Study With Me: Summer Edition

What have I done this summer?

Ah, long time no post! I don’t know why I’ve been so awful at this lately, I guess everything just caught up with me! Now though, I present to you my Summer Study With Me! I was set a lot of homework to do before September and I thought that I’d take you through what I’ve completed, and what I’ve still got to do in the remaining fortnight!

I go back to college on the 10th September and I won’t know my timetable probably until the day before, so I need everything to be fully prepared for the first day back! I have a very long, comprehensive to-do list to work through, so how much have I done?

Study With Me: Summer Edition

Psychology

For Psychology I had to firstly complete revision summaries for all the Year One topics. Luckily I got through a fair few of these when I was revising for my exam, but as it turns out I still have a fair few to do! I’ve got through s few but now I need to focus on two specific topics (Issues & Debates and Approaches) as they were specified on the HW sheet.

I also had to buy the Year Two textbook, which I’d already done so that’s one thing checked off the list! I had to arrange my notes into three different folders by exam, and luckily I’d already started doing that before the summer too! I like to read ahead as well, but I’m still yet to do that!

Photography

For photography, I was required to bring my sketchbook up to date, complete six shoots and complete any relevant research. So far, I have completed ONE shoot (go me!!) and one piece of research, but my book is as up to date as it can be at this point. Before September 10th, I need to complete 5 shoots and a few more pieces of research! This isn’t as daunting as it sounds, I can get up to three shoots done in a day, provided I’ve planned them!

One requirement was to visit as expedition as a part of the research! This is something I HAVE done! Me and my friend, Alicia visited the Tate Modern in London at the end of July! I have also completed the page in my book!

Biology

From what I have gathered using the college VLE, I have found that I need to complete a worksheet and a poster on Cell Ultrastructure by September. I have started both, and I’m also making notes from the text book! I should probably complete this though because I’m starting AS Biology for the first time in September and I want to make a good impression!

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

I’m doing the EPQ as part of my second year studies to boost my UCAS points as I’m only going to have two full A Levels, and an AS. This way I’m going in on the same level as everyone else! The EPQ is basically a dissertation type thing where you research a question that you’ve chosen. You can either write a 5000 word essay, and do a presentation, or create an artefact, an 1000 word essay and a presentation. I’ve gone with the latter (the essay!)!

My chosen question is quite controversial I think. I’m going to debating whether ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is a ‘real disorder’. I believe that is it, but there’s been arguments about it in the past! My EPQ summer advisor, who also just happens to be my Psychology teacher, suggested that I complete 90% of my research over the summer holidays! After a slow start I believe that I’m well underway with that!

Chemistry

I don’t do A Level Chemistry and I’m not going to, but I am teaching myself bits of it because I think it’ll be useful for university! I’m also doing a FutureLearn course in Biochemistry and in October I’ll be doing one on Medicinal Chemistry too!

Bullet Journal

Not strictly studying, I know! I just wanted to let you know that I started bullet journalling again this summer after winning a giveaway from @LeafGraphPaper on Instagram! Expect to see Bullet Journal posts and videos soon!

Tutorial

Finally, for tutorial, I’m required to have a full draft of my UCAS statement by the 10th of September. I believe that mine is pretty much complete but I don’t really know who my tutor is going to be because apparently she’s gone on long term sick leave! Guess I’ll find out!

I hope you enjoyed my summer edition Study With Me! As you can probably tell, I’m going to be a bit busy over the next couple of weeks!

Thanks for reading – what did you do this summer?

*PS GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE GETTING GCSE RESULTS, SEE MINE HERE

July Favourites

Happy, happy, happy August! I can’t believe it’s only just over 4 months until 2019!  It’s a little late but I have brand new collection of favourites for you! As per usual some of it is a bit random, but this is what I loved this July:

July Favourites

1. Grey’s Anatomy

Yes, this month I accidentally discovered Grey’s Anatomy and I honestly don’t know why I didn’t discover it sooner! I’m seriously hooked! I didn’t start it very long ago and I’m already at the end of Season 3! If you like a good ‘ol medical drama, Grey’s is definitely the one for you! I watch it on Amazon Prime Video (but I also found all the series boxsets in HMV!!)!

2. Always Dailies

Sounds like a super weird thing to put on my monthly favourites but seriously they’re so handy and they really help you feel a bit fresher! They’re so small you don’t even feel them and they’re ideal for everyday use! And, of course, I was drawn to them because they’re pink!

3. Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser

I recently did a review on this, but it also made it onto my favourites. Woo! A good hack I found with it is to use it in the shower! Wet your face, rub it on and then rinse it off Done! Nice clean, smooth, soft face! It smells pretty good! It’s got rosewater or something in it, you can read my review HERE! You can also get 10% off your first Glossier order using THIS link! Yay!

