How much harder are A- Levels compared to GCSE???

  • 2 votes

For my A-Levels i chose Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths...(I must be crazy!) and i wanted to know what to expect next year. Everyone says that A-Levels are super hard but how much harder?

Posted Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 18:53 by Me

19 Answers

  • 7 votes

i do all of those subjects plus critical thinking (which is pointless btw) and its really good if your willing to do the work and i definately underestimated it when i took my first exams in jan so i had to resit my chem and bio. it is really fun and you learn so much  and its good if you want to do medicine or something similar but if your not sure about what you want to do then dont take these because you crush any oppertunity of becoming anything with a humanity based feild. i want to be an astrophysisist but originally wanted to be a doctor so it worked out ok for me! trust me if you really like that kind of thing then you should really go for it because it is awesome and make sure you read into the subject or buy new scientists every few  months just to keep track of sciency things happening in the world!

it is really good but a big jump from GCSE and my teachers said that usually the people who get A*s at gcse will get an A at alevel and if you get an A then a B at alevel ...etc...

yeah so you dont have to give up all of your spare time just to do science and maths , just be  aware that theres more hours needed than GCSE

hope this helps =D

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 19:14 by olivia
  • 3 votes

A-levels are a LOT harder, but not quite as hard as you'll be told they are, in my honest opinion. If you're prepared to put the work in, you can get through A-levels with decent grades. :) And I'm doing similar subjects: Chemistry, Biology and Maths, and Psychology at AS (which I dropped), so trust me, if you're prepared to put in the effort to get your head around it all and remember what you need to know, you'll do well.

Sciences have a reputation for being the hardest A-levels there are though (especially biology), so good luck. :)

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 19:11 by Fool
  • 2 votes

I am going to do the same subjects as you and i was wondering the same thing ? :) 

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 18:55 by Lil W
  • 2 votes

Apparantley an A grade in GCSE is worth a C grade in A level, so i think it is quite a bit harder at A Level, but i havent even finished GCSE yet.

Answered Sun 12th June, 2011 @ 17:07 by Joe
  • 1 vote

any advice for me?

im taking bio,chem, psychology and history.

i do triple science now, but it will be my first ever experience of psychology.

however i havn't done history at GCSE, (i wanted to do english lit at a level but by school option blocks didnt allow it) - so my only other option was history...what do you think my chances are? think studies include ireland and china! 

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 19:29 by JNicole
  • 1 vote

just to add I'm doing 5 a-levels next, 3 of then being foreign languages. Am I crazy? :P

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 19:42 by Kelly:)
  • 1 vote

Thanks peeps!!!Really helped!

i feel a little less pessimistic about my choices now; everyone kept telling me i'm crazy for choosing these subjects :( (not as crazy as Kelly:) lol) and i was seriously considering changing my options. Thank you!

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 19:58 by Me
  • 1 vote

don't feel pessimistic about them, if they're what you enjoy and want to do in the future, then go for it! haha, thanks :P

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 20:07 by Kelly:)
  • 1 vote

Aowa , if you really want to do psycology 7 people in my year are doing psyco (which is over half my year) and they really love it they say that its really interesting although a lot of work but it really enables you to think in another way!!

another 2 of my year are doing history without having done it at GCSE and they say its really fun and you dont need any prior experience with history and as long as you can write a balanced argument youll be fine!! i dont know about the topics though so you may need to check it out from your teacher or some other people from the year above you in your school!! good luck in choosing and a bummer about the option blocks...=D

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 20:11 by olivia
Edited by olivia on Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 20:15
  • 1 vote

Much harder, don't be put off though, just make sure you keep on top of things, even if it means you miss your tv programme or whatever.

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 22:49 by a
  • 1 vote

just to kelly who said that shes worried about her choices now, if you like them/ are good at them then there should be no problem :) i did 3 sciences and an essay subject and im finding them so much easier now that im enjoying them ...

and in answer to the actual question, the first exams are the hardest because they are so new and different but once you have done those its far easier to learn what you need to revise and how it would be easiest to revise. 

