Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    I'm starting sixth form tomorrow and I am quite nervous! I want to make new friends and above all, get good grades, does anyone know any tips on studying in A-levels? And will I never have a social life again? Will I be drowning in work?

    Many thanks
    TWB
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Theworriedbanana)
    I'm starting sixth form tomorrow and I am quite nervous! I want to make new friends and above all, get good grades, does anyone know any tips on studying in A-levels? And will I never have a social life again? Will I be drowning in work?

    Many thanks
    TWB
    Tip #1: Learn how to do research.

    I found this after a quick search:
    http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/cont...ing-sixth-form
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by pizzanomics)
    Tip #1: Learn how to do research.

    I found this after a quick search:
    http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/cont...ing-sixth-form
    Thanks but I wanted some personal tips from people but thanks anyway!
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    I'm starting A Levels tomorrow too! Advice people have given me:
    enjoy year 12 as it goes fast
    work hard throughout year 12 so year 13 is more manageable
    if there is something you don't understand on one of your courses/your specification then seek help from a teacher or friend straight away. Delaying could mean you forget or you pile up work before exams.
    if there is something you don't grasp, keep practicing as you can improve drastically with hard work and motivation
    the jump from GCSE to A Level in most subjects is pretty big so don't be disheartened if at first you find the work very difficult. Just keep at it and you'll improve

    As for making friends: be nice and be yourself! There'll be loads of people who will have common interests with you so try and find them!

    good luck!
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    I've just started upper sixth at my school - achieving 4 A grades in my As-exams. One of the most helpful tips my science teachers gave me is to have a "study book" my school did a lot of work from lever arch files and sheets of paper, so by rewriting or making a detailed summary of what you've learnt in that subject so if you do lose sheets that contain notes you can always use the book. Just don't do what I did and leave it till I had a test to make the notes - it will lead to stress. You wouldn't necessarily be under too much stress - like some days it could be hard others will have it easier.
    My chemistry teacher also told us this before study leave for the exams - "You should revise for these exams because you will need them for university. Sacrifice a very small amount of your long life with revision and reap the benefits when you get your results." Also - dont think that this year wont count because its "just AS-level" many people in my year had that mind set and failed exams. Try and do well so you wont have to repeat any exams during your last year of school because thats more added stress.
    That's basically what my friends and I have done and it does work... for us at least
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    If you want As/A*s. The best advice I can give is hit the ground running and work a little everyday. It'll seem hard at first but once you get into the groove of doing 2 or 3hrs of quality revision everyday. It'll put you far ahead of the pack by the time the summer exams come round. Also if you have a question, the trick is to ask a teacher about it! Go after school or at lunch. It'll pay off when the exams come around


    In terms of making friends, joining societies and hanging around areas like the library worked for me. Don't push yourself too hard when revising, it's a marathon not a sprint. Contrary to popular belief, it's perfectly possible to have friends and get As/A*s. I got A*AA

    Start revising immediately, manage your time well. You will reap the rewards later in the year.
    Offline

    8
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by _NMcC_)
    If you want As/A*s. The best advice I can give is hit the ground running and work a little everyday. It'll seem hard at first but once you get into the groove of doing 2 or 3hrs of quality revision everyday. It'll put you far ahead of the pack by the time the summer exams come round. Also if you have a question, the trick is to ask a teacher about it! Go after school or at lunch. It'll pay off when the exams come around


    In terms of making friends, joining societies and hanging around areas like the library worked for me. Don't push yourself too hard when revising, it's a marathon not a sprint. Contrary to popular belief, it's perfectly possible to have friends and get As/A*s. I got A*AA

