pixels.avw
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Year 13 Study Blog
Hi, welcome to my first study blog I decided to start one this year as a record for myself, and hopefully to motivate others doing A Levels.

About Me
I'm currently a sixth form student studying chemistry, biology and maths at a state school. My ultimate goal would be to study biochemical natural sciences at Cambridge (but if I don't get an offer I'm sure I'll be happy studying natural sciences anywhere). My aim for this year is 3A*'s.

GCSE's
I did 11 GCSE's and achieved 2 9's, 1 8, 7A*'s and 1A. I worked very hard for these grades and was very happy with them!

AS Levels
Chemistry A
Biology A
Mathematics A
Physics A
Once again, very pleased with these results and a lot of revision went into them. I decided to drop physics this year to focus on my other subjects.

A Levels
Chemistry (AQA), Biology (AQA), Mathematics (edexcel).

University Choices
Cambridge (natural sciences)
Durham (natural sciences)
Lancaster (natural sciences)
Leeds (biochemistry)
York (biochemistry)


I aim to update this blog regularly, I hope you can find some inspiration from it!:lazy:
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steveeem
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
Year 13 Study Blog
Hi, welcome to my first study blog I decided to start one this year as a record for myself, and hopefully to motivate others doing A Levels.

About Me
I'm currently a sixth form student studying chemistry, biology and maths at a state school. My ultimate goal would be to study biochemical natural sciences at Cambridge (but I'm not sure if an offer is achievable). My aim for this year is 3A*'s.

GCSE's
I did 11 GCSE's and achieved 2 9's, 1 8, 7A*'s and 1A. I worked very hard for these grades and was very happy with them!

AS Levels
Chemistry A, Biology A, Mathematics A, Physics A. Once again, very pleased with these results and a lot of revision went into them.

A Levels
Chemistry (AQA), Biology (AQA), Mathematics (edexcel).


I aim to update this blog regularly, I hope you can find some inspiration from it!:lazy:
Good luck! if you find any good resources for edexcel maths other than the obvious (PAMT) let me know!
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pixels.avw
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(Original post by steveeem)
Good luck! if you find any good resources for edexcel maths other than the obvious (PAMT) let me know!
Thanks! And I will do. Last year I found the crashmaths papers really helpful for the new spec, and there’s obviously the solomon papers for harder questions. I also found the exam questions by topic on dr frost maths helped, but you’ll need a log in from your school. Apart from that and specimen papers, it was mainly lots of textbook questions for me!
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GraftTime
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Good luck ! If you don't mind howd you go about revising physics to get that A ? I really want to up my grades in physics
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pixels.avw
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(Original post by XTim96)
Good luck ! If you don't mind howd you go about revising physics to get that A ? I really want to up my grades in physics
Thank you! I revised all sciences pretty similarly in the way that I’d use the textbook to make a mindmap of each chapter throughout the course, so make whichever notes work best for you. I made these mindmaps in preperation for assessments throughout the year. I also made sure to learn all of the definitions while doing this. Learning the concepts first is important, and then you can go on to doing lots and lots of exam questions, so use past papers, physics and maths tutor, exampro (if you have a log in), whatever resources you can find for questions really. Isaac physics is also good but the questions can be challenging. Remember to use correct significant figures (the lowest number of sf used in the question), units, learn SI units (eg. kilo, mega, giga). You might also get questions on practicals, so make sure you can read a vernier calliper etc. Finally, practice doing multiple choice questions under time pressure and how to quickly eliminate answers, timing in physics exams always seems to be a problem for even the fastest of people! I had some pretty poor teaching in physics last year, and in some mocks I got low percentages, which kind of disheartened me (however grade boundaries are very low remember, I couldn’t answer a fair bit in my AS exams and still came out with an A). But if you do plenty of practice, there’s no reason why you won’t get the hang of it and do great. Good luck with physics!
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pixels.avw
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First week of year 13:

I didn’t start lessons until Wednesday this week so I spent a lot of time on Monday and Tuesday finishing off summer homework (there was a lot). I had around 40 pages of maths questions in total, including exam questions, chapter exercises and MEI papers. I also finished off 2 sets of exam questions for biology and 4 papers for chemistry. I also spent some time practicing for the NSAA and reading a book on biochemistry.

On Wednesday when I went back, I had one lesson of chemistry, where we went over entropy and calculating it, I found this clarified a few things I’d read over the summer. Then, I had 3 free lessons, so I tried to do as many maths questions from the chapter exercises that I could. I managed to do more than I expected. After lunch I had double maths, where we started learning about sequences and series. Proving the formula for the sum of series was really interesting to me, but I felt like I’d have to go over it again to fully appreciate it. We did some questions on arithmetic and geometric sequences. The questions were relatively straightforward, but challenging enough that they weren’t boring. Overall, decent first day! I didn’t do any work that night after school as I’d had a few teeth out so I really didn’t feel like it.

