If you are currently a lower secondary student (Form 1, Form 2/Form3), we know that 2021 has been a challenging year. As most of you spent the majority of last year in online learning and since PT3 was cancelled (only for last year!), it could be quite hard to pick up the momentum when schools reopen again in 2022!

When it comes to preparing for a subject like Science, you'll probably want to gather as much information as possible on the right way to study the chapters, the PT3 Science exam format as well as extra tips to ace the paper!

Let's start with the basics. Your Science textbooks.

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How To Fully Utilize Your PT3 Science Textbooks While Studying?

You'll be surprised by how many resources your Science textbooks have. The latest KSSM syllabus textbooks are written with a greater focus on problem-solving skills, information and communication skills, decision-making skills and thinking skills to cater to the 21st century learning approaches.

Studying Science with textbooks is no longer dull when you know how to make the best out of the provided features. Here are some of our go-to tips.

a) Organize your notes by using the concept maps given at the end of each chapter 

Nothing beats the feeling of having a clear and concise "big picture" of what you have learnt. Concept maps enable you to focus better by breaking down big concepts into smaller ones.

Taking the example of the chapter on Light and Optic (Chapter 8 of Form 1 Science, page 248), you can branch out the subtopics such as:

  • The uses of mirrors (types of mirrors and their characteristics)
  • Properties of lights (how light travels and the effects of that)
  • Phenomena of light (reflection, refraction, dispersion, scattering)
  • Addition and subtraction of light (cause of the addition/subtraction and primary/secondary light)

This would serve as a more effective way of memorizing your notes instead of focusing on long paragraphs.

b) Look through the Glossary to remember keywords and their definitions 

You'll be asked many questions on definitions and characteristics throughout Section A, B and C in your PT3 Science paper. The glossary serves as a great guideline to write a complete and accurate definition of any scientific process/name.

Here are 2 examples:
1. Homeostasis 
The regulation of the internal environment in an organism, such as temperature level, water, pH, blood pressure and so on, so that it remains in a balanced and stable condition.

2. Parallax error
The error that occurs due to the position of the eyes which are not perpendicular to the scale reading when taking measurements.

c) Go through and complete all the self-reflection questions and summative practices 

Think of this part as a checklist of confirming whether you have truly engaged and understood what you have studied for the entire chapter.

For example, when you are learning the chapter on Earth, one of the subchapters is about the Age of The Earth.
Some of the self-reflection questions include: Explain the method to determine the age of the Earth and reason about the importance of fossils in the advancement of contemporary science.

If you can answer all these questions, it proves that you are on the right track. You can then test them out by doing the summative practices based on the chapters that you've learnt. You can find the answers section at the end of the book.

PT3 science study methods
Revising Science with concept maps could be more effective as compared to thick books and notes.
Source: Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

d) Access three-dimensional animations and interactive games via the QR codes in some of the pages 

Even though the main Science textbooks consist of physical words and notes, there are additional digital components that are embedded in them.

Using the QR Reader application on your mobile devices, you can scan the image on the page and enjoy videos, interactive quizzes and extra information on various Science topics.

You'll be up for a diverse and visually appealing learning experience!

It will no longer be a problem to do well in your PT3 Science paper if you have the right mindset and sustained interest when it comes to learning this subject.

What Is The Exam Format For PT3 Science Paper?

Before we go into the format and marks allocation of this paper, you should know the core of the Science syllabus under the latest PT3 examination.

Basically, throughout your studies from Form 1 to Form 3, you will learn a total of 31 chapters. 

The 31 chapters fall under these 5 themes.

  • Theme 1:  Scientific Methodology
  • Theme 2: Maintenance and Continuity of Life 
  • Theme 3: Exploration of Elements in Nature
  • Theme 4: Energy and Sustainability of Life
  • Theme 5: Exploration of Earth and Space 

Don't be overwhelmed by the idea of how much you need to study for this subject.

Instead, focus on how well you can prepare in advance to ace your PT3 Science paper by diving deep into the types of questions that will be asked in these 3 sections.

There is only 1 paper for this assessment and the duration of the exam is 2 hours. 

