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About Stereoisomer

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    IB Alumna

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    Nov 2010

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  1. Stereoisomer

    The Best IB Chemistry Textbook

    I also recommend the chem textbooks by Pearson (both SL and HL). Another one I really liked was the "Chemistry for the International Baccalaureate" by John Green (IBID press). I found this book to be a lot more concise and in some ways "simpler" than content covered in Pearson's textbooks. Sections in this particular book are divided using headings from each point in the syllabus (and it's always good to stick to the syllabus)! Another one you may want to look into for quick exam revision is the IB chemistry study guide (Oxford). Edit: Oh wait - just reread OP's post. Hehe you don't like that textbook by John Green? Then I say definitely try the Pearson one.
  2. Stereoisomer


    A little birdie told me Oxford uses a mathematical formula/algorithm when trying to figure out who to invite for interview. They combine your GCSE grades and BMAT scores to calculate a rank and invite say, the top 300 for interviews. Like the other said, there's no harm in applying! But apply to other med schools too. There are plenty of great ones in the U.K.
  3. Stereoisomer

    Lab ideas with Daphnia?

    ^ Caffeine works! Other easily accessible drugs like ethanol (to simulate alcohol) may also do the trick. You may also want to consider acetylcholine/noradrenaline. Ask your lab technicians to see if they stock them.
  4. Stereoisomer

    How do you make your notes/remember information?

    I usually write my notes down on refill in class. When I go home, I always retype my notes and incorporate any other bits of information from extra reading. (For history, historiography). My brain works well with listing not mind maps so do whatever fits your learning style
  5. Stereoisomer

    The Unbearable lightness of being

    I loved it!!! Definitely one of my favourite books of all time.
  6. Stereoisomer

    Easiest IB SL Science?

    I'll only be able to comment on the 2 sciences I took....... 1. Difficulty of getting a 7 in course 2. Difficulty and complexity of IAs This is entirely subjective and really depends on your interest, effort and aptitude. Try not to pick a subject just because it is generally considered to be "easy". Taking an "easy" subject will not guarantee a better score. In fact, quite the contrary. All markbands are scaled depending on the performance of all other candidates. Historically, biology always had a harsher mark band for 7 than say, physics or chemistry. 3. Amount of practical work and experiments (I freaking suck at those, especially writing them up) I took HL chem and bio. The trend: whenever I had a biology practical writeup to hand in, I always seemed to have a chemistry writeup due too. So I would say the practical work involved for most group 4 sciences are pretty much equal. Biology experiments are generally less pecise and complex than chemistry/physics practicals. In terms of writing the actual experiments up, I found biology to be more demanding. Especially in the format and the way data is displayed and processed, etc. 4. Amount of homework that will need to be set/ anticipated to be set This really depends on your teacher. But regardless, the amount of work you should put in for each group 4 subject at SL should be fairly similar. See syllabus and the hours attached. 5. Course based on deep profound understanding vs rote memorization I am a little confused when you say "rote memorization". From experience, memorizing without actually understanding the concepts proved to be futile in nearly every single subject. I am just going to assume the word, "rote" does not exist and concentrate on memorization. xP Chemistry: Mainly profound understanding and little memorization. Learn to use the data booklet reasonably well. Biology: I would say about 1/2 and 1/2. 6. Correlation between teacher's skill and grade achieved (My bio teacher sucks, so if I do bio I'll probably have to self study at least 1/3 of the material) I would say having a great teacher makes studying a lot easier than having a teacher who don't really know what s/he's doing. However, if you are a motivated individual then self - studying 1/3 of the material shouldn't be an issue. And I am sure your biology teacher does not "suck". Maybe he can't teach very well, but he must be qualified to teach you so ask him any questions you don't understand and I'm sure he'll explain! 7. Potential for last-minute studying (will probably neglect science) Ah. hahahaha. Ahem. Well the official version is: Blah blah blah, don't cram study, don't leave everything 'till the last minute. But if you do end up in a sticky situation, I find biology to be the easiest to cram study and pass if you are insanely good at learning material off by heart.
  7. Stereoisomer

    Anticipating Chemistry?

