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    Update - 30/04/2017 - Evening

    I've spent the day going through my year 1 Biology Masterpost. Since my mum wasn't in I spoke out loud the information from each topic and then hacked my notes to see if I was right. There are only some small bits of key words I've forgotten but overall I have my year 1 content down! Very happy with that to be honest.

    Tomorrow I'm hoping to go on exampro and do some AS questions, and maybe do the papers I sat last year in Biology.
    If I have time I will try the 2016 C3 paper again but untimed to see how I tackle each question again.

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    Update - 03/05/2017 - Evening

    So, I managed to look over some Biology notes like I said the other day. I got to the point in homeostasis involving the countercurrent multiplier at the Loop of Henle from the first chapter, so I was pretty impressed. Periodically, throughout highlighting, I would put the notes to the side and quickly jot down the main points of each section, and drew some diagrams to annotate. This was more of a quick fire thing to keep everything refreshed, and I found this really helpful, especially because at this stage I don't want to be writing any more notes.

    I spent yesterday doing some C1 papers. I got my first full marker! Wahoo! Took me long enough:sigh::sigh:. I then did another one and got another full marker, I need to keep this up in the exam and I'll be fine!

    We also received our intervention timetable for exam season and it was completely wrong, they mixed up all the GCSE and A-Level sessions so I spent some time trying to organise that and email teachers to see what can get sorted or not. It's looking like we will only have 1 hour of C3 revision the night before the exam, which is a bit worrying but I'm stronger at C3 than I am C4 so I guess it's better that we have more time dedicated to C4.
    I also (on another note) retired my nose piercing and I am so happy! I've had it for over 6 months now and it was just a pain to look after, and with my septum it made my face look a bit weird. So I'm glad its out and healing over so I look a lot better and feel a bit prettier (it sounds really sad, but it helped).

    So today I tackled my first S1 paper and got 60/75 - which is one mark off an A. I was really impressed with this, especially when I made a lot of silly mistakes (forgetting that fractions will change when sample size decreases, using correct notation). I also haven't completed two topics so I was just trying to do my best and answer as many as I could. I'm hoping by the end of next week I could do better in a paper as we will be pretty much finished with S1.
    I also did another C1 paper, dropping 3 marks. Sometimes I make stupid mistakes and don't check over the paper before I mark it, but now I know that I just need to double check before signing off.

    So my final plans for tonight are:
    To do some questions from the textbook on Chromatography
    To do some final research before the Manchester Mayor Election tomorrow

    I'm hoping that I make the best decision because I'm voting for the first time in my life! I don't want to come out and regret what I put down. Also very excited to just walk to the polling station with my friend so I'm not alone. I hope everyone voting tomorrow is making an educated decision on their first and second choice. So to those who are 18+ tomorrow, don't forget to vote!
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    I voted! Finally!
    I went to the polling station at 7.20 this morning and completed my first proper vote for something I actually see as important. I know people don't have to share who they voted for, but my first choice was Labour, with my second choice being the Green Party. In the Manchester mayor election there is a new voting system where two choices are required.
    The first candidate to get more the 50% of the "First Choice" votes will win automatically. If nobody achieves this, the two candidates with the most votes will then compete. The candidate out of the two with the most votes (both "First" and "Second" choices) will win. It sounds complicated, but is more of a representative system than a first past the post, because it considers the fact that people can vote for two different parties. But, I've never heard of it actually being a system so I have no idea how much harder it is to sort out.

    I'm hoping that the mayor will create some change in Manchester, it's been a dump recently, and homelessness is getting out of hand. Hopefully we will see a change
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    So it's been a few days!

    I spent a couple of nights revising for my Chemistry mock. It was the second Specimen paper and the Paper 1 - it wasn't too bad in the end! Luckily I revised a lot of acid and bases content before the exam and I hope that paid off because I felt like I was confident in the content. There were quite a few content errors with my inorganic chemistry, but it is to be expected really considering I didn't revise it that much.