    Start revising immediately, manage your time well. You will reap the rewards later in the year.
    Great advice. What subjects did you take and any subject specific revision tips?
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Use your frees for studying. You will regret it if you don't.
    If something isn't working for you, tell the teacher ASAP. They're much nicer to Sixth Formers.
    Start thinking about university. Not planning your PS, just think about it now and then.
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by _NMcC_)
    If you want As/A*s. The best advice I can give is hit the ground running and work a little everyday. It'll seem hard at first but once you get into the groove of doing 2 or 3hrs of quality revision everyday. It'll put you far ahead of the pack by the time the summer exams come round. Also if you have a question, the trick is to ask a teacher about it! Go after school or at lunch. It'll pay off when the exams come around


    In terms of making friends, joining societies and hanging around areas like the library worked for me. Don't push yourself too hard when revising, it's a marathon not a sprint. Contrary to popular belief, it's perfectly possible to have friends and get As/A*s. I got A*AA

    Start revising immediately, manage your time well. You will reap the rewards later in the year.
    Definitely agree! Doing a little every day will put things into your long term memory which is a lot better.
    Also make the most of college life- I managed to juggle social life, boyfriend, 5 days a week netball and get AAAA this year. It's possible with good time management! Also, if you haven't figured it out already, learn how you best revise. I found halfway through the year I learned really well with mindmaps, and it basically got me my grade in history!
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by kagawa88)
    Great advice. What subjects did you take and any subject specific revision tips?
    Hi yes, I took OCR Chemistry A (A*), AQA Biology and CCEA I.T. (AA)

    Wanted to take Maths but my school wouldn't accept a B, so that's what I got for being a lazy GCSE student lol


    Advice for Chemistry.

    . It's a very conceptual subject. I made sure that I understood each concept to the point where I could explain it to a friend or relative. If I didn't understand something, then I asked my teacher about it. If you understand it, you'll find that you don't need to memorise much.

    . PPQs are the ideal tool that I started doing as soon as we had finished a topic. OCR chemistry has mostly 'application of knowledge' style Qs in it so try to do as many as possible so you get a feel for the style of them. I used this site http://pastpapers.org/ quite often as it has lots more past papers from legacy qualifications.

    . OCR put a lot of difficult questions in their papers. One tip that helped me was to talk or write my thought process out. Often I found it easier to sort through thoughts that came into my head when solving the difficult problems by writing or speaking what I was thinking.

    General questions I found myself asking:

    - What information can you gather from the question, what do you know?

    - What area or equations might this relate to?

    - Can you deduce or take anything immediately from the problem?


    . If you look at Past papers, you'll notice that OCR recycle certain types of questions a lot. So it's quite easy to get good at solving certain types of problems. Provided you put the effort in.

    . Certain questions actually have ''answer structures'' to them, so you look at mark schemes and try to answer within the desired structure in the exam and predict the points that they want you to make. I think this helps if you want the A*.

    . Examiner's reports are also useful to see what areas people fall down on.


    In summary: Make sure you actually understand the topic before attempting a problem, I.e Can you explain it to someone? Practice practice and practice some more at questions. You can never really do enough. Do a certain amount of ppqs on a select topic everyday as revision and bring them to teachers to mark, as they'll mark them like an examiner would.

    Remember it's not stupid to ask for help, it's stupid not to.


    AQA Biology

    . Lots of material to revise, start immediately. A little everyday will go a long way (that rhymes haha). I used a combination of mindmaps, flashcards and revision notes for Biology. Get your revision technique nailed.

    . Again PPQs are the way to go. AQA are also keen on application of knowledge style questions so get working at them.

    . There is a lot more memorisation in this subject so make sure you know your definitions and biochemical reactions very well. You won't be able to answer many questions on e.g photosynthesis or respiration if you don't know your biochemical reactions well enough. Learn them inside out.

    . Read around the subject if you can. I did a bit of background reading on photosynthesis at A2 and I found that the subject stuck better in my mind simply because I was reading about it in my spare time.

    . Again ask questions if you're stuck!


    . I.T was weird subject that I ended up learning markschemes for it lol. The only hard bit is database normalisation which actually is quite difficult. Understand that bit and memorise the rest!