On Thursday, I had no lessons so I spent the morning reading more of ‘The Chemistry of Life’ and making flashcards on sequences and series. Then in the afternoon, I did some logarithms practice because I realised in the lesson that it wasn’t something that was immediately obvious to me like it was a few months ago. Then in the evening I compared a few uni courses as I’m still unsure of all 5 of my choices.

That brings us to Friday, I had 2 frees in the morning so I did some maths homework and went back over the photosynthesis and respiration topics that we’d learnt after our AS exams. In double biology after this, we were asked to write out the stages of these processes so looking over them was helpful. We spent most of the lesson recapping this, and talking about extra reading and things we need to be doing throughout the year. Then, I had chemistry, and we learnt about Gibb’s free energy, which was very useful for clarifying the exergonic and endergonic reactions I’d read about in biochemistry texts. Last lesson my other chemistry teacher wasn’t here, so we didn’t really do any work for the lesson.

Tonight I’ve just been organising my folders, and I plan on trying to finalise my uni choices and reading some more. Hopefully this weekend will be productive, I have a lot of homework already.
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pixels.avw
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20/09/2018

So, this week I've basically been trying to keep on top of homework and notes before we get into the big rush of deadlines and assessments. I've given my personal statement to one of my biology teachers and one of my chemistry teachers to read over. My biology teacher got back to me on it a few days ago, she made some very helpful suggestions. The fact that she pretty much left the two main paragraphs and said they were good was promising. I should be getting feedback from my chemistry teacher tomorrow.

Today I had no lessons, so I decided to read a bit this morning, and then make notes on sequences and series because we went through the chapter pretty quickly during lessons and there's a lot of proofs to remember and understand. I actually got my AS maths papers back yesterday too, I did pretty much as I expected in both, not the best but not the worst. I got 71/100 in the pure paper, I knew that I'd messed up a few questions while I was doing it. The time pressure is the worst bit for me. In stats and mechanics I got 44/60. Throughout the year I'd been getting close to 100% in stats papers, and struggled more with mechanics. In the AS exam however, I got 67% in stats and 80% in mechanics, which just shows that exams don't always represent how confident you are with certain topics. I really need to work on my maths this year!

After this, I did some maths homework which was more sequences and series practice. I also did my biology homework, which was questions on photosynthesis and respiration, but they were OCR and I'm on AQA so at times they were asking things that aren't on my spec. Later on I went out, and now since I've come home I finished off those questions and made some notes on responses to stimuli, and even though I find neuroscience really interesting, this section about kinesis and taxes isn't that interesting to me. Hopefully it starts to get more exciting soon!
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Rolls_Reus_0wner
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
Year 13 Study Blog
Hi, welcome to my first study blog I decided to start one this year as a record for myself, and hopefully to motivate others doing A Levels.

About Me
I'm currently a sixth form student studying chemistry, biology and maths at a state school. My ultimate goal would be to study biochemical natural sciences at Cambridge (but I'm not sure if an offer is achievable). My aim for this year is 3A*'s.

GCSE's
I did 11 GCSE's and achieved 2 9's, 1 8, 7A*'s and 1A. I worked very hard for these grades and was very happy with them!

AS Levels
Chemistry A
Biology A
Mathematics A
Physics A
Once again, very pleased with these results and a lot of revision went into them. I decided to drop physics this year to focus on my other subjects.

A Levels
Chemistry (AQA), Biology (AQA), Mathematics (edexcel).

University Choices
Cambridge (natural sciences)
Durham (natural sciences)
Lancaster (natural sciences)
University (biochemistry OR natural sciences)
Nottingham OR York (biochemistry)
*As you can see, my last 2 choices are still up in the air at the moment. I'm very indecisive

I aim to update this blog regularly, I hope you can find some inspiration from it!:lazy:
Good luck! Hope you get into Cambridge!
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pixels.avw
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(Original post by Rolls_Reus_0wner)
Good luck! Hope you get into Cambridge!
Ah thank you! Honestly it would be a dream come true if I did, but hopefully I won’t be too disappointed if I don’t get an offer because I’m sure I’ll be happy wherever I end up
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Rolls_Reus_0wner
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
Ah thank you! Honestly it would be a dream come true if I did, but hopefully I won’t be too disappointed if I don’t get an offer because I’m sure I’ll be happy wherever I end up
Thats the spirit!

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pixels.avw
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21/09/18

I went into school for first two lessons today even though I had frees, and did some respiration revision for my test next week, as well as the biology exam questions I had for homework. Then I started some maths homework, but I didn’t manage to get much of it done. I also had to register for the NSAA this morning, so at least that’s one UCAS thing sorted!