4. MDF Acoustica Rose Gold and White Stethoscope

Some of you may know that I want to go onto a medical type career after I leave school. I was interested in stethoscopes and how they worked, and what they made things sound like! So I decided to buy myself one and I love it! The colour is so pretty and it makes things sound really cool! I listened to my cats’ heartbeat and it was honestly amazing. It also serves slightly as motivation for me as when I see it I know I’m working so that I can use it in ‘real life’!

I know this isn’t a very long post but I hope you enjoyed my latest monthly favourites! I hope you have a great month!

Thanks for reading – what are you favourite products?

Desk Tour!

I’m slowly, but surely beginning to catch up with blogging! Soon, I’ll be back to just two posts a week; one on Monday and one of Friday. Then, in September, things are going to change a little but don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere! Anyway, I thought for this post I’d show you a tour of my little working space, a.k.a where all the magic happens! Yes, that’s blogging magic and college magic!

If you’d like to see some elements in more detail, I’d advise you to check out my Desk Tour video I did on my newly revamped YouTube channel. It’s on the channel previously known as Jess Louise. I’ve changed it to JessStudies as I feel that it is much more fitting to the channel. Here is the video: Desk Tour Video. (And HERE’s a link to the channel)

Desk Tour:

This is my desk! It’s from Ikea and it isn’t that THAT big so that’s why I have a little extension on the side! It technically doesn’t match the other furniture in my room but it looks like it does!

Storage Box

This is on the very left-hand side of my desk, on the floor, and it’s a bit of a mess at the moment! In this box I keep my files, papers that I need to file and my college bag when I’m not using it! I’m not entirely sure where the box is from but you can get them in HobbyCraft. Most of the files are from WHSmith, except the back one which is from Sainsbury’s! I got my college bag off of Amazon and the labels on my files I made using my HP Sprocket!

Desk: Left-Hand Side

On the very end of my desk I keep two coasters, one for me and one for a friend and my pencil cases so that I can get to them easily! One pencil case is from SuperDry and the other is from WHSmith! Under the shelf unit, I tend to keep my HP Sprocket, my Ted Baker spray, a spare inhaler and a couple of Starbucks cups that double as pen pots! I bought some new colouring pencils since these pictures were taken so I now have three cups there! In the cups I keep random pieces of stationery that I use quite a lot!

On the first shelf I keep some Sellotape, a stapler, a hole punch, a pot of bulldog clips, some marble post-it notes, some arrow post-it notes and some sticky tabs! I’m not entirely sure where the tape, the stapler or the hole punch is from, but I think these are quite easily available from Ryman, WHSmith, Staples or Office Outlet. The clips are from Sainsbury’s Home range, the arrow post-its are from Amazon and the marble post-its and tabs are from WHSmith!

On the top shelf, I keep my cactus, named Bill, which I got from my local garden centre along with my camera memory cards and adaptors and a desk vacuum! The desk vac is very useful when I’m bullet journalling as I can use it to sweep away my rubbings! I got it for Christmas but I’m not sure where it’s from!

Top of Desk

On the very top of my desk, I like to keep a box of tissues (which has now just run out!) and I like to have a reed diffuser (from Sainsbury’s I think) there so that it smells nice! It also looks nice, so win-win! Up there, I additionally have a couple of Bath & Body Works Pocketbacs because I love them so much! The green one is Juicy Watermelon and the red one is Japanese Cherry Blossom! Next to that I have a small tea light, but I tend not to light it because I have a nice Yankee Candle and a nice one that my Grandma got me from Sainsbury’s, which I prefer to light because they’re slightly saver and smell SOOOOOOOO nice! I got the big J from a shop on Southwold Pier, but I’ve seen them in other places and I got the cute lil hat on a bottle of Innocent smoothie!

On the wall, I have the signs that my friend, Alicia, bought for me. I’m pretty sure they’re from Homebase, but don’t quote me on that! The prints are just off of the internet, I used washi tape to frame them! That cat in the corner is my calendar, my mum bought it for me either just before or for Christmas and I think it is from the Calendar Club!

Desk: Middle

In the centre of my desk I have a textbook holder which I got from Amazon! The sticker on the side next to it is the Grey’s Anatomy logo! Most of the prints are from Dot Creates‘ site except the Pumpkin Spice one which I got from a Treatbox from Treatbox UK. At the right hand side I have my college timetable! I will be putting a new one there in about a month!

Desk: Right Hand Side

On the very right hand side of my desk I keep several things! Firstly, there is my bullet journal which I won in a giveaway from Leaf Graph Paper on Instagram, and I love it! I’m not even afraid to admit that it is totally Grey’s Anatomy themed! Next I have my Psychology, Chemistry and Biology textbooks, along with my stethoscope which I absolutely love! It’s white and rose gold; you can see it in the desk tour video! Then, I have my diary, my to do list pad and my blog planner and these are really useful to have on my desk! I now also have my new Anatomy Colouring Book there too!!

