[Exam Cram] Biology Revision Chat Thread Watch

SarcAndSpark
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Hey

So, on TSR we are currently running our "exam cram" revision support- with a focus on a different subject each day.

Today's focus is biology to help everyone prepare for GCSE paper 2 and the upcoming A-level exams.

I thought it would be good to set up a chat thread for people to discuss their biology revision, and ask any quick questions they have about biology and the exams.

I'm currently a trainee biology teacher, and happy to try to answer any questions about subject content, exam technique and so on. I'm most familiar with AQA at GCSE and Edexcel at A-level. I hope others will be happy to jump in any answers and advice they have too!
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RB2001
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Hi! I have Bio AQA paper 1 coming up on the 6th June and I am aware that in terms of the practical based questions for that paper, we can only be asked on practicals 1-6. However, apart from the general questions which I think I am good at, I'm not sure if we require to know the specific method or plan for each practical?
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by RB2001)
Hi! I have Bio AQA paper 1 coming up on the 6th June and I am aware that in terms of the practical based questions for that paper, we can only be asked on practicals 1-6. However, apart from the general questions which I think I am good at, I'm not sure if we require to know the specific method or plan for each practical?
Hi

I'd suggest having a look at the past papers available on AQA's website here:
https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/scie...ment-resources

From a quick look, it does look like you are expected to be able to give a basic method for practicals, including explaining which variables you would control for and how.

Maybe make flash cards for the method for each practical and test yourself on them? It's something you can learn by rote and could be some easy marks.
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rohika
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What’s the easiest way to remember protein synthesis? Is there any acronyms or mnemonics?
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RB2001
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That makes sense, thank you!
(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Hi

I'd suggest having a look at the past papers available on AQA's website here:
https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/scie...ment-resources

From a quick look, it does look like you are expected to be able to give a basic method for practicals, including explaining which variables you would control for and how.

Maybe make flash cards for the method for each practical and test yourself on them? It's something you can learn by rote and could be some easy marks.
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by rohika)
What’s the easiest way to remember protein synthesis? Is there any acronyms or mnemonics?
Hi

Is this for A-level or GCSE? There are differences in what you need to know.

I don't know of any acronyms or mnemonics, although others might.

I'd suggest writing out each step and drawing a picture to go with it- the dual coding will help information go into your memory. You could also make these into flashcards and try to memorize them that way!
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rohika
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Hi

Is this for A-level or GCSE? There are differences in what you need to know.

I don't know of any acronyms or mnemonics, although others might.

I'd suggest writing out each step and drawing a picture to go with it- the dual coding will help information go into your memory. You could also make these into flashcards and try to memorize them that way!
GCSE aqa biology (triple)
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by RB2001)
That makes sense, thank you!
Glad you think it's helpful! Good luck!
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by rohika)
GCSE aqa biology (triple)
For GCSE, you don't need to know too much detail.

I'd break it down into steps:

1. DNA codes for amino acids. The amino acids must be in the right order for the protein to work.
2. 3 bases code for an amino acid.
3. When a protein is needed, the relevant section of DNA is unwound/unzipped.
4. Messenger RNA/ mRNA is used to make a copy of the relevant section. (TRANSCRIPTION)
5. This can leave the nucleus and travel to a ribosome.
6. Amino acids float freely in the cytoplasm, bound to tRNA with a specific code.
7. This matches with the mRNA at the ribosome in the correct order to make the right amino acid sequence (TRANSLATION).

You could try drawing a picture of the DNA/RNA at each step to help you remember. There's quite a good video here too:
https://www.bbc.com/bitesize/guides/z9pkmsg/revision/8

To remember the difference between transcription and translation:

Transcription is where one type of nucleic acid (DNA) is directly copied into another kind (RNA). It still uses bases, so it's the same "language".

Translation is like changing the nucleic acid into another language, the language of amino acids and proteins.

I hope this helps a bit!
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rohika
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
For GCSE, you don't need to know too much detail.

I'd break it down into steps:

1. DNA codes for amino acids. The amino acids must be in the right order for the protein to work.
2. 3 bases code for an amino acid.
3. When a protein is needed, the relevant section of DNA is unwound/unzipped.
4. Messenger RNA/ mRNA is used to make a copy of the relevant section. (TRANSCRIPTION)
5. This can leave the nucleus and travel to a ribosome.
6. Amino acids float freely in the cytoplasm, bound to tRNA with a specific code.
7. This matches with the mRNA at the ribosome in the correct order to make the right amino acid sequence (TRANSLATION).

You could try drawing a picture of the DNA/RNA at each step to help you remember. There's quite a good video here too:
https://www.bbc.com/bitesize/guides/z9pkmsg/revision/8

To remember the difference between transcription and translation:

Transcription is where one type of nucleic acid (DNA) is directly copied into another kind (RNA). It still uses bases, so it's the same "language".

Translation is like changing the nucleic acid into another language, the language of amino acids and proteins.

