Examination Tips for “O” Level Science
Building up a strong foundation for Science concepts is the key to performing well in the GCE “O” Level Science examinations. Follow these strategies to master the examination skills for the “O” Level examinations!
Write Science notes
Writing is one of the most effective ways to reinforce one’s understanding of concepts. Students are strongly encouraged to write their own Science notes to help them organize the knowledge they have learnt in class. The notes may be presented in point form, tables as well as mind maps. To aid the recall of information during examinations, students can make their notes more visually appealing by using illustrations and color coding. These also help students to stay focused while doing their revision.
Studies have shown that active retrieval of memory, which involves recalling and applying knowledge repetitively, helps in enhancing one’s learning. After students have learned the basic concepts, they can deepen their understanding with ample practice. This can be done through topical practice. For each topic, students should take note of the formulae and concepts that are frequently used. Students should not feel discouraged when they answer questions wrongly. Instead, they can learn from their mistakes and avoid repeating them in examinations.
Learn from mistakes
There may be many reasons for answering a question incorrectly. These could be include missing keywords, careless mistakes and misconceptions about a concept. Students can study the answers or step-by-step solutions provided and pay close attention to what is required to score. By reviewing the questions that are answered wrongly, students should take note of the common mistakes they make, such as forgetting to convert units to SI units. Students should also attempt the question again to ensure that their mistakes are rectified.
Attempt ten-year series topical practice (TYS)
Attempting the ten-year series topical questions allows students to get a feel of answering actual “O” Level examination questions. From the past years’ questions, students can find out what formulae or concepts are commonly tested. They will be able to observe the trends in past years’ papers such as which topics carry a higher weighting channel their revision efforts accordingly. Moreover, they can also evaluate their strengths and weakness in each topic. This helps students to build up their confidence to taking the examinations.
Manage the time during the examination
Taking an examination in the examination hall can be stressful as students are provided with a limited amount of time to complete the questions. Therefore, to simulate the actual examination, students are encouraged to time themselves while attempting an actual or mock examination paper in a quiet location. Students can then notice the problems they may face in a timed condition and learn to overcome these problems ahead of the actual examinations.
The strategies above are to prepare students for the examinations mentally. For optimum performance, students should also be physically prepared with a healthy diet and adequate sleep. With plenty of preparation, students will be well-placed to ace their “O” Level Science examinations.