The Student Room Group

GCSE's in a month - How to get all 9's?

I'm currently working at 7/8 in all my subjects; here is a list of subject with recent mock grade.

English Literature: 8
English Language: 9
Maths: 7
Further Maths: N/A
Biology: 7
Chemistry: 8
Physics: 6
RS: 9
Mandarin: 7

I will want a clean sweep of 9's as I want to apply to universities like Cambridge or Oxford for Computer Science.

I'm willing to put the work in and have the motivation to...anyone got advice for how to revise though?
Practise your practicals and 6 markers for the sciences, and be brutal when self marking. If you don't mention a specific word, take away a mark. Do difficult maths questions that you don't know how to do yet in order to improve, do a lot of them, and stop going back to the comfortable and easy ones. Write practice essays for English Literature based on previous feedback and get more feedback as soon as you return. Do past papers for Mandarin and practise reading, writing, listening and speaking. Finally, practise Physics the most. Stay behind at lunchtimes and go through anything you don't understand and can't find online with your teacher, even if it has to be explained 4 times in a row. It is only embarrassing when you reach the exam and still don't know how to do it.

Good luck with your exams.
Original post by Joe6753
I'm currently working at 7/8 in all my subjects; here is a list of subject with recent mock grade.

English Literature: 8
English Language: 9
Maths: 7
Further Maths: N/A
Biology: 7
Chemistry: 8
Physics: 6
RS: 9
Mandarin: 7

I will want a clean sweep of 9's as I want to apply to universities like Cambridge or Oxford for Computer Science.

I'm willing to put the work in and have the motivation to...anyone got advice for how to revise though?



Hi there! Current Year 12 student, so I should be able to help you out.

Your results are already pretty good, I too had around the same grade profile as you at this time last year, and turned into eight grade 9s and 2 grade 8s, so you're on the right track for sure. I'm also sitting Mandarin GCSE this year (!) so, I understand your pain.

For your maths and sciences, practice papers and questions are the best way to go - I can recommend savemyexams.co.uk or Physics and Maths Tutor - you seem to have grasped the concepts, the things keeping you from higher grades is exam technique, using the right terminology etc. Keep checklists and make sure you understand all the concepts.

For English Literature - mind maps and practice essays, don't be afraid to use your teachers to mark additional essays for work - try search for exemplar essays online, pick up similar ideas which you can also reproduce in the exam. Original knowledge is key to getting a 9 in English Literature. Your exam board should also publish exemplar essays in their mark schemes, so take a look at them, and see what they're looking for. It really does help.

Now, Mandarin - ooh.. this is a hard one. Make sure you have your characters nailed down, I've taken a look at this year's advance info and it seems fine - just learn your writings. Having sat 3 other MFL GCSEs, just do that and you'll be fine.

If you need any more help, just reply :smile:
Original post by BarnabyK
Hi there! Current Year 12 student, so I should be able to help you out.

Your results are already pretty good, I too had around the same grade profile as you at this time last year, and turned into eight grade 9s and 2 grade 8s, so you're on the right track for sure. I'm also sitting Mandarin GCSE this year (!) so, I understand your pain.

For your maths and sciences, practice papers and questions are the best way to go - I can recommend savemyexams.co.uk or Physics and Maths Tutor - you seem to have grasped the concepts, the things keeping you from higher grades is exam technique, using the right terminology etc. Keep checklists and make sure you understand all the concepts.

For English Literature - mind maps and practice essays, don't be afraid to use your teachers to mark additional essays for work - try search for exemplar essays online, pick up similar ideas which you can also reproduce in the exam. Original knowledge is key to getting a 9 in English Literature. Your exam board should also publish exemplar essays in their mark schemes, so take a look at them, and see what they're looking for. It really does help.

Now, Mandarin - ooh.. this is a hard one. Make sure you have your characters nailed down, I've taken a look at this year's advance info and it seems fine - just learn your writings. Having sat 3 other MFL GCSEs, just do that and you'll be fine.

