The road to straight As in SPM is not a straightforward journey for most students. Whether it is inadequate practice, lack of interest towards the subject, or sudden unexpected difficult questions during the real SPM, these are the main reasons often cited on why students fail to perform well in examinations.

Sejarah (History) is not really a fan favourite among most students because this subject gives the impression that is BORING, LONG WINDED and, at times, IMPRACTICAL. But is it really the case?

To master any subject and to ace it in examination requires the mastery of the syllabus as well as the exam marking rubrics. Keep your eyes glued to this article as we guide you on how to ace your SPM Sejarah paper.

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What are the learning constructs tested through your SPM History papers?

It is good to know how your real SPM questions and syllabus are based on. At the end of the day, your SPM Sejarah test is aimed to equip you with the following learning constructs.

a) Mengetahui dan Memahami (Comprehension and understanding)
This measures how students understand the historical facts, terms, concepts and theories and how they can relate all of that after the learning process.

b) Mengaplikasi (Application)
This evaluates students on their ability to use the given lessons and give a relevant and accurate explanation about the fact, term, concept and historical fact in the context of a new situation.

c) Menganalisis (Analysis)
This tests how students can break down and gather various facts, information and a historical event in a rational and appropriate context.

d) Menilai (Evaluation/judgement)
This grades how the students evaluate historical events, facts and information in a critical, creative and mature manner as well as construct their justifications to be made into lessons on upholding the identity, dignity and development of the country.

e) Mencipta (Creating)
This will see how students combine various elements to plan and create a creative chain of thoughts.

For Sejarah Kertas 1, you will be tested on these four components:

  • Memahami
  • Mengaplikasi
  • Menganalisis


a) Sample question for SPM Sejarah Kertas 1
- Apakah mesej yang terkandung melalui perkara X?

For Sejarah Kertas 2, you will be evaluated according to these 6 components:

  • Mengetahui dan Memahami
  • Mengaplikasi
  • Menganalisis
  • Menilai
  • Mencipta

a) Sample question for SPM Sejarah Kertas 2
Bahagian A
- Jelaskan maksud perlembagaan.
Bahagian B
- Bagaimanakah Malaysia berperanan membantu ASEAN mencapai...........?

Essentially, identifying these learning constructs enable you to track the pattern and format of questions that are asked in your SPM Sejarah paper. With ample exercise and practice through various reference SPM Sejarah exercises and past year papers, you will find that you can answer the questions faster and more accurately.

SPM Sejarah exam question
Doing more past year papers and exercises on reference books can help you to study exam questions' patterns.
Source: Photo by Zen Chung from Pexels

How are your SPM History Papers graded?

Before we talk about the various marks for SPM Sejarah Paper 1 and Paper 2, it is best if we begin with the current grading system for SPM subjects. What is the distinction between a C, B and A in terms of marks? Knowing this will set you in a clear direction to aim for accurate scoring methods for both papers in your SPM Sejarah subject.

Remember, Sejarah is an important subject to score regardless if you are in Science or Art stream in Malaysia. In 2013, the Malaysian Ministry of Education announced that SPM Sejarah is made a must-pass subject (at least a Grade E) in SPM for students to receive their SPM certificate.

Overview of SPM grading system for all subjects

GREDMARKAHTAHAP
A+90-100CEMERLANG TERTINGGI
A80-89CEMERLANG TINGGI
A-70-79CEMERLANG
B+65-69KEPUJIAN TERTINGGI
B60-64KEPUJIAN TINGGI
C+55-59KEPUJIAN ATAS
C50-54KEPUJIAN
D45-49LULUS ATAS
E40-44LULUS
G01-39GAGAL (FAIL)

 

Let's break down the current Sejarah SPM paper format as of 2021.

SPM History Paper 1 [40m]

40 objective questions (COMPULSORY TO ANSWER ALL)
Duration: 1 hour 

Your final answers have to be circled and submitted via the Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) sheet.

SPM History Paper 2 [100m]

Paper 2 has 2 sections:

Bahagian A- 4 structured questions (COMPULSORY TO ANSWER ALL)
Bahagian B- Choose to write 3 essay titles out of 5 essays
Duration: 2 hours and 30 minutes 

The final grade for SPM Sejarah: Total marks from both papers divided by 140 marks times 100%

How to score A for Sejarah in SPM?

After reviewing the marking scheme, now is time to set your goals and march towards excellence for your actual SPM Sejarah paper!

Doing well in examinations has a great deal to do with studying smart. How do you study smart? By applying the right techniques!

a) Identify and differentiate the keywords asked
It is important to scan through the questions and search for the keywords. To circle or to highlight is entirely your choice but make sure you don't miss them/confuse them.

Some of the commonly used keywords include:

1. Nyatakan (State/Choose)
This keyword is mostly used in Kertas 1 and Bahagian A in Kertas 2. There are normally fixed and standard answers. Questions that have this keyword are usually SPECIFIC. One point will be given without further elaboration.