    Another general A level tip is to start researching universities now and make a plan of where you want to go and to do what. That way you have something to shoot for.

    Good luck
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by _NMcC_)
    Hi yes, I took OCR Chemistry A (A*), AQA Biology and CCEA I.T. (AA)

    Wanted to take Maths but my school wouldn't accept a B, so that's what I got for being a lazy GCSE student lol


    Advice for Chemistry.

    . It's a very conceptual subject. I made sure that I understood each concept to the point where I could explain it to a friend or relative. If I didn't understand something, then I asked my teacher about it. If you understand it, you'll find that you don't need to memorise much.

    . PPQs are the ideal tool that I started doing as soon as we had finished a topic. OCR chemistry has mostly 'application of knowledge' style Qs in it so try to do as many as possible so you get a feel for the style of them. I used this site http://pastpapers.org/ quite often as it has lots more past papers from legacy qualifications.

    . OCR put a lot of difficult questions in their papers. One tip that helped me was to talk or write my thought process out. Often I found it easier to sort through thoughts that came into my head when solving the difficult problems by writing or speaking what I was thinking.

    General questions I found myself asking:

    - What information can you gather from the question, what do you know?

    - What area or equations might this relate to?

    - Can you deduce or take anything immediately from the problem?


    . If you look at Past papers, you'll notice that OCR recycle certain types of questions a lot. So it's quite easy to get good at solving certain types of problems. Provided you put the effort in.

    . Certain questions actually have ''answer structures'' to them, so you look at mark schemes and try to answer within the desired structure in the exam and predict the points that they want you to make. I think this helps if you want the A*.

    . Examiner's reports are also useful to see what areas people fall down on.


    In summary: Make sure you actually understand the topic before attempting a problem, I.e Can you explain it to someone? Practice practice and practice some more at questions. You can never really do enough. Do a certain amount of ppqs on a select topic everyday as revision and bring them to teachers to mark, as they'll mark them like an examiner would.

    Remember it's not stupid to ask for help, it's stupid not to.


    AQA Biology

    . Lots of material to revise, start immediately. A little everyday will go a long way (that rhymes haha).

    . Again PPQs are the way to go. AQA are also keen on application of knowledge style questions so get working at them.

    . There is a lot more memorisation in this subject so make sure you know your definitions and biochemical reactions very well. You won't be able to answer many questions on e.g photosynthesis or respiration if you don't know your biochemical reactions well enough. Learn them inside out.

    . Read around the subject if you can. I did a bit of background reading on photosynthesis at A2 and I found that the subject stuck better in my mind simply because I was reading about it in my spare time.

    . Again ask questions if you're stuck!


    . I.T was weird subject that I ended up learning markschemes for lol. The only hard bit is database normalisation which actually is quite difficult. Understand that bit and memorise the rest!


    Another general A level tip is to start researching universities now and make a plan of where you want to go and to do what. That way you have something to shoot for.

    Good luck
    You are a star! Thank you for your post.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by CounTolstoy)
    You are a star! Thank you for your post.
    No probs, I hope they go well
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    Thank you everyone for all your very kind posts sixth form is good, everyone is nice. I try to revise everyday if i can
    Offline

    5
    ReputationRep:
    HI everyone I was wondering if I should get revision guides or the big textbooks. Is it true that revision guides don't have all the info? Also when in the year should I start buying these
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Theworriedbanana)
    I'm starting sixth form tomorrow and I am quite nervous! I want to make new friends and above all, get good grades, does anyone know any tips on studying in A-levels? And will I never have a social life again? Will I be drowning in work?

    Many thanks
    TWB
    Hi!
    Firstly, don't worry! You've applied to college because that's what you want to do, whether you change your mind later on, don't worry, this is where you're at now.

