With these tips, hopefully your H2 Math journey is a little bit easier.
1. Understand the characteristics of each chapter.
Every chapter is different. Vectors require a lot of drawing and visualisation in 3D space. Permutations and Combinations requires you to do as many questions to encounter as many as possible. Differentiation and Integration requires you to memorise formulas. Statistics requires your GC as you are basically dead without it. And the list goes on.
Some topics (like Differential Equations, Binomial) test the same questions all the time, and requires you to just regurgitate the same formula each time. Others are different every time you see them, and requires you to fully understand the technique, and apply them to the question. Make sure you know what kind of skill set and information you need to understand the topic!
Next, each topic has certain question types that will be tested. Know the common questions that come out often and make sure you understand the technique used to solve it.
2. Memorise what you need to.
Compared to other subjects, JC math does not need much memorisation. It’s about 20% memorisation and 80% application, but it does differ from topic to topic. Memory-intensive topics include Functions, Integration and Differential Equations. Other topics require you to memorise different kinds of techniques and apply that to the respective questions.
When memorising something, give yourself a time limit (eg. 1 hour) to memorise all the points of a chapter. After memorising, immediately quiz yourself.
To strengthen your memorisation, write a list of important things you need to memorise into a list or a card. Refer to it when you need it, and after some practice, you should be able to recite it by heart.
Make sure to memorise everything before starting any topical revision!
3. Learning techniques
Firstly, plan out your revision. Make sure you have a plan for the next week or so planning what you are going to revise on that day.
Scientific research has found out your brain will absorb things more effectively if you go back to it once the next day, then again a week after. This is so you can keep refreshing your brain and make sure you get it.
By going back to something you’ve learnt in the past, you have a different understanding and it helps you interlink the knowledge to, maybe, something else from another chapter. By leaving a topic untouched, no matter how easy it is, will make you forget it.
Secondly, know how to get around revision.
Don’t move onto doing full JC papers without practicing topical papers first.
After doing 1-2 hours of the same topic, take a 15-20 minute break.
Don’t do the same topic for more than 3 hours.
Know what kind of questions you need to practice in order to strengthen your understanding. A teacher or experienced tutor could help you analyse your weaknesses.
Make flashcards or notes with the common concepts, important equations and common mistakes that you can flip through when you forget something, or right before the exam.
4. GC Cheat Sheet
The GC is your new best friend. That thing can do a lot. So, use it to your advantage!
There are some questions that accept a “by GC” as the answer. Make sure you know if you need to draw a part of the graph or a table in order to make your answer complete.
You can also double check your answer using the GC. By putting the equation into the graphing function, you can check if your answer is correct. You can also use the integration, differentiation and complex number functions on the GC to check your final answer.
Another cool tip! Bring in another scientific calculator into the exam, and use both calculators at once! This is so that you can refer to two things at once and multitask on questions, such as checking something while having the GC display your graph.
By Ms Cheng
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