Introduction

Welcome! My name is Daniel Lim Jhao Jian. Here is where I share my experience, knowledge and ideas. You are welcome to leave comments and follow my blog. You are free to copy anything from this blog. Please recommend this blog to your friends.


Friday, 27 December 2013

Complete Tips for SPM Examination

For my SPM, I got 9A+, 1A and 1A-. I got A+ for Bahasa Melayu, Mathematics, Additional Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Information And Communication Technology, Sejarah and Pendidikan Moral. I got A for English. I got A- for Bahasa Cina. Do you want to know how to score in SPM? Here, I am posting the complete tips for SPM. These tips are intended for Form 4 and Form 5 students this year who are taking SPM 2017 or SPM 2018. Please click on the links below to view the tips for each subject.

SPM Bahasa Melayu & English 1119:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/09/complete-tips-for-spm-bahasa-melayu-and.html

SPM Mathematics & Additional Mathematics:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/09/complete-tips-for-spm-mathematics-and.html

SPM Chemistry & Physics:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/10/tips-for-spm-chemistry-and-physics.html

SPM Biology & Information And Communication Technology (ICT):
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/10/complete-tips-for-spm-biology-and-ict.html

SPM Science & Additional Science:

For mathematics and science subjects (including Mathematics, Additional Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, ICT, Science and Additional Science):
Since 2003, these subjects in SPM are set bilingually in both English and BM, and students can choose to answer in English or BM. In November 2011, it was announced that starting from 2021, these subjects will be set entirely in BM and students will be allowed to answer only in BM. However, the Dual Language Programme (DLP) was announced in October 2015. As a result, these subjects will continue to be set bilingually in 2021 and beyond, and all students can still choose to answer in English or BM, regardless of whether they are under the DLP or not.

If you are looking for tips for CIE AS and A Level examination, you can find it here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2014/09/complete-tips-for-cie-as-and-level.html

Tips for SPM Sejarah and Pendidikan Moral

For my SPM in year 2012, I got A+ for both Sejarah and Pendidikan Moral. Do you want to know how to score in SPM for these 2 subjects? Here, I am posting the complete tips for SPM Sejarah and Pendidikan Moral. These tips are intended for Form 4 and Form 5 students this year who are taking SPM 2017 or SPM 2018.

Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html


SPM SEJARAH:

Note: These tips for SPM Sejarah are based on the latest examination format from SPM 2013 onwards.

1. Studying tips
- Both the Form 4 and Form 5 textbooks are 100% complete. If you are in Form 5 and you do not have the Form 4 textbook, I would recommend you to buy one from the bookshop or borrow one from your friends and photostat it. However, studying using the textbooks can be boring, difficult and slow because they contain too much text in essay form. Therefore, you should also get a reference book. I recommend you to use the Success Sejarah SPM reference book by Oxford Fajar. However, the reference book is only about 95% complete.
- When studying a topic for the first time, read though the facts and explanations in the reference book. If possible, you should read it as a story to help you remember it and also make it more interesting to study. Try to understand every sentence that you read because this can help you to remember them. However, it may not be possible to understand some facts because there is no explanation for them. You should have an idea on what you have read and understood.
- Then, you have to remember everything that you have read. Do not memorise exactly all sentences because it is almost impossible to do so since there are so many sentences in the book. Instead, you should memorise the keywords for every sentence which can give you the idea on what that sentence is about. You can then use those keywords to create your own sentence. Make sure that you can remember what every sentence is about.
- For events or incidents, the sentences are often related to each other by 'cause-and-effect', where the event in one sentence is caused by another event in the previous sentence, and will cause another event in the following sentence. Try to find out that relationship because it can help you remember the events. You should also try to remember it as a story that you have read. For facts, you should remember it based on your understanding if there is explanation for them. If there are too many facts for a particular subtopic, you can try to group two or more similar facts together and remember them as one.
- You need to do revision for every topics regularly in order to ensure that you remember everything for a long time. The more revision you do, the more you can remember. Revise as many times as you can until you are sure that you have remembered everything. When doing revision, go through all the facts and explanations in the reference book. You should find out what you still remember and what you have forgotten. For anything that you have forgotten, you must memorise it again.
- Since the reference book is only about 95% complete, after you have understood and remembered everything in the reference book, you should go through the textbooks as well. Look for facts in the textbook that are not found in the reference book, especially those in the Sudut Maklumat. You should read though and understand them, then remember them.
- You also have to do exercises. Buy exercise books from the bookshop. You can start by doing topical questions topic by topic. When you have understood all topics, proceed with doing SPM model test papers, past year SPM trial questions and past year actual SPM questions. They should be available from bookshops. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- You should sometimes refer to the mark scheme of past year SPM trial papers to find out how every question is marked and which points need to be included in the answers for every question. Usually, the same types of questions will have similar mark scheme, so this can help you when answering exam questions.
- When doing revision before exam, you should first go through the subtopics that you think you may have forgotten. Then, go through other topics as well if possible.
- Every year, there are predictions made by teachers on the subtopics that will be tested in the SPM Sejarah Paper 2. Usually, only some but not all of the predictions are true. You should not rely on those predictions and you should prepare for all topics if possible. Besides that, subtopics that have been tested in the previous year Paper 2 are usually not tested again in the following year Paper 2, but this is not always true. You can skip those topics if you do not have time, but avoid doing so if possible.
- One months before the exam, a general topic will be released for Sejarah Paper 3. You should look for materials that are relevant to the topic in books, newspapers, magazines, the internet and other sources. You should also discuss with your teacher and friends about that topic.

2. Paper 1
- Read the question and all the options carefully. Cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Then, choose the most suitable answer among the 4 options.

3. Paper 2 Bahagian A
- You need not answer in complete sentences. You are allowed to write extra answers for all questions. Marks will only be given for the correct answers, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable answers. There is no limit on how many answers you are allowed to write.

4. Paper 2 Bahagian B
- You must answer in continuous writing form. You are not allowed to answer in point form, table form, mind map, flow chart or any other forms. If you do so, half of the marks you scored for that question will be deducted. (For example, if you get 6 marks, 3 marks will be deducted.) You should also answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood.
- If the question says 'Nyatakan', 'Berikan', 'Namakan', 'Tuliskan' or something similar, you only need to write facts without elaboration. If the question says 'Jelaskan', 'Terangkan', 'Huraikan', 'Bincangkan' or something similar, you should give facts and elaborations. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer. Marks will only be given for the correct points, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable points. There is no limit on how many points you are allowed to write.

