Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Lauren's Journey To A*A*AA And Scientific Success (Hopefully) Watch

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Introduction and background information

    Hello, everyone. I'm Lauren and I'm an AS student. I currently study chemistry, physics, maths and psychology. As my blog title suggests, I'm looking for at least A*A*AA by the end of A2. Why? Because I want to go to Oxford. I honestly hope to be predicted A*A*A*A to make my application more competitive, but the aim is the entry requirements.

    My GCSE is profile is below average for applicant (I believe)- A*A*77AAAA5D. I hope to make up for this by making the other parts of my application as stellar as possible. Even though the Oxford website's Q&A section states that applicants typically have a high proportion of As and A*s (which I do), I'm not risking anything.

    I currently plan to apply for a Nuffield research placement in November, and I've already applied for the Cambridge University shadowing scheme (NatSci as my first choice, PBS as my second). I also hope to gain a work experience placement somewhere.

    I'm hoping that my grade profile looks like this in two year's time:

    A*- Chemistry
    A*- Physics
    A- Maths
    A- Psychology

    Maths and Physics may swap as I'm finding Physics quite hard (see below). Psychology is one of the As and not an A* as the A*s must be in a science or maths.

    A summary of the year so far

    My year has had a rocky start, but has smoothed out. My first Chemistry assessment (large portion of amount of substance) was a U grade (14/29), which was worrying as I want to study that. However, in the second assessment on atomic structure I got an A (31/32) and on my AoS resit I also got an A (18/20). Chemistry do our grades by the AS grading system (max A) so I'm very happy.

    I got a D on my first maths homework and a U on the second, but got a high A on the 3rd (89%- 1% off an A* since they mark us on the A2 grading system) since I tried hard on it that time. I also got a B on the assessment we did, which is the first grade to go on my online report. I'm awaiting results for my next piece of homework, although I think I didn't do badly as the teacher spoke to some people who did badly during class today- and I wasn't one of them!

    Physics is... A nightmare. I've got low grades in my assessments (typically surrounding the 50% mark), asides from a resit where I got 18/26). I do enjoy Physics but we've started off with Mechanics, which is probably one of my least favourite parts. I hope to catch up soon.

    Psychology is very interesting and may seem like an odd choice. Why not Biology? Answer- I only got an A in Biology at GCSE due to taking it in year 10 and not really being taught during that time. I was given no revision tips- I literally just read the revision guide all day at school and did past papers near to the exams. Back to Psychology- we've started off with cognitive and social psychology, with one teacher teaching us for each type. Our social teacher doesn't make the lessons very engaging- we practically get told to teach ourselves the answers from a booklet to do task he's set. Although, the teacher is a substitute for a few weeks. However, cognitive is absolutely amazing. I've had no grades from the assessment I did- we were just given our marks. I got 67/78, but the test was mostly multiple choice and maths.

    Today

    I honestly need to speed up when it comes to making revision notes as I've barely done any. And attending Physics support might be a necessity if things don't pick up. I have the resit this week so fingers crossed.

    Wednesday is okay, but I have to wait from 12.40pm to 4pm for the bus, since I really don't want to walk or pay a lot of money for it. The buses I can get are really empty and I wish I could get a different one.

    I'm really trying to talk to a girl I know from a trip we went on together back in... February? We smile at each other and I spoke to her in the lunch queue on the second day but I honestly don't know how to. I feel like a social outcast here.

    I hope to be updating this daily, but I haven't described my day very well due to needing an introduction.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    good luck Lauren!! I hope it all goes well for you x
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Thursday 19th October 2017

    Today was a fairly interesting day. A lot of downs with a few ups.

    I woke up at half 5, showered and.... went back to sleeping on and off until quarter to 8. I knew I wouldn't be late as I was being deopped off and don't have to leave until late. I got to school, bought a coffee from the Oak building and headed to Maths.

