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Difference between normal books and revision books for science AS level textbooks Watch

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    Okay, so I've seen two types of textbooks for AS level. There's either revision books which are shorter and more concise or there is normal books (sometimes called textbooks/study books) which are longer and explain things more.

    So basically, I was wondering whether the study books for were those mainly looking for background information purely out of interest or self studying their entire AS level or does everyone need to learn and memorize the study books in order to get a grade A or would the revision guides be enough?

    Wouldn't the revision guides cover everything you need to know point by point to the specification? The text/study books tend to have newspaper articles, long chunks of text and some bits of information seem a little too detailed or irrelevant to the specification..

    So what do you think? For biology and chemistry, would it be okay to attend all lessons at school and then use the revision guides - would that be okay for a grade A?

    Did you guys use the revision guide only or the study/textbooks too, to get a grade A? Do you think the study/textbooks help a huge amount?

    Thanks
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    did my AS's this year, was heavilly dependent on the text books which were needed to learn the entire course in detail as needed to get A's and used my notes from class as a revision sourse...
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    From my experience of A-levels the revision books never went into enough depth, but on the flip side they were straight to the point unlike textbooks.

    They both have their good and bad points so just use both.
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    (Original post by Grapevine)
    From my experience of A-levels the revision books never went into enough depth, but on the flip side they were straight to the point unlike textbooks.

    They both have their good and bad points so just use both.
    This.
    Also, textbooks are better at helping you understand in depth, which is useful if you've got a real interest in the subjects.
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    I don't think the revision guides are very useful.

    I'll give you my two cents' worth...

    You want to have the textbook - no questions there. When you come to revise, the first time you go through the material, you cover it slowly. You read the textbook in all its detail (yes skipping the crap like newspaper articles fine), and you fully understand the concepts. Then next time you come to the topic, you have the textbook, flick through each page making sure that you remember what was being said on that page, the concepts, diagrams, etc. Each time you come back to the topic, you are able to go through it much quicker, reading less of the textbook as you remember more of the info. So by the day before the exam, you can just flick through the textbook as though it were a revision guide!

    My school always gives us revision guides and I don't use them until the day before the exam / morning of the exam just so I can go through the whole material in half an hour. Other than that, I don't use the revision guides, and I think that I would be fine without them.

    If you are going to buy just one, make sure it is the textbook!


    The above works for me: it might or might not for you, but you do need the detail that the textbook gives you.
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    Thanks to everyone who posted so far! Really helpful and rep will be given .
    (Original post by Mr Nonsense)
    I don't think the revision guides are very useful.

    I'll give you my two cents' worth...

    You want to have the textbook - no questions there. When you come to revise, the first time you go through the material, you cover it slowly. You read the textbook in all its detail (yes skipping the crap like newspaper articles fine), and you fully understand the concepts. Then next time you come to the topic, you have the textbook, flick through each page making sure that you remember what was being said on that page, the concepts, diagrams, etc. Each time you come back to the topic, you are able to go through it much quicker, reading less of the textbook as you remember more of the info. So by the day before the exam, you can just flick through the textbook as though it were a revision guide!

    My school always gives us revision guides and I don't use them until the day before the exam / morning of the exam just so I can go through the whole material in half an hour. Other than that, I don't use the revision guides, and I think that I would be fine without them.

    If you are going to buy just one, make sure it is the textbook!


    The above works for me: it might or might not for you, but you do need the detail that the textbook gives you.
    Hey, thanks so much for your post You seem to have 2 AS subjects in common with me (chemistry and maths). So just wondering whether you have the list of the all the chemistry/maths textbooks and revision guides you used? Also, what were your predicted grades?

    And how much did you revise per day per subject for your january unit 1 exams?
    Also, did you make loads of notes from the textbooks or did you just read read read?
    Thanks a lot!
    xxx
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    (Original post by Princestia)
    Thanks to everyone who posted so far! Really helpful and rep will be given .


    Hey, thanks so much for your post You seem to have 2 AS subjects in common with me (chemistry and maths). So just wondering whether you have the list of the all the chemistry/maths textbooks and revision guides you used? Also, what were your predicted grades?