    I then spent some time on Friday writing a Biology essay. We did a timed written one in class and I did another one during one of my free periods so I could hand it in to my teacher at the end of the day. I'm hoping she's marked it by tomorrow, because I'm really bad at this whole theme business, I don't know how obvious they want the theme. This is because we looked through some essays as a class and there was no distinct mention of a theme, the topics were more linked together, so I attempted to do that in some respects. I think the examiners will be a bit lenient on the first years, though, because the specification is all new and the content being solid is more important than having a theme, especially is all the content links together in some fashion.

    I was then so exhausted on the Friday evening that I had a 3 hour nap, ate my tea and went to bed. I think this week had gotten to me because I was having super late nights (for no reason) and then waking up at 6.30 everyday. I was also tired because I was so happy with the election results I cried (yes, I know it's sad but I'm very pleased Andy Burnham got in. I absolutely love Labour atm).
    Yesterday I did no work either, two of my best friends went into Manchester with me and we went to the Vintage Kilo Sale. Unfortunately I only liked one thing I bought in the end, but I'm selling my other bits on Depop anyway so it's no big issue. We also went to some other free entry kilo sales and got a couple more things, which I'm super happy with. If you aren't from Manchester but love a good vintage shop I would definitely recommend the shops near and in Afflecks and the Thrift Shop near Piccadilly Gardens. But I would wait until all the Kilo sales come around so you are more likely to find what you're looking for.

    And then today I've been focussing on Maths. I want to improve my C3 more because for an A* I need 180 UMS from C3 and C4. However, my C4 skills are pretty bad, so if I get a higher UMS in C3 (try and get around 95) then I can afford to drop to 85 UMS in my C4, which is more likely to happen. I've been analysing each paper and repeating the questions until I understand how and why I went wrong.
    I re-did some questions from the C3 paper, and made sure I rectified all my errors from the previous time I did it.
    I also did the June 14 paper, getting 66, so an A* (92UMS). I went over the paper and found out all the reasons why I made the errors and corrected them. I then did the June 13 paper, getting 70, so a more secure A*(97UMS). If I could score around 97 UMS in C3 I can afford to drop the 7UMS in C4 which I don't mind. Obviously it would be best to get high A* grades in both exams, but there are no promises that I won't freak out during exams. But at least I know now what I'm capable of. :clap2:

    I'm not really sure what I'm going to do for the rest of the afternoon. Maybe some more Maths or I'll have a bit of a chill when my mum comes home. Hope everyone's revision is going well!
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    Update: 09/05/2017

    We've finally finished all of my A-Level content! It's a bit scary that the end is nigh and there is no more learning, only practise to be done. But I am glad that stats is pretty much over. It is the most boring maths topic there is, and it is all about evaluating in relation to the question - which isn't maths skills, its just common sense (which I lack!).

    I got my Chemistry mock back, and I got an A! 73% which may not be much for some of you guys, but to me that is really good considering how much I focussed my revision onto a small umber of topics. My main problem is forming ionic equations, however I have been learning to do it and will do some more practise tomorrow.
    I also got my Biology essays back, getting a 20/25 in one, and the other hasn't been fully marked yet. However, my main improvements was to go into less depth on a topic and include more topics that link together. Apparently my style and flow is good, but the number of topics is where I go down. This is because I feel like I've not gone into enough depth so I will end up basically writing the entire topic, instead of staying focussed on the question at hand. But if that gets me a high Band 4 I'm pretty happy with that .

    I did a couple of S1 papers today, getting two 57s - so two Bs (can't find the grade boundaries for one so I'm assuming it's the same grade). Which I'mm pretty happy with, I could obviously do better but I need to focus on my Core 4 at the minute so I'm not going to stress myself out about an exam where realistically I only need about 30 UMS to get an A/A*. My hope is to get an A in the exam, but considering I've only done 3 papers thus far, I'm not expecting perfection yet.
    I also did a couple of vector questions and so far I'm getting them right! I need to build my confidence in them, so I asked my friend who's a straight A* student to give me some advice on how he tackles them, which was a massive help.