    From my experience (whether this applies or not I don't know ...)
    I'm just going into year 13 now. I didn't join college with a friendship circle and my college is v far away from home, so it was very out of my comfort zone. The social circles for me really didn't form into place. I don't mean to scare you, but they didn't. I just have people to say hi to or talk to in lessons, nobody to hang with outside class. Obviously I found this upsetting as I did go out of my way to make friends, but I'm not into the celeb-phones-drugs-hook-ups culture we live in.
    After a few weeks, this seemed to actually be an advantage to me. Many people I know found it very hard to balance social life and work life, but for me this wasn't a problem. The gap to A-levels from GCSE is big but it wasn't a massive shock to me. If you keep up to date with work and keep focused you shouldn't struggle massively.
    My biggest tip would be to use your free time wisely. Obviously September will be the month of settling in etc, but after that, use all your frees to study. Many people chat to their friends/phones but I'm glad this was not me as I had hardly any work to do at home after doing it all at college! The way I motivated myself was thinking that my free time was just another lesson and I'd work as hard as in a class.

    Definitely keep/create a new hobby. The best thing to do is make yourself busy with things so that you're really tired by like 10pm. That way the weekdays go quickr, you're sleeping properly and appreciate your weekends/days off. I joined the gym and go about 4 times a week, I also cook and write.

    Good luck I'm sure it will be fine!
    x
    Offline

    5
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by javvyjingle)
    Hi!
    Firstly, don't worry! You've applied to college because that's what you want to do, whether you change your mind later on, don't worry, this is where you're at now.

    From my experience (whether this applies or not I don't know ...)
    I'm just going into year 13 now. I didn't join college with a friendship circle and my college is v far away from home, so it was very out of my comfort zone. The social circles for me really didn't form into place. I don't mean to scare you, but they didn't. I just have people to say hi to or talk to in lessons, nobody to hang with outside class. Obviously I found this upsetting as I did go out of my way to make friends, but I'm not into the celeb-phones-drugs-hook-ups culture we live in.
    After a few weeks, this seemed to actually be an advantage to me. Many people I know found it very hard to balance social life and work life, but for me this wasn't a problem. The gap to A-levels from GCSE is big but it wasn't a massive shock to me. If you keep up to date with work and keep focused you shouldn't struggle massively.
    My biggest tip would be to use your free time wisely. Obviously September will be the month of settling in etc, but after that, use all your frees to study. Many people chat to their friends/phones but I'm glad this was not me as I had hardly any work to do at home after doing it all at college! The way I motivated myself was thinking that my free time was just another lesson and I'd work as hard as in a class.

    Definitely keep/create a new hobby. The best thing to do is make yourself busy with things so that you're really tired by like 10pm. That way the weekdays go quickr, you're sleeping properly and appreciate your weekends/days off. I joined the gym and go about 4 times a week, I also cook and write.

    Good luck I'm sure it will be fine!
    x
    Hi I also started gym and go about 3 times a week. just wondering is it still good to go around exam period or should you take a break?
    Offline

    17
    ReputationRep:
    Just don't die
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Brexit voters: Do you stand by your vote?
    Help with your A-levels

    All the essentials

    The adventure begins mug

    Student life: what to expect

    What it's really like going to uni

    Rosette

    Essay expert

    Learn to write like a pro with our ultimate essay guide.

    Uni match

    Uni match

    Our tool will help you find the perfect course for you

    Study planner

    Create a study plan

    Get your head around what you need to do and when with the study planner tool.

    Study planner

    Resources by subject

    Everything from mind maps to class notes.

    Hands typing

    Degrees without fees

    Discover more about degree-level apprenticeships.

    A student doing homework

    Study tips from A* students

    Students who got top grades in their A-levels share their secrets

    Study help links and info

    Can you help? Study help unanswered threadsRules and posting guidelines

    Sponsored content:

    HEAR

    HEAR

    Find out how a Higher Education Achievement Report can help you prove your achievements.

    Groups associated with this forum:

    View associated groups
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Write a reply...
    Reply
    Hide
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.