5. Paper 2 both Bahagian A & B
- Bahagian A consists of 4 structured questions where you must answer all questions while Bahagian B consists of 7 essay questions and you can choose any 3 of them. You can answer extra questions in Bahagian B if you have time. The examiner will mark all questions you answer and choose the questions where you score the highest marks.
- When answering, read the question carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. For questions on facts, answer based on your knowledge and understanding on the relevant topic in Sejarah. You can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in the textbook. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. You are not advised to give facts that are not found in the textbooks. For questions on your own opinion, you have to give your own ideas, based on your knowledge in Sejarah or your general knowledge. Your ideas must be logical and relevant. You can also give facts from the textbook or revision books if they are relevant. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general.
- Avoid making spelling errors in your answers. For minor spelling errors, marks is usually not deducted, but for major spelling errors, marks may be deducted. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Avoid using any short forms in your answer, especially short forms that are not found in the textbook. If you use short forms that are found in the textbook, marks is usually not deducted, but if you use short forms that are not found in the textbook, marks may be deducted.

6. Paper 3
- Paper 3 consists of 1 question with several parts. It is an open-book test. For Paper 3, bring both the Form 4 and Form 5 textbooks and revision books into the examination hall. You should also bring in any other materials that are relevant to the general topic released one month before the exam.
- When answering, read the questions carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. Usually, questions on facts carry the first 50 marks, while questions on your own opinion (KBKK) carry the other 50 marks. For questions on facts, look for the answers from the textbook. You can copy the sentences directly from the textbook. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. You are not advised to give facts that are not found in the textbooks. For questions on your own opinion, you have to give your own ideas, based on your knowledge in Sejarah or your general knowledge. Your ideas must be logical and relevant. You can also give facts from the textbook, revision books or other materials if they are relevant. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general.
- Avoid making spelling errors in your answers. For minor spelling errors, marks is usually not deducted, but for major spelling errors, marks may be deducted. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Avoid using any short forms in your answer, especially short forms that are not found in the textbook. If you use short forms that are found in the textbook, marks is usually not deducted, but if you use short forms that are not found in the textbook, marks may be deducted.
- You must answer in continuous writing form. You are not allowed to answer in point form, table form, mind map, flow chart or any other forms. If you do so, marks will be deducted. You should also answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. Organise your answer into different paragraphs. Answer for different parts of the question should be written in different paragraphs.
- If the question says 'Nyatakan', 'Berikan', 'Namakan', 'Tuliskan' or something similar, you only need to give facts without elaboration. If the question says 'Jelaskan', 'Terangkan', 'Huraikan', 'Bincangkan' or something similar, you should give facts and elaborations. The number of marks allocated for the part of question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer. Marks will only be given for the correct points, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable points.



SPM PENDIDIKAN MORAL:

Note: These tips for SPM Pendidikan Moral are based on the latest format and style of the questions in Bahagian B from SPM 2013 onwards.

1. Studying tips
- You should have a list of all the 36 Nilai in the syllabus and their Definisi and Kata Kunci. If you don't have one, get it from your teacher.
- You need to understand the meaning and usage for every Nilai. Read the Definisi of every Nilai and try to understand it. The textbook also contains some explanations and examples that can help you understand the Nilai. You should also pay attention when your teacher is teaching in class. If you still do not understand the Nilai, ask your teacher.
- You have to remember every Nilai and its Definisi and Kata Kunci. You must memorise them exactly as in the syllabus, especially for the Nilai and Kata Kunci. All spellings, Imbuhan and order of words in the Nilai and Kata Kunci must be exactly the same as in the syllabus. For other parts of the Definisi that is not part of the Kata Kunci, slight differences may be allowed, but you are strongly advised to memorise them exactly. This will help you to answer questions on Nilai.
- You teacher should to able provide you with notes for the academic content of every Nilai when teaching in class. If your teacher does not provide you with any notes, you should either take down your own notes in class or request your teacher to give you notes.
- You should read through and understand everything in your teacher's notes. Then, you have to remember them. You should also read and understand the textbook and remember the facts that can be found in the textbook. This will help you to answer questions on facts and on your own opinion (KBKK).
- You have to regularly do revision. When revising, go through all the 36 Nilai, Kata Kunci and Definisi. Make sure that you remember all of them exactly as in the syllabus. You should also go through your teacher's notes and the facts in the textbook. Regular and repeated revision will help you to remember everything for a long time.
- Then, you have to do exercises. Buy exercise books from the bookshop. You can start by doing topical questions. When you have understood all Nilai, proceed with doing SPM model test papers and past year SPM trial questions. They should be available from bookshops. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- You should sometimes refer to the mark scheme of past year SPM trial papers to find out the acceptable Nilai and answers for every question. Usually, the same types of questions will have similar mark scheme, so this can help you when answering exam questions.
- You must know the correct answering techniques for SPM Pendidikan Moral, especially for the Nilai questions. Refer to the Answering tips below.