    I think you should definitely repeat the course. The whole point of anticipating a subject is to 1) do well in it so you can put it behind you 2) relieve your workload in IB2. If you get a 4/5 in your final exam then I recommend resitting. At our school, maths was the only subject that people could anticipate in. The people who got a 6/5 instead of a 7 all resat their exams. However, you have to ask yourself - do you think taking it for another year will help you? What are you struggling with the most? If you find chemistry relatively difficult, I would urge you against taking it at HL. In comparison between the two, HL is a lot harder than SL. There are more material to cover and more to understand. What about resitting SL Chemistry? An extra year of learning may help you to raise your score. But like I said before, it all depends on your interest towards the subjects.
  8. Stereoisomer

    4 in IA..what do to to get a 6 in HL?

    Hypthetically, if someone gets a 0/48 for his internals (which is clearly impossible) and get 100% for his papers 1, 2, 3 he'll still be able to get a 6 (76% maximum, 4% away from a 7). Don't calculate - just try your very best. Revise and make sure you know every single point in your syllabus. It is still possible to get a 6 but you must do extremely well in your externals.
  9. Stereoisomer

    Acid-base questions

    QB Acids and Bases Ans.rtfSHL Acids and Bases.docxQB Acids and Bases.rtf Hmmmm... I've always found questions on the net unreliable. I think the use of textbooks, questionbanks and past papers are some of the best ways to study. I attached above some questions you may find useful. They were copied/pasted from IB Questionbanks and the SL/HL Pearson Chemistry Books (my favourite!!)
  10. Stereoisomer

    Easiest options for Chemistry HL paper 3?

    Further Organic chem was such an interesting option. But I wouldn't recommend it if the core organic chem isn't really your thing. Medicines/Drugs is probably the easiest option out there - lots of memorising though. The questions they ask are pretty predictable. I swear the "what is a weak analgesic?" has came up SOOO many times in the past (and probably will come up again in the future). I agree with the posters above - if you take biology, the human biochemisry option is probably the most suitable one. Similarly - if you take physics then option C will be a lot easier.
  11. Stereoisomer

    Not participating

    Well - group 4 is compulsory. Whatever your other "thing" is, I suggest working around it and negotiating to have it moved to another date. If not, then talk to your head science teacher. At our school, those who failed to turn up to their group 4 days(hehe initially told that they are going to fail blah blah blah) were forced to participate with the lower classmen (and women hehe) after they sat their externals and graduated from high school.
  12. Stereoisomer

    What to expect for HL Chemistry

    The best tip to study for chem is to make notes for the theory part of the course under each sub - heading on your syllabus and memorise key points/definitions. But don't stop here - you must practice questions with lots of exercises. (esp in the quantitative chem chapter, redox, energetics and kinetics) Draw diagrams and flow charts (ESP for organic chem reaction pathways.) For paper 3 (options), make sure you learn your material really well. Take biochemistry for example - there's only a limited amount of scope the examiners can cover. You'll find that questions in paper 3 to be a lot less unpredictable than that of paper 2/paper 1. Check out the syllabus and you'll know exactly what's in the course. You should expect both theory and practical (experimental) aspects of chem to be assessed. Practical reports are internally assessed, making up 24% of your final grade. The rest is examined externally with 3 papers. Ooo another thing- make sure you actually take the internally assessed portion seriously. Having a good internal grade really gives you the confidence before externals come by. After every experimental class, write up your practical. Seriously, JUST WRITE IT UP AND DON'T PROCRASTINATE. If you leave it until the night before the due in date, you'll forget everything. Write down data in a booklet and keep it with you. Make sure the data is not only quantitative (numbers) BUT QUALITATIVE TOO (observations). P.S I don't think you should take chemistry just because it's going to look good on your college/uni apps. The reason is because you have to really like chem to do well in it. :)But if you are considering a career in medicine then chem is probably inevitable. Try to love it - it is a really interesting subject and if you concentrate and really try to understand, you'll enjoy it!
  13. Stereoisomer

    UCL Applicants

    so was mine Applied in October and was made an offer in November this year
  14. Stereoisomer

    BMAT results tomorrow. DUn dun du

    Oooo yeah, lol I checked my BMAT yesterday and was pleasantly surprised! I thought I completely and utterly flunked that exam but it turned out to be Okay How did yours go? I hope it went well!!! Are you applying for med/vet or biomed?
  15. Stereoisomer

    How to Study.....

    I made my own notes from the notes I took down during class time along with important extracts from different textbooks. Oooo and also, those notes were all made under each heading in the syllabus. I then memorised the key points (this shouldn't be too difficult as writing notes out while concentrating helps the information to stick) and then do past exam questions. Good luck studying!! 4 weeks should be plenty of time.

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