How to get an A in chemistry A-Level..???

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lqwerty98
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I need to get an A for chemistry A Level to go to uni.
I really struggle to revise, any tips????
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Gerry-Atricks
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Past papers galore- make a note of your mistakes then revise that- repeat
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lqwerty98
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(Original post by glad-he-ate-her)
Past papers galore- make a note of your mistakes then revise that- repeat
thank you, have you done chemistry a level?
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Gerry-Atricks
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(Original post by lqwerty98)
thank you, have you done chemistry a level?
Am doing it this year- predicted A*
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HopelessMedic
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Past papers and calculations, then just memorise the rest of the content.
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Pink_Sparkles
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(Original post by lqwerty98)
I need to get an A for chemistry A Level to go to uni.
I really struggle to revise, any tips????
I suggest u practice according to specification, make notes , learn reactions and practice calculations , learn them by writing them again n again, if u master all these then proceed to past papers
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TajwarC
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-d-TDQnE24

this guy seems to know what he's talking about o.o
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lqwerty98
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(Original post by glad-he-ate-her)
Am doing it this year- predicted A*
wow!
which exam board are you doing?
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lqwerty98
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thank you everyone!!
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MajorFader
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(Original post by HopelessMedic)
Past papers and calculations, then just memorise the rest of the content.
Really?
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Gerry-Atricks
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(Original post by lqwerty98)
wow!
which exam board are you doing?
the joy that is edexcel
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HopelessMedic
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(Original post by MajorFader)
Really?
yeh
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MajorFader
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(Original post by HopelessMedic)
yeh
Is that what you did? Just memorised? Not understanding the concepts??
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HopelessMedic
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(Original post by MajorFader)
Is that what you did? Just memorised? Not understanding the concepts??
Pretty much but tbh i've never had trouble understanding the content when i'm going through it, it's just remembering it is difficult.

I should say i'm doing A2 now, i got an A in the AS last year.
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lqwerty98
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(Original post by glad-he-ate-her)
the joy that is edexcel
ohhh ok i do ocr
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_NMcC_
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The above points are correct. There is no secret technique to getting an A/A*. The best and only way to do it is to treat it like Maths. Past Papers, Past Papers and more Past papers.

Chemistry is as logical as Physics when you actually ask 'How' or 'Why does x happen' instead of simply learning by rote. For example:

''An Sn2 reaction requires a polar aprotic solvent in order to work''. Many would go and monotonously learn that as a fact. Fair enough but why not simplify by understanding 'why' you use it.

It's because a polar protic solvent can form hydrogen bonds with the nucleophile and therefore severely hinder it's ability to perform the backside attack, proved quantitatively by rate data. A polar aprotic solvent can't form H-bonds with nucleophile, so it's not hindered!

I didn't memorise anything there, I simply understand how hydrogen bonds work and how solvents play a role in the rate of SnX and Ex reaction types. Then you simply unite the two ideas. That's rational thinking instead of memorisation.

A lot of schools teach Chemistry (and sometimes Maths) by rote instead of understanding in order to save time, teaching energy and people being swamped with info but from simple observation this often has the opposite effect and people are left confused, they don't properly grasp the ideas.

My GCSE Maths teacher just stuck up PowerPoints on stuff like 'Rules of Algebra' and just said 'Memorise these'. Fine but the teacher never introduced me to the logic or thinking behind why e.g The sign changes when you move a number the other side of an equation. I eventually learned the logic myself by playing about with equations but it shows that in order to apply something, you must understand it.

If you treat Organic Chemistry like Maths. It just becomes another puzzle-solving game like Sudoku or Chess. Play by the rules and you can win the game. However in this game, the rules are set by Nature! You can't possibly memorise every single reaction, what you can do is understand the categorised mechanistic processes (Sn1,Sn2, Wittig etc) and other factors (inductive, steric, energetics etc) that have influence in the subject. Then simply play the game with your understanding!

A tip for scheduling revision of topics. Write a list of all your topics then beside each topic. Write a number from 1-3 with 3 = I feel very strong on this topic, 1 = I feel very weak. Then select the areas that have 1s and 2s. Pick x number to work on in a week (depending on how many you have). Then re-assess yourself after a week with the same method. It'll help you see progress (If you do practice questions and refresh the material) and highlight your weaker areas.

Of course at the start you'll not know much so just pick a few topics to start on.

Another tip. Chemistry is a heavy subject, so don't be afraid to take breaks. I personally revise in 'broken-hours' 2 x 25min sessions with 2 x 5min breaks that make up each ''hour'' or ''period'' of revision (technically 50mins). Taking time to walk/get air/get a drink can keep your mind fresh and help you think. Works for me anyway and I'm now doing a Chemistry degree.
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lqwerty98
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(Original post by _NMcC_)
The above points are correct. There is no secret technique to getting an A/A*. The best and only way to do it is to treat it like Maths. Past Papers, Past Papers and more Past papers.

Chemistry is as logical as Physics when you actually ask 'How' or 'Why does x happen' instead of simply learning by rote. For example:

''An Sn2 reaction requires a polar aprotic solvent in order to work''. Many would go and monotonously learn that as a fact. Fair enough but why not simplify by understanding 'why' you use it.

It's because a polar protic solvent can form hydrogen bonds with the nucleophile and therefore severely hinder it's ability to perform the backside attack, proved quantitatively by rate data. A polar aprotic solvent can't form H-bonds with nucleophile, so it's not hindered!

I didn't memorise anything there, I simply understand how hydrogen bonds work and how solvents play a role in the rate of SnX and Ex reaction types. Then you simply unite the two ideas. That's rational thinking instead of memorisation.

A lot of schools teach Chemistry (and sometimes Maths) by rote instead of understanding in order to save time, teaching energy and people being swamped with info but from simple observation this often has the opposite effect and people are left confused, they don't properly grasp the ideas.

My GCSE Maths teacher just stuck up PowerPoints on stuff like 'Rules of Algebra' and just said 'Memorise these'. Fine but the teacher never introduced me to the logic or thinking behind why e.g The sign changes when you move a number the other side of an equation. I eventually learned the logic myself by playing about with equations but it shows that in order to apply something, you must understand it.

If you treat Organic Chemistry like Maths. It just becomes another puzzle-solving game like Sudoku or Chess. Play by the rules and you can win the game. However in this game, the rules are set by Nature! You can't possibly memorise every single reaction, what you can do is understand the electronic mechanics and factors that surround each process. Then simply play the game with your understanding!

A tip for scheduling revision of topics. Write a list of all your topics then beside each topic. Write a number from 1-3 with 3 = I feel very strong on this topic, 1 = I feel very weak. Then select the areas that have 1s and 2s. Pick x number to work on in a week (depending on how many you have). Then re-assess yourself after a week with the same method. It'll help you see progress (If you do practice questions and refresh the material) and highlight your weaker areas.

Of course at the start you'll not know much so just pick a few topics to start on.

Another tip. Chemistry is a heavy subject, so don't be afraid to take breaks. I personally revise in 'broken-hours' 2 x 25min sessions with 2 x 5min breaks that make up each ''hour'' or ''period'' of revision (technically 50mins). Taking time to walk/get air/get a drink can keep your fresh and help you think. Works for me anyway and I'm now doing a Chemistry degree.
Thanks for such helpful advice, appreciate it x
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_NMcC_
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(Original post by lqwerty98)
Thanks for such helpful advice, appreciate it x
No probs, good luck!
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