2. Bahagian A
-  When answering, read the questions and situation carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for.
- When answering questions on Nilai, you must use the Nilai in the syllabus. Choose the Nilai among the 36 that are most suitable and relevant to the question, based on the definition of every Nilai. Look at the number of Nilai you need to write as stated in the question and the marks allocated for the question. For 1 Nilai 1 Mark, 2 Nilai 2 Marks or 3 Nilai 3 Marks questions, you only need to give Nilai without Penerangan or Contoh. For 1 Nilai 2 Marks, 2 Nilai 4 Marks or 3 Nilai 6 Marks questions, you need to give Nilai and Penerangan without Contoh. For 1 Nilai 3 Marks or 2 Nilai 6 Marks questions, you need to give Nilai, Penerangan and Contoh. 1 mark is given for each correct Nilai, Penerangan and Contoh. However, marks can only be given for Penerangan if the Nilai mark is scored, and similarly, marks can only be given for Contoh if the both the Nilai and Penerangan marks are scored.
- When writing the Nilai, you can write down the Nilai straight away. You should include the word 'Nilai' in front of the Nilai you wrote.
- When writing the Penerangan, you should include the Watak / Situasi and one Kata Kunci of the Nilai. For 1 Nilai 2 Marks, 2 Nilai 4 Marks and 3 Nilai 6 Marks questions, you also have to relate the Penerangan to the question. The best way to do so is by giving an example from the question (similar to writing Contoh). You can repeat the same example when relating the Penerangan for other Nilai to the question. For 1 Nilai 3 marks and 2 Nilai 6 Marks questions, you do not need to relate the Penerangan to the question. You must write the Penerangan in one complete sentence. Begin the sentence with the Watak / Situasi, followed the Kata Kunci of the Nilai and then relate the Penerangan to the question (if necessary).
- When writing the Contoh, begin with 'Contohnya' and give an example that is relevant to the Penerangan. You must write the Contoh in one complete sentence. You are advised to relate the Contoh to the Penerangan. If there are examples in the question, you can use them. You can also use other suitable examples that are not in the question. However, you cannot repeat the same example when writing the Contoh for other Nilai, unless if you make some changes by relating the Contoh to the Penerangan in a different way with different meaning.
- When writing the Nilai, Penerangan and Contoh, the spelling for all Nilai, Kata Kunci and Watak/Situasi must be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other words, marks is usually not deducted for wrong spelling. The imbuhan and susunan of the Nilai and Kata Kunci must also be exactly the same as in the syllabus. (For example, you cannot write 'Mematuhi Peraturan dan Undang-undang' as 'Pematuhan Peraturan dan Undang-undang' or 'Mematuhi Undang-undang dan Peraturan' ) Do not give any Nilai that is not among the 36 in the syllabus. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing.
- When answering questions on Definisi Nilai, you must give the complete definition of the Nilai, including all the Kata Kunci. Make sure that Definisi is exactly the same as in the syllabus, especially for the Kata Kunci. If the Kata Kunci is not exactly the same as in the syllabus, marks may be deducted. For other parts of the Definisi, slight differences is usually not penalised.
- When answering questions on your own opinion (KBKK), you have to give your own ideas. Your ideas must be logical and relevant. You can also give facts from the textbook, revision books or your teacher's notes if they are relevant, and sometimes you have to make some changes to suit the question. Your answer must be specific and not too general. For 1 Answer 1 Mark, 2 Answer 2 Marks, 3 Answer 3 Marks and 4 Answer 4 Marks questions, you only need to give facts without elaboration. For 1 Answer 2 Marks, 2 Answer 4 Marks and 3 Answer 6 Marks questions, you have to give facts and elaboration for every facts.
- When answering questions on facts (Akta / Tokoh / Pertubuhan), give your answer based on your general knowledge as well as relevant facts in the textbook, revision books or your teacher's notes. You should give the full name of the Akta, Pertubuhan or Tokoh. For Akta, you are advised to include the year of the Akta. For Pertubuhan, avoid writing only short forms in your answer, especially short forms that are not officially used by that Pertubuhan. If you write short forms that are officially used, marks is usually not deducted, but if you write short forms that are not officially used, marks may be deducted. All spellings should be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted.
- For all questions in Bahagian A, you are allowed to write only one extra answer for every part of the questions. Marks will only be given for the correct answers, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable answers. If you write more than one extra answers, those extra answers will not be marked.

3. Bahagian B
When answering, read the question and situation carefully. The question may ask you to give Nilai or others. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for.
a) For questions on anything except Nilai,
- You have to give your own ideas. Your ideas must be logical and relevant. You can also give facts from the textbook, revision books or your teacher's notes if they are relevant, and sometimes you have to make some changes to suit the question. Your answer must be specific and not too general.
- For questions requiring 5 answers, you should give 5 Fakta and a Huraian for each of the Fakta. For questions requiring 3 answers, you should give 3 Fakta, as well as a Huraian and a Contoh/Huraian Lanjut for each of the Fakta.
- You must write each of the Fakta and Huraian/Contoh in complete sentence. The Fakta and Huraian/Contoh should be written in separate sentences. 1 mark is given for each correct Fakta and Huraian/Contoh. However, marks can only be given for Huraian if the mark for Fakta is scored.
- Some questions may first ask you whether you agree or disagree with something, whether something is correct or not, or something similar. In that case, you should first answer that (For example, by stating that you agree or disagree) before proceeding with the rest of the question. 1 mark may be given for that.
- Marks is usually not deducted for incorrect spelling or grammatical errors, as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. You must answer in continuous writing form. You are not allowed to answer in point form, table form, mind map, flow chart or any other forms. If you do so, marks will be deducted.
- You should not include any Nilai in your answer unless if the question says otherwise. You are allowed to write 1 extra Fakta for every question. Marks will only be given for the correct Fakta, and marks will not be deducted for wrong Fakta. If you write more than 1 extra Fakta, those extra Fakta will not be marked.
- For every Fakta, you are allowed to write extra Huraian/Contoh in your answer. Marks will only be given for the correct Huraian/Contoh, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable Huraian/Contoh. There is no limit on how many Huraian/Contoh you are allowed to write.
b) For questions on Nilai,
- Usually, you have to give 2 Nilai based on the question. In rare cases, the question may ask you to give 3 Nilai. You must use the Nilai in the syllabus. Choose the Nilai among the 36 that are most suitable and relevant to the question, based on the definition of every Nilai.
- For each of the Nilai, you need to give 2 Penerangan and 2 Contoh. 1 mark is given for each correct Nilai, Penerangan and Contoh. However, marks can only be given for Penerangan if the Nilai mark is scored, and similarly, marks can only be given for Contoh if the both the Nilai and Penerangan marks are scored.
- When writing each Nilai, you should include the Watak / Situasi. You must write the Nilai in one complete sentence. Begin the sentence with the Watak / Situasi, followed by the Nilai. Do not forget to include the word 'Nilai' in front of the Nilai you wrote.
- When writing each Penerangan, you should include the Watak / Situasi and one Kata Kunci of the Nilai. You do not need to relate the Penerangan to the question. You must write the Penerangan in one complete sentence. Begin the sentence with the Watak / Situasi, followed the Kata Kunci of the Nilai.
- When writing each Contoh, begin with 'Contohnya' and give an example that is relevant to the Penerangan. You must write the Contoh in one complete sentence. You are advised to relate the Contoh to the Penerangan. If there are examples in the question, you can use them. You can also use other suitable examples that are not in the question. However, you cannot repeat the same example when writing the Contoh for other Nilai, unless if you make some changes by relating the Contoh to the Penerangan in a different way with different meaning.
- When writing the Nilai, Penerangan and Contoh, the spelling for all Nilai, Kata Kunci and Watak/Situasi must be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other words, marks is usually not deducted for wrong spelling. The imbuhan and susunan of the Nilai and Kata Kunci must also be exactly the same as in the syllabus. (For example, you cannot write 'Mematuhi Peraturan dan Undang-undang' as 'Pematuhan Peraturan dan Undang-undang' or 'Mematuhi Undang-undang dan Peraturan' )
- Do not give any Nilai that is not among the 36 in the syllabus. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. You must answer in continuous writing form. You are not allowed to answer in point form, table form, mind map, flow chart or any other forms. If you do so, marks will be deducted.
- You are allowed to write up to 3 Nilai for every question. Marks will only be given for the correct Nilai, and marks will not be deducted for wrong Nilai. If you write more than 3 Nilai, those extra Nilai will not be marked. However, if the question asks you to give 3 Nilai, then you can write up to 4 Nilai.
- For every Nilai and Penerangan, you are allowed to write extra Contoh in your answer. Marks will only be given for the correct Contoh, and marks will not be deducted for wrong or unacceptable Contoh. There is no limit on how many Contoh you are allowed to write.

