Why does everyone say A levels are so bad? Watch

Ameba
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#61
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#61
(Original post by NotNotBatman)

Now I'm not saying it isn't more difficult, because it is. But I was warned about this "big jump" and I started revising to accommodate that (14 hours a day) and to catch up, but that's what most of it was, catch up and if I was taught the necessary things at GCSE or actually revised, I wouldn't have to do that.
Was that 14 hours on the weekend? Because I don't see how you can do it on days with lots of lessons.
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Ol94
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#62
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when i was at sixth form years back about 25 from school went there and only 4 of us made it to the end. it was cos a levels were only worthwhile if going to uni. if not might as well jump into an apprenticeship or work cos a levels dont serve you in real world. if u want to become an accountant no point dicking about studying a level sociology or philosophy or english just jump into an apprenticeship instead
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username4242832
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(Original post by Nihilisticb*tch)
I'm just starting year 12 and basically I keep hearing from older friends and people on social media that A levels are really bad and all that. People are always complaining on Twitter about how hard they are and stuff and I really want to know what all the fuss is about. As someone who is about to start doing 4 A levels this is understandably disheartening. I did really well in my gcses ( 5 9s and 5 8s, so the equivalent of all A*) by working moderately hard but I understand that I will have to work much harder for A levels. I was kind of looking forward to A levels because I want to learn more about science but now I'm kinda scared that I'm going to fail or not be able to cope with the work load. Basically, long story short i want to know whether they're actually that bad and if so what makes them difficult and how can I be successful in them.
They're really not that bad as long as you keep up with the work and pay attention in class. The only reason people on the internet say that A-Levels are hard is because they spend far too much time on the internet complaining how hard A-Levels rather than studying. Don't listen to them.
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Zoqua
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(Original post by Nihilisticb*tch)
I'm just starting year 12 and basically I keep hearing from older friends and people on social media that A levels are really bad and all that. People are always complaining on Twitter about how hard they are and stuff and I really want to know what all the fuss is about. As someone who is about to start doing 4 A levels this is understandably disheartening. I did really well in my gcses ( 5 9s and 5 8s, so the equivalent of all A*) by working moderately hard but I understand that I will have to work much harder for A levels. I was kind of looking forward to A levels because I want to learn more about science but now I'm kinda scared that I'm going to fail or not be able to cope with the work load. Basically, long story short i want to know whether they're actually that bad and if so what makes them difficult and how can I be successful in them.
The people who say that stuff are the people who messed up their A-Levels. You sound quite smart(congrats on the GCSE results btw, I'm starting Y11, aiming for 4 Grade 9's, 3 Grade 8's and 2 Grade 7's at GCSE and 4 A levels), I wouldn't listen to what the other people say. I'd just get on with it. You sound very academically competent, so I don't see what your worrying about!
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NotNotBatman
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(Original post by Ameba)
Was that 14 hours on the weekend? Because I don't see how you can do it on days with lots of lessons.
Weekdays as well, there weren't any days with lots of lessons. Most was 3 in a day, that's 4.5 hrs, I had 2 days a week with a 5 HR break and as soon as I got home I practised some maths until about 2am. This was only in the first year and not entirely consistent.
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Jake Davies
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#66
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My genuine advice to is not to worry. You'll learn how hard it is with time, and you'll learn how to cope with the workload. It's good fun though, especially if you've got good friends, and a good sixth form!

If you want my advice on how to achieve? Revise early. Make cue cards (or whatever revision materials you find best) now so you don't have to play catch up later like me and miss out on valuable revision time. You'll be fine!
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Nihilisticb*tch
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(Original post by Zoqua)
The people who say that stuff are the people who messed up their A-Levels. You sound quite smart(congrats on the GCSE results btw, I'm starting Y11, aiming for 4 Grade 9's, 3 Grade 8's and 2 Grade 7's at GCSE and 4 A levels), I wouldn't listen to what the other people say. I'd just get on with it. You sound very academically competent, so I don't see what your worrying about!
Thanks for the advice! I think you're probably right and i also think people like to complain about stuff. It will be stressful and hard at times but I think I'm in a good enough place mentally to get through it. I would say I am academically competent but I'm not sure whether I have the will power or natural ability to do well but only time will tell about that. Whenever you go into a new phase of life there's always going to be some fear especially when there's so much negativity surrounding A levels.
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Nihilisticb*tch
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#68
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(Original post by Tom 2001)
They're really not that bad as long as you keep up with the work and pay attention in class. The only reason people on the internet say that A-Levels are hard is because they spend far too much time on the internet complaining how hard A-Levels rather than studying. Don't listen to them.
You're probably right haha. I have been at college for 4 days now and I have been given lots of homework but I'm keeping on top of it and using my frees. Most of it is GCSE stuff that they're recapping though so it might be harder to keep on top of A level work.
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Nihilisticb*tch
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(Original post by nmudz_009)
You will be okay just keep up the work ethic which got you your good gcse grades and take confidence from the fact that you only had to work moderately hard to get them. And i'm sure it'll be easy for you to step it up if needed too.
Yeah I definitely didn't push myself to the limit with gcses. My idea of revision was reading the revision guides for a few hours a day which is more than some people do but definitely not the maximum amount I could do which is why I say I worked moderately hard. I think ill be capable of stepping it up for A level and hopefully I'll do well.
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amy_br0
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#70
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its just such a massive step up from GCSE. I personally found them horrible. I ended my GCSEs with 7 As and 2 A* so I was no stranger to hard work but the leap is immense.