ALSO how difficult you fond each subject is entirely down to how much work you do for it in the end :S it sounds really obvious but you don't realize how much difference it makes until you fall behind XD but i'm sure you will do well if you're good at and enjoy your subjects :D

Answered Mon 6th June, 2011 @ 22:59 by Pandora Lusby
  • 1 vote

Yeah I was really surprised at the Jump between GCSE and AS levels, all the subjects kept saying how much harder it would be but tbh I didn't believe them. I don't do any of those subjects but for me though, it was more about the quantity of stuff we learn than actually understanding the concepts. At GCSE we would spend 2 weeks on a topic that would be covered in one lesson at AS level.

But you have to remember you also have less subjects, more free periods, and I found you had much better support from teachers (and also friends doing the same subject) than GCSE so you just deal with it. I wouldn't worry too much, just don't let things slip because it's much harder to catch up than GCSE. Good Luck **

Answered Tue 7th June, 2011 @ 12:53 by E. Frostydino
  • 1 vote

the subjects you choose are very demanding but all as levels are and it depends on your work ethic to see if you are likely to succeed.

the main thing to realise with a levels as with any subject your are doing they are building blocks for the future, and without a good foundation it is hard to succeed unless u win the lottery. :)

good luck in september with your a levels

Answered Tue 7th June, 2011 @ 21:36 by Tiffany
  • 1 vote

I know lots of people who do that combination of subject, and yeah to me it does seem a little crazy but then they say to me "oh god i can't believe you take English". You're probably gonna be spending about 4 hours a week on each subject so it's gotta be something you're interested in.

From what i've heard from my friends and teachers, they're are known for being difficult subjects for a reason but in a way it's good to take a combination like that because chemisty/biology overlap a lot, and depending on your modules in maths so do maths and physics. Also, it seems to me as an outsider to the subjects that another benefit to maths science subjects is that the exam really is a good test of your ability. If you understand the material then you're likely to get a good mark (if you put the work in) whereas with subjects such as english, philosophy, economics sometimes the exams can throw a curveball that you know or you don't regardless of the amount of revision.

Speaking of which, one of the big differences i've found between AS and GCSE is that the specification as AS is sooo much more vague which makes revision much harder.

Answered Tue 7th June, 2011 @ 23:59 by E. Frostydino
  • 1 vote

yeah i'm doing the exact same subjects next year in year 12 but I believe that life is not fun without a challenge, so what if it is hard its not rocket science is it?

Answered Thu 9th June, 2011 @ 20:56 by Nazia Master
  • 1 vote

hi, i also picked exactly the same subjects, and i'm not going to lie they are really hard, however if you are prepared to put in the effort they can be the best decision ever. I really picked these subjects as i enjoyed subjects which had a specific answer (e.g 2+2=4, and not english where the examiner decides) but wish you the best of luck, i have got my real exams in january and i am actually looking forward to them :))) best of luck, thanks **

Answered Thu 1st December, 2011 @ 16:27 by MU
  • 1 vote

paople say i'm crazy too :) i want to take maths, further maths, physics, chemistry and goegraphy.

My physics teacher said i should go for it if i'm gonna work hard :)

Answered Thu 1st December, 2011 @ 19:01 by Natalia
  • 1 vote

think of it as the following, 

in GCSE we all (majority) used to complain about the number of subjects we had and the work there was

In A level, it is a lot more detail, more pressure, more exams (1 set every 6 months for some), and the subjects excuse cannot work

A level is a transition from high school to university, it is difficult but once you get past this, university will be a lot easier

Answered Fri 2nd December, 2011 @ 22:51 by Former Member
  • 1 vote

In my opinion I think A-level is a very big jump from GCSE as there is more to do and a lot of time needs to be spent revision, if your a person who will start revising from day one then yeah go for your chosen subjects but if u won't bother then its going to be very tough. For example, maths needs a revision before and after lesson in order to achieve your grade, biology there are lots of processes that will be in great great great detail to understand and learn, chemistry there will be a lot of high level stuff u will need to deal with, physics will have a loooooooooot of formulas to learn. 

Don't forget this 'quality is more important than quantity', meaning that its better to have 3 A's or A*'s than to have 4 low and high grades. As the subjects u have chosen are 1 of the toughest A-levels.

Answered Sat 3rd December, 2011 @ 00:19 by TAZ