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GCSE options

I have to pick my GCSE’s and I basically know what I’m going to pick except for two things which is really frustrating me. I have to pick between geography and history, both which I don’t love, and I don’t hate them both either. I have to pick one of them and I’m kinda bad at them both in general. I’m really bad at writing and I’ve been told history is ALOT of writing, but I also get really bored of random stuff like rocks and stuff, and I have also heard that’s all you do in geography. I really just don’t know which to pick because I’m good at both as long as it’s not a lot of writing. I would choose history but it’s just the writing aspect which is really putting me off because I’m just so bad at it.
Could someone please help me because I’m really struggling and I have to decide by two weeks so I’m really stressing.
I just feel like I won’t get so good in both.
Also, does anyone have any tips on how to write essays better since that’s what I am like super bad at and I just get no marks on them.
Reply 1
Original post by Heythere…
I have to pick my GCSE’s and I basically know what I’m going to pick except for two things which is really frustrating me. I have to pick between geography and history, both which I don’t love, and I don’t hate them both either. I have to pick one of them and I’m kinda bad at them both in general. I’m really bad at writing and I’ve been told history is ALOT of writing, but I also get really bored of random stuff like rocks and stuff, and I have also heard that’s all you do in geography. I really just don’t know which to pick because I’m good at both as long as it’s not a lot of writing. I would choose history but it’s just the writing aspect which is really putting me off because I’m just so bad at it.
Could someone please help me because I’m really struggling and I have to decide by two weeks so I’m really stressing.
I just feel like I won’t get so good in both.
Also, does anyone have any tips on how to write essays better since that’s what I am like super bad at and I just get no marks on them.

I took geography for GCSE so i can only give you a viewpoint on that, I wouldn’t say it’s all rocks and stuff. Its split into 2 parts: human geography and physical geography. A lot of the physical side is to do with rivers, volcanoes and some case studies. The human side is more to do with push/pull factors and migration, I personally found human geography much easier than physical. In geography there was one 8-marker per paper i think, which wasn’t too bad, but at the end of the day the decision is up to you and what you think you would enjoy the most.
Reply 2
GCSE History is really long as depending on the courses that your school chooses you will have to do a lot of memorization but in terms of writing it's not really that much in my opinion
Reply 3
Original post by HT_3105
I took geography for GCSE so i can only give you a viewpoint on that, I wouldn’t say it’s all rocks and stuff. Its split into 2 parts: human geography and physical geography. A lot of the physical side is to do with rivers, volcanoes and some case studies. The human side is more to do with push/pull factors and migration, I personally found human geography much easier than physical. In geography there was one 8-marker per paper i think, which wasn’t too bad, but at the end of the day the decision is up to you and what you think you would enjoy the most.

Is the mark scheme for geography hard? Someone I know from year 10 was telling me how no one understood the geography test when they got it. Also, do you think geography is a boring subject? I get bored quite easily and people always call me lazy, I don’t want to do a subject which I’m just going to end up regret doing.
Reply 4
Original post by Itz_TN
GCSE History is really long as depending on the courses that your school chooses you will have to do a lot of memorization but in terms of writing it's not really that much in my opinion

Is history long as in boring
lol I’m rubbish at everything but memory is the only thing I’m good at so seems like that’ll be alright for me
The thing is my school is a private school so they use a different exam board and stuff
Yeah I did ask me teacher and he said it’s a lot of writing as in 16 marker questions and stuff which seems fine but honestly all my marks are lost for writing tasks and everything. Literally I think I’ve done well and I end up getting 43%
(edited 2 months ago)
Reply 5
Original post by Heythere…
Is the mark scheme for geography hard? Someone I know from year 10 was telling me how no one understood the geography test when they got it. Also, do you think geography is a boring subject? I get bored quite easily and people always call me lazy, I don’t want to do a subject which I’m just going to end up regret doing.

Yeah, of course, no subject is easy but some are easier than others. For example, in geography after a while you will get familiar with the mark schemes and you will be able to predict what the mark scheme says. Personally i always found history boring, but i found parts of geography boring too. It honestly depends on your personal opinions on the things covered in each subject; i would recommend talking to someone in a higher year that may be able to help give you more of an insight
Reply 6
Original post by Heythere…
Is history long as in boring
lol I’m rubbish at everything but memory is the only thing I’m good at so seems like that’ll be alright for me
The thing is my school is a private school so they use a different exam board and stuff
Yeah I did ask me teacher and he said it’s a lot of writing as in 16 marker questions and stuff which seems fine but honestly all my marks are lost for writing tasks and everything. Literally I think I’ve done well and I end up getting 43%

As I don't really know what topics your school is offering for history I can't really tell you if it would be boring ad it generally depends on you as a person.For me I'm doing edexcel gcse history-cold war and superpower relations,weiar and nazi germany and also migrants in Britain c800-present and I would say that memorisation of the key dates and details as well as the different structures for the question is the hardest part.

