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Is it common to feel stupid at the start of A levels?

Feeling frustrated bc i feel stupid in a level phyics. I like physics because it's interesting.
Yes this is pretty normal. There is a big jump between GCSE and A-level, particularly in physics. You can speak to your teacher if you're concerned, but for me it took at least a couple of terms to start feeling more comfortable with the new content and question style
Original post by serterweryerper
Feeling frustrated bc i feel stupid in a level phyics. I like physics because it's interesting.


Hi @serterweryerper,

Please don't worry too much about this, you will definitely improve and understand stuff more as time goes on.

Many people forget when going from GCSE's to A-Levels is that you used to study around eight subjects to it then becoming three in much more detail then before.

I didn't study the same as you however I do remember feeling disheartened at the beginning of A-Levels due to the grades/marks I was achieving. However, you can't come into A-Levels expecting to get A's from the beginning as your teachers/markers are looking for different things to what was expected of you during your GCSE's.

Give yourself the time to improve, when I was at college we did tests every half-term so I would say see if you improve in them over time and if not then I would recommend speaking with your teacher. See if they can recommend any resources to you that could be useful or any tips on stuff you are struggling with.

Hope that helps! Let me know if you have any questions :smile:

Rebecca
3rd Year Geoenvironmental Hazards Student
Reply 3
Original post by serterweryerper
Feeling frustrated bc i feel stupid in a level phyics. I like physics because it's interesting.


Yes - you haven't touched the subject for nearly thre months ... it's normal. This is why we set holiday work ...
Reply 4
Original post by serterweryerper
Feeling frustrated bc i feel stupid in a level phyics. I like physics because it's interesting.

oh my gof i am having the exact same issue rn😦😦 i was few marks off a 9 in gcse & thought i’d be able to handle a level just fine but i literally do NOT understand any of the content at all!!!!!!! but i don’t want to change to anything else bc it’s the only other subject i’d be willing to study🥲 (any tips btw)
Original post by j3llyf1sh
oh my gof i am having the exact same issue rn😦😦 i was few marks off a 9 in gcse & thought i’d be able to handle a level just fine but i literally do NOT understand any of the content at all!!!!!!! but i don’t want to change to anything else bc it’s the only other subject i’d be willing to study🥲 (any tips btw)

I kinda forgot about this post and coming back to it I really wonder why I am so quick to just give up. It's obvious that GCSEs and A-Levels are two worlds apart, and it's shown me that you have to be motivated and consistent to learn and revise and not give up quickly. I've made sure that I can keep on top of revision daily (reviewing notes and doing any homework and asking teachers for clarification w/ anything), ensuring it's at least an hour a day.

With the A-levels right now, I find that how I find them always varies, with some topics I understand quickly, whereas some topics I might spend more time studying until I get it. Hopefully you can eventually get the hang of the A-Levels you are studying!
Reply 6
Original post by serterweryerper
I kinda forgot about this post and coming back to it I really wonder why I am so quick to just give up. It's obvious that GCSEs and A-Levels are two worlds apart, and it's shown me that you have to be motivated and consistent to learn and revise and not give up quickly. I've made sure that I can keep on top of revision daily (reviewing notes and doing any homework and asking teachers for clarification w/ anything), ensuring it's at least an hour a day.

With the A-levels right now, I find that how I find them always varies, with some topics I understand quickly, whereas some topics I might spend more time studying until I get it. Hopefully you can eventually get the hang of the A-Levels you are studying!

thank u sm for replying !!!!! again i’m experiencing the same thing, currently finding that im slowly beginning to understand it. went to my teachers for help & got a better grade than id predicted in our first mini test which i’m super proud of😊 to anyone reading who’s also struggling w physics , there’s no shame in asking for help!!! it’ll be worth it , & keep going !!!!!!!!!!😊😊😊
Reply 7
ive been told before that the jump from gcse to a level is more noticeable than the jump from a level to uni, im year 13 so can’t vouch for that being true, but it seems pretty realistic
I’ve also been told (by a year head) that it’s harder to get an E at a level than a 9 at gcse, the workload is so much bigger BUT you will get used to it, if you’re not comfortable by October half term then there might be cause for concern

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