The jump from GCSE to AS can seem very daunting at first. As a GCSE student you’ll have done, on average, around 10 subjects with the focus on memorising and learning the content. With A-levels your subjects will be reduced to 4 or 5 but you’ll need to actually understand them and use your own initiative a lot more.
You should also have a genuine interest in your chosen subjects as this more ‘Advanced level’ will delve into a lot more detail. There will also be higher workloads, depending on the difficulty of the subject. For example Chemistry and Maths are known to be a lot more challenging at AS level.
All of this should be taken into consideration when it comes to choosing which A-level subjects you’re doing and why. You should also research the syllabus of any new subjects that weren’t covered in your GCSEs.
You should talk to your tutor about the best suited subjects for any degree you wish to pursue at university. If you’re uncertain which career path you’re taking than go with what interests you the most. If you don’t have full engagement in your subjects then you’ll certainly struggle when it comes to completing any extra work or reading to achieve higher grades.
You should also be wary of taking too many subjects although you can drop some at the end of the first year which may help if you’re torn at the beginning.
There are gradual changes to the A-level system over the next few years that are worth knowing about and will affect you if you started your AS after September 2015.
Eventually the AS level will no longer count towards an overall A-level grade. There will no longer be an exam in January but the overall grade with lean more on exams than coursework.
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