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Hi, I am a tutor with 20 years experience of tutoring Biology.

What topics are you having difficulty with?

Best, Jon Clark

  1. Past papers - as everyone here has already said, this is the key way to familiarise yourself with how exam questions should be answered. Doing an exam is a skill in itself!
  2. Feedback - ensure that your teacher(s) is (are) giving you plenty of timely feedback on previous mock papers, work you've done for them, even how you have structured your notes. They're paid to support you, and although they'll never be able to give you as much time as you need get what you can.
  3. Peer review - get others in your class to look over practice exams you've done, as often they will notice why you didn't get a mark for something when you don't see why.
  4. Role play - when you do a practice exam think of it like an exam, pretend it's real. Zero distractions, timed, no cheating, and always remember to make no assumptions about what the examiner thinks.
  5. Take care of yourself - always remember to take care of your body, mind and spirit when studying, burnout will help no one.
  6. Get a tutor - but then I would say that!
  7. Re-revise - don't just revise something once. Re-revise it after a couple of days, and then re-re-revise it after a week or two.
  8. Read the question - underline key words in the question, don't just write what you know. The number of exam questions I've given zero marks for, full of accurate science but completely irrelevant to the question... Makes me want to cry sometimes!
  9. Traffic Lights - assess your weakest areas and revise these in particular. When a teacher, tutor or fellow student asks what you need help with you need to give them a straight answer, for example "I don't understand what is the difference between magnification and resolution?" not "I don't understand microscope stuff."
  10. Subliminal revision - if recalling facts is your main problem come up with revision you can't avoid - posters in the bathroom, bedroom and kitchen - apps on your phone with a reminder set - revision cards that fit into a coat pocket.

Whatever happens, Moni, all the best with your retake - you will do fine!

As well as practice papers and mark schemes, exam boards often publish the examiners' notes. These give you more insight into what they were looking for, and the common mistakes candidates made. They are well-worth looking into if you are polishing your technique.

Make sure you are answering the question they ask, which means understanding their language and differentiating between when they want a statement of fact, an explanation or a deduction/suggestion.

One other resource that is useful when working through past papers plus their markschemes, is taking a peek at the 'Examiner's Report' for the questions; particularly if you have found them difficult.  The markscheme outlines the correct answer, whereas the Examiner's Report identifies where the greater number of students have made mistakes. 

Keywords!  Ensure that you have a list of these for each topic and that you understand what they mean (in context); definitions also - straightforward learning of them as given in your specification textbook. Biology is 'wordy' and it is so important to get those words in the correct order and context! 

Many students have a good knowledge and understanding of the specification, but are unable to access exam questions. In other words, many fail to recognise exactly what is being asked and how to answer. Get hold of as many past exam papers as you can (available to download for free from Exam Board websites). You must stick rigidly to the mark scheme when reviewing your work. If possible, get someone else to mark your answers, even if they have no understanding of Biology (in which they will have no option but to stick to the MS). You will begin to see which type of questions come up often, and how they should be answered.

Most of all, it sounds obvious, but READ THE QUESTION and any associated information thoroughly. The examiners never include anything that is not completely necessary in a question. If it's there, you need to read and use it!

Hello, 

I can help you out as I am offering tuition.


I have achieved A*AAB in my A-Levels in Geo,Chem,Bio and Phy 

I guarantee you will achieve the same if not better. 

Ok well, basically I prepare you for your exams in the best possible way. 

I have lots of notes and extra reading material. Also, I know a few top rated websites for Past Papers and understanding difficult topics. 

I will definitely exam you every week. These questions would be from past papers of course. I would identify your weakness and work on that will you merely practice your strengths. 


Other than that, I would definitely produce a timetable and work accordingly. As you may of heard that the January Exams no longer exist. But don't worry I did all of my exams for AS and A2 in the summer-time.


Hi

Well I would use the tried an tested ways. Including, going through past papers, identifying areas of weakness, revisiting the topic, and doing more past papers. Brainstorming topics and quizzes also help.

hi , yes i got grades C & D , so i need to retake, how could you offer  techniques / assistance ?

Monica

Hi

I may be able to help. Have you already taken the Unit 1 exam and want to retake?

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