Q: Congratulations Emma and Sameeksha, what fantastic results. These results are from last year's exams. Do you remember how you felt when you left the exam hall?
S: The GCSE period is very hectic and I had taken the English exam in the morning and felt quite exhausted when I left school after the Geography exam. I felt well prepared but didn't know that it went that well.
E: As Sameeksha said, when you're in the middle of the exams period you can't really think, you just go in and take your exam and hope for the best.
Q: How did you prepare for the GCSEs?
E: I think that doing practise papers was what helped me most. You also have to make sure that you take a lot of notes and that you don't leave anything until last minute.
S: In geography there are a lot of concepts that you need to know, you just have to learn them. I used note cards with the key concepts on and just went over and over them until I knew them. It is also important not to skip anything. There are always parts that are more challenging, but there are no shortcuts, you just have to face your fear and work extra hard on those bits.
Q: You are now half way through the IB Diploma Programme, did you feel prepared when you started?
E: The IBDP is not like anything else, it is intense, yet rewarding. The intensity of the GCSEs certainly prepared me, there's still a lot of new ways of thinking, but entering the IBDP with the core knowledge from the GCSE was a big help.
S: I agree with Emma, the IBDP is a different level, but the GCSEs gave us the core and now we can look at things more in-depth.
Q: It is daunting to pick your GCSE subjects, do you have any tips for our younger students that will make their selection next year?
S: I think that what is most important is to pick subjects that you really enjoy. You will spend a lot of time on your studies and you need to enjoy what you're studying in order to stay motivated.
E: Yes, you definitely have to study subjects that you are interested in. I would also recommend to pick one creative subject, even though there's still a lot of studying, it is nice to use your hands or your body and not just your brain. I did drama and thoroughly enjoyed it.