If you need any more help, just reply :smile:

what would you recommend for English Language??
and i agree, PMT is a godsend! :smile:
Original post by harlz_chalamet
what would you recommend for English Language??
and i agree, PMT is a godsend! :smile:


English language for me was infuriating in the way it was assessed, comprehensions and writing tasks aren't especially fun or easy to revise for. I think where most people fail is in understanding what the exam board wants. You can write in perfect, clear, and refined English, and still struggle to get a 7. Write to fit the mark scheme, that's all I can really recommend tbh.
Reply 5
Original post by BarnabyK
Hi there! Current Year 12 student, so I should be able to help you out.

Your results are already pretty good, I too had around the same grade profile as you at this time last year, and turned into eight grade 9s and 2 grade 8s, so you're on the right track for sure. I'm also sitting Mandarin GCSE this year (!) so, I understand your pain.

For your maths and sciences, practice papers and questions are the best way to go - I can recommend savemyexams.co.uk or Physics and Maths Tutor - you seem to have grasped the concepts, the things keeping you from higher grades is exam technique, using the right terminology etc. Keep checklists and make sure you understand all the concepts.

For English Literature - mind maps and practice essays, don't be afraid to use your teachers to mark additional essays for work - try search for exemplar essays online, pick up similar ideas which you can also reproduce in the exam. Original knowledge is key to getting a 9 in English Literature. Your exam board should also publish exemplar essays in their mark schemes, so take a look at them, and see what they're looking for. It really does help.

Now, Mandarin - ooh.. this is a hard one. Make sure you have your characters nailed down, I've taken a look at this year's advance info and it seems fine - just learn your writings. Having sat 3 other MFL GCSEs, just do that and you'll be fine.

If you need any more help, just reply :smile:


How are you going about revising Mandarin?

For speaking, I'm going to learn my general questions answers.

For reading, listening and speaking, I'm doing Quizlets to learn English to Chinese and also character recognition.

Just not sure about writing.
Original post by Joe6753
How are you going about revising Mandarin?

For speaking, I'm going to learn my general questions answers.

For reading, listening and speaking, I'm doing Quizlets to learn English to Chinese and also character recognition.

Just not sure about writing.

I have speaking in exactly a week, I'll just go over the flashcards for the general questions, the speaking isn't too bad for me as you can easily score high marks.

I do character recognition through quizlet, I think for this year they can't test us outside the defined vocabulary, (which is 900 characters I think) so I'm aiming to learn it all by next month.

For writing, I've been doing practice paper worksheets for characters - I've been doing this for a few years though so I have an OK grasp of characters, I'm not ethnic Chinese though and haven't been going to Chinese school so it's taken a bit. If you aren't solid on writing, I wouldn't focus on that now tbh. Learn a few essays on family life, jobs, etc and just try copy it out to your best. No point trying to learn to write 900+ characters.
I think for English Language. Realise that 50% of your paper is Essay/creative writing based. You need to prep drafts of this outside of the exam and refine it consistently based on teacher/tutor feedback. You can't truly improve any essay based subject without external feedback. i would say there are about 25 descriptive writing titles you can work on. And with article you need to learn how to persuade ultimately.

Rinse and repeat until all your drafts are at grade 9 standard. You can't expect to get a grade 9 in the final exam if you can't score that mark under non exam conditions.

Also search up this on youtube:
How to get Grade 9s in any GCSE - Oxford Educated Tutor 2022. I am not sure if youtube posts are allowed on here.
Reply 8
Original post by BarnabyK
I have speaking in exactly a week, I'll just go over the flashcards for the general questions, the speaking isn't too bad for me as you can easily score high marks.

I do character recognition through quizlet, I think for this year they can't test us outside the defined vocabulary, (which is 900 characters I think) so I'm aiming to learn it all by next month.

For writing, I've been doing practice paper worksheets for characters - I've been doing this for a few years though so I have an OK grasp of characters, I'm not ethnic Chinese though and haven't been going to Chinese school so it's taken a bit. If you aren't solid on writing, I wouldn't focus on that now tbh. Learn a few essays on family life, jobs, etc and just try copy it out to your best. No point trying to learn to write 900+ characters.


If you do AQA, there's the advanced info for writing topics. Maybe preparing an essay on the 6 topics would be good, as you'd have 3 options for Part A and B so you're bound to cover both topics at the very least.
Exactly what I'll be doing - I'm not worried about the first 3 exams. Listening, Speaking and Reading is always easy. It's just the writing, but we have until June 6!
Reply 10
Original post by BarnabyK
Exactly what I'll be doing - I'm not worried about the first 3 exams. Listening, Speaking and Reading is always easy. It's just the writing, but we have until June 6!


