Oxford Revise – GCSE Combined Science Trilogy

Just before Christmas I stumbled upon a GCSE Revise series published by Oxford University Press. They had Revise books for the Separate Sciences (so separate books for Biology, Physics and Chemistry) and they also had two combined Science books (one for Foundation and one for Higher). I saw a few photos of the layout and heard that the basic structure was first some knowledge revision, then a retrieval exercise followed by lots of practice questions. So naturally I started getting a bit curious and asked if we could review one of the books. Kindly they agreed and they sent us a copy of their AQA GCSE 9-1 Combined Science Trilogy Higher book.

Now first impressions – it is quite a thick book, my husband actually commented on that fact when it arrived. But then if you think about it, it is covering three sciences in one. On a very quick first look I immediately liked the knowledge pages – these are summary pages of all the key facts (but I want to stress summary) and I really appreciated the number of questions that they have included (the more we go down our GCSSE journey the more I am aware of how important it is for the kids to have lots of different practice questions). And the very important point answers – all answers are free to download from their website, and yes I have logged on and already downloaded all the answers for Biology and Physics and even printed out quite a few of them and I have had no issue.

All three science sections are set out in the exact same manner.

Easy to read Knowledge page (normally 2 pages for each topic). They have set it out in blocks so it is not an overwhelming page and they include diagrams and tables which help explain the information. But please this is a SUMMARY page, an excellent summary page but a summary page.

Second you get the Retrieval questions. The idea here is that the kids cover up the answers with a sheet of paper and test themselves. I was initially not sure about this but actually I love it as it is a quick test of key info.

Then you come onto a page which deals with Maths Skills and Practical skills that may be needed for the topic. Something which is vital for Science so I thought it was very useful that they have included this.

And finally for each topic they have included a lot of exam-styled questions. And I mean a lot. 6 pages of questions for each topic. The questions they have included are varied in terms of the type of questions and the level. On the side of the question page they have also included small blocks called exam tips (some of these blocks will seem a bit basic but others will included some really useful tips).

Okay so ease of use. My daughter has already used some of the Biology topics from this book. She found it easy to use, she worked though it independently and then marked her answers herself. Her favourite feature was the summary notes and I must confess as a home educator my favourite feature were all the practice questions (I know I go one about practice questions but as a home educator finding good questions, at the right level that come with answers for this level is not as easy as I thought).

My thoughts on future use? Yes we are going to use it. My idea is once we have completed a topic we can use this as our wrap-up activity. My daughter can read through the summary sections, make sure she knows the key facts and then test her knowledge with the questions.

I think it is going to be a very useful addition to our Science book collection and I am thrilled we have been able to add it to our bookshelf.

You can get this Revise book directly from the OUP site – AQA GCSE 9-1 Combined Science Trilogy Higher and you can also get it from Amazon – OUP Revise Science Book. I have not yet spotted it at my local bookstores.

Admin Bits – As mentioned above I asked for a review copy and OUP kindly sent us this book. We were NOT paid for this post and we were under no obligation in terms of what we wrote.

I do include Affiliate links. If you follow an affiliate link and go on to purchase that product, I will be paid a very small commission, however your cost will remain the same. I only include affiliate links for products that we use and recommend.

About ofamily

Home educating family based in the UK. We try to make learning fun
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