If you need help in doing the Kerja Kursus Pendidikan Moral, you can use my coursework as a guide. Download my coursework here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2011/09/ict-and-moral-folio.html


Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html

Monday, 23 December 2013

Tips for SPM Science and Additional Science

My SPM was in year 2012. I did not take Science and Additional Science during my SPM because I was in Science stream and these 2 subjects are taken by students in Arts stream. However, I took Chemistry, Physics and Biology and got A+ in all of them. Do you want to know how to score in SPM Science and Additional Science? Here, I am posting the complete tips for SPM Science and Additional Science. These tips are intended for Form 4 and Form 5 students this year who are taking SPM 2017 or SPM 2018.

Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html


SPM SCIENCE:

1. Studying tips
- When your teacher is teaching in class, pay attention to what your teacher says. Make sure you understand everything taught by your teacher. If you do not understand anything, ask your teacher or friends.
- You need a reference book because the textbook and practical book are not enough. I recommend you to use the Longman Essential Science SPM reference book by Pearson Longman.
- When studying a chapter, read through all the explanations in the reference book sentence by sentence. Make sure that you truly understand each sentence before moving on to the next sentence. You also need to know and understand all formulas. Certain topics may require understanding of earlier topics, so make sure you understand those topics. You should also try to relate them to what your teacher had taught in school.
- You need to read through all the experiments and activities in the reference book. You have to understand the Aim, Problem Statement, Hypothesis, Variables, List of Materials & Apparatus, Procedure, Tabulation of Data and Conclusion for all experiments. This is essential to enable you to answer the questions on describing experiment in Paper 2 Section C. For the Procedure, read through it step by step. Make sure that you truly understand each step before moving on to the next step. To help you understand, try to imagine that you are carrying out the experiment. Understanding the Procedure will make it very easy for you to remember the List of Materials & Apparatus. You are also advised to be actively involved in all experiments carried out in school because this can help you understand and remember the experiment.
- Then, you have to remember everything that you understood. You can memorise the sentences in the book, or you can also create your own sentences that have the same meaning and memorise them. If you create your own sentences, make sure that you do not change the original meaning, do not leave out any important points and do not change the important keywords and scientific terms. However, do not just memorise without understanding. Once you have understood, it will be quite easy to remember and you will be unlikely to forget any of the points.
- For certain facts, there may be no explanation for them so it is not possible to understand them. In that case, you have to remember and memorise those facts.
- For the calculations, you need to know how to apply what you have learnt and use the correct formula to solve the questions. Go through all the example questions in the revision book. Make sure that you understand how every question is solved.
- You have to regularly revise every topics again and again. When revising, go through all the explanation, facts, experiments and examples for calculation questions in the book. Make sure that you do not forget anything that you have understood previously. Regular and repeated revision will help you to remember all the explanation and facts for a long time.
- Then, you have to do exercises. Buy exercise books from the bookshop. You can start by doing topical questions topic by topic. When you have understood all topics, proceed with doing SPM model test papers, past year SPM trial questions and past year actual SPM questions. They should be available from bookshops. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- You should sometimes refer to the mark scheme of past year SPM trial papers to find out how every question is marked and which points need to be included in the answers for every question. Usually, the same types of questions will have similar mark scheme, so this can help you when answering exam questions.
- When doing revision before exam, you should first go through the subtopics and experiments that you think is more difficult or that you may have forgotten. Then, go through other topics as well if possible.

2. Paper 1
- Read the question and all the options carefully. Write any rough workings on the question paper if you need to. Cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Then, choose the most suitable answer among the 4 options.

3. Paper 2 Section A, B & C
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on your knowledge and understanding on the relevant topic in Science. Certain questions may test you on more than one topics. For some questions, you may have to apply what you have learnt in Science in order to answer them. You have to think carefully and relate the question to what you have learnt. You may also be asked to give your own opinions.
- When writing your answer, you can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. If the question asks on something that is not in revision books (the question requires you to apply what you have learnt in Science or give your own opinion), then you have to answer in your own sentences. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct scientific terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all scientific terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other non-scientific terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities or when writing working for calculation. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula, unless if the question asks you to write the chemical formula or if you are writing a chemical equation.
- It is not compulsory to answer in continuous writing form. You are allowed to answer in table form or other suitable forms. In suitable cases, you can also use diagrams, equations or graphs in your answer. However, you are not advised to answer in point form. There is not penalty for answering in point form, but some inexperienced examiners may deduct your marks if you do so.
- When answering questions on calculation, you must show all workings. You should not skip any important steps, otherwise marks may be deducted. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the amount of working needed. 1 mark will be given for each important step and the final answer. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted. For a calculation question which requires you to use your answer from the previous question, even if your answer for the previous question is wrong and you use it for this question causing your answer for this question to be wrong, usually you will still get full marks for this question as long as your calculation for this question is correct. This is known as 'error carried forward'.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. If the question states the number of answers you have to write, then you are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. If the question does not state the number of answers you have to write, you are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write any answers with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- When answering questions on describing experiment, your answer should include all the necessary details stated in the question. When writing the procedure, you must include all the steps to carry out the experiment, including the precautionary steps. You must state the amount and concentration of the substances used. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. When tabulating the data of experiment, you can leave blank for the results of the experiment.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis. Plot all points on the graph accurately. Then, draw the correct curve or straight line. When drawing the curve or straight line, it should pass through all points on the graph if possible. If this is not possible, the line or curve should pass through as many points on the graph as possible, all the points should be close to it and the number of points above and below the line or curve should be almost equal. The graph should cover at least half of the graph paper.
- When drawing diagrams, make sure that all important details are included in the diagram you draw. You have to label correctly all parts in the diagram. Your diagram should be clear and neat.



