Now, I have talked about A-Levels being hard and daunting but there are some students who will go into A-Levels thinking that they’re easy. I am not saying that this is a bad mindset to have because it’s not, it’s good in regards to the fact that you are very confident in your abilities. But please try and make sure that you don’t take A-Levels lightly and do every piece of work to the best of your abilities. Anything less than full commitment and you are bound to fail. This may be a slap in the face to some people, but those GCSE’s that you have under your belt hold no significance when it comes to A-Levels. If you’ve done amazingly well in GCSE’s then well done, but don’t think for one second that those A*’s at GCSE will mean you’re going to replicate that at A-Levels without hard work and perseverance. Make sure that you’re one of those students who wants to get the highest in the class through hard work and make sure that, once you’re at the top, you work even harder to stay at the top. Don’t settle for anything less than your very best. I’ve seen some very smart students get sloppy because of their lifestyle and their attitude towards learning. One thing they all have in common; regret. They all regret not putting in 100% in every exam they did, every topic test and so on. Then results day comes and that famous line comes out again and again; “I wished I revised more and worked harder than I did”. I was never that student and now I am off to the University of Birmingham to study Mathematics. Hopefully this acts as an incentive for all students doing A-Levels. Put in as much effort as you can for the next 2-3 years and enjoy the successes of it for the rest of your life!
Towards the beginning of any subject you do at A-Levels, you will probably get lots of homework and will be overpowered by the difficulty of the subject content. The main thing I will say is do not give up! I am talking from my own experiences so I know what I am saying. I went from learning conduction and convection in GCSE Physics to the Photoelectric Effect at A-Level. This overwhelmed me and I thought of dropping it straight away because I believed at the time that I wouldn’t get the grade I wanted. My family then said “stick it out for at least a month or two and if you still don’t like it then change it”. So I listened to them and within that month, the topic I hated became easier because of me making notes on the topic and asking the teacher for further explanation. In A-Level Physics, I managed to get an A and this was down to my positive attitude. So my advice to you students struggling at the start, wait it out and make notes on the topics that you can’t quite grasp. Ask teachers for extra help because in A-Levels, time is of the essence so you may not cover the topic you’re struggling with in a lot of detail. I would also recommend you reading around the topics that you’re struggling with.
There are some do’s and dont’s on your first day of A-Levels. Let me get the boring stuff out the way first. Bring the required stationary; pens, pencils, ruler and if you’re doing maths, a calculator. Blah blah blah, you know the rest. You’ve heard teachers tell you this a million times and you don’t take it in because it’s a teacher who’s told you this. But listen to a fellow student. Stationary is important and I strongly believe that if you are organised, then this will help you that little bit more in A-Levels. Also, bring a notepad to make a lot of notes in. This is one key difference between GCSE’s and A-Levels. At GCSE, you can blag your way through the entire year, revise the day before the exam by looking at some past papers and scrape a C. If you think you can do that at A-Levels, think again mate. With A-Levels, notes are crucial. So make sure that’s in your shopping list before you go to school. Also, sit next to people that will help you progress further in that particular subject. Yes, I know that it’s ‘cool’ to sit with your friends, but sometimes they hold you back and the ‘banter’ takes over which interferes with your education. To really do well in A-Levels, you have to concentrate at all times and sometimes, friends stop you from doing this. By sitting with someone clever, you kind of inherit their mentality in that subject and you will definitely feel a change, believe me. Ask the teachers what the specification is like. This will allow you to know what it is you’re actually learning in the subject. This is helpful in two ways. The first way; if you look at the specification and you don’t like the topics, you can change that subject to another one that you prefer before it’s too late. The second way; if you know what topics you are learning, you can plan ahead and make notes on those topics or just read about it so that when that topic comes up in class, you will already be familiar with it.
The main thing you shouldn’t do is take A-Levels lightly. This will probably be included in every one of my posts but I cannot stress enough how many students mess up because they thought the subject was easier than it actually was. This is where asking the teacher for the specification is helpful because you will know what you’re getting yourself into right from the get go. Even though A-Levels are hard, they are most definitely doable. All you have to do is revise smart and make notes that will help you with your final exam. Don’t just jot everything down. Jot down things that are important. If the teacher goes onto the next slide without you making notes, tell them. I’ve had some teachers do that to me and I was very verbal with them. Everything you need to smash your A-Levels, I will help you with that. Anything you need help on specifically, contact me. Look on the About page for details.
Every student, including myself, will have a positive attitude at the start of the year in September. What every student doesn’t realize is the fact that A-Levels are a massive jump from GCSE’s. In fact, I wouldn’t even call it a jump. It is more like a leap of faith! If you think I’m exaggerating and are willing to mess up your A-Levels, then click on a new tab and delete this one. If you want to be successful in your A-Levels then listen to what I say and take heed from my advice. I am saying this because I done extremely well at GCSE, getting 3A*’s, 3A’s and 4B’s. I got a D as well, but we’ll ignore that for the time being. I then went onto A-Levels with the mindset of probably most individuals. I thought ‘Oh, well A-Levels are going to be easy, there are only 4 of them’. How wrong I was! A-Levels suck up your time and even some of your friends away from you like a space-time continuum. I managed to get AAC at the end of my two years of A-Levels in Maths, Physics and English respectively, so I must have done something right. This is because I learned how to adapt to the difficulty of it very quickly. I am not quite sure that everyone has this adaptability ingrained in their mindset. So for those of you who haven’t got that mindset and even for those of you who do, keep reading and learn how to prepare for A-Levels.
I felt compelled to help people prepare for their A-Level examinations as soon as I finished mine because I knew the difficulty of it and the worst part of it, for me, was the beginning because you’re not quite sure how hard they’re going to be. School will not condition you to believe that A-Levels are hard which is wrong because then students will enter their first year of A-Levels thinking that it’s easy and 8/10 students will not get the grades they wanted or expected. This will lead to heartbreak and will hinder their chances of going to university or do an apprenticeship. So this website will endeavor to help all students on preparing for A-Level examinations