    And how much did you revise per day per subject for your january unit 1 exams?
    Also, did you make loads of notes from the textbooks or did you just read read read?
    Thanks a lot!
    xxx
    maths - didn't use a textbook. Don't even possess any
    chemistry - school revision notes and OCR A official textbook, whoever that is published by

    I am hoping for all A*s over the 2 years :p: and got 100% in both my science modules in Jan, and hoping for the same in 20 days time!

    I don't make notes - I do what i said above. Reading, memorising, reciting. I only use a pen for past papers - and do as many of those as you can get your hands on, regardless of whether they are wrong board, etc.
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    I just used the textbooks. We didn't get given revision books and I didn't buy any myself. If your school gives you them, you might as well use both but personally I saw it as a waste of money to buy them.
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    Biology had to use official Endorsed book...No way was i gonna use a revision guide.

    Chemistry I used CGP :ninja:.....Was actually really useful and got straight to the point. Also included past questions.

    Whats a Maths revision guide :s: :p:
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    (Original post by Mr Nonsense)
    maths - didn't use a textbook. Don't even possess any
    chemistry - school revision notes and OCR A official textbook, whoever that is published by

    I am hoping for all A*s over the 2 years :p: and got 100% in both my science modules in Jan, and hoping for the same in 20 days time!

    I don't make notes - I do what i said above. Reading, memorising, reciting. I only use a pen for past papers - and do as many of those as you can get your hands on, regardless of whether they are wrong board, etc.
    :O dude u got 11 A*s at gcse and now hoping for all A*s at A level? You're a genius! :O

    Ohh would you please please be able to find the ISBN or author or something for that chemistry book since I think there's quite a few ocr endorsed textbooks out there for AS/A2 level? Also, what helped you more - the revision notes from school or that book? - did u use any other books as well?

    By the way, I was wondering what it is with AS levels that makes it so hard? since most people hear the word gcse and say it's really easy and not challenging but when it comes to AS level and then A2 level too, people say: you need to revise like 7 hours a day to be able to get a grade A? So, I'm wondering what makes AS levels so difficult? - The amount of content, the difficulty of the content,the exam questions style (e.g. questions not asking what's in the book but more testing u thinking yourself rathet than stating facts?) or just something else?

    Thanks a lot

    P.S how did u learn/revise,etc.. maths?
    cheers x
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    (Original post by Grapevine)
    From my experience of A-levels the revision books never went into enough depth, but on the flip side they were straight to the point unlike textbooks.

    They both have their good and bad points so just use both.
    I would agree with this and to add advice from my personal experience of biology and chemistry, I recommend you study from the chunky textbooks first and then use the thin revision guides much closer to the exam. As somebody said, they used their revision guides the night before or even on the morning of the exam which is what I did - just to act as a memory jogger which made me remember "oh, I know this, and this, and this. I'm confident. :cool:"

    Don't prefer the revision guides just because they're thin and straight to the point - that's not always the best option when exams can be detailed and broad in questioning.
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    Thanks to all those who have posted All really helpful

    It's just that when I looked at a few past papers, I looked up the answers in a revision guide (only like 50 pages for a whole unit - biology) and all the answers required for the exam were able to be found in the revision book.

    Even for questions like, describe 4 adaptions to a mamallian's lungs or something along those lines, and it was a 5 mark question and the 5 points stated to get the full 5 marks were also found in the revision guide. So that's why I was asking

    Thanks to all those who responded and I would be very grateful for further posts

    x
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    (Original post by Princestia)
    Thanks to all those who have posted All really helpful

    It's just that when I looked at a few past papers, I looked up the answers in a revision guide (only like 50 pages for a whole unit - biology) and all the answers required for the exam were able to be found in the revision book.

    Even for questions like, describe 4 adaptions to a mamallian's lungs or something along those lines, and it was a 5 mark question and the 5 points stated to get the full 5 marks were also found in the revision guide. So that's why I was asking

    Thanks to all those who responded and I would be very grateful for further posts

    x
    Yeah many times the revision guides get straight to the point and give you just what you need to know for the exam, just like the example you mentioned.

    However, they are not always like this! A lot of exam questions will not be so simple such as "describe X features of Y"; they will be much more demanding and test your understanding which you won't get from these simplistic revision guides. They give you a lot of basic facts and alone, you could get a reasonable grade just using them, but if you're aiming high (above a low B) - leave them alone and use a real textbook.
 
 
 
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