Physics is not everyone’s cup of tea. But you don’t have to be bad at it! We believe it’s highly possible for students who were ‘bad’ at physics to excel in the subject, as long as they know the right techniques and approach to learning physics.
Our expert tutors at Future Academy have experienced helping many students go from failing grades to high passes and even A grades. How did we do it? If you want to improve in your physics and score better for your upcoming exam, make sure to read on!
1. Read very carefully
This tip is so easy, you don’t even have to prepare anything to do it right. Many students lose precious marks when they fail to read the exam question properly. If you have a history of being careless, just incorporating this tip can help you perform better!
It is common to read the wrong units and wrong values, causing your entire calculations to be incorrect. Another common mistake is misinterpreting questions with negatives, such as questions like “Which one is NOT an example of…”
2. Create concept maps
Concept maps are our hot favourite when it comes to revising chapters in Physics. Mind maps and concept maps are great ways to summarise topics and let students see the connections between the subtopics and even between chapters.
When you are done revising one chapter, treat mind-mapping as a test to recall all the concepts you have learnt. You can also use concept maps as an easy reference tool when doing your practice papers.
3. Use flashcards for definitions
You need to know your definitions and key phrases in order to get the marks in the physics exam. Even if you understand the topic well, failing to use the correct phrases will cause you to lose out.
If your difficulty is with memorising these definitions and key terms, try using flash cards to help you learn them. Write down the keyword on one side, and the definition on the flip side. Test yourself everyday.
Another way that helps with memorisation is to place hard-to-remember content in places you will look at everyday. For example, paste the definitions above your study table, or on your room door, or set it as your device wallpaper. The constant exposure will help you form better neural connections and remember them better.
4. Show your workings
Here’s another tip you can apply immediately. Writing down every step of your calculations during the exam is a good habit as it helps you in a few ways.
Firstly, you will be less likely to skip steps when you write them down and you can see exactly what you are doing. Secondly, for some questions you can salvage partial marks for your working even if you end up with the wrong answer, as long as you show that you are using the correct method and formula.
5. Practice the 10-year series
As we are already nearing exam period, practising past year exam questions should be a part of your revision routine! These past year papers – especially the 10-year series – will familiarise you with the trending type of questions that often appear in exams.
And don’t just do it blindly – make sure to mark your work, take note of what type of mistakes you make, and avoid them the next time you do a similar question.
We know it’s not always easy to find past year papers with good answer keys, and sometimes you are not even sure where you went wrong. In that case, do consider joining a Secondary Physics Tuition class! The physics tutor can guide you to understand your mistakes and teach you the key points to note for scoring well at each question.
6. Play to your strengths
We don’t recommend spotting topics, but if you are really short of time, and you want to maximise your time, we advise you to play to your strengths.
This means that if you are strong in math, focus on perfecting your understand of all the formulae and calculations-heavy topics like kinematics, forces, and electricity. If math is not your strong suit, spend your time on more theory-heavy topics like Waves, Electromagnetic Forces, and Radiation.
For the areas you are weaker in, you can then spend some time after the exams to catch up on them so that you will be better prepared for the subsequent exam. Just as well, Future Academy is already opening registrations for post-exam tuition, which will let students do catch-up on the topics they need help with. Get in touch with us to arrange your classes for this year-end!
No one said Physics is easy, but these tips we shared are some of the easiest ways to see immediate improvements to your Physics grades! To maintain your improvements and build an even stronger foundation for Physics, putting in consistent hard work is essential.
Learn more about how our Physics tutors cultivate good study habits and Physics knowledge when you join our Physics tuition classes! Already doing okay, but want to master more challenging questions and turn those Bs into A-stars? Our IP Physics Tuition classes may be suitable for you.
Enquire today for class details, and we look forward to seeing you in class! All the best for your physics exam!