    We just did more differentitation, but using a tangent. I honestly really enjoyed it and got to grips with it fast. We started Calculus this week and I thought it would be a nightmare, but it's not. I have a person opposite me who already did AS Maths (changed her subject choices so she had redo first year) and a really nice girl next to me, so it's a really nice lesson. We can talk too, unlike in Chemistry where we all sit in rows and have 10 minutes of answering questions that aren't on whiteboards. But then there's the kicker- I was finishing a question and everyone had pretty much left. My teacher asked me "have you changed your name to O..." (he gave up but I'd censor it anyways). I said no, but that it's my legal last name but shouldn't be like that on the registers. He said that I should get it changed before exams and I was just like "I want it changing as soon as possible so it won't be anywhere near that long". I applied for a deed poll form ten minutes later, as I sat in tutor.

    Tutor ia nothing special. Just had a current affairs quiz and notices. I spoke to my tutor about my name and whether I should drop a subject to pick up an EPQ, even though I wasm't really considering it as much.

    Physics was better than usual. After my initial slight confusion due to not knowing how to do the component of the weight parallel to the slope, along with not quite getting the theory until I stopped overcomplicating things, I understood about Galileo's experiment and how to find the paralle component, and therefore other values using suvat. We need to complete the questions we were doing for Tuesday, but I got quite far anyways. Amother down- I left my memory stick in there and they were having an astrophysics talk, so I didn't go back for it.

    Lunch starts and I just spend the entire time wishing I had friends. The queue was ridiculously long so I didn't bother getting coffee, even though it is good from there. The girl I talked about yesterday was there. She smiled at me, which not many people actually do. I really ahould talk to her but I have no clue how to...

    I had a free so I sat around, doing much of the same but with a Psychology textbook out. She also had a free and was sat in the upstairs bit of the Elm building with her friends, so I didn't go and bothered her. I just sat and browsed, ocassionally posting on SC and Twitter.

    Last lesson of the day was Chemistry. We were doing titrations so it was essentially GCSE work, so it wasn't difficult. Nothing eventful happened but I STILL didn't go for my memory stick. Whoops.

    I got the bus but got off a few stops late, since I wanted a walk, but I got off one stop later than intented. That stop was ages away from the last one.

    I got home, went on my phone. I had dinner and dessert before going back to my phone. I eventually spotted "pogdogs" trending and misread it as coming tomorrow. I was so excited- something to make a Friday good. I later realised it wasn't, after mum told me. I was so pissed because I couldn't watch it live.

    It honestly made the end of my day bitter, but I can try again tomorrow. I have a Paychology test tomorrow but haven't revised much so that will end badly. I also HATE Fridays. You will never understand my intense hatred of them... until tomorrow.

    Time to get a bit of sleep. I know I need it.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by mez_merising)
    good luck Lauren!! I hope it all goes well for you x
    Thank you x
    Offline

    4
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by bookloverlolly)
    -
    Good luck! Looks like your results are getting pretty good, and I don't know if you're doing M1 in maths or the mechanics in the new syllabus, but that helps a lot with the physics mechanics and good luck in the resit!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Saturday 28th October:

    I've been swamped with depression in the past week, so I'll give you the highlights. Monday Psychology was cancelled thanks to the teacher not turning up. I started, finished and handed in the homework due for the Monday... on the Monday. I got 42/44 or 43/44 on the Chemistry test on the Tuesday, which I'm really happy with. Wednesday was our Physics assessment, which I think went well. Other than that, there were a lot of name troubles as I have my old last name on the system now. Same with Thursday, but the test was a required practical instead. Which I have no results for yet.

    Friday was the first day of half term, so I just watched Stranger Things and Rick And Morty. Very similar situation today, expect I'm going to file my notes. I was briefly dumped by my girlfriend on Friday before we fixed things between us (she said she was just moody) and I'm now on track.

