How can I start preparing for my A Levels?

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cupcake27
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Hello everyone,

So, I am currently in the summer between Year 11 and going into Year 12 (Sixth Form). For my A- Levels, I am doing Biology, Chemistry and Psychology. My school has already given me work that I could be doing in preparation to sixth form. However, I feel as though, seeing as they are tough subjects, that I should be doing something extra alongside the work I've already been given. So what kind of things would you recommend me to start doing in order to feel prepared to do these subjects?

I would also like to ask you what we should be doing during sixth form, in terms of at home? like, would you be going over the stuff you've learnt for the day? because i don't want to leave any work behind and i would like to stay on top of everything, so please comment anything that you would do, once you come home from a lesson, because that would also be greatly appreciated.

I just want to ensure that I am not delaying anything and I can revise as effectively as I can , in order to get the best grades.

Thank you.
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Rmcewan15
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(Original post by cupcake27)
Hello everyone,

So, I am currently in the summer between Year 11 and going into Year 12 (Sixth Form). For my A- Levels, I am doing Biology, Chemistry and Psychology. My school has already given me work that I could be doing in preparation to sixth form. However, I feel as though, seeing as they are tough subjects, that I should be doing something extra alongside the work I've already been given. So what kind of things would you recommend me to start doing in order to feel prepared to do these subjects?

I would also like to ask you what we should be doing during sixth form, in terms of at home? like, would you be going over the stuff you've learnt for the day? because i don't want to leave any work behind and i would like to stay on top of everything, so please comment anything that you would do, once you come home from a lesson, because that would also be greatly appreciated.

I just want to ensure that I am not delaying anything and I can revise as effectively as I can , in order to get the best grades.

Thank you.
I did humanities, so I can't speak about the specifics of the sciences, but I can give you a general idea. I know that, particularly for chemistry, a lot of the stuff you get taught at GCSE is actually incorrect (for example, the stuff you're taught about electron shells is just plain wrong - I believe the correct version is called radicles?), and so a lot of the first term of A Level will be about correcting that knowledge. It would be worthwhile looking on Youtube or at sites directed towards A Level students to get an idea of some of the new things you'll be learning in Chemistry and Biology, and doing some learning ahead. Your syllabus will be an important aid for this.

For Psychology, I don't know how in depth you'll actually go, but you can't go wrong reading some Freud and Jung. It's also worth being aware of seminal studies in the world of psychology, such as the Milgram experiment, or the Stanford Prison experiment, and also getting your head around some of the new vocab - the id, ego, super-ego, and so on. General reading around the subject will help as well.

I can speak more easily about the idea of doing work at home, as this isn't subject-specific.

I didn't do much work at home at all, including not doing a great deal of homework, and I can't say it really hurt me all that much. Paying attention in class is important, as that's where you can ask questions and really get your head around difficult concepts. Obviously, if you want top, top grades (A*s and As), it's not going to hurt doing some work at home, though I think it's unrealistic to say you're going to do two hours of revision a night or whatever some kids say. I think the most time-efficient method of revision is probably to sit down every weekend with a pad of paper and write out a set of notes on the topics you've covered in each topic that week.

The sciences are more linear than the humanities, so it's important that you learn and understand each step before moving on - I bombed the first two terms of Chemistry GCSE, but ended up getting an A*, solely because I went back and worked through everything I didn't understand. I would advise not doing what I did and assiduously completing every homework you get for Chemistry in particular, though it's important you don't neglect your other two subjects. Make sure you're turning in a lot of essays for Psychology, as much of A Level is learning how to write a different style of essay. Obviously, if you get any coursework, maintain close correspondence with your teachers on this to make sure you maximise your grade. I got over 90% in my Geography exams for GCSE, but only got an A because I bombed the coursework.

That's it really. Just be organised, work hard, talk to your teachers and you'll be fine.
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username3731912
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i say to just relax.
its your last real summer stress-free, dont burn yourself out.
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monostable
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(Original post by cupcake27)
Hello everyone,

So, I am currently in the summer between Year 11 and going into Year 12 (Sixth Form). For my A- Levels, I am doing Biology, Chemistry and Psychology. My school has already given me work that I could be doing in preparation to sixth form. However, I feel as though, seeing as they are tough subjects, that I should be doing something extra alongside the work I've already been given. So what kind of things would you recommend me to start doing in order to feel prepared to do these subjects?

I would also like to ask you what we should be doing during sixth form, in terms of at home? like, would you be going over the stuff you've learnt for the day? because i don't want to leave any work behind and i would like to stay on top of everything, so please comment anything that you would do, once you come home from a lesson, because that would also be greatly appreciated.

I just want to ensure that I am not delaying anything and I can revise as effectively as I can , in order to get the best grades.

Thank you.
Just relax and do all the work you were set to the best possible standard. Enjoy the week or so you have left.
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