RoadToGradeA
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So I have had the longest summer of my life, after finishing a levels, got into DMU for pharmacy, although my grades did slightly dissapoint me and going to move into my accomodation in about two weeks. Now in this summer, i have basically done no revision, wanted to just relax and remove stress. So basically I feel like I am very rusty in regards to chemistry and biology. So i need some suggestions of some topics in both which i should go over to put me back on track for when I start my course in october. Obviously, i cannot relearn the whole of AS and A2 within 2 weeks, so what should I go over? Any suggestions are greatly appreciated. And congrats to anyone else who got into pharmacy this year
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FallenPetal
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FIrst year of Uni for me was spend covering pretty fundamental stuff in chemistry and biology - they didn't suddenly throw us in the deep end with regards to content. Pretty much everyone was in the same 'I remember some of this stuff from A-level, but not all of it' boat, so don't sweat having a few rusty patches in your memory. I think the point of having A-levels isn't a 'I know this stuff and have it commited to memory', it's more 'I have demonstrated that I am capable of understanding these concepts, thus I am not going to be completely lost when it comes to looking at the somewhat more advanced stuff in my degree'.

That said, if you want to revise, you probably don't need to relearn the whole A-level, just the relevant parts. To give you specifics to brush up on, in terms of biology, I'd look over any cell biology and human physiology stuff you did - I promise you that stuff like plant biology and ecology are very unlikely to come up. Chemistry-wise, I would make sure you understand the different reaction classifications (e.g. SN2), make sure you understand things like Pka and lipophillicity (as they govern how drugs behave in the body), and brush up on organic chemistry (as pretty much all drug molecules consist of C, H, O or N; hydrocarbon chains basically). It also won't hurt to go over spectroscopy techniques as well.
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RoadToGradeA
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(Original post by FallenPetal)
FIrst year of Uni for me was spend covering pretty fundamental stuff in chemistry and biology - they didn't suddenly throw us in the deep end with regards to content. Pretty much everyone was in the same 'I remember some of this stuff from A-level, but not all of it' boat, so don't sweat having a few rusty patches in your memory. I think the point of having A-levels isn't a 'I know this stuff and have it commited to memory', it's more 'I have demonstrated that I am capable of understanding these concepts, thus I am not going to be completely lost when it comes to looking at the somewhat more advanced stuff in my degree'.

That said, if you want to revise, you probably don't need to relearn the whole A-level, just the relevant parts. To give you specifics to brush up on, in terms of biology, I'd look over any cell biology and human physiology stuff you did - I promise you that stuff like plant biology and ecology are very unlikely to come up. Chemistry-wise, I would make sure you understand the different reaction classifications (e.g. SN2), make sure you understand things like Pka and lipophillicity (as they govern how drugs behave in the body), and brush up on organic chemistry (as pretty much all drug molecules consist of C, H, O or N; hydrocarbon chains basically). It also won't hurt to go over spectroscopy techniques as well.
you dont know how helpful this paragraph is, i was so nervous that everyone else in my class will know stuff but i wont. and when you talk about human physiology, what parts, like what parts e.g. kidney, nerves? In A2 bio, there was quite a bit.
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FallenPetal
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(Original post by RoadToGradeA)
you dont know how helpful this paragraph is, i was so nervous that everyone else in my class will know stuff but i wont. and when you talk about human physiology, what parts, like what parts e.g. kidney, nerves? In A2 bio, there was quite a bit.
Well, Pharmacy will cover a lot of human physiology as that's how you understand how both diseases and drugs work. I did my first year a loooooong time ago and at a different University, so I couldn't tell you which parts of human physiology will be given more or less emphasis, but I could give you general guidance?

What will *probably* be most helpful is to look over nerves and, in particular, how signals are propogated through the nervous system. No idea if A-level bio covers this still, but look into how the pre-synaptic membrane is floods the synaptic cleft with neurotransmitters, and that flooding of transmitters causes receptors on the post-synaptic membrane to be activated. If the concentation of NTs is low, no signal is propogated; when high however, the nerve is fired off.

Well that, in principle at least, is how drugs work. You have a receptor (or protein active site) which you know will produce a certain physiological response when "triggered", so you flood it with synthetic molecules (a.k.a. drugs) which artificially either fires it off or blocks it. Understanding nerve transmission, how enzymes work, etc. is a solid foundation for understanding mechanisms of drug action.

It may also help to be familiar with organs in the body and their roles, but don't get bogged down with specifics. Unlikely that your lecturers are going to say "this is a kidney, since you all probably covered this stuff at A-level, I'm not going to bother explaining how it works" - especially as I don't think biology is a strict requirement to study Pharmacy.

Another thing to emphasize is that, even though you feel like you've forgotten stuff, it won't be the same as learning it from scratch. More likely, your lecturer will talk about how the kidneys filter toxins from the blood, have a glomerulus and whatnot and, while you may not 100% remember exactly what those things mean, they will at least ring a bell.
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RoadToGradeA
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(Original post by FallenPetal)
Well, Pharmacy will cover a lot of human physiology as that's how you understand how both diseases and drugs work. I did my first year a loooooong time ago and at a different University, so I couldn't tell you which parts of human physiology will be given more or less emphasis, but I could give you general guidance?

What will *probably* be most helpful is to look over nerves and, in particular, how signals are propogated through the nervous system. No idea if A-level bio covers this still, but look into how the pre-synaptic membrane is floods the synaptic cleft with neurotransmitters, and that flooding of transmitters causes receptors on the post-synaptic membrane to be activated. If the concentation of NTs is low, no signal is propogated; when high however, the nerve is fired off.

Well that, in principle at least, is how drugs work. You have a receptor (or protein active site) which you know will produce a certain physiological response when "triggered", so you flood it with synthetic molecules (a.k.a. drugs) which artificially either fires it off or blocks it. Understanding nerve transmission, how enzymes work, etc. is a solid foundation for understanding mechanisms of drug action.

It may also help to be familiar with organs in the body and their roles, but don't get bogged down with specifics. Unlikely that your lecturers are going to say "this is a kidney, since you all probably covered this stuff at A-level, I'm not going to bother explaining how it works" - especially as I don't think biology is a strict requirement to study Pharmacy.

Another thing to emphasize is that, even though you feel like you've forgotten stuff, it won't be the same as learning it from scratch. More likely, your lecturer will talk about how the kidneys filter toxins from the blood, have a glomerulus and whatnot and, while you may not 100% remember exactly what those things mean, they will at least ring a bell.
This is very helpful, any chemistry topics that i should cover? Hopefully, I will be able to cover some of these topics that you have mentioned as a move into uni in two weeks.
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