Then, I had double biology where we did some more respiration and photosynthesis exam questions, I feel like I’ve done so many at this point I’m suprised there’s even any left! Hopefully it means the test won’t be too bad next week, but apparently it’s the test that most people have to resit so I’m not sure.

After lunch, I had 2 lessons of chemistry. In the first we did some rate equation calculations, finding the orders of the reaction etc. I actually quite enjoy them. My teacher also got back to me on my personal statement and said it was one of the best she’s read, which was really nice to hear. She told me one or two things I could add, which I have done, but I’m currently about 400 characters over the limit I’ll have to try and sort that out next week.

Tonight I’ve been desperately trying to compare unis once again, because I really can’t make my mind up between Nottingham and York as my 5th choice. They’re the only 2 unis I’m considering that I missed the open days for which isn’t making things easier. I’m hoping to have chosen by the end of next week, as well as having my personal statement sorted so I can just send my application off soon.

I have a lot of work to do this weekend so hopefully it’s a productive one!
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pixels.avw
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24/09/18

This weekend I managed to get a lot of revision for photosynthesis and respiration done, because I’ve been told that the assessment is a difficult one that most people have to resit. I read an article on the circadian rhythm and breast cancer for our journal discussion next week, it was really interesting. I also did some maths and my chemistry homework, but this week I need to focus on chemistry more because it ended up taking less of a priority last week. That being said, the kinetics and organic stuff we’re doing at the moment isn’t too difficult.

Today I had 3 lessons, all in the morning. In stats I we did some conditional probability, and using the union and intersection notation suddenly just clicked in my mind, before I used to struggle slightly when it came to 3 way venn diagrams but I managed to answer them all right today. I really enjoy things like probability because stats is my favourite part of maths. Then, I had pure maths where we were doing some binomial series, but when n is less than 1. I quite enjoyed it, I like the routine of doing binomial expansions.

After break I then had my biology test on photosynthesis and respiration, which I thought went okay, not as bad as everyone made it seem like it would be. However there were some questions that I know I answered wrong, so I still don’t think I did amazing, but I also hopefully didn’t fail. I might be getting the results back on friday but I’m not sure yet.

Then I went home, as I had no more lessons, and did some questions on response to stimuli for my biology homework. It’s really not my favourite topic, I just don’t like answering questions about the movement of insects through favourable and unfavourable conditions. Then I finished my chemistry rate questions, which wasn’t too bad, it’s actually quite enjoyable. After eating I made some notes on modelling with series, and continued doing the exercise on it. I’ve realised it’s around 20 questions long so it’s going to take a while. Now, I’ve been reading through some of the ecology sections for tomorrows lesson, about sampling, succession, abiotic and biotic factors in ecosystems. Last year I found this sort of stuff really boring but this year it looks more interesting. Hoping it stays interesting tomorrow!
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pixels.avw
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12/10/18

Sorry it's been a while since my last post! It's been a bit hectic with UCAS and everything. I finally sent off my application today though, and now I'm stuck refreshing my emails continuously to hear anything. I know that I shouldn't be fussing, I did only send my application this morning, but seeing others getting acknowledgements and even offers is making me impatient. I think just getting an acknowledgment email from one of my choices would put my mind at rest, but I'm not expecting anything until at least next week now. I'm going to try a new way of summarising my week through specific subjects.

Chemistry: I got my thermodynamics assessment back this week which I got 91% on! Totally unexpected but I was very happy with it. Kinetics and thermodynamics seem to come quite naturally to me which is nice, I suppose they follow on quite well from the AS chapters. We've also continued with organic, which I'm loving at the moment. We've been looking at chirality, ketones and aldehydes recently, which I just find really fascinating.

Biology: So I had to resit my photosynthesis and respiration assessment because I got 71% Not sure how it went yet, but hopefully I got over 75% so I don't have to resit again! I actually really enjoy the topic too, I just don't always say what the mark scheme wants specifically. We've also been looking at nervous responses, I find the PNS and CNS much more interesting than the start of the responses chapter. I've also been enjoying the nitrogen and phosphorus cycles, even though a lot of people seem to find it quite dull. I suppose it's the chemistry that makes it enjoyable for me.

Maths: Radians made my brain hurt a bit at first, but I'm starting to get used to them the more I use them. Stats has been interesting (it's my favourite part of maths). We've been looking at the normal distribution, and I feel like I'm understanding things faster than I usually do. We've nearly finished stats though, which makes me a little sad because I don't find mechanics as enjoyable.