SPM ADDITIONAL SCIENCE:

Note:
The syllabus of SPM Science and Additional Science combined is almost equivalent to the syllabus of SPM Chemistry, Physics and Biology combined.

1. Studying tips
- When your teacher is teaching in class, pay attention to what your teacher says. Make sure you understand everything taught by your teacher. If you do not understand anything, ask your teacher or friends.
- You need a reference book because the textbook and practical book are not enough. As far as I know, there are very few reference books for SPM Additional Science in the market and none of them is complete. Instead, you can use the reference books for SPM Chemistry, Physics and Biology. I recommend you to use all of the following reference books:
(a) Longman Essential Chemistry SPM by Pearson Longman
(b) Success Physics SPM by Oxford Fajar
(c) Success Biology SPM by Oxford Fajar
However, if you know of any reference book for SPM Additional Science that is complete, you may use it.
- When studying a chapter, read through all the explanations in the reference book sentence by sentence. Make sure that you truly understand each sentence before moving on to the next sentence. You also need to know and understand all formulas. Certain topics may require understanding of earlier topics, so make sure you understand those topics. You should also try to relate them to what your teacher had taught in school.
- You should be actively involved in all experiments carried out in school because this can help improve your practical skills which are essential for Paper 3.
- You also need to read through all the experiments and activities in the reference book. You have to understand the Aim, Problem Statement, Hypothesis, Variables, List of Materials & Apparatus, Procedure, Tabulation of Data and Conclusion for all experiments. This is essential for Paper 3. For the Procedure, read through it step by step. Make sure that you truly understand each step before moving on to the next step. To help you understand, try to imagine that you are carrying out the experiment. Understanding the Procedure will make it very easy for you to remember the List of Materials & Apparatus.
- Then, you have to remember everything that you understood. You can memorise the sentences in the book, or you can also create your own sentences that have the same meaning and memorise them. If you create your own sentences, make sure that you do not change the original meaning, do not leave out any important points and do not change the important keywords and scientific terms. However, do not just memorise without understanding. Once you have understood, it will be quite easy to remember and you will be unlikely to forget any of the points.
- For certain facts, there may be no explanation for them so it is not possible to understand them. In that case, you have to remember and memorise those facts.
- For the calculations, you need to know how to apply what you have learnt and use the correct formula to solve the questions. Go through all the example questions in the revision book. Make sure that you understand how every question is solved.
- You have to regularly revise every topics again and again. When revising, go through all the explanation, facts and examples for calculation questions in the book. Make sure that you do not forget anything that you have understood previously. Regular and repeated revision will help you to remember all the explanation and facts for a long time.
- Then, you have to do exercises. Buy exercise books for SPM Chemistry, Physics and Biology from the bookshop. You can start by doing topical questions topic by topic. When you have understood all topics, proceed with doing SPM model test papers, past year SPM trial questions and past year actual SPM questions for Chemistry, Physics and Biology. They should be available from bookshops. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- When doing revision before exam, you should first go through the subtopics that you think is more difficult or that you may have forgotten. Then, go through other topics as well if possible.
- The Additional Science topics may require knowledge and understanding of the Science topics. Make sure that you understand all the topics in SPM Science.

2. Paper 1
- Read the question and all the options carefully. Write any rough workings on the question paper if you need to. Cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Then, choose the most suitable answer among the 4 options.

3. Paper 2 Section A & B
- Section A consists of 8 structured questions where you must answer all questions while Section B consists of 4 essay questions where you can choose any 2 of them. You can answer extra questions in Section B if you have time. The examiner will mark all questions and choose the questions where you score the highest marks.
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on your knowledge and understanding on the relevant topic in Additional Science. Certain questions may test you on more than one topics. For some questions, you may have to apply what you have learnt in Additional Science in order to answer them. You have to think carefully and relate the question to what you have learnt. You may also be asked to give your own opinions.
- When writing your answer, you can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. If the question asks on something that is not in revision books (the question requires you to apply what you have learnt in Additional Science or give your own opinion), then you have to answer in your own sentences. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct scientific terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all scientific terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other non-scientific terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities or when writing working for calculation. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula, unless if the question asks you to write the chemical formula or if you are writing a chemical equation.
- It is not compulsory to answer in continuous writing form. You are allowed to answer in table form or other suitable forms. In suitable cases, you can also use diagrams, equations or graphs in your answer. However, you are not advised to answer in point form. There is not penalty for answering in point form, but some inexperienced examiners may deduct your marks if you do so.
- When answering questions on calculation, you must show all workings. You should not skip any important steps, otherwise marks may be deducted. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the amount of working needed. 1 mark will be given for each important step and the final answer. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted. For a calculation question which requires you to use your answer from the previous question, even if your answer for the previous question is wrong and you use it for this question causing your answer for this question to be wrong, usually you will still get full marks for this question as long as your calculation for this question is correct. This is known as 'error carried forward'.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. If the question states the number of answers you have to write, then you are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. If the question does not state the number of answers you have to write, you are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write any answers with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis. Plot all points on the graph accurately. Then, draw the correct curve or straight line. When drawing the curve or straight line, it should pass through all points on the graph if possible. If this is not possible, the line or curve should pass through as many points on the graph as possible, all the points should be close to it and the number of points above and below the line or curve should be almost equal. The graph should cover at least half of the graph paper.
- When drawing diagrams, make sure that all important details are included in the diagram you draw. You have to label correctly all parts in the diagram. Your diagram should be clear and neat.

