How to Pass GCSE Chemistry
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The time has come. Your GCSE chemistry exam is approaching and you’ve just Googled ‘how to pass GCSE chemistry’ and it brought you here. Well, luckily for you, in this post, we share our best advice for passing GCSE chemistry.
Whereas there’s no substitute for hard work and practice, there are some things you can do to ensure you perform at your best on the day of the exam. At Exam Papers Plus, we publish GCSE Chemistry revision packs, so we know a thing or two about making the most of your study time.
Vary Your Revision Techniques
There comes a point in everyone’s revision where they hit a wall and find it difficult to stay motivated. Our best advice is to change the way you’re revising. For example, if you’re reading through revision notes, try something different that involves practice tests.
Here are some revision techniques to try when you need a boost of motivation:
Group revision – Studying with other people can help improve your focus and get you into the right mindset. Arrange to meet up with 3 or 4 of your fellow chemistry students for a group revision session. Everyone can work on their own topics but you’ll have the added bonus of being able to ask someone for help or advice when you get stuck.
Student as teacher – This revision technique is a good way to boost your confidence in the lead up to the test. Ask a friend or family member to choose a topic from your revision notes. You then need to talk about the topic in as much depth as you can, as if you were teaching it. This technique can help you realise that you know more than you think.
Timed questions – If you find answering practice questions a slog, then add some variety by giving yourself a time limit for each one. For longer questions, you’ll need around 3 minutes, and around 1 minute for shorter questions. This revision method can help you get used to thinking on your feet and can improve your time management skills.
The Night Before the Chemistry Exam
How you should spend your time before the GCSE chemistry exam will feel different for everyone. Some students find that continuing to study up until the very last minute helps them feel extra prepared. Whereas others prefer to take a break the night before and accept that they’ve done all they can to pass GCSE chemistry.
Whatever you choose to do, there are a few rules you should definitely follow:
- Try to get a full night’s sleep. Go to bed early and set an alarm for the next morning. You may also want to ask a family member to set an alarm for you, just in case.
- Arrange how you’re going to travel to the exam and plan to be there early.
- Have everything you’ll need for the exam already packed. This includes revision notes, water, pens, pencils, your student card and snacks for throughout the day.
- Try to adopt a positive mindset. If you can wake up the next morning feeling positive about the exam, you’ll be in a resourceful frame of mind and better able to deal with any setbacks or surprises in the test papers.
GCSE Chemistry Exam Tips
On the day of your chemistry exam, there are some things you can do to ensure you make the most of your time. Here are our top tips for exam day.
- Read your revision notes up until the moment you step into the exam hall. Having your notes fresh in your mind can help give you a head start once the exam begins.
- Write down any formulas or equations that you might struggle to remember as soon as the test begins. Having this information to hand on a separate sheet of paper can help put your mind at ease, knowing you have them covered.
- Bring water into the exam with you. Your GCSE chemistry tests may only last 1 hour 45 minutes each but that’s still a long time to give 100% concentration. Drinking water throughout your exam keeps you hydrated and improves your ability to focus.
- Try to finish each test paper with 10 minutes to spare. Use this time to revise your answers and to complete any questions that you skipped.
- Ignore what other students are doing. It can be easy to get distracted by other students in the exam, so try and remain focused on what you’re doing. Don’t be concerned if you see students leaving early. Use any spare time to look for mistakes and errors. You should always assume that you’ve dropped marks somewhere.
For more advice on how to pass GCSE chemistry, check out this video from student Marianne:
GCSE Chemistry Practice Tests
In order to pass GCSE chemistry, you need to have good resources. At Exam Papers Plus, we publish revision packs that help students prepare for the exam. Out practice test papers can help you become familiar with the types of questions you’ll be asked on the day.
As well as helping you chart your progress as you study, our sample tests can also improve your time management skills when taken under timed conditions.
As part of the process of creating our CSE chemistry packs, we thoroughly analysed reports from previous years to make sure our questions cover all the topic areas of the exam. We also studied the types of questions that students find most challenging and included examples in our packs, so you’ll have every eventuality covered.
All of our GCSE packs have been written and developed by former chemistry examiners and markers, so you can rest assured that our questions are tried and tested. They focus on the key skills that students need to develop to perform well in higher tier GCSE exams and they include detailed step-by-step answers and mark schemes for every question. Each question is labelled to identify the relevant exam boards.
We’d highly recommend the following resources to boost confidence in GCSE chemistry tests:
All of our GCSE packs are available immediately after download.