Small Table

Next to my desk I have a small table where I keep a few extra things. I have two Starbucks cups with highlighters and brush pens in! Most of the highlighters are Zebra Mildliners which I bought from Amazon, and I have a few Stabilo Swing Cool highlighters too from WHSmith! I then have two Zoella Beauty bags from Superdrug! In one I have Sharpies which I got from Tesco and in the other I have Crayola Supertips which I also got from Tesco!

In the letter tray, I have my Sainsbury’s home weekly planner, my Whitelines notebooks from Amazon, a library book and several important papers!

At the back I keep my medals! I have four from gymnastics competitions, three from the Color Obstacle Rush, another gymnastics one for completing my badges and a few swimming ones!

Desk Drawers and Cupboard

I have two drawers and a cupboard in my desk. Let’s start with the big drawer! In this drawer I mainly have various stationery items, double sided tape and stickers! Then, in the small drawer I have my spare Muji gel pens (from Muji), my flashcards (from Amazon and Sainsbury’s) and my flashcard boxes from Amazon! In the cupboard I have my subject notebooks on the top shelf which are Pukka Pads from Ryman. On the middle shelf I have some spare photographs from photography, a mouse mat and some sticky labels and on the bottom shelf I mainly have plastic wallets and folders!

Under the Desk

Under my desk I keep my photography sketchbook, my trimmer/guillotine, my HP laptop bag from Argos, spare plain paper and spare carrier bags and also my bin. Occasionally you’ll see a cat under there too!

I know it’s super long, but I hope you enjoyed my Desk Tour! I’ve included some links to websites or b’og posts so you can find out more information if you like! Don’t hesitate to ask any questions!

*There are no affiliate links in this post*

Thanks for reading – what’s your favourite part of my desk?

5 Things To NOT Do When Studying

I’ve covered various studying topics such as stress, revision tips and productivity, but I’ve never mentioned what I believe you shouldn’t do whilst you’re studying. Obviously, the aim of having a study session is to get as much information into your head as possible. Not doing certain things maximises the information that goes into your head and so I thought I’d share with you some things I recommend you never do when trying to study:

Don’t…

… Study Without Water!

No, never study without water (and I mean WATER). You must keep hydrated in order to keep you brain engaged and focused on what you’re doing. If you want to have another drink as well, such as coffee, you need to make sure you have a cup/bottle of water as well. This is because coffee etc. is not nearly as hydrating as water. Water is clean and fresh and your brain will like you a lot if you drink it!

… Watch something whilst studying!

Whereas it might sound like a great idea to watch the next episode of Grey’s Anatomy whilst revising for your American History exam (two birds one stone, am I right???), it is not. Likely you’ll be too far sucked into the world of Seattle Grace Hospital are more likely to remember the last person Meredith kissed (because who knows who that was!!), than any actual American History. If you’re studying you should focus completely on what you’re meant to be doing, not anything else. Otherwise, what’s the point? You can use watching things as a reward to do after studying! Unless you have to watch a TED talk/webinar etc. I don’t recommend watching anything until you’re done!

… Have too many distractions!

This links with the last point but this time, I’m bringin’ out the big guns! Distractions include: Social Media, Tumblr, Friends who are not studying, noisy siblings, the PlayStation, your phone and more. I know you’re thinking, how do I avoid these? Luckily, I have solutions!

For anything distracting on your computer/phone/tablet, I highly recommend the Forest app. I’ve mentioned it before. On your phone/tablet, you select the amount of time you want to study for and it grows a little tree in your phone. If you leave the app, it dies! On a computer, it’s a similar concept except you type in distracting websites and it kills the tree if you go onto them. If you’re not that disciplined, you could ask someone to take your phone for you whilst you’re studying and you could use a temporary website blocker to block distracting websites (still allowing ou access to websites you may actually need).

For dealing with distracting people around you, I highly recommend a trip to the library. You can study in there almost distraction free. You get a decent amount of space and most libraries offer free computer use/WiFi.

Listening to quiet, not too overpowering, music is fine. It has been shown to help some people study!

… Not take breaks!

It’s very important to take breaks because your brain can’t deal with too much information and you’ll become tired. You should take an at least 30 minute – 1 hour break (minimum) for every 2 hours of studying. You can’t study all the time, you need to relax too.

… Study too late at night!

I don’t know if I’m weird or not, but I love getting up early because I feel much more energised and like I have loads more time to do the things I want to do! That isn’t the point I’m trying to make here, I’m not saying we should ALL get up at the crack of dawn! I believe that you shouldn’t study too far into the evening to the point it interferes with your wake-sleep pattern. Your sleep is just as, if not more, important that your studies and in order to study well, you need adequate sleep. You see, it’s all connected! This isn’t a problem for me as I do things much earlier in the day!