4. Paper 3 (Old format for SPM 2017 and earlier)
a) For structured questions,
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you understand the experiment given and know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on the experiment and its observations and results. You may need to apply your Science experimental skills to answer some questions. Certain questions may require your knowledge and understanding in Additional Science to answer them. You may also need to give your own opinions. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct scientific and experimental terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all scientific and experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities or when writing working for calculation. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula, unless if the question asks you to write the chemical formula or if you are writing a chemical equation.
- When answering parts of the question on calculation, you must show all workings. You should not skip any important steps, otherwise marks can be deducted. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted.
- When answering parts of the question that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for each part of the question is always 3. The marks are given based on the quality of your answer, so it does not actually depend on the number of points in your answer. However, you should not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- When answering parts of the question that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. You are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. For the Constant Variable, you only need to write one answer although there may be many.
- When recording numerical data from an instrument used in the experiment, the number of decimal places used should be equal to half of the smallest division of scale of the instrument, unless if there is special instruction in the question. (For example, if the instrument's smallest division of scale is 0.1, you should record the data to the nearest 0.05, which is 2 decimal places) Usually, the last decimal place of the recorded data can only be 0 or 5. Do not give more or less number of decimal places. You must also write the correct units.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis. Plot all points on the graph accurately. Then, draw the correct curve or straight line. When drawing the curve or straight line, it should pass through all points on the graph if possible. If this is not possible, the line or curve should pass through as many points on the graph as possible, all the points should be close to it and the number of points above and below the line or curve should be almost equal. The graph should cover at least half of the graph paper.
b) For essay questions (design experiment),
- When answering, read the question given carefully. You have to design a suitable experiment based on the question. Your answer must include all the necessary details stated in the question. When writing the Aim, Problem Statement, Hypothesis, Variables and List of Materials & Apparatus, give the answer based on the experiment. You need not answer in complete sentences.
- When writing the procedure, you must include all the steps to set up the apparatus, steps to handle the manipulated, responding & fixed variable and the precautionary steps. You must state the amount and concentration of the substances used. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. You do not need to draw the diagram of set-up apparatus.
- When tabulating the data of experiment, you should include all the manipulated variables and the header for both the manipulated & responding variable, and you can leave blank for the results of the experiment (responding variable).
- You can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. You are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. For the Constant Variable, you only need to write one answer, even though there may be many.
- You should use the correct experimental terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula.

Note: The examination format for Additional Science Paper 3 will be changed starting from SPM 2018 onwards. In the new format, Paper 3 will be a practical test unlike the old format where it was a written practical test. I have written the tips for Paper 3 based on the new format. However, I currently do not know how the questions for the new format will be set, so the tips shown here are only provisional. I will update the tips when I have more information about the questions for the new format.

5. Paper 3 (New format from SPM 2018 onwards) (Provisional tips)
- During the test, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you understand the experiment given. Certain parts of the question require you to record the readings from the experiment in a table. You should draw the tables before carrying out the experiment so that you can record your readings in the table straight away during the experiment. Then, carry out the experiment by following the steps given in the question exactly. You need to apply your Science practical skills when carrying out the experiment.
- Certain questions may require your knowledge and understanding in Additional Science to answer them. You may also need to give your own opinions. Your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- When recording readings from an measuring instrument (except metre rule, vernier calipers and micrometre screw gauge), the number of decimal places used should be equal to half of the smallest division of scale of the instrument (For example, if the instrument's smallest division of scale is 0.1, you should record the reading to the nearest 0.05, which is 2 decimal places.) For digital instruments (except digital stopwatch), the number of decimal places used should be the same as that shown on the display. The reading should be recorded to the nearest 0.1cm for metre rule, 0.01cm for vernier calipers, 0.01mm for micrometer screw gauge and 0.1s for stopwatch (both analogue and digital). In all cases, do not give more or less number of decimal places. You must also write the correct units.
- In most cases, you should take each reading twice, then calculate and record the mean of the 2 readings. Ensure that you show in your answer both readings and the calculation of their mean. However, for questions which states that repeated readings are not required, you only need to take each reading once and record it straight away.
- For questions on titration, you should first perform a rough titration, then perform 2 accurate titrations. Record the initial burette reading and final burette reading for each titration, then calculate the titre. You should record everything in a table. All readings should be recorded to 2 decimal places. The titre for the 2 accurate titrations should not differ by more than 0.10cm3. Then, calculate the mean titre for the 2 accurate titrations. The mean should be given to 2 decimal places.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis and do not use any odd scales such as 3:10. Both the x-axis and y-axis need not start from 0. The scales should be chosen such that the points plotted on graph cover at least half of the graph paper. The markings on the scales should not be more than 3 large squares apart. Plot all points on the graph accurately. The points should be accurate to half a small square. For all the points, their diameter should not be larger than half a small square. Then, draw the correct straight line or curve. When drawing the straight line or curve, it should pass through all points on the graph if possible. If this is not possible, the line or curve should pass through as many points on the graph as possible, all the points should be close to it and the number of points above and below the line or curve should be almost equal.
- When determining the gradient of the line of graph, choose 2 points on the line and draw a triangle. The distance between the 2 points chosen should be at least half the length of the line. When determining the y-intercept of the line of graph, if the x-axis starts from 0, you can read it off directly from the y-axis of graph, or if the x-axis does not start from 0, you should choose a point on the line, preferably one of the points that you used to calculate its gradient, and substitute its x and y values as well as the gradient into the equation y=mx+c to determine the value of c which is the y-intercept.
- For questions on qualitative analysis, for each chemical test, you should use about 1cm depth or 2cm3 of each solution unless otherwise stated by the question. You have to record the full observations. State if there is any colour change or if precipitate forms. For any colour change, indicate both the initial and final colour, as well as the stage in which the change occurs if more than one reagents are added. If precipitate forms, state the colour of precipitate and whether it is soluble in excess of the reagent added, and if it is soluble state the colour of the solution formed. If you see any bubbles formed, it means that gas is released, and the question may ask you to carry out a gas test to determine what the gas is. State that effervescence occurs and state the observations of the gas test and the type of gas released. When determining the type of an unknown chemical, it should be based on your observations of the chemical tests carried out.
- For questions on microscopy, you will be required to draw plan diagrams (low power drawings) and high power drawings. For all drawings, use pencil to draw, draw as big as possible without drawing over the text of the question and leave enough space for labels, ensure that the lines you draw are thin, single, unbroken, clear & continuous and never shade or colour. When drawing plan diagrams (low power drawings), use low power objective lens of the microscope, show the outlines of the tissues, ensure that the proportions of tissues in the diagram you draw is the same as what you see and do not include drawings of cells. When drawing high power drawings, use high power objective lens of the microscope, draw only what the question asks, show the outlines of the cells, ensure that the proportions of cells in the diagram you draw is the same as what you see, show the cell walls of plant cells as double lines and where plant cells touch there should be 3 lines and show any contents of cells that you can see which may be nucleus, chloroplasts, vacuoles or others. Label your diagram if required by the question. Use a ruler to draw the labelling lines.
- For any questions involving calculation, you should show all workings and do not skip any important steps. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer if it is not provided. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted. For a calculation question which requires you to use your answer from the previous question, even if your answer for the previous question is wrong and you use it for this question causing your answer for this question to be wrong, usually you will still get full marks for this question as long as your calculation for this question is correct. This is known as 'error carried forward'.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are irrelevant but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. If the question states the number of answers you have to write, then you are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so, marks may not be given for the extra answers, and marks may be deducted if any of them is wrong. If the question does not state the number of answers you have to write, you are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write any answer with wrong facts. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are irrelevant but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contain wrong facts, marks may be deducted.
- When drawing diagrams, make sure that all important details are included in the diagram you draw. You have to label correctly all parts in the diagram. Your diagram should be clear and neat.
- For all questions, you should use the correct experimental and scientific terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all scientific and experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities or when writing working for calculation. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula, unless if the question asks you to write the chemical formula or if you are writing a chemical equation.


Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Tips for SPM Biology and ICT

For my SPM in year 2012, I got A+ for both Biology and Information And Communication Technology (ICT). Do you want to know how to score in SPM for these 2 subjects? Here, I am posting the complete tips for SPM Biology and ICT. These tips are intended for Form 4 and Form 5 students this year who are taking SPM 2017 or SPM 2018.

Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html


SPM BIOLOGY:

1. Studying tips
- When your teacher is teaching in class, pay attention to what your teacher says. Make sure you understand everything taught by your teacher. If you do not understand anything, ask your teacher or friends.
- You need a reference book because the textbook and practical book are not enough. I recommend you to use the Success Biology SPM reference book by Oxford Fajar.
- When studying a chapter, read through all the explanations in the reference book sentence by sentence. Make sure that you truly understand each sentence before moving on to the next sentence. Certain topics may require understanding of earlier topics, so make sure you understand those topics. You should also try to relate them to what your teacher had taught in school.
- You should be actively involved in all experiments carried out in school because this can help improve your practical skills which are essential for Paper 3.
- You also need to read through all the experiments and activities in the reference book. You have to understand the Aim, Problem Statement, Hypothesis, Variables, Technique, List of Materials & Apparatus, Procedure, Tabulation of Data and Conclusion for all experiments. This is essential for Paper 3. For the Procedure, read through it step by step. Make sure that you truly understand each step before moving on to the next step. To help you understand, try to imagine that you are carrying out the experiment. Understanding the Procedure will make it very easy for you to remember the List of Materials & Apparatus.
- Then, you have to remember everything that you understood. You can memorise the sentences in the book, or you can also create your own sentences that have the same meaning and memorise them. If you create your own sentences, make sure that you do not change the original meaning, do not leave out any important points and do not change the important keywords and scientific terms. However, do not just memorise without understanding. Once you have understood, it will be quite easy to remember and you will be unlikely to forget any of the points.
- For certain facts, there may be no explanation for them so it is not possible to understand them. In that case, you have to remember and memorise those facts.
- For the calculations, you need to know how to apply what you have learnt to solve the questions. Go through all the example questions in the revision book. Make sure that you understand how every question is solved.
- You have to regularly revise every topics again and again. When revising, go through all the explanation, facts and examples for calculation questions in the book. Make sure that you do not forget anything that you have understood previously. Regular and repeated revision will help you to remember all the explanation and facts for a long time.
- Then, you have to do exercises. Buy exercise books from the bookshop. You can start by doing topical questions topic by topic. When you have understood all topics, proceed with doing SPM model test papers, past year SPM trial questions and past year actual SPM questions. They should be available from bookshops. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- You should sometimes refer to the mark scheme of past year SPM trial papers to find out how every question is marked and which points need to be included in the answers for every question. Usually, the same types of questions will have similar mark scheme, so this can help you when answering exam questions.
- When doing revision before exam, you should first go through the subtopics that you think is more difficult or that you may have forgotten. Then, go through other topics as well if possible.

2. Paper 1
- Read the question and all the options carefully. Write any rough workings on the question paper if you need to. Cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Then, choose the most suitable answer among the 4 options.

3. Paper 2 Section A & B
- Section A consists of 5 structured questions where you must answer all questions while Section B consists of 4 essay questions where you can choose any 2 of them. You can answer extra questions in Section B if you have time. The examiner will mark all questions and choose the questions where you score the highest marks.
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on your knowledge and understanding on the relevant topic in Biology. Certain questions may test you on more than one topics. For some questions, you may have to apply what you have learnt in Biology in order to answer them. You have to think carefully and relate the question to what you have learnt. You may also be asked to give your own opinions.
- When writing your answer, you can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. If the question asks on something that is not in revision books (the question requires you to apply what you have learnt in Biology or give your own opinion), then you have to answer in your own sentences. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct Biological terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all Biological terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other non-Biological terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula.
- It is not compulsory to answer in continuous writing form. You are allowed to answer in table form or other suitable forms. In suitable cases, you can also use diagrams, equations or graphs in your answer. However, you are not advised to answer in point form. There is not penalty for answering in point form, but some inexperienced examiners may deduct your marks if you do so.
- When answering questions on calculation, you must show all workings. You should not skip any important steps, otherwise marks may be deducted. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the amount of working needed. 1 mark will be given for each important step and the final answer. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted. For a calculation question which requires you to use your answer from the previous question, even if your answer for the previous question is wrong and you use it for this question causing your answer for this question to be wrong, usually you will still get full marks for this question as long as your calculation for this question is correct. This is known as 'error carried forward'.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write points that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the points, even if one of them is correct. You are advised to write extra points if you are not completely sure of what the question is asking for.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. If the question states the number of answers you have to write, then you are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. If the question does not state the number of answers you have to write, you are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write answers that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the answers, even if one of them is correct.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis. Plot all points on the graph accurately. Then, if it is possible to draw a curve or straight line that passes through all points on the graph, you should do so. If it is not possible, you can just use straight lines to join them point-to-point. The graph should cover at least half of the graph paper.
- When drawing diagrams, make sure that all important details are included in the diagram you draw. You have to label correctly all parts in the diagram. Your diagram should be clear and neat.