P.s If you want more information
Number 1 talk to the geography and history teachers
And also I can find out from a friend who takes both geography and history to say the pros and cons of both subjects as I can only speak from my perspective
I chose to do both geography and history and am predicted 8/9 in both subjects.
I am really enjoying history but finding geography a bit of a drag.
It’s not difficult but there is a lot of fairly dry content. I find it’s just not as interesting as history. You will have to remember facts/dates/stats of some kind for both subjects and they both involve longer answers in part of the exams too. Don’t worry though your teacher will help you learn how to construct your answers.
My advice is to go with whatever you find the most interesting (or least boring).
Reply 8
Original post by Heythere…
I have to pick my GCSE’s and I basically know what I’m going to pick except for two things which is really frustrating me. I have to pick between geography and history, both which I don’t love, and I don’t hate them both either. I have to pick one of them and I’m kinda bad at them both in general. I’m really bad at writing and I’ve been told history is ALOT of writing, but I also get really bored of random stuff like rocks and stuff, and I have also heard that’s all you do in geography. I really just don’t know which to pick because I’m good at both as long as it’s not a lot of writing. I would choose history but it’s just the writing aspect which is really putting me off because I’m just so bad at it.
Could someone please help me because I’m really struggling and I have to decide by two weeks so I’m really stressing.
I just feel like I won’t get so good in both.
Also, does anyone have any tips on how to write essays better since that’s what I am like super bad at and I just get no marks on them.

Hey! Im an A-level geography student in year 13 and id deffo recommend geography at GCSE! there's this stereotype that all you learn about is rocks which isn't true at all, there's a massive range of topics which I found really interesting. I didn't do
history at GCSE but I heard that its a lot of writing and if you're not keen on that id deffo consider geography as its not too
wordy as the longest questions are 6 markers with 3 spag marks. There's a lot of 1 and 2 markers so it doesn't feel too wordy at all. Geography at GCSE isn't too hard imo and its a nice one to revise for as you can make a lot of posters and mind maps to help you remember case studies!
I hope this helped and if you have any more questions let me know! :smile:
Reply 9
Heyy, I'm currently in year 11 and am finishing my final year doing GCSE History. In my opinion, it is extremely truthful when people say history has A LOT of content. Each unit consists of many mini units which makes it impossible to revise and entire unit within one sitting. However, people who take geography and history have told me that history is more interesting whereas gepgraphy is "easier". My exam board for History is AQA, if your exam board is the same i can tell you stuff that the teachers won't before you pick it. So let me know! Also btw i sometimes find myself saying "Why didnt I pick geography?"
Reply 10
Original post by retroconn
Heyy, I'm currently in year 11 and am finishing my final year doing GCSE History. In my opinion, it is extremely truthful when people say history has A LOT of content. Each unit consists of many mini units which makes it impossible to revise and entire unit within one sitting. However, people who take geography and history have told me that history is more interesting whereas gepgraphy is "easier". My exam board for History is AQA, if your exam board is the same i can tell you stuff that the teachers won't before you pick it. So let me know! Also btw i sometimes find myself saying "Why didnt I pick geography?"

Yeah, I’m pretty sure our exam board is AQA as well
Ok that really helps me because I was still rlly confused about what to pick
Reply 11
Original post by Heythere…
Yeah, I’m pretty sure our exam board is AQA as well
Ok that really helps me because I was still rlly confused about what to pick

AQA consists of four papers and you will do two of them at a time in a two-hour sitting. I wish I had known this before picking it because it makes revising for it extra hard.

Within two hours you will do:

Elizabethan England

Health and the people (This topic has a lot of dates and people to remember)

These two exam structures are:
Q1- how convincing is this source (8 marks where you will need to do two high-quality paragraphs or three)
Q2- explain the significance of ... (8 marks same structure)
Q3- write a detailed account of (8 marks)
Q4- historical site or explain the influence of ... on ... (16 marks- 4 detailed paragraphs)

During the two hours you will answer a set of these for each of the two papers.

and then you will do another two-hour sitting of two German exams (which are a little easier due to it having different questions to the other two and has more lower mark questions.)
I only do geography and I chose this purely knowing that I'm more suited for 'factual' recall and 'shorter' based questions. Whereas History is very much essay based which I don't go well with. In my view I like geography more, sure it's quite boring, but for me it's more just revising a lot of content. For History, there are times where its more fun and engaging, but then exam time seems way more stressful with the essays.

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