    These posts will be daily, now. See you tomorrow.
    Offline

    17
    ReputationRep:
    good luck! your posts are really detailed and interesting - can’t wait to read more
    Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Tuesday 31st October

    I honestly haven't been doing much academically since we broke off. All of my notes are now filed, so I can fcus on the work. I now have red hair and nice eyebrows after Sunday, along with some lipstick that my mum bought for me. With the £20 my mum gave me, I bought some concealer, a memo block and a to do list jotter on the Sunday, all for £3 as Wilkos is amazing but so underrated (especially for stationery- I do understand why you wouldn't buy their makeup). I also finished filing all of my chemistry notes in the evening. The girl I mentioned in my previous posts messaged me and told me I looked pretty after I posted my new look on my story, then we chatted for an hour, before she left. Messaged me again when I posted about my new candle, which is the same one as she was burning. She's lovely- recommended ASDA as a place to buy a flask too.

    Monday was spent cleaning and organising my folders. The latter was the main focus, which really helped with the cleaning. I managed to file physics and psychology, before I went to bed. There was nothing particularly special about the day, asides from the fact that my mum brought grandad to us to stay!

    Today, I filed some of my maths notes before going to the city centre. Primark was where the bulk of our time was spent. I was looking for a coat when I ran into my year 10 (partly) and year 11 science teacher, who had her baby with her (he's so cute!). She's the best teacher I ever had- she came up to me and hugged me, then we chatted about how college was going and her going back to work (she left for maternity leave after she had the baby early in the summer half term). She told me to look after myself before she left, and I continued shopping. I found my dream coat (well, the one I imagined when I though of what I wanted in a coat). My mum also picked up another amazing coat and bought them for me- with it coming out of my Christmas fund, of course. Later on, we went into Boyes for my grandad and sister, before getting chips from the chip shop and driving to ASDA. I bought a litre flask, which is copper coloured and works really, really well. I messaged the girl to thank her, though she didn't seem up for chatting so I didn't carry on the conversation. When I got back, I finished filing my maths note and played Splatoon 2 after. I'm about to finish cleaning and do some work.

    I plan to complete:

    - Section 1 of the chemistry homework.
    - Notes of 3.1.1.2 of Chemistry.
    - The first 3 questions of the maths homework.
    - Two notes pages for Physics (maybe just one though).

    We'll see how it goes tomorrow! I'll be posting daily or once every few days, depending on how lazy or forgetful I am!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    A note:

    Apologies for the lack of posting. I've been really busy with work all week and I'm about to help out with the open evening at our college. I'll post tonight or tomorrow.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    Sunday 12th November 2017

    Everytime I make this post, I either don't finish it or my computer freezes. I make pretty long posts so I hope I haven't been disqualified (although, I'd carry on regardless). Since I have a LOT to talk about, I'm splitting this into how my days went academically, then a section on socialising/goals/how I'm doing personally tomorrow.

    It's been a good but busy first week back. Monday was by far the busiest. Psychology was all abut evaluating Burger's study, but we did a Kahoot on the APRC of it- I did badly because I didn't do it over half term. It was also our last lesson with our cover, so our normal teacher started teaching us on the Wednesday. In chemistry, we learned how to pipette in preparation for the titration practical the next day. There wasn't really much else to it. My free/lunch/free portion of Monday was spent finishing the last question of the Maths homework due for last period and doing some of the Issac Physics boards due for the next day(which I only remembered about on the Sunday evening- oops). I finished the potential errors section of the evaluation too. Maths was bland- more differentiation work. My entire evening, from when I walked in to going to bed at 3, was filled with doing my evaluation (the only bit I didn't finish was the description of Galileo's experiments) and the Issac Physics work, as the boards were difficult to the point where there were a few unanswered questions on the Moments board, although I completed the Vectors one.