    So tomorrow my plan is to come home from work and get all my documents in order, write down all the formulas I need to learn for stats and do another paper (they only take me about half an hour). Then I want to do some vectors work, a few Biology notes on some rusty topics and do some yoga.

    We had such a good yoga session today. Normally we do sun salutations and focus on vinyasa, however, since today is a full moon, we did a moon salutation. It was more difficult than the sun salutations, but still amazing because I never realised I could do the poses. We also did the final breathing exercises and our instructor helped us to forget about our bodies and just basically become our breath - it was truly relaxing. Even though I'm only relaxed for a short amount of time (literally just during that session) it resets all my feelings! I would definitely recommend yoga if anybody is reading this and feeling stressed, even if it's just at home it is still beneficial to learn yogic breath to calm you down and basic poses.

    Hope everyone is doing well
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    Update: 11/05/2017

    I didn't end up doing everything I was meant to do the other day. I did three stats papers instead, getting 3 B's. The same trend is happening where I am misunderstanding how they want me to phrase things, but I will get there eventually.
    I also got very burnt in the sun, hoping it goes down to a nice tan in a couple of days!

    And then today I did the final Chemistry mock of my life! It was Paper 3 of Specimen 2. We get our results back tomorrow so I'm hoping I did well. Spoiler: it was really hard! The multiple choice were quite nice but Section A was actually gross. There were so many ridiculous questions, but luckily we went over recrystallization of a drug the other day and a whole question was about that, hoping that I get some good marks there. But other than that, there were questions that nobody in our class could do.

    I then came home and sat in the sun for a bit, listening to the Disney soundtrack for a bit whilst catching some rays. The weather is amazing at the minute, and revising outside is actually really nice!

    I've then spent a couple of hours going through Biology questions on Exampro. My exam technique for Biology is pretty awful, especially when it comes to analysis of unknown data and when there are large passages of text. So I've been trying to improve that. I'm slowly getting there, but my progress is slower than I expected. I need to annotate better, and stop rushing!!!

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    Update: 16/05/2017

    Sorry it's been a few days. I have mainly been doing Exampro revision for Biology, trying to improve my comprehension ability. I think I'm getting there, I just need to slow down and think, a lot of the time they actually give you the answer so it's easy to just copy what they've told you to get marks. I'm pretty bad at stats test questions because they are just a hassle, but I should get there in the end.

    We've also been doing some chemistry revision with all the errors we made in the mocks. Overall the three papers are as follows:
    Paper 1: 77/105
    Paper 2: 59/105 (let's just ignore this haha)
    Paper 3: 53/90
    So using the old grade boundaries I'm 3 marks off an A, which I'm happy about. Especially when I was feeling terrible during Paper two and just felt really unmotivated and stupid. I'm hoping to improve a lot more in the next couple of weeks. I just wish I was on study leave so I can revise all day at home and schedule my own breaks instead of having to comply with college hours. I'm also sick of teachers because they are just as stressed as we are so we are all just getting ratty with one another. Only one week left though.

    It's my first exam tomorrow! Core 1 resit, it should be okay. The nerves are setting in which is what I want, so that they will disperse when I'm in the exam - which is the whole reason why I'm having to do a resit in the first place.
    I've been doing plenty of C1 papers, too, getting between 73-75 in each, so ranging from 97 to 100 UMS. Hoping to achieve this in the actual one, but we shall have to wait and see.

    I'm hoping to continue with doing Exampro questions and then do a couple of C1 papers before getting an early night, I'm running on so little energy having around 6 hours sleep each night, I need to sort it out. Hope all is well with everyone
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    The last 24 hours have been hard. The news about Manchester Arena was devastating, my heart goes out to those affected by the attack. A friend of mine was lucky enough that her friend dragged her in the opposite direction, due to feeling the heat of the explosion, otherwise she too would have been involved in the incident. It's terrifying.

