Close this search box.

Common O Level Chemistry Challenges and How to Overcome Them

Chemistry is one of the most complex O Level subjects. It relies hugely on the students’ memorization power and understanding of the subject content. Having multiple confusing formulas that students need to remember to deal with their examinations, O Level Chemistry challenges the best of students. Through this article, we intend to help our students understand other common O Level Chemistry challenges and how you can overcome them.

Common Challenges Faced in O Level Chemistry 

There are numerous problems that students come across while dealing with O Level Chemistry. We’ve picked the most common ones to help maximum students relate to these issues. Let’s look at these challenges:

Dealing with Excessive Information 

student studying

While preparing for the O Level Chemistry exam, the vast amount of information needed to be retained might seem overwhelming to students. Various intricate concepts such as balancing equations, constructing formulas for compounds, and the mole concept are taught initially. These are required to move forward, and it would be nearly impossible to understand advanced content without them.

As 60% of the O Level Chemistry content is covered in Secondary 3, it is problematic for students to have the perfect understanding of these topics till Secondary 4 or 5. Over time, this information falters if not kept in constant revision, resulting in difficulties for students to cope at the time of examinations. Consequently, students find themselves under pressure and incapable of digesting a hoard of information, which ultimately affects their performance.

Inability to Identify Weak O Level Chemistry Practical Skills

O Level Chemistry has three components. Paper 3 is the practical component that lasts 1 hour and 50 minutes and is worth 40 marks. Identifying weak O Level Chemistry practicals and rigorously practicing them is essential for each student.

Students who are exceptional at understanding theory often delude themselves by thinking they would excel at practicals as well. As a result, they take their practicals very lightly and stay unaware of their weak skills. Such practices lead them to get terrible grades in their practicals, which affects their overall results. 

Lack of Exam-Taking Skills

It is vital to consider that learning and retaining the subject content is not the only problem. Many students who are well prepared falter under the exam pressure and are unable to perform well.  Students often rush through their exams and answer questions before evaluating the requirements of the questions, causing them to miss keywords and score lower marks. 

Furthermore, if students get stuck on a particular question, they waste their precious time thinking about it instead of moving forward and attempting questions they know the answers to. Through this, they lose a lot of time and ultimately panic. As a result, they perform poorly and fail to achieve their desired grades.

Strategies to Overcome Common O Level Chemistry Challenges

Such challenges can be extremely daunting to the majority of students. However, there are many ways you can overcome them and achieve excellent results. 

Understanding the Question Requirements 

The most common issue that nearly every student attempting O Level chemistry encounters is that they often disregard the requirements of the questions. For instance, many questions that include words such as “define,” “state,” “explain,” or “outline” test factual knowledge and understanding.

You must remember the differences between words such as “state” and “define” to avoid losing unnecessary marks. Moreover, students should identify the topics tested by looking for keywords and answer accordingly and try to incorporate all the essential phrases required for that particular answer. Such techniques will help students comprehend questions better and give answers to the point. 

Abundant and Strategic Past Paper Practice

Acing O Level Chemistry is all about practice. It is nearly impossible to attain remarkable grades in this subject without abundant practice. Students should start practicing past papers months before their examination. Initially, they should practice without setting a time limit and concentrate on solving the practice question completely. 

Through this, they will understand their problematic areas, work hard to understand their mistakes, and learn from them. However, when the exams are close, they should set a  time limit and try to finish before the end time. This practice is crucial to keep students calm and collected during their examinations. They will not waver under pressure as they will have sufficient preparation and solve their exam paper with understanding.

Upgrading Revision Techniques 

student highlighting in their notebook

First and foremost, students should create an efficient timetable and try to follow it strictly. As a result, they will have a concrete plan and know exactly what to do and when to do it. Their revision strategies should include flashcards and mind maps, coupled with solving our free chemistry tys yearly pdf to ensure exceptional practice. These will help students understand the paper pattern and have clear concepts.

The Best Assistance to Overcome O Level Chemistry Challenges

At Peak Tuitions, we work hard to help our students understand the problems they face while dealing with O Level Chemistry and provide them with essential strategies to deal with them. We provide our classes for $500 a month. To enroll at Peak Tuitions, fill out this form.

Our well-trained and highly experienced tutors, Mr Clement Ong and Ms Kydy Yew, are exceptional at teaching Chemistry. They also assist their students outside the classroom by helping them gain confidence and motivating them. To learn more about us, we recommend taking a trial class



Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top

Want to enquire about class time slots?

Want to come down to our centre?

Or have an urgent question?

Click the button below to chat, we are most responsive here!