I hope this helps a bit!
Thank you xx
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by rohika)
Thank you xx
That's ok, I hope it helps!
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SARAHHHHK03
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(Original post by rohika)
What’s the easiest way to remember protein synthesis? Is there any acronyms or mnemonics?
Just remember there are 2 steps:
1) Transcription
2) Translation
Hopefully then that will be enough for you to recall your memory of what happens at each stage and if you're panicking in the exam and can't remember anything - just write what they do for example at transcription, the code is copied or 'transcript-ed' onto the template strand...
Hope that helped!
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rohika
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(Original post by SARAHHHHK03)
Just remember there are 2 steps:
1) Transcription
2) Translation
Hopefully then that will be enough for you to recall your memory of what happens at each stage and if you're panicking in the exam and can't remember anything - just write what they do for example at transcription, the code is copied or 'transcript-ed' onto the template strand...
Hope that helped!
Thank you x
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SARAHHHHK03
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Hey, do you have any predictions for the GCSE Triple Biology Paper 2? Anything you'll reckon might come up? Also what practicals would you predict?
Thanks
Hey

So, on TSR we are currently running our "exam cram" revision support- with a focus on a different subject each day.

Today's focus is biology to help everyone prepare for GCSE paper 2 and the upcoming A-level exams.

I thought it would be good to set up a chat thread for people to discuss their biology revision, and ask any quick questions they have about biology and the exams.

I'm currently a trainee biology teacher, and happy to try to answer any questions about subject content, exam technique and so on. I'm most familiar with AQA at GCSE and Edexcel at A-level. I hope others will be happy to jump in any answers and advice they have too!
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by SARAHHHHK03)
Hey, do you have any predictions for the GCSE Triple Biology Paper 2? Anything you'll reckon might come up? Also what practicals would you predict?
Thanks
As we've only been through one exam cycle, it's pretty hard to question spot at this stage!

The required practicals for AQA are reaction times (ruler drop), field investigation (quadrat sampling) and for biology only plant responses (growing new seedlings) and decay (milk at different temperatures over time). As there's only 4 required practicals for this section of the course, I'd suggest they've all got a good chance of coming up, and if you know them well, they could be some easy marks.

I've got a thread here with all the subject content for paper 2:
https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5972852

I wouldn't like to say what will/won't come up at this stage.

If you're looking for somewhere to focus your revision right now, I'd say instead to focus on "Amber" topics, topics where you know a bit but not a lot and can easily get some extra marks out of the topic. Now isn't the time to be focusing on stuff you really struggle with- but you can still gain marks on things you've got some idea about but don't know that well.
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Alex Taylor
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You do need to know a very specific method for the practicals. The website “Physics and Maths Tutor” has questions for every exam board for each topic in the A-Level and has practical revision resources as well!
(Original post by RB2001)
Hi! I have Bio AQA paper 1 coming up on the 6th June and I am aware that in terms of the practical based questions for that paper, we can only be asked on practicals 1-6. However, apart from the general questions which I think I am good at, I'm not sure if we require to know the specific method or plan for each practical?
You
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by Alex Taylor)
You do need to know a very specific method for the practicals. The website “Physics and Maths Tutor” has questions for every exam board for each topic in the A-Level and has practical revision resources as well!

Second this recommendation- physics and maths tutor is a really great resource for exam past paper questions by topic. They cover most boards at GCSE too for all sciences.
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islahikaye
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Im taking aqa bio. Im struggling with the stuff about the eye. So any help on that would be much appreciated
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imogen28
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
For GCSE, you don't need to know too much detail.

I'd break it down into steps:

1. DNA codes for amino acids. The amino acids must be in the right order for the protein to work.
2. 3 bases code for an amino acid.
3. When a protein is needed, the relevant section of DNA is unwound/unzipped.
4. Messenger RNA/ mRNA is used to make a copy of the relevant section. (TRANSCRIPTION)
5. This can leave the nucleus and travel to a ribosome.
6. Amino acids float freely in the cytoplasm, bound to tRNA with a specific code.
7. This matches with the mRNA at the ribosome in the correct order to make the right amino acid sequence (TRANSLATION).

You could try drawing a picture of the DNA/RNA at each step to help you remember. There's quite a good video here too:
https://www.bbc.com/bitesize/guides/z9pkmsg/revision/8

To remember the difference between transcription and translation:

Transcription is where one type of nucleic acid (DNA) is directly copied into another kind (RNA). It still uses bases, so it's the same "language".

Translation is like changing the nucleic acid into another language, the language of amino acids and proteins.

I hope this helps a bit!
If we’re talking about aqa gcse this is more detail than we need - @rohika I’d recommend looking at the specification to see exactly what you’re required to know
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by islahikaye)
Im taking aqa bio. Im struggling with the stuff about the eye. So any help on that would be much appreciated
I'd suggest getting a diagram and practice labelling:

•retina•optic nerve•sclera•cornea•iris
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