probably gonna fail but most of my bio class are doing well
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    (Original post by ErraticPhysicist)
    I am currently an A2 student studying Biology (OCR), Chemistry (OCR) and Mathematics (OCR).
    I would say it depends on what type of learner you are. Many people will agree with me that biology requires a good memory as there are specific ideas and concepts that you need to memorise across many different areas along with of key vocabulary.
    For chemistry, personally I have found chemistry to be relatively straightforward, but you will need to be confident in applying your knowledge to new scenarios that you won't have studied and be a logical thinker. A classic example is when you study analysis of organic chemistry, you will need to think logically about evidence you are presented with (Mass spec, IR, molecular formula etc...) to find a suitable answer.
    Therefore, chemistry is generally considered the harder one and biology the easier however biology demands more revision time than chemistry based on the whelp of information you have to learn.
    I assume you are studying at GCSE level at the moment, if you are getting B-A* in triple award or A-A* in dual then I have full confidence you could managed both biology and chemistry at AS and A2 standard.
    Hope this was helpful, and good luck
    Thanks! This answer helped me too!
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    Unless you have a passion for chemistry i really wouldnt recommend it. To get a good grade you will really have to put in the effort and do lots extra reading outside of lessons, not that you shouldnt do that anyway! Chemistry, although interesting, is so difficult and unless you are 100% sure its something you want to study i wouldnt recommend it as you'll likely regret it later.
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    Psychology is my favorite subject, so I highly recommend taking it. Chem was one of the other subjects I took and I didn't find that hard. However, bio is a more interesting subject that you can take good marks in. And after today's chem exam, I don't advise you to take it.


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