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The Underachiever's Guide to A levels watch

    • Thread Starter



    I will be completely honest.

    I do not know what I'm doing here, or what I'm supposed to be doing. But welcome to my GYG blog - focusing on the messy, confusing, awkward parts of A levels, including detailed descriptions of food, the occasional dank meme, and my incredibly not stylised workspace...

    It's my bed.

    So, what A levels am I taking?
    • Archaeology (which I feel like is severely underrated, the only negative part of it is that I have a teacher that doesn't seem to understand how to teach in an interesting or engaging manner)
    • English Literature
    • and Medieval/Early Modern History
    • along with an EPQ!!! (about 'the Anarchy', the first big Civil War in English history)
    • Oh, and General studies...

    Am I expected to use pretty graphics here? Well, don't expect wonders from me. I'm going for the rustic, hardcore look, with blocks of text and little else. I am not an adept hand at computers, although I am by no means a blogging newbie. Just google my username, followed by 'Wordpress', to find my book blog. *sneaky snek plug*

    Why am I an underachiever? Because I never put in as much work as I should do. And when I do put the work in, I always do worse than I wanted to. Case in point, my Archaeology AS exam, where I did better in the unit I didn't revise for (almost full marks, somehow) and worse in the one I revised my arse off for (a high B... I guess you could also call me a perfectionist).

    Oh, yeah. I also don't know how to revise. I just can't revise. It is not within my capabilities. And let me tell you, as someone who can play the entirety of Stairway to Heaven's five-minute intro riff, that is a rare thing.

    I also cannot use apostrophes. I just can't. What are they? Why are they so ****ing hard? Also, I'm addicted to dabbing...

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    That's me. Dabbing. Next to a lake in the Brecon Beacons. Note the terrible fashion sense. But my DMs are amazing.

    If you're interested: I like all loud, screaming music; I dislike Disney movies, Hamilton, any song in the Top 40, aubergine and stir fry. And I think that's everything interesting there actually is to know about me.

    Some stats about me:



    3 A*s - English Language, English Literature, German
    3 As - French, History, Maths Apps
    4 Bs - Maths Methods, Biology, Chemistry, Physics
    1 C - Music

    AS Levels:


    Archaeology AS:
    Unit 1 - A (74/80 UMS)
    Unit 2 - B (93/120 UMS)
    Overall - A (167/200 UMS)

    Predicted Grades: (on UCAS)


    Archaeology: A*

    English Literature: A (but I've now been predicted an A* - a bit late, but it'll do)

    Medieval/Early Modern History: A*

    I have no idea what I was predicted for General Studies and my EPQ...

    University Choices!

    • University of Oxford - History and English (I've sat my HAT test, I am awaiting confirmation of if I have an interview or not)
    • University of Birmingham - English and History (I have received an offer for AAA, or AAB with the B in Archaeology if I recieve an A in my EPQ. That only applies if I firm them, but considering that they're my first choice if Oxford rejects me, that works out well! I didn't get an unconditional, which rather upsets me, because they ask for 7 A*s/As and I only got 6. Like, what's the difference??)
    • Cardiff University - English Literature/History (I received an offer for ABB. They're probably going to be my insurance choice!)
    • University of East Anglia - Literature and History (I received an offer for BBB, and an Unconditional if I firm them. I have considered putting them as my insurance, but Norwich is a pig to get to from where I live, so I can't get to an Open Day.)
    • Aberystwyth University - History/English Literature (Again, I received an offer for BBB, and an Unconditional if I firm them. I just added this one onto the end, so I haven't seriously considered going there.)

    Other things I do/have done:

    • Bronze D of E (which I did in Year Eleven, I simply cannot be bothered to do Silver or Gold)
    • Girlguiding Baden Powell Award (which is kind of like a special award which you can do when you're fourteen in Guides, it's the highest award you can get)
    • National Citizenship Service (which I didn't technically complete, but that's NCS Herefordshire's fault, not mine)
    • I'm an editor for my college's Student Voice newspaper/magazine/thingy
    • I help run the college Feminist Society
    • I'm an active member of the LGBT+ Society and Book Club, too
    • I did the YA Book Prize this year, and actually went to the judging in London!!! https://www.thebookseller.com/ya-book-prize

    Well, I hope that gives you a bit more insight into what kind of person I am. I'm often tired, always ill, and constantly procrastinating. I don't even study, really, most of my time is spent on Netflix.

    But I will try and give this a solid crack. I hope I can impart invaluable knowledge about learning about revision, completing an EPQ, and generally not dying upon you.

    Until next time, this is Ellie, signing off.

    NB: I hope you can realise that my arrogance is supposed to be amusing. I have a very sarcastic sense of humour that doesn't always come across well. My life is satirical. I have no self-esteem.

    If you think Rick from The Young Ones is attractive, then you're in the same boat of insanity as me.
    • Thread Starter

    Update Number 1: We Wish You a Wombling Merry Christmas

    The whole wide world is Wombling toooooo...

    I have been told that listening to music whilst revising is a bad thing. But it's something I've always done, and I can't see it stopping anytime soon.

    Maybe that's just because I have a short attention span, and music helps me concentrate...? I'm not sure. We'll see. I might have a go at working without music tonight.

    This is my working music for the day:

    Because, yes, it is now Christmastime.