You also shouldn’t cram all night! This isn’t healthy and your brain will not appreciate it and your exam performance may suffer. What you should do is revise/create revision materials of the course of the year/term/module so that you can revise near your exam without it affecting your sleep pattern!

I hope this post is useful for some of you and improves your studying experience!

Thanks for reading – what are you currently studying?

What I’m Doing At University #1

I’ve mentioned a few times now that I was going to do a post about my university plans, and now I’ve decided to do it! No, I haven’t yet applied for university yet. Applications can be submitted from the 5th September and they have to be in by the 15th January. However, I have chosen the courses I want to apply for (You can choose up to five!) and I’ve near enough finished my application. I thought that now would be a good time to explain some of my future plans as in September 2019, I could begin pursuing them! Obviously it is still early days, anything could happen. Of course, I’ll be updating you along the way, but this is what I’ve got so far:

My University Plans

You’ve probably seen my University Open Days post where I mentioned that I already knew where I wanted to go prior to the open days, but I didn’t say where! The university I have chosen to apply for is the University of Sussex. Out of the three I visited, I liked Sussex the most. It’s closest to home, it offers the courses I want to do and it’s a good, well respected university. The other two, unfortunately, didn’t get that adrenaline running so much even though they are also great universities and lots of students love them. Sussex is the place for me though, I can feel it. I’m planning to go back to another open day in September or October so I can find out as much information as possible before I need to focus on passing my A Levels.

I want to live my first year in university halls. I know it’ll be tough living away from home and my parents, but I feel like I’ll be able to absorb myself and appreciate university life more. Obviously, having not applied yet, I haven’t applied for accommodation either. That’ll come in another update! I want to able to adjust and get in a proper routine in my first year, when not much matters, before I get chucked in the deep end! If all else fails, I’m only an hour and half away on the train, or half an hour by car.

Now for the important bit, choices! Choosing courses was tough for me because I’m not going to come out of college with three A Levels, which is the entry requirement for most courses. I’m coming out with two full A Levels (Photography and Psychology), an AS Level (Biology) and an EPQ (Psychology based, worth an AS Level). So, I’ll have the equivalent of three A Levels, but I won’t actually have three A Levels. It’s complicated. I have used up all five of my course choices, and they’re all for the University of Sussex. My five choices are Biomedical Science BSc, Medical Neuroscience BSc, Psychology Bsc, Biosciences Foundation Year and Psychology Foundation Year. I have to apply for the two foundation years because I have to accept that I don’t, and won’t, meet the exact entry requirements for the full bachelor degrees from the get-go. I spoke with someone from admissions and they said that I should apply for the full courses too as I might be able to go in as a special case (as I didn’t choose to drop my third A Level). This way it saves me from having to go into clearing, or adjustment on results day.

My top choice is Biomedical Science, or the Bioscience Foundation Year if I don’t make it straight on. The foundation year allows me to get my skills up in order to partake in the full degree (in my case it could be either Biomedical Science or Medical Neuroscience) after successfully completing the year. If I do Biomedical Science, I would ideally like to go on to do Graduate Entry Medicine (GEM) at Brighton & Sussex Medical School, or St George’s University, London. This is what I really want to do, but of course I have alternative options if this doesn’t go as planned.

I chose Medical Neuroscience as well as Biomedical Science because having my full Psychology A Level means I have a better chance of getting onto the course as it is one of the entry requirements. I can still go on to do GEM from here, but I chose Biomedical Science over this because I think that I’d be more interested in it, and it’d be more useful. But this course certainly holds a lot of interest for me too, otherwise I wouldn’t have chosen it.

Then there’s Psychology. I’m good at Psychology and it’s currently my favourite subject, but it’s now serving as my back up plan. Psychology is my back up plan because ideally I won’t need the foundation year in this course (though I’m still applying to be on the safe side) and so I can get straight onto it. I don’t think I want to make Psychology my career though, as my as I enjoy it. I wouldn’t turn it down if there was absolutely no way of getting onto my top choices though. I wouldn’t be unhappy, it’s still medical related and I can still help people, which is my prime goal I guess.

I’m trying everything I can to get onto my top choice. I’m doing hospital work experience, I’m teaching myself A Level Chemistry (the college won’t allow me to take up another course, not without dropping photography anyway which would leave me with only one A Level) and I’m going to be delving deep into some Biochemistry and Medicinal Chemistry Future Learn courses. So, nobody can say I didn’t try!

This is all I know at the moment, I’ll be sure to write updates as the situation progresses! My UCAS application is pretty much ready to go, just got to polish off those final details in my Personal Statement!

Thanks for reading – what are your future plans?