Study Skills Guide: How to Memorise Chemistry Lessons Better
May 5, 2021
How To Study Chemistry: A Guide for the Chemically Challenged
August 3, 2021

We Spotted a Student in Need!

So we came across this Reddit post made by u/bxjisu on a subreddit for Singapore Exams. He is a student in secondary-4 and is currently doing O-levels Chemistry. Our friend here is going through a tough problem that is all too common among students his age: he is fatigued by Chemistry.

He claims that throughout Secondary 3, his Chemistry grades have been moving between C’s and fails. He then goes on to share that his Chemistry understanding and application have lately been improving as of Secondary 4, and he has gotten a few B’s and even an A in a Chemistry test, showing that he has been improving.

But he is faced with a problem currently, he feels like Chemistry is :

  • Taking a high mental toll on him.
  • Is becoming too memory-based and no one likes mindlessly memorizing concepts without reasoning.
    A very burdensome subject that he can no longer carry wishes to drop it for his O-levels.

He is not completely sure of this decision and is consulting his peers and seniors on Reddit for further help.

u/bxjisu then goes on to state that he enjoys Physics, another science subject, indicating that he plans to study sciences in the future and wants to pursue a field in Physics currently. This is important information for his case and we will delve deeper into it within a short while.

Well, all in all, this is a classic situation that many of us go through at least some time in our lives. When faced with adversity our mind goes into fight or flight mode, we either confront the problem or we try fleeing it. u/bxjisu is currently trying to decide what route he should take to tackle this issue. So let’s try helping him out!

Should He Do the Deed?

Yeah, why not? The kid doesn’t like Chemistry. The subject is at times quite scary for many people and they prefer to leave it and move on with their lives without this subject. You will probably never find a person on a deathbed regretting that they didn’t drop O-levels Chemistry, will you? There shouldn’t be any harm, he should just do it!

Well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let’s first analyze his case and observe his situation. Because as usual, the devil is always in the details.

u/bxjisu is currently in Secondary 4 and he has been observing a trend of improvement in Chemistry lately, which is undoubtedly a good sign. If he keeps on the improvement gradient, he should be able to get the top grades. But his mental health is currently taking a toll, and we do not believe that one should prioritize studies over their mental well-being, so if he is looking for a way out it is not unjustified.

u/bxjisu also mentions that he enjoys doing Physics and wants to pursue it. And this is where the main problem lies. If he plans to pursue his further studies in Sciences, then HE CANNOT DROP CHEMISTRY. If he drops Chemistry right now and decides to choose a science-related course in JC, the prerequisites for those courses will need him to have taken O-levels Chemistry.

So the final verdict for Mr.u/bxjisu is that he should NOT drop Chemistry as long as he wants to pursue anything science-related in the future.

Quick Tip: If you find yourself in a similar position where you have to study Chemistry while you struggle with it, you should check out a quality O-levels Chemistry tuition in Singapore run by a good chemistry tutor with a superior record in O/A levels Chemistry.

In What World Would Dropping Chemistry be Alright?

But there are scenarios where one can drop Chemistry in O-levels and carry on with his/her life scratch-free.

If u/bxjisu or anyone else for that matter, wants to pursue a career in humanities/Arts/Music or anything unrelated to science, they can go ahead and remove Chemistry from their lives!! Since it will not be required in those courses.

Still, Chemistry is a really fun subject if studied properly or assisted by a good O-levels Chemistry tuition, you can very easily nail it!

You can check out Julian Chemistry for a top-notch learning experience. We specialize in O-levels and A-levels Chemistry tuition in Singapore.

Understanding the Importance of Chemistry

So, you might be pondering right now why a student who wants to study physics, biology, or any other science, needs to study Chemistry too? Well, Chemistry is in every part of life, and is very much involved in other scientific disciplines as well. Learning this subject is extremely helpful in understanding why any chemical processes or procedures happen.

  • How molecules, the building blocks of life, interact with one another to formulate complex systems?What causes the principles of any application to operate?
  • What are the chemical procedures behind any chemical reactions?
  • What substances can be dangerous or what combination of substances has a destructive potential?

Chemistry answers such broad questions, which makes it heavily interlinked with other sciences. These aspects are what make Chemistry so intriguing and integral for the success of sciences!

Solutions for our friend here:

Well as the saying goes, “If you can’t beat them, join them.”

And that’s simply the best way ahead for u/bxjisu. If he wants to improve in Chemistry, he needs to embrace it. He needs to figure out which part of Chemistry is causing him trouble and he needs to start there. He mentions in his post that he has been having trouble since Chemistry is becoming more and more memory-focused.

To solve this issue, one has to realize that Chemistry is not a solely memory-based subject, so perhaps he should be looking into how he can study differently.

You can find some good tips for learning Chemistry here.

Of course, there is some memorization that needs to be done, to acquire the knowledge before you can apply it to different questions.

All sciences, math, or any languages will need some form of memorization, that’s part of the learning process. So during the repetitive efforts to memorize, maybe he should actively reflect on what he is memorizing- instead of just swallowing up the whole theory without any logical rationale to it.

He should think about the reasons behind why the questions have to be solved in a certain way.

So a more reflective approach in learning will be more effective.

Making connections with the different concepts that are linked will allow him to see a bigger picture and join the dots between different ideas.

Furthermore, he should also think about how to space out his learning so that he is not chunking everything in one go. Instead, break into smaller bites, but repeat it every day or frequently.

You can find more tips on how to focus on the Chemistry syllabus better here.

Final Thoughts

Chemistry is a really enjoyable subject and with the proper guidance and techniques you can easily get top grades.
And if you still need further help then you can contact Julian Chemistry, a chemistry tuition centre in Singapore.

Here is an O Levels chemistry tuition weekly programme if you need any help for your tuition search!!