Holly recently studied A Level Maths with us – here are her insights on her Justin Craig experience.
Board Specific courses and feedback from friends helped my decision to go with Justin Craig
Just after my A level mocks in January, I realised that if I wanted to achieve the grade I needed for University that I would need some extra help with maths. I wasn’t really understanding enough in school so I felt that an intensive maths course would really help. In particular, there were a number of really hard topics that were specific to my exam board, OCR, which I needed extra help with. Having heard lots of good things from various friends about Justin Craig’s board specific courses, Justin Craig seemed to be the best option.
Every day went really fast and I started to enjoy Maths again
Before the course, I was quite nervous about everyone being much better than me or it being too basic. I needn’t have worried as they make sure they cater to each person’s needs. It’s a small class so you’re able to go at your own speed and I found that it really didn’t matter what standard you were because everyone found different topics difficult. Also, everyone seemed to struggle with the really tricky topics and it was really helpful to go over examples as a class. Whilst I hadn’t been sure about how I’d enjoy doing 7 hours of maths for 3 days straight – before I started that sounded like my worst nightmare – I discovered that the days actually go really fast. There are also lots of breaks to socialise and break up the day. I actually started to enjoy maths again.
The combination of friendly tutors and small classes quickly dispelled my pre-course nerves
Arriving at the centre was quite daunting, but for the first hour we had an introductory lecture before we went off to meet our tutors, which really helped settle my nerves. My tutor was really friendly, which also helped with my nerves, and the groups were small which I really liked. With only 9 students in the class, everyone was able to chat and get to know each other a bit, which made working together easier. Everyone was super friendly which was great because when I got stuck on a question I could work with the others to figure it out. Whilst the classroom was quiet enough to study and concentrate, I liked that our tutor broke up sessions with group examples worked through on the board where we all gave our ideas and inputs.
My tutor made a huge difference to me and the grade I achieved
My tutor was one of my favourite ever maths teachers since year 7! I felt he really cared that we understood what was going on. I also felt comfortable enough to ask him questions that I thought may be stupid – he would always sit down with me one and one to explain the theory. I really believe my tutor was the reason I managed to bring my Maths grade back up. He gave me back my confidence in maths and made me believe that I could achieve the grade I needed. Having never received much reassurance from school teachers, his confidence in me made a massive difference and carried through to when I was revising. He was also really clear at explaining things slowly and carefully. If you didn’t understand the way he explained a problem the first way, he would switch his approach and try a different way until you understood.
Lots of practice questions really helped embed knowledge and understanding
I think one of the best bits of the course was the focus and time spent on practice questions. I always found at school that they rushed through topics or didn’t go through enough examples. At Justin Craig, we spent time going through lots of different types of examples for the same topic, many of which were similar to the exam style. I think this really helped because the more you understand a topic, the more you can apply it. As all the examples were from previous past papers or specific to my exam board, I was able to get a better feel for what the examiners were looking for and this really helped me not panic in the exam when I didn’t understand the question straight away.
My Justin Craig course was fantastic preparation for my exam, helping me remain calm on the day
I really enjoyed this course (as much as you can enjoy maths lol) and I honestly think this helped me improve my final A level grade, it helped my overall understanding and gave me my confidence in my own abilities back. I did so many past questions from past papers specific to my board that it helped me be prepare for the exam so the really tricky questions that I couldn’t understand right away wouldn’t throw me. It helped me remain a lot calmer and gave me the ability to think the question though instead of panicking. This was something I really struggled with before coming on the course. I would definitely recommend a Justin Craig course to anyone considering it, for me it made a noticeable difference and I found it invaluable. The course really helps you solidify your knowledge and build on existing ideas.
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