GCSE Science

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GCSE Science Exam

GCSE Science Exam is a compulsory option but you can choose to study it in different ways. Your choice at this stage can affect which A-level subjects you study and the university course you take in the future.

There are 3 ways you can study GCSE Science Exam:

  • Core Science or Combined Science
  • Double Science or Double Award Science (Core Science plus one additional science subject)
  • Triple Science or Triple Award Science (Biology, Chemistry and Physics as separate subjects)

Here we are focusing on the first option above, Core GCSE Science Exam. You will understand what you need to learn plus find some great examples of helpful science study notes and top revision tips and exam advice below.

Keep reading below to get started improving your GCSE Science Exam revision.

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GCSE Science Exam Subject Overview

The core science subject touches on each of the three areas of science:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics

We will break-down each of these areas to understand what you should expect, the topics you need to cover for your exam and bonus tips to help you get the most form your revision.

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Biology

Biology is the study of living organisms (animals, plant, fungi and micro-organisms) and their interactions with each other and the environment. We study the natural world to improve our lives and create a sustainable world for future generations.

The key areas you need to revise are:

  • Cell Biology: Identify cell types, their functions and understand cellular respiration. You need to be able to describe the growth of cells through mitosis and meiotic cell division.
  • Transport Systems: As well as the complex human circulatory system, you need to understand the transport system in plants and within cells.
  • Health & Disease: You will learn about certain diseases, their cures and preventative measures including HIV/AIDS.

Biology Topics

  • Nerves & Hormones: Describe the role of hormones such as adrenaline in the body. Practice drawing the structure of the nervous system and receptive organs.
  • Photosynthesis: Outline the process of photosynthesis and explain the effect of factors such as light and temperature on the rate of photosynthesis.
  • Ecosystems: Keep track of key definitions such as biodiversity plus how various factors can affect a habitat. You also need to be aware of environmental processes such as the carbon cycle.
  • Inheritance & Genetics: This section focuses on DNA and the process of cell division. You also need to work on genetic diagrams to understand how genetic disorders are inherited.

Chemistry

Chemistry is the study of matter in terms of composition, structure and reactions. We also study elements of the earth, atmosphere and the environment.

You need to have an understanding of:

  • Atomic Structure: This section will give you a foundation for studying chemistry by learning about atoms. You will also learn the elements of the modern periodic table.
  • Chemical Bonding: Here you will study the different types of chemical bonds; ionic, covalent and metallic bonding. You also need to understand the states of matter (solid, liquid, gas) and how matter can change state.
  • Chemical Changes: You need to write chemical symbols, formulas and equations. You should also understand the reactions of matter as well as the chemistry of acids.
GCSE Revision Timetable

Chemistry Topics

  • Energy Changes: This area largely focuses on endothermic and exothermic reactions and their explanations.
  • Rates of Chemical Reactions: Know how to measure the rate of a reaction and factors affecting the process.
  • Chemical Analysis: This involves purifying and separating mixtures plus calculations such as using the law of conservation of mass.
  • Chemical Industry: There are 3 topics; lifecycle assessment and recycling, crude oil and cracking and extracting and purifying metals.
  • Earth and Atmospheric Science: Along with studying the composition of earth, you will learn how it is damaged by greenhouse gases and atmospheric pollutants.
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Physics:

Physics is the study of energy, forces, waves, mechanics and the structure of atoms and the physical universe. Put simply, physics is the study of matter, energy and the interaction between them.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Energy: Do you know the different types of energy and how it can be transferred? Don’t forget to revise renewable energy and how it can be conserved.
  • Forces and Motion: There is some mathematical equations involved in your study of force. Along with speed, velocity and other equations you need to understand and use Newton’s Law of Motion.
  • Waves: The theory of Waves in physics requires you to know features and types of waves. You will also learn about the areas of light and sound in physics.

Physics Topics

  • Electricity: For your exam, you will be studying electrical safety, domestic use, circuits, current, voltage and resistance.
  • Magnetism and Electromagnetism: This can be a fun topic in class as you get to play with magnets! The real magic is learning about magnetic fields.
  • Particle Model of Matter: The particle model of matter refers to the states particles are in and how physical changes are different from chemical changes.
  • Atomic Structure: Here you will learn about the structure of atoms in terms of how they are charged, their size and what they are composed of.

Gcse Science Exam Revision & Tips

There are certain studying method methods which work particularly well for the study of life that is science. We’re giving you a head-start with some key advice that will help you prepare for the GCSE Science exam:

1. Use Flashcards to Learn Definitions

More than any other subject, GCSE Science exam involves learning a huge amount of definitions, facts, functions and applications. Flashcards are the easiest and quickest way to test your knowledge, review topics and improve your memory. Here’s more reasons why GCSE Flashcards are ideal for science revision.

Revision techniques
GCSE Revision Timetable

Science Study Advice

2. Test Yourself with Exam Questions

Create exam-like conditions to encourage your mind to think about what you know and get it down on paper. Testing yourself regularly will help you remember your science revision better and show you where your weaknesses lie so you can focus on those areas.

3. Create a Revision Timetable

Building a personal study plan will particularly help you study science as the subject is divided into 3 distinct sections; Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Map out each area and link any topics together that you can to save yourself time.

GCSE Science Exam Revision Tips

4. Use Colour, Pictures and Diagrams

You don’t need to be an artist to study science but using colour, graphs and diagrams in your study notes will help boost your memory. Your brain will be able to recall pieces of information from a picture easier than from plain text so get the colouring pencils ready!

5. Use the wisdom of the crowds 

Online communities connect you with like-minded students who are going through the same experience. GoConqr’s GCSE public groups are a place for students to share learning material, external links and discuss issues. Join GoConqr today and discover learning groups to help you succeed.

GCSE Science

GCSE Science Exam Hints & Tips:

On the day of your science exam, keep this advice in mind:

  • Know what equipment you need
  • Ask for graph paper if you need it
  • Label your graphs and diagrams clearly
  • Include accurate units where required
  • Show all steps used to reach a solution
  • Drink plenty of water and get started!

Now you should understand your GCSE Science exam curriculum and know the best tips to optimise your exam performance. If you want to practice some sample questions, try creating your own online with GoConqr. Check out our other subject pages for even more learning resources and study tips.

Want to discover more learning resources or create your own? We have over 2,000,000 resources waiting to be discovered on our learning website GoConqr. Students worldwide have logged over 40,000,000 learning sessions on the site, so why not join in and see how it can help you. Get started today for free with GoConqr.