Yeh haha, got a 14 day gap with no exams to cover chemistry, Chinese further maths and physics 🥰😍
Reply 11
Original post by BarnabyK
I have speaking in exactly a week, I'll just go over the flashcards for the general questions, the speaking isn't too bad for me as you can easily score high marks.

I do character recognition through quizlet, I think for this year they can't test us outside the defined vocabulary, (which is 900 characters I think) so I'm aiming to learn it all by next month.

For writing, I've been doing practice paper worksheets for characters - I've been doing this for a few years though so I have an OK grasp of characters, I'm not ethnic Chinese though and haven't been going to Chinese school so it's taken a bit. If you aren't solid on writing, I wouldn't focus on that now tbh. Learn a few essays on family life, jobs, etc and just try copy it out to your best. No point trying to learn to write 900+ characters.


Hi!
I am also doing Mandarin Chinese for gcse this year and thanks for the tip about worksheets for characters!

please may you send the link of the 900 character Quizlet as it sounds really useful

wishing you the best luck in your gcses!
Reply 12
Original post by BarnabyK
I have speaking in exactly a week, I'll just go over the flashcards for the general questions, the speaking isn't too bad for me as you can easily score high marks.

I do character recognition through quizlet, I think for this year they can't test us outside the defined vocabulary, (which is 900 characters I think) so I'm aiming to learn it all by next month.

For writing, I've been doing practice paper worksheets for characters - I've been doing this for a few years though so I have an OK grasp of characters, I'm not ethnic Chinese though and haven't been going to Chinese school so it's taken a bit. If you aren't solid on writing, I wouldn't focus on that now tbh. Learn a few essays on family life, jobs, etc and just try copy it out to your best. No point trying to learn to write 900+ characters.

Hi!
I’m also doing Mandarin Chinese, wishing you luck on your exams.
Would it be possible if you could share the link to your Quizlet as it sounds really useful?
Original post by Joe6753
I'm currently working at 7/8 in all my subjects; here is a list of subject with recent mock grade.

English Literature: 8
English Language: 9
Maths: 7
Further Maths: N/A
Biology: 7
Chemistry: 8
Physics: 6
RS: 9
Mandarin: 7

I will want a clean sweep of 9's as I want to apply to universities like Cambridge or Oxford for Computer Science.

I'm willing to put the work in and have the motivation to...anyone got advice for how to revise though?

Everyone seems to like these here - https://sndppynloq2.typeform.com/freemocktests?utm_source=tsr

this is a form for free mocks that are happening every week. I wasn't on the last mock but my friend told me they added their own sample papers but you can write past papers too and they mark some of the papers afterwards.
Original post by Joe6753
I'm currently working at 7/8 in all my subjects; here is a list of subject with recent mock grade.

English Literature: 8
English Language: 9
Maths: 7
Further Maths: N/A
Biology: 7
Chemistry: 8
Physics: 6
RS: 9
Mandarin: 7

I will want a clean sweep of 9's as I want to apply to universities like Cambridge or Oxford for Computer Science.

I'm willing to put the work in and have the motivation to...anyone got advice for how to revise though?


Hi, you seem to have really great grades! At this point I would recommend constant past paper and practice questions to make sure you are applying your knowledge - I would also write a checklist of all my topics and go through the ones I am weak at to ensure I am comfortable with the spec. For sciences and maths, past papers are the key. For english and perhaps RS, again past papers are great, but also making sure you know your quotes (for english lit and RS) and can think of good points to go with it. For mandarin, a 7 is an excellent grade, again practice is really good, and make sure you are consistently practicing your characters, as that is essential for exams like writing and reading. PMT and MME Revise have great revision paper and notes, as well as that, use youtube channels like gcse maths tutor and freesciencelessons, as they use the spec for their resources. Keep up the good work and good luck in your exams!
Hey, I have no gcse advice but just want to say that Oxbridge won't care if you get all 9s
They look to see if you've got good gcses (all above 7/8) but having all 9s will put you at no/ a very small advantage to other candidates because they base offers on much more than gcses

Quick Reply

Latest