    I attended the evening vigil at Albert Square, and it was beautiful. People coming together and uniting against terrorism and against people who want to tear our community apart. I was honoured enough to be able to light a candle at the vigil and say a small prayer, the true scale of this attack is just awful.

    To those who were victims last night, you can still speak out. Even if you are not injured physically, these events are traumatic and please ask for help if you do need it. I reply quickly if you would like to talk, but please contact the numbers available if you need professional help:
    0161 856 9400
    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/manchest...eople-affected
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    Okay so I'm back! It's been a few day, but I've been pretty devastated surrounding the Manchester attacks and haven't done much work. As exams are getting closer I'm feeling more and more unmotivated to do the work, especially in Biology because I'm just not improving so my negative mindset is starting to kick in. But I need to get back to work!

    It was my C1 resit the other day, and it went pretty badly, but I'm just choosing to ignore it now because my other exams are more important. I definitely think the grade boundaries will be lower but not by much, and I made soe pretty dumb mistakes. But I definitely didn't do as bad as last year (I think).

    Today I'm focussing on C4 I think. I want to perfect vectors and some other small bits that I keep on getting wrong. I want to do the 2016 paper again to see if I've made any progress. I'm hoping that if I get that done I can move onto Chemistry. I know I should put more effort into Biology but my morale towards it is pretty low, so I'm just gonna leave that for another day. Luckily with Biology my AS content is pretty solid, compared to Chemistry which always need refreshing.

    I'm also having a bit of a life dilemma regarding my course and stuff, I think about uni everyday so this is probably a natural thing to happen. But I need to focus n exams before I think about my course. I won't get into any university if I don't get the grades.

    Hope everyone is well
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    So I've done a few C4 papers, and I think I'm finally doing well at them! My vectors are not driving me crazy anymore, and it's a case of small things getting in the way rather than an entire topic I struggle on. My scores have ranged from 60-65 so mostly A/A*. I am pretty happy with this, I'd love to achieve a 65 in the exam, especially if there is a hard vector or decay question in there. I'm planning on helping a friend out who really hates C4 too so we can polish our skills together, it also helps me avoid my stress about exams if I'm trying to help calm her down.

    I want to do some stats papers later too, and then I don't have to dedicate an entire day to Stats. I know that exam is closest but I never feel like I'm using my brain for Stats so I don't want to feel like I've wasted a day.
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    So progress has been pretty slow the past few days.

    I have done a lot of Chemistry revision, mainly focussing on updating my quizlet information. I find this useful when trying to memorise small things like equations and key words, so a lot of inorganic topics can be easily summarised using quizlet. I'm finding electrode potentials difficult to learn because of all the equations involved with the processes (especially the half and full equations of batteries). So I need to keep going over them. The same applies with flue gas desulphurisation because there are so many different equations to remember.

    I also did the Biology 1 paper that the AS students just sat, and it seemed pretty good. A friend of mine went through it with me afterwards and we agreed on a lot of things, it was a pretty standard AS paper if you ask me. I obviously don't know how well I did, but when we go back to college I think our teachers will mark their predictions on the answers and give us an expected grade. I'm hoping we get nice content questions on our paper 1.

    At the minute I just feel like there is so little time and so much content to go through. I just need the next two weeks to be over and I will be a lot happier with where I'm at. Most of my exams will be out of the way, and I won't have maths to worry about anymore. Luckily I am the most confident with maths, but having it done would just be a massive weight off my shoulders
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    Update: 05/06/2017

    So I've had a productive morning!

    I have been going through all the small things about Chemistry that make me fall down a few marks. So I have gone through the equilibria of ammonia, methanol and ethanol, including conditions and uses. I have also gone through Flue-gas, which is actually a lot simpler than I felt it was last year - I think it's because I understand why everything happens more so than previously. I've also gone through the Manganate ion redox titration, with plans to do some exam questions on it later. I've also gone through the reduction of Vanadium with Zinc in acidic conditions. So I feel quite happy with my progress this morning.