At A level I did Maths, Biology, Chem and Geography and ended with CEDD. I worked my socks off for those grades but I dont think I had enough support from the school (my year were the first year to do alevel sciences). As long as you have good support and know how you like to revise then you should be okay
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Jpw1097
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(Original post by Nihilisticb*tch)
I'm just starting year 12 and basically I keep hearing from older friends and people on social media that A levels are really bad and all that. People are always complaining on Twitter about how hard they are and stuff and I really want to know what all the fuss is about. As someone who is about to start doing 4 A levels this is understandably disheartening. I did really well in my gcses ( 5 9s and 5 8s, so the equivalent of all A*) by working moderately hard but I understand that I will have to work much harder for A levels. I was kind of looking forward to A levels because I want to learn more about science but now I'm kinda scared that I'm going to fail or not be able to cope with the work load. Basically, long story short i want to know whether they're actually that bad and if so what makes them difficult and how can I be successful in them.
I got 4 A*s in biology, chemistry, physics and maths at A level, so I know a little bit about what I'm talking about. Firstly, if you enjoy your subjects and take an interest, it will make everything a lot easier. To do well at A level, you can't leave everything until a few months before, you have to keep working at it throughout the whole year. In fact, I taught myself A2 maths in the summer between year 12 and 13, and I always used to try and read ahead so that I had taught myself most things before I had been taught it officially by my teachers. I also found that reading material outside the scope of the curriculum always helped, learning things in more detail than you need I always found helped me to really understand the subjects, and this helped me to remember the relatively basic level of knowledge that is required at A level.
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username1230881
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As long as you keep up with the work they're fine. Particularly with AS levels effectively gone, there's a bit more time to get used to it. You might find it more enjoyable than GCSEs - I certainly did - because there's no compulsory subjects.
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black1blade
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#73
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DId better at a-level than gcse but I did work much harder. That said it was much easier to motivate myself to work because I liked all my subjects.
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ozzyoscy
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It boils down to how good you are at taking school exams rather than simply proficiency or 'natural ability' in the subject.

If you do a science subject, (good) professors will spend 2 years drilling into you how absolutely vital it is to double then triple check your work, take your time, rule out all mistakes, reduce potential for error as much as possible and make allowances for likely error etc.

Then at the end... they give you a timed exam that tests how fast you can do it. It's an actual race where hesitation or double-checking could see you not finish every answer to their fullest. The real smart students start from the last question backward, because they also load it so the big complicated essay-ish questions come on the last few pages, when time is even less, ramping up pressure even more.

So if you're really good at maths, science etc. and always been brilliant in class until now, you're still not gonna make it if you don't know how to, as teachers say, "game the system", become a robot kid, and have a certain recklessness about you.

For GCSEs this isn't a problem, because that level should be very easy (certainly as an adult, if not first time as a child) if you're taught properly, but after that you enter a way more advanced world where the subjects take a whole new direction.
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TheTroll73
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nah man they just didn't enjoy their a level subjects

a levels are much easier when you like the subjects :P
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username4241764
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Maybe because there's more emphasis in A Levels than in the rest of school to direct your own learning. Schools aren't always good at teaching sixth formers how to do that, and when they don't people find their work a lot harder to handle. I think A Levels are pretty harsh as a way of assessing people's abilities to be honest, you're kind of dropped in the deep end in terms of personal responsibility and some people don't know how to handle that - I sure didn't. But if you deal with the work as it comes and aren't afraid to ask for help along the way, you'll be fine
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Zahid~
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It's because for the first time in a lot of people's lives they've got to study and put in actual work. most end up having to reevaulate what it actually means to study properly.
They expect to get the same grades they did at high school by putting in x2 or x3 what they did there. considering it took a matter of days to revise for a subject and get an A* aslong as you did the school work that really is nowhere near enough. People love to complain that life is difficult and blah blah.
I wrote a massive post about how to revise for A levels somewhere so read that and you'll be fine, it's in my profile somewhere.

study hard
study smart
you'll be fine

my teacher explained that A levels is just a race against other students. just start early and keep going, use your time resources and energy effectively.
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Anonymouspsych
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#78
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(Original post by Nihilisticb*tch)
I'm just starting year 12 and basically I keep hearing from older friends and people on social media that A levels are really bad and all that. People are always complaining on Twitter about how hard they are and stuff and I really want to know what all the fuss is about. As someone who is about to start doing 4 A levels this is understandably disheartening. I did really well in my gcses ( 5 9s and 5 8s, so the equivalent of all A*) by working moderately hard but I understand that I will have to work much harder for A levels. I was kind of looking forward to A levels because I want to learn more about science but now I'm kinda scared that I'm going to fail or not be able to cope with the work load. Basically, long story short i want to know whether they're actually that bad and if so what makes them difficult and how can I be successful in them.
You'll be fine. You are far above the average cohort so bearing that in mind, this doesn't mean you will personally find A Levels difficult. There are always people complaining about exams etc. It's simple if you want to be successful at them then keep working for all your a levels and it really ain't that bad lol.
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chelseagirl2002
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Well I know for sure A levels are much easier than IB. You will be fine.
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username4167060
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(Original post by Nihilisticb*tch)
I'm just starting year 12 and basically I keep hearing from older friends and people on social media that A levels are really bad and all that. People are always complaining on Twitter about how hard they are and stuff and I really want to know what all the fuss is about. As someone who is about to start doing 4 A levels this is understandably disheartening. I did really well in my gcses ( 5 9s and 5 8s, so the equivalent of all A*) by working moderately hard but I understand that I will have to work much harder for A levels. I was kind of looking forward to A levels because I want to learn more about science but now I'm kinda scared that I'm going to fail or not be able to cope with the work load. Basically, long story short i want to know whether they're actually that bad and if so what makes them difficult and how can I be successful in them.
Constantly do papers on physicsandmathstutor every time you learn a new topic.
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