    Good luck hun! I relate so much to the underachieving and procrastination, and thank god I'm not the only one who has a sarcastic sense of humor. :lol:
    • Thread Starter

    (Original post by Tate00)
    Good luck hun! I relate so much to the underachieving and procrastination, and thank god I'm not the only one who has a sarcastic sense of humor. :lol:
    Thank you! Hope you're having a great day
    • Community Assistant

    Community Assistant
    Wow your grades and predicted grades are really good! You definitely don't seem like an underachiever
    • Thread Starter

    (Original post by Amefish)
    Wow your grades and predicted grades are really good! You definitely don't seem like an underachiever
    It's more that I'm unlikely to get those predicted grades, they're way above what I think I'm actually capable of getting. But thank you, though!
    • Thread Starter

    Update Number 2: Getting Rid of Toxic Friends and Getting On Top of Work

    After a slightly interesting debacle involving London Midland's cancelled trains and a trip to Poundworld for Mountain Dew...

    I only had two lessons at college today, meaning I had a two-hour lie in at home, a History Depth Study essay, a free and then English Literature.

    I spent the latter part of my time at home going over my notes for my essay, quickly scribbling notes about the Pilgrimage of Grace onto a massive A3 sheet that my History teacher was allowing us to have out on the table in front of us as we did our essay. I made sure I had all of the key points I needed to cover, which would be needed to dispute and back up two passages by historians that we'd been given a week previously. I left this very late, but it worked out well, considering that it meant that I was completely prepared for the essay, and I felt that it went really well!

    It took me about 45 minutes to write the essay proper, which is good, as the time in the exam includes reading and planning time. However, this did leave me with 15 minutes extra time in my History lesson. I ended up writing a very detailed conclusion, which spanned over a side of A4. By the end of the time, I had started to go completely hog wild, including criticisms of the historians themselves, pointing out how they should actually be arguing objectively rather than subjectively, and not injecting their personal opinion into everything. I doubt that will garner me many more marks, but it was fun to write!

    I had LGBT+ Soc at lunch, so I ended up not doing much work at college today. Instead, I signed up for our Christmas fundraiser as a Drag King, which means I'll be lipsyncing for my life in a couple of weeks. I'm honestly more worried about the fact that I'm going to have to find a way to flatten my chest without damaging myself, but luckily I have a few close transgender friends who have said they'll help me out. Currently asking my boyfriend if I can borrow his clothes. No reply as of yet.

    In my free after lunch, I got my English Literature homework for the next period done - annotating a critical article on "The Bloody Chamber", which is one of my titles for my coursework. We get taught one, and we choose a title of our choice to compare it to. I'm comparing it to "Rebecca", one of my favourite books (du Maurier is one of my favourite ever authors). My article (if anyone's interested) is from English Review - "Gothic Terrorist". If you're doing the Gothic or even "Bloody Chamber", I seriously recommend it. Oh, yes, I also made a meme page on Facebook.

    And then my train was cancelled. Hooray for London Midland! Luckily one of my close friends offered me a lift with his dad, so after waiting for an hour outside 'Pets At Home', I was safely in bed. One of my friends who I normally get the train with was arguing with me about how I didn't tell him I was leaving and I obviously didn't care about him as a result. He's been really quite toxic for a long while, ever since I've known him, so I've stopped talking to him, at least for the meanwhile. I don't need that kind of negativity affecting my mood and life :P Remember kids! Cutting toxic people out of your life is a good thing to do!

    And then we come to now. I'm doing some History revision, and then I'm hoping to get a little more of my EPQ sorted, before doing some admin for my role as an editor of my college's student newspaper. All in all, a not entirely unproductive day. How was yours? What work do you need to get done this evening? How are you?
    • Thread Starter

    Update Number 3: Bowling For Soup and Stressing Over Coursework Deadlines

    Because having three coursework essays and an EPQ is bloody brilliant...

    My main issue with my Year Thirteen workload is that I'm simultaneously doing three subjects that include coursework and an EPQ on top of all that. You think overnight homework is bad? Try to do it with a coursework deadline looming in the near future. And don't even get me started on my EPQ - at least it's better planned than my History Coursework, but it's still only at 1000 words.

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    my history coursework... the sad truth of it all.

    I think it's just my issue of procrastination and general disorganisation. It's a pain, let me tell you. But I don't really have anyone but myself to blame for that.

    Expect a better update in the near future. By the end of today, hopefully. Wednesdays are half days at my sixth form college, so I'm going to get lunch with my mum, and then get the train home, and try to prepare for my mock Oxford interview tomorrow morning. And maybe get back on top of coursework/EPQ work. Thankfully, I'm actually organised with everything else for once, I did my History homework in the lesson, and I doubt my Archaeology teacher will set me much work (watch this space...).
    • Thread Starter

    The Underachiever is back... And she's lazier than ever.

    And this, kids, is why you shouldn't do a part-time job during A levels...

    Sorry I've been gone. I'm sure you didn't miss me all that much, though. Well, do I have an excuse?


    My History coursework deadline for the first draft is in a week and a day? I've done nothing to my EPQ? Or maybe I just need to accept that I'm a lazy hunk of human flesh.

    I haven't even done all that much work. Well, I do work all Saturday, at a company that shall remain unnamed. If you live in the rural part of the West Midlands, then you'll know this company, even more so if you happen to live on a farm in Shropshire.

    But anyway, I spend 9 hours at work every Saturday, followed by a half an hour walk across town to home. By that point, I'm too exhausted to do some proper work, so I just end up booting up my laptop, watching some Netflix, and staying awake until one am talking about stupid baby names with my boyfriend.

    (I think "Coldplay" would be an excellent middle name, don't you?)

    But back to business. My plans for the day are to do a little of my English Literature annotation in the morning, followed by time with my significant other. I did suggest he bring his Chemistry work with him so we could have a study sesh, but I doubt he thought I was being serious.

    I'll check back in here later to reveal how much work I actually did.

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