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Anyone else have a DC doing Cambridge IGCSE in sciences?

(9 Posts)
Asterisk Fri 21-Feb-14 23:35:54

Is it just me, or is the chemistry exponentially harder than the biology and physics? Huge amount of content and difficult theory.

LadyMaryLikesCake Fri 21-Feb-14 23:39:13

Yup. Ds say's chemistry is far harder than any of his other subjects. I've had a look at what he's doing and it looks more like As level Chemistry then GCSE.

ThreeBeeOneGee Sat 22-Feb-14 07:57:13

DS1 has just started these courses. First tracker tests results:
Biology: A*
Physics: A
Chemistry: B

He blames the Chemistry teacher for being ineffective (DS1 is 14 so nothing is ever his fault).

I think that both the Chemistry and the Physics seem much harder than the GCSEs I did in 1989, but the Biology seems similar.

Suffolkgirl1 Sat 22-Feb-14 08:11:19

DS is doing these, he finds the chemistry easy but struggles with the biology. Particularly the practical exam which he had a disaster with in his mock. His mock results (minimal revision as lazy toad) were chemistry A*, physics A snd Biology B.
His teacher has told him that these courses are great for those wanting to do A level Sciences, but probably not so good for others.

ThreeBeeOneGee Sat 22-Feb-14 09:10:06

these courses are great for those wanting to do A level Sciences, but probably not so good for others.

I would agree with that. Having compared each syllabus, they are definitely harder than the AQA GCSE courses, but students would be better prepared for Science A-levels.

Asterisk Sat 22-Feb-14 09:31:18

Suffolkgirl I'm amazed that your DS could do so well with minimal revision. There are lots of uses of chemicals to learn, detailed steps in various processes, tests for anions and cations, names of organic compounds.... I can see how a bright child can 'get' the formulae balancing and the stuff that relies on logic, but that's quite a small proportion as far as I can see. The extended theory paper is a killer! My DD wants to do well but each practice paper brings on a fresh wave of despair!

basildonbond Sat 22-Feb-14 09:36:40

Ds did these last year - at one point it looked like he was going to get a C in both chemistry and physics with a B on biology - he did some intensive revision in the summer term (talk about leaving it to the last minute and ended up with A* in biology and As in the other two

He is bright but not what I'd call a natural scientist so they are do-able with a bit of concentration

Suffolkgirl1 Sat 22-Feb-14 09:49:24

Chemistry is his best subject it just seems to click for him. He is considering chemical engineering at uni. His school teach the sciences starting in year 9, even though other gcses do not start until year 10, so he has had 2.5 years at it.
The CIE science exams are very early this year, his biology practical is the day after May day!

LadyMaryLikesCake Sat 22-Feb-14 11:25:11

Ds dropped biology (he wants to study Law so it's not a biggie) and is doing chemistry and physics (he's good at maths and physics is very maths based so it made sense). Both subjects are far more advanced then the combined science GCSE that I studied, and I know that the things he's learning I studied at A'Level. He's a bright boy so he 'gets it' but it does look very difficult.

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