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How to prepare for new AS's

(15 Posts)
BlueBelle123 Sat 06-Feb-16 15:21:36

DD is in year 12 and has AS's this summer however, a couple of her subjects are new Specifications and so there are no past papers, just samples.

How would be the best way to revise, would it still be worth doing past papers in that board even though spec has changed and style of questions. Any advice would be gratefully received!

OkaZaki Sat 06-Feb-16 16:42:59

Still worth doing recent past papers. School should have access to software that builds papers relevant to new spec from older questions (AQA have Exampro and Edexcel have Examwizard). She should be able to ask her teacher.

BlueBelle123 Sat 06-Feb-16 16:51:07

Thanks OkaZaki that's really useful didn't know such software even existed!

OkaZaki Sat 06-Feb-16 19:59:24

Yes but too expensive for anyone other than a school to get. You can use it to make question packs by topic or type too so if she is very proactive she could ask for specific things

Katnisnevergreen Sat 06-Feb-16 20:17:35

Depending n the subject it is not worth using recent old spec papers!! History has completely different criteria and question stems this year from previous ones. Avoid giving advice if you don't know the specs please

BlueBelle123 Sat 06-Feb-16 22:05:30

Its Chemistry & Biology.

OkaZaki Sat 06-Feb-16 22:22:35

In which case my advice is relevant

OkaZaki Sat 06-Feb-16 22:35:44

In any case my advice involved talking to her teacher so I don't feel bad about giving advice without knowing the spec. Her teacher would know if the format had changed completely.

Katnisnevergreen Sat 06-Feb-16 23:07:59

It's content as well as question style which have changed across almost ALL the subjects, not just history, that's just one of the subjects I teach as an example. Check before handing out advice

Kitla Sat 06-Feb-16 23:15:50

Agreed - definitely DO NOT do past papers, unless you know the mark scheme has not changed that much - very dodgy advice! In one of my subjects, the requirements have totally flipped, so what would have previously got an A is now only worth a C, and what was previously a C, could now get you an A.

Your best bet is to speak to the teacher, although it is really the blind leading the blind. I'm teaching a new spec this year, and I don't have access to any more info than the students. I'm modelling questions on the ones in the authorised text books as I was told at training that for my subject, that the questions would be similar for them to be approved by the exam board. However, this assumes your teacher was allowed to go on training. In these days of cut budgets, many of my teacher friends are not being allowed to go on the training courses, because schools can't afford the cover.

Sorry, that's not much help, but it is pretty shitty for those in the first year of their exams.

glamourousgranny42 Sun 07-Feb-16 07:37:37

Use the sample papers. Most textbooks have exam style questions in them particularly the exam board approved ones. Ask the teacher if they know of any revision guides to go with the new spec. I'm in the same boat (psychology ) and I'm relying on the samples, books and my own creativity!

ChopsticksandChilliCrab Sun 07-Feb-16 07:45:09

DD is doing chemistry but not bio. We have bought her the latest edition CGP revision books plus DD has got a copy of the syllabus to cross check against. It is a worry.

BlueBelle123 Sun 07-Feb-16 10:45:35

My theory was by doing past questions, although the style of question may have changed surely the content is pretty similar and you are getting practice at apply your knowledge surely the more you apply it hopefully the better it will be retained, which I feel is better than constantly reading your notes.

DD is not a high flyer and her weakness has always been exam technical ie actually applying what she knows. She can't keep doing the same sample paper!!!! I know its the same for everyone but this situation is far from idea for DD sad

catslife Sun 07-Feb-16 14:11:43

There is less variation between the different exam boards for the new AS Chemistry so you could also try sample papers from the other exam boards! Edexcel have had multiple choice Qs on A level papers for several years fo example.
I have only looked in detail at the AQA spec and the Organic Chemistry doesn't seem to have changed in content (same mechanisms and reactions) and the old paper 1 Foundation chemistry questions are all still relevant. There are some topics such as Equilibrium constants and Kinetics that used to be split between AS and A2 and have now been moved to AS. So unfortunately your dd will also have to look at some relevant Qs from old A2 papers as well.
Some schools may provide students with edited versions of past papers soon.

BlueBelle123 Sun 07-Feb-16 16:11:48

Thanks catslife that is extremely useful, DD's board has just brought in multiple choice which threw her and so to be able to practice those would be great.

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