Here is what you can expect in each section.

PT3 Science Section A 

This section comprises 20 multiple choice questions from the themes mentioned above. The questions can be taken from any chapters that you have studied in Form 1, Form 2 and Form 3.

The marks allocation for this section is 20m.

PT3 Science objective questions
Objective questions are part of your PT3 Science assessment.
Source: Photo by Andy Barbour from Pexels

PT3 Science Section B 

For this section, you'll need to answer 5 short structured questions. Don't worry as questions in this section are pretty straightforward where you can get them right. The scope usually touches on pairing/ matching definitions and characteristics or choosing the right statements for the given scenarios.

The marks allocation is also 20m.

PT3 Science Section C 

It's the final section of this paper. You have to answer all 6 questions that are based on diagrams, illustrations. Answers for this section generally requires extra elaboration with specific examples in order to obtain full marks.

The marks allocation is 60m.

Why You Should Analyse Past Year Papers When Preparing For PT3 Science?

You know your PT3 exam preparation gear is heading full activation mode when you see teachers and students frantically passing and completing past year papers.

Even though the format and assessment method is different from PMR, the essence of past year papers revision is this: practice makes perfect.

Here are two keys that you should take note of when you're doing past year papers.

a) Familiarize yourself with HOT questions 

Higher-Order Thinking (HOT) questions require you to think outside of the box. It means going beyond the usual straightforward answers but applying and connecting what you have learnt.

The forms of HOT questions include:

  1. Application: Transferring knowledge to a different context
  2. Analysis: Breaking down complex components into specific and focused characteristics
  3. Synthesis: Coming out with new values and inputs based on the provided information
  4. Evaluation: Summarizing and developing answers based on evidence and solid reasons

b) Know what is required to gain full marks for the asked questions 

It's important to know the right answering methods when it comes to tackling various sections of your PT3 Science paper. Recognizing the correct keywords, explanations and examples that the examiners are looking for can help you to organize your answers in advance and help you to complete them on time.

You can refer to this resource when it comes to searching past year papers/ trial papers for PT3 Science. 

Where Can You Find A Good PT3 Science Private Tutor?

We've talked about how you can maximize your studying experience through the exam format, textbooks and past year papers.

Granted that you will be sitting for a written test, it does help to absorb the chapters and topics through written words.

But not everyone learns best through reading alone. Research shows that almost 30% of the world's population are auditory learners, where they will absorb most information through repeated listening of lectures/ conversations.

This is why many educators often push for attentive listening in education institutions. That's because active learning also involves active listening and it helps to set the tone for classroom learning or private tutoring.

The steps of active listening are as follows:

  1. Receiving
  2. Understanding
  3. Evaluating
  4. Remembering
  5. Responding

If you know that you are an auditory learner and prefer to have a personalised learning experience, you will certainly thrive in your studies with a help of a private tutor.

Not sure where to find an experienced PT3 Science tutor near you?

Look no further than Superprof, the perfect platform to connect with home tutors/online tutors!

You can take Science tutoring lessons at an affordable rate from tutors that come from diverse backgrounds, ranging from retired Science teachers to student tutors who are currently pursuing their studies in a Science related degree.

Apart from home tutoring in the cities near you, you can also opt for online Science lessons if you prefer to have a more flexible and convenient learning experience.

Online lessons at Superprof enable you to take lessons from any tutors that are based in different cities as long as they match your personal preference in terms of teaching experience, teaching methodology and rate per hour.

online tutor science superprof
You can gain extra insights through your online lessons.
Source: Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

You can still have an interactive learning session online and review your lesson recordings anytime and anywhere you want.

Don't forget, private tutoring also gives you the opportunity to master the actual grading scheme for PT3 Science with direct guidance from your Science tutor.  These can be done through tutor's feedback, revision strategies suggestions and practical examples given during lessons.

Be sure not to miss this opportunity to learn effectively with Superprof!

You're not that far from getting an A for your PT3 Science paper!

“Education is the key to success in life, and teachers make a lasting impact in the lives of their students.” ― Solomon Ortiz.

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