    Tuesday was less busy. We did the titration practical in the morning, which went well- I only made minor mistakes. As I got a value for the average titre, I could do the rest of exercise 4 of the practical booklet, which were the only questions I couldn't do over the holiday. The teacher said it was fine when she checked the booklet to see if I'd done the homework. This was quickly done in my free, along with the exam questions she gave us that day. Tutor was kind of interesting. It was all about time management. We started by answering questions and getting a score /30... I got 23, the highest in the class. This is particularly good because 26-30 was the section that said it was good, but the risk of burnout was too high.We did a pie chart of what we spent our time on too. Lunch was a bit boring, since I don't really remember much. In physics, we started off the F = ma topic by listening to an explanation of Newton's laws and by doing questions on resultant forces. Psychology was cognitive psychology, which is my favourite. We got our tests back- I got 33/43, which was one mark off an A. I didn't do as well as I thought because I didn't really know the answers to the 8 mark evaluation question (only got 3 out of 8 as I didn't finish it due to a lack of time) and a four mark question that I didn't answer- they were social psychology questions. The lessons in social weren't engaging due to reading out of the books so it's probably one of the reasons why. Asides from those two questions, my test was full marks minus one, since I didn't write a fully operationalised hypothesis due to missing out the "counting down from 20" bit of the independent variable (see picture below of my answer). Asides from that, we started recreational memory and schemas by Bartlett, which was fascinating. I didn't do much when I got home, which was a shame.

    Wednesday was even less packed. In Physics, we were in a different classroom for some reason and had to work in pairs on a big whiteboard to make up a resultant force question. We did one on a shark but didn't finish making it up. I don't really like partner work in Physics as I don't fit in or talk to the other girls. Psychology was next and our social teacher was back. We did a recap of Burger's study in the form of some questions. I answered them pretty quickly, with one I got stuck on. When the class went through answers, I gave the percentage of participants that didn't obey, since no one else remembered and I wasn't sure, but said I thought it was in the 30s, only to be old I was right! I gave the less obvious hypothesis that he made up too (there were three possible answers to "name a hypothesis" question)- apparently everyone forgets it and I wasn't 100% sure I was right since I wrote a different one. But I was. We then went through social impact theory, which was okay. Maths involved velocity-time graphs and differentiation questions to do with them. My frees in the afternoon were spent doing exercise 4 of the chemistry booklet, which I figured out how to do thanks to looking at the mark scheme for that little bit. I also did a bunch of physics questions that were set as overnight homework. I was so close to getting the last one right but couldn't figure out the method.

    Thursday was busy. Maths was made up of differentiation review questions, which I'm getting sick of. This was followed up by the weekly politics quiz in tutor, along with a chat with my tutor about an incident involving someone emailing the college after seeing my Twitter (none of the jokes on there were very serious and I have few followers, so the whole thing was odd) and worrying about my mental health. Ironically, this put me on edge and made me particularly anxious. Physics involved harder questions and seeing our practical evaluation results- I passed all the competencies in the practical! My free involved doing questions from the maths homework, and I did about half of them. Finally, Chemistry was 30 minutes shorter than usual due to the open evening, but we started ionic bonding- very similar to GCSE. I couldn't go home as I was helping out the psychology department for the open evening. I got to speak to lots of year 11s, some conversations going better than others. I didn't get home until half eight, so I didn't revise.

    My mum was working days on Friday, so I couldn't be dropped off at school. As I have a free first thing on Friday, I decided to leave the house later, meaning I didn't get to school until 10. It was quite a refreshing 3 mile walk and I felt great when I got to college- it definitely helped reduce the nightmarish-ness that is Friday. Chemistry was my first lesson. We did metallic bonding, which was interesting. The parts from A Level were easy to grasp as they were based on the principles covered in atomic structure. We did have to leave the lesson part way through for the minute silence (I'll talk about this more tomorrow), but this didn't affect the lesson too badly.

    The weekend has been dry of work. I've been out to buy food but other than that, I've been lazing about. I'm off to do my homework, so I'll talk about social developments tomorrow.
 
 
 
  • 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
    What newspaper do you read/prefer?
    Useful resources

    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

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