 Sample question:
Nyatakan 2 pihak yang terlibat dalam perundingan tersebut.

If it is asked in Kertas 1, you just need to choose between the I, II, III and IV selection in the objective paper.

On the other hand, for Bahagian A in Kertas 2, you just write down WHO is (pihak yang terlibat) on the given answering lines.

2. Jelaskan /Bagaimanakah/Mengapakah (Explain how/why)
This keyword is always found in Kertas 2, for both Bahagian A (structured short questions) and Bahagian B (essay questions). Your answers require further elaboration and the marks are usually higher. Probably 4m. So it means 2 facts with 2 elaborations respectively.

Sample question:
Mengapakah rundingan tersebut diadakan? 

3. Berikan ulasan/penjelasan (Give your comment)
You will find this keyword in Bahagian B of your SPM Sejarah Kertas 2. You have to state whether you agree or disagree with the statement that has been given and list down the reasons why you agree or disagree. It is normally asked in the last question of Bahagian B. 

Sample question:
Kesultanan Melayu Melaka merupakan asas kepada pembinaan negara bangsa kita. Berikan ulasan anda.

SPM Sejarah keywords
Identifying the different keywords in your SPM Sejarah paper will help you to prepare and score better.
Source: Photo by Polina Tankilevitch from Pexels

b) Pay attention to the mark allocation

Apart from looking at the keywords, the mark allocation is the most accurate guideline on how to score high for all your sections. Here are some examples of how marks are allocated for different sections:

Bahagian A (10m per question)
a) 2m  (Nyatakan kesan-kesan.......)
So you know you need to list down 2 KESAN only without further elaboration.

b) 4m  (Mengapakah kesan itu.......)
So you have to elaborate on that 2 kesan that you have mentioned in question a) previously. Meaning, 1 fact, 1 elaboration each.

c) 4m (Berikan ulasan anda berdasarkan.......)
So you have to give 4 points based on the given statement.

Bahagian B (20m per question) 

a) 6m (Berdasarkan rajah di atas, jelaskan sistem.......)
You have to include 6 points while answering. Sometimes the points can be a SINGLE keyword. Take note that for longer questions, 1 point may serve as (1/2) marks. So technically, you have to include 12 points to score a maximum of 6m for the section.

b) 6m (Bagaimanakah undang-undang tersebut dapat.........)
The same principle as question a).

c) 8m (Berikan ulasan anda....)
The same principle applies as questions a) and b). 

c) Connecting the dots and writing your answers based on facts

This is especially important in keeping your points relevant in both Bahagian A and Bahagian B of your SPM Sejarah Kertas 2. It has to be straight to the point for both your structured and longer essay question.

Bear in mind that there are 2 things to take note of when you are answering.

Firstly. this is not a language subject, so cut off any unnecessary flowery words (no point writing a long passage if you do not know the real answers). Secondly, the questions are not really asking for your opinion on the statements. It is all about the FACTS that you have read in your Form 4 and Form 5 Sejarah textbooks.

Finding the best Sejarah private tutor with Superprof 

Private tutoring is getting more common these days, especially for students who are sitting for major examinations such as SPM. There are bound to be subjects that you hope to improve on and to ask direct questions faster. With the pandemic ongoing this year, it can be quite demotivating to study on your own after your online classes with a big group of classmates.

What could be the key to make you improve and excel in your studies instead of feeling overwhelmed?

SPM Sejarah tutor
Learning with a tutor will help you to prepare better for your exams in the midst of the pandemic.
Source: Photo by Michael Burrows from Pexels

Let us introduce to you - Superprof! Superprof is a student-centric learning platform that connects students to tutors from various subjects. You can gain easy access to your ideal tutor's completed and updated profile at your fingertips! We have also listed some criteria of private tutoring information that is provided by Superprof.

Maximum budget? Checked.
Teaching qualification? Checked.
Student reviews? Checked.
Mode of learning? Checked.
Subject specialisation? Checked.
Locations across Malaysia? Checked.

In short, you are SUPER-covered with Superprof! Once you have confirmed the tutor that you would want to learn from, you can then proceed to contact the tutor through the website. The tutors will reply to you within their given response time (also listed in their profile) and upon their reply, you can proceed to confirm with them about their availability to teach and what exactly you are looking for.

For instance, you can discuss with your Sejarah tutor that you would prefer a two-day lesson instead of only one day and that you need assistance in your Sejarah Paper 2.

Hesitate no more and get ready for a fun and historical adventure by having your Sejarah lessons with your Sejarah tutor at Superprof! Seize this opportunity to start your first FREE lesson and you are on your way to getting that A for your SPM Sejarah!

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An avid reader and writer, Joycelyn loves the art of communication and is passionate about all kinds of media.