Hopefully I'll hear back from one of my choices soon, but in the meantime I'll be sat impatiently
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nyxnko_
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I totally relate.. seeing people get offers already is making me very envious.. but i would much rather get a late acceptance than an early rejection so :dontknow:
Well done on those assessments!! :woo:
Good luck!! :rave:
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pixels.avw
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(Original post by nyxnko_)
I totally relate.. seeing people get offers already is making me very envious.. but i would much rather get a late acceptance than an early rejection so :dontknow:
Well done on those assessments!! :woo:
Good luck!! :rave:
Thank you! And yeah you’re right about the early rejection thing, I hadn’t thought of it like that. I got an acknowledgement from Lancaster this morning so now I’m happy that it’s at least being considered Good luck to you too!
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amypops
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
Year 13 Study Blog
Hi, welcome to my first study blog I decided to start one this year as a record for myself, and hopefully to motivate others doing A Levels.

About Me
I'm currently a sixth form student studying chemistry, biology and maths at a state school. My ultimate goal would be to study biochemical natural sciences at Cambridge (but if I don't get an offer I'm sure I'll be happy studying natural sciences anywhere). My aim for this year is 3A*'s.

GCSE's
I did 11 GCSE's and achieved 2 9's, 1 8, 7A*'s and 1A. I worked very hard for these grades and was very happy with them!

AS Levels
Chemistry A
Biology A
Mathematics A
Physics A
Once again, very pleased with these results and a lot of revision went into them. I decided to drop physics this year to focus on my other subjects.

A Levels
Chemistry (AQA), Biology (AQA), Mathematics (edexcel).

University Choices
Cambridge (natural sciences)
Durham (natural sciences)
Lancaster (natural sciences)
Leeds (biochemistry)
York (biochemistry)


I aim to update this blog regularly, I hope you can find some inspiration from it!:lazy:
Wow your grades are amazing!!! How do you revise for Bio Chem and maths. I do the same alevels. Also any textbook/websites that you used??? Your grades are just the dream, all the best!!
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nyxnko_
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
Thank you! And yeah you’re right about the early rejection thing, I hadn’t thought of it like that. I got an acknowledgement from Lancaster this morning so now I’m happy that it’s at least being considered Good luck to you too!
me neither :nah: an acquaintance said it and i was like, you know what? me too. at least, if they haven't rejected me yet, it means that i still have a chance, right?
love getting acknowledged they make me feel special
thank you :hugs:
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je m'en fiche
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(Original post by pixels.avw)
12/10/18

Sorry it's been a while since my last post! It's been a bit hectic with UCAS and everything. I finally sent off my application today though, and now I'm stuck refreshing my emails continuously to hear anything. I know that I shouldn't be fussing, I did only send my application this morning, but seeing others getting acknowledgements and even offers is making me impatient. I think just getting an acknowledgment email from one of my choices would put my mind at rest, but I'm not expecting anything until at least next week now. I'm going to try a new way of summarising my week through specific subjects.

Chemistry: I got my thermodynamics assessment back this week which I got 91% on! Totally unexpected but I was very happy with it. Kinetics and thermodynamics seem to come quite naturally to me which is nice, I suppose they follow on quite well from the AS chapters. We've also continued with organic, which I'm loving at the moment. We've been looking at chirality, ketones and aldehydes recently, which I just find really fascinating.

Biology: So I had to resit my photosynthesis and respiration assessment because I got 71% Not sure how it went yet, but hopefully I got over 75% so I don't have to resit again! I actually really enjoy the topic too, I just don't always say what the mark scheme wants specifically. We've also been looking at nervous responses, I find the PNS and CNS much more interesting than the start of the responses chapter. I've also been enjoying the nitrogen and phosphorus cycles, even though a lot of people seem to find it quite dull. I suppose it's the chemistry that makes it enjoyable for me.

Maths: Radians made my brain hurt a bit at first, but I'm starting to get used to them the more I use them. Stats has been interesting (it's my favourite part of maths). We've been looking at the normal distribution, and I feel like I'm understanding things faster than I usually do. We've nearly finished stats though, which makes me a little sad because I don't find mechanics as enjoyable.

Hopefully I'll hear back from one of my choices soon, but in the meantime I'll be sat impatiently
Hi, we do the exact subjects!!! I'm doing OCR so things might be slightly different but for Chemistry we are stilll going through thermodynamics which makes no sense to me. I am very much confused by it. Also just a question, how many tests do you have in a week?
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gw07mcgheerachel
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Good Luck!
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[QUOTE=pixels.avw;79789998]Year 13 Study BlogHi, welcome to my first study blog I decided to start one this year as a record for myself, and hopefully to motivate others doing A Levels.About MeI'm currently a sixth form student studying chemistry, biology and maths at a state school. My ultimate goal would be to study biochemical natural sciences at Cambridge (but if I don't get an offer I'm sure I'll be happy studying natural sciences anywhere). My aim for this year is 3A*'s.[size=4][color=
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