    I've made up for what work I didn't do over the weekend. I spent some time with my mum on the Saturday before a night out for my friends birthday. He then had a party the next day so I spent the day catching up on sleep and then spending the night at his. We ended up watching the One Love concert and it was amazing. It's so beautiful that all us Mancunians can come together. It's making me even more excited for my tattoo day on Friday! Can't wait to make my contribution to the Manchester fund.

    It's also election week and I'm pretty worried about it. I absolutely hate May with a passion and I hope to God that the Tories don't get in. This election season has drove me mad, especially when I am participating in some market research for the election, and uncovering more of the things she hasn't done to protect us is infuriating. I'd just love her to leave government because she does not deserve to be our Prime Minister. Silly mushroom head.

    But for the rest of the day I plan to focus on some more Chemistry equations - I want to perfect them before Friday (my Chemistry day at college) so then I know what other things I need to brush up on before next Tuesday. I also want to go through some A2 Biology, I haven't revised it for so long. I know I should be focussing on AS at the minute, but my knowledge of that is much more solid than my A2. Especially the purple section and the DNA technology bit. I love those sections the most, but there's just too much of it.

    Hope all is well
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    Further update: 05/06/2017

    So I've learned a TON of equations today; lithium cell, KOH electrolyte, MnO4- reactions, catalyst, flue gas equations, production of substances in equilibrium conditions in industry. So I've felt pretty productive!

    I've also done some A2 comprehension, some on respiration, mark-release-recapture and a lot on different studies with your typical questions involving variables and why certain results can appear, this includes how to find a maximum rate of reaction. So a pretty productive day overall.

    I'm pretty tired now, I could probably do more but I've basically been working since 11 am, with small breaks for food and that's it. So I'm gonna have a bit of a relax before I go back to college tomorrow. I also need to see Love Island now it's back on! Hope everyone is okay
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    Update: 07/06/2017

    I am finally free from stats! The exam went pretty well, I know I made the silly mistake of getting my confidence interval wrong, but that's a rare mistake for me and the rest of it went pretty well from what I've seen of the Unofficial mark schemes. I was done in around half an hour. So I'm glad it's over and I can dedicate more time to the rest of my exams, which are obviously a lot harder than an AS exam.

    So I'm planning on doing some Biology revision this evening, with my plan to have a Biology day with friends tomorrow after I go and vote (don't forget guys!!). I want to focus on some AS content, but I feel like maybe I should do A2 instead to refresh my knowledge. But I'll figure it out as I go along. I'm mostly feeling relieved that I have a lot of time before Monday to revise and sort out where my head is at - I needed to just get the stats exam out of the way.

    I'm also starting to get ill so I want to try and get it out of me before next week begins! Making sure I keep wrapped up with a brew nearby to soothe my throat.

    Hope all is well with everybody
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    Update: 12/06/2017

    So the dreaded week has arrived! Starting with my Biology Paper 1
    It didn't go great, and to be honest I know I made so many mistakes it's not even funny. But at this point of the year I don't even care about grades. I just want the exams to be over.

    The questions focussed on the bits of the spec you choose not to revise because they are too niche to come up, but they came up anyway! But judging by tweets and TSR a lot of people struggled so the grade boundaries will naturally come down. I don't think it was an A standard paper for me, but only time will tell.

    I can't really say anymore because I need to do some chemistry revision. My Inorganic paper is tomorrow so I have to revise for that. Then after this exam I will be halfway through my exams for the week! This exam is the one I'm dreading the most, so I'm hoping that all goes well.

    What isn't helping right now is that I have a pretty chesty cough. It's so loud and just gets in the way, I've been taking medicine for it, but obviously these things take time.

