Hi again – it’s Emma here – don’t worry if you haven’t read my earlier article on the trials and tribulations of being a sixth former, you can still read it here.
This time I thought you might like to know how I got on with the Justin Craig Revision Course that my mum was very keen for me to try. Well, in short …it was great and much better than expected. I was genuinely surprised at how much content we covered and how much I learnt in just three days.
So here’s a bit more about my experience with Justin Craig.
Choosing a Revision Course
After much discussion, I opted to try a Justin Craig A level biology revision course during the Easter holidays. To be honest, prior to the course, I was fairly reluctant as I really wasn’t sure if it would be that beneficial and thought my time would be better spent revising at home. I was also convinced that it would be 3 days of very intense, heavy going revision, with the result that I wasn’t particularly looking forward to it.
Administration & Preparation
A couple of weeks before the course, we received an email with a link to the Justin Craig online portal – this was really helpful as the questions made me think about what I needed to go over most on the course. The portal also included questions on different aspects of exam technique, for example, maths questions, longer answers, interpreting data. Whilst I could have completed this in a few minutes, I found myself looking over various end of topic tests that I had done in school and this helped me to see what I needed to work on and where I lost marks. It also helped identify that the types of question/topic where I seemed to lose more marks. Nevertheless, I still felt quite apprehensive about the course and wasn’t sure what to expect.
However, I had no reason to worry. On the first day they gave us an introductory talk and made me feel welcome and relaxed. The helpers handed out individual timetables for the three days with details about rooms, tutors and breaks/lunch. We then got called into our different groups with our tutors and went to our rooms. All of the groups seemed relatively small; and my group had seven students, including myself. In my opinion, I really liked being in a small group as we were able to cover everything that we had requested on the portal.
All of the other students in my class were really friendly and we all got on well, which made the course even more enjoyable. As a small group, there was time for discussion and, sometimes, we sat round the same table doing group revision. We all wanted to be productive and get as much work done as possible, which was great as there were no distractions. This made for a great learning environment; it wasn’t intense or silent as discussions were allowed and, being surrounded by others wanting to work, was really conducive to studying.
Our Justin Craig Tutor
Our tutor was excellent and very well prepared each day, bringing different sets of revision packs, practise questions and past papers. He also gave us a list identifying the different topics within the past papers, so if you were focusing on a certain topic, you were able to skip to those related questions – this has been really useful for my revision at home. It was clear that he had looked at our portal feedback, knew what we wanted to cover and how to make the best use of our time on the course.
In addition to be being well prepared, our tutor was also very friendly, approachable and flexible in his approach. If the group decided they wanted to work on a different topic, that was fine and he would try to find practise questions for us. He was also happy to go through topics/questions individually if needed. I also liked that we could suggest topics to go through as a group but could also study a different topic individually if preferred. Our tutor’s teaching methods were very engaging and varied; we often changed up the style and tried different approaches including big mindmaps, online videos, group questions on whiteboards, notetaking and practise questions.
As for the course venue, this was a local school with nice bright classrooms and all the facilities we needed. It was also nice to have the outside spaces as it was good to get a change of scene in the breaks and have a real break from studying.
My View of Justin Craig A Level Revision Courses
Overall, I found the course extremely helpful and a really good use of my time. I thought it was particularly good that it was tailored specifically to my exam board for biology (WJEC), as it’s quite an uncommon board and it’s difficult to find WJEC revision courses. I came away feeling much more confident and having a clearer understanding of what is expected in exam questions. It was much better than I had expected and although I was reluctant to go, I definitely think it was a good decision. I have been recommending Justin Craig courses to friends as I got so much focused revision done in a relatively short time and wasn’t completely bored by the end of it – which is a nice change?? Lol! After having been on the course, I feel much more prepared for my mocks and A levels. Hopefully my mum will be ok with me doing further Justin Craig courses next year.