    On a more positive note, on Friday I will have finished maths forever! Wahoo!!!
    I also got my Manchester Bee Tattoo last Friday so I'm super happy! I'd put a picture up, but because of the healing process it looks really scabby and ugly right now. An update will follow after the scabs have healed.

    But yeah, there's nothing else to really update I've just been revising like crazy since the election. The election, by the way, worked out to be a mess for my constituency. My tactical vote didn't pay off and my constituency is still a Tory one - which I'm gutted about. I wish the system wasn't like this and I wish it was more representative of how people actually vote. But that's also a rant for another day...

    I hope everybody's revision is going well! I'll probably update you tomorrow on how things are going
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    Update: 14/06/2017

    So that's two more exams down!

    My Chemistry exam went the worst it could possibly go. There was a mistake on the paper so halfway through the exam the exams officer gave us instructions to cross out one of the questions, which put me on edge for later questions. Not to mention there was a horrible 8 marker on there which I couldn't figure out the logic of under the exam pressure and conditions. I'm hoping I've got around 4 marks for my working, or possibly more with my error carried forward.
    But overall the exam went horribly and I think I've lost my opportunity to get an A now - which also questions my university choices. If I work really hard now and try my best in papers 2 and 3 then maybe I could pull up my grade. I'm hoping this is the case because I can't have another exam where I cry.
    Spoiler:
    Show

    I basically cried for the last 10 minutes of the exam


    Then today I had my C3 exam. Which was okay, but not as good as I usually do in the exams. I find myself often getting very high marks, but I know I've dropped at least 7 marks so my chances of getting an A* are very slim now, unless I can make up for it with my C4 (unlikely as I'm worse at it, especially if it turns out to be a horrible paper). But it didn't make me cry which is a bonus! I only have one maths exam left now before I am completely finished with it. It's going to be so strange just having Biology and Chemistry to focus on, but at least I'm over halfway through after Friday.

    I'm going to do a lot of Organic Chemistry tonight to try and refresh what I haven't done in a while, then tomorrow I have a maths revision session to go to and will spend the morning doing biology. But all of this will probably change but I'll update soon.

    Hope everybody is staying as stress free as they can
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    Update: 24/06/2017

    So it's been a while...

    I only have two exams left now! It has been a crazy week

    So I finished maths last Friday. The C4 went okay, but again, I don't think I would have got the A* I really wanted. But there is nothing I can do to change that now, just hoping that I will meet any university placement at this point. The final question was just terrible, but I hate decay anyway so I was probably going to hate it anyway...

    And the Monday and Tuesday just gone were my Chemistry and Biology papers. The Biology one was a standard paper but I don't really like those styles because I hate problem solving somebody else's problems - which is not the point of Biology but they seem to make it the whole of Biology in exams. I would much rather be told how to do an experiment and draw my own conclusions because I have my own experience to back myself up and contribute to the way I think. Whereas in those exams they only tell you specific amounts of detail and that really frustrates me. My next Biology exam is mostly practical based with an essay at the end, grouping most content information they didn't bother to ask about from the previous exams, so I'm hoping that the essay will bring me up a bit.

    The Chemistry went almost too well. It was a very good paper in terms of what everybody thought of the exam, and I agreed with them. This is worrying because grade boundaries are going to be that much higher now and my little mistakes that would have creeped in will have influenced my grade a lot compared to Paper 1 where a lot of people didn't like it so the grade boundaries will be lower. So it has been very interesting indeed.

    I just want exams to be over and to go back to work and start earning money for my amazing summer! I went to work on Tuesday and Wednesday so got some money, but it won't last long with all the nights out planned and meals after I finish on Tuesday.
    Luckily I have a lot of holiday spending money so whatever I don't use can be converted back into cash and used at a later date, sorting the festival tent out and stuff.
    I also have to start looking at student accounts and saving for the deposit on my halls of residence, which sounds boring (because it is) but makes uni sound that much closer! Basically after these exams are done I can start to get my life back and start being just that bit happier!
 
 
 
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