4. Paper 3 (Old format for SPM 2017 and earlier)
a) For Question 1,
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you understand the experiment given and know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on the experiment and its observations and results. You may need to apply your Biology experimental skills to answer some questions. Certain questions may require your knowledge and understanding in Biology to answer them. You may also need to give your own opinions. Your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct Biological and experimental terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all Biological and experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula.
- When answering parts of the question on calculation, you must show all workings. You should not skip any important steps, otherwise marks can be deducted. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted.
- When answering parts of the question that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for each part of the question is always 3. The marks are given based on the quality of your answer, so it does actually depend on the number of points in your answer. However, you should not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points with wrong facts or points that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable but does not contain wrong facts, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contain wrong facts or points that contradict one another, marks may be deducted.
- When answering parts of the question that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. You are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of
them is wrong, marks can be deducted. For the Constant Variable, you only need to write one answer, although there may be many.
- When recording numerical data from an instrument used in the experiment, the number of decimal places used should be equal to the smallest division of scale of the instrument, unless if there is special instruction in the question. (For example, if the instrument's smallest division of scale is 0.1, you should record the data to the nearest 0.1, which is 1 decimal place.) Do not give more or less number of decimal places. You must also write the correct units.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis. Plot all points on the graph accurately. Then, if it is possible to draw a curve or straight line that passes through all points on the graph, you should do so. If it is not possible, you can just use straight lines to join them point-to-point. The graph should cover at least half of the graph paper.
b) For Question 2,
- When answering, read the question given carefully. You have to design a suitable experiment based on the question. Your answer must include all the necessary details stated in the question. When writing the Aim, Problem Statement, Hypothesis, Variables, Technique and List of Materials & Apparatus, give the answer based on the experiment. You need not answer in complete sentences.
- When writing the procedure, you must include all the steps to set up the apparatus, steps to handle the manipulated, responding & fixed variable and the precautionary steps. You should state the amount and concentration of the substances used. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. You do not need to draw the diagram of set-up apparatus.
- When tabulating the data of experiment, you should include all the manipulated variables and the header for the manipulated & responding variable, and you can leave blank for the results of the experiment (responding variable).
- You can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. You are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted. For the Constant Variable, you only need to write one answer, even though there may be many.
- You should use the correct experimental terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula.

Note: The examination format for Biology Paper 3 will be changed starting from SPM 2018 onwards. In the new format, Paper 3 will be a practical test unlike the old format where it was a written practical test. I have written the tips for Paper 3 based on the new format. However, I currently do not know how the questions for the new format will be set, so the tips shown here are only provisional. I will update the tips when I have more information about the questions for the new format.

5. Paper 3 (New format from SPM 2018 onwards) (Provisional tips)
- During the test, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you understand the experiment given. Certain parts of the question require you to record the readings from the experiment in a table. You should draw the tables before carrying out the experiment so that you can record your readings in the table straight away during the experiment. Then, carry out the experiment by following the steps given in the question exactly. You need to apply your Biology practical skills when carrying out the experiment.
- Certain questions may require your knowledge and understanding in Biology to answer them. You may also need to give your own opinions. Your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- When recording readings from an measuring instrument, the number of decimal places used should be equal to half of the smallest division of scale of the instrument (For example, if the instrument's smallest division of scale is 0.1, you should record the reading to the nearest 0.05, which is 2 decimal places.) For digital instruments (except digital stopwatch), the number of decimal places used should be the same as that shown on the display. The reading should be recorded to the nearest 1s for stopwatch (both analogue and digital). In all cases, do not give more or less number of decimal places. You must also write the correct units.
- When plotting graph, draw both the horizontal and vertical axis on the graph paper correctly. You should plot the independent variable on the x-axis and dependent variable on the y-axis. Label both axis correctly and state the unit (if any). Use a suitable scale for both axis and do not use any odd scales such as 3:10. Both the x-axis and y-axis need not start from 0 (unless otherwise stated by the question). The scales should be chosen such that the graph cover at least half of the graph paper. For line graphs, the markings on the scales should be 2cm apart, plot all points on the graph accurate to half a small square and the diameter of each point should not be larger than half a small square, then draw a curve or straight line that passes through all points on the graph if it is possible to do so, or if it is not possible, you can just use straight lines to join them point-to-point, and in all cases never extrapolate the line. For bar charts, draw blocks with equal width accurate to half a small square, where there must be space between the blocks and the distance between adjacent blocks should be equal, then label every block.
- For questions on microscopy, you will be required to draw plan diagrams (low power drawings) and high power drawings. For all drawings, use pencil to draw, draw as big as possible without drawing over the text of the question and leave enough space for labels, ensure that the lines you draw are thin, single, unbroken, clear & continuous and never shade or colour. When drawing plan diagrams (low power drawings), use low power objective lens of the microscope, show the outlines of the tissues, ensure that the proportions of tissues in the diagram you draw is the same as what you see and do not include drawings of cells. When drawing high power drawings, use high power objective lens of the microscope, draw only what the question asks, show the outlines of the cells, ensure that the proportions of cells in the diagram you draw is the same as what you see, show the cell walls of plant cells as double lines and where plant cells touch there should be 3 lines and show any contents of cells that you can see which may be nucleus, chloroplasts, vacuoles or others. Label your diagram if required by the question. Use a ruler to draw the labelling lines.
- For any questions involving calculation, you should show all workings and do not skip any important steps. You must also write the correct unit for the final answer if it is not provided. You are not allowed to write extra solutions or answers. If you do so and any of the answers or solutions is wrong, marks will be deducted. For a calculation question which requires you to use your answer from the previous question, even if your answer for the previous question is wrong and you use it for this question causing your answer for this question to be wrong, usually you will still get full marks for this question as long as your calculation for this question is correct. This is known as 'error carried forward'.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the points, even if one of them is correct. You are advised to write extra points if you are not completely sure of what the question is asking for.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. You are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write answers that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the answers, even if one of them is correct.
- When drawing diagrams, make sure that all important details are included in the diagram you draw. You have to label correctly all parts in the diagram. Your diagram should be clear and neat.
- For all questions, you should use the correct experimental and biological terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all biological and experimental terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, except when writing units for quantities. For all chemical substances, you should write the complete name and do not write only the chemical formula.



SPM INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT):

Note:
- Starting from SPM 2018 onwards, ICT will be replaced by Sains Komputer. The tips here may not be applicable for Sains Komputer as it has a different syllabus and examination format.
- It is more difficult to get A+ for SPM ICT compared to other SPM subjects. In SPM 2010 especially, no one in the whole Malaysia got A+ for ICT. In SPM 2011 and SPM 2012, only 3 candidates in my school got A+ for ICT. The minimum marks to get A+ for SPM ICT is very high, usually 95. If you aim to get A+ for ICT, you need to understand it very well and master the answering techniques.

1. Studying tips
- When your teacher is teaching in class, pay attention to what your teacher says. Make sure you understand everything taught by your teacher. If you do not understand anything, ask your teacher or friends.
- You need a reference book because there is no textbook. I recommend you to use the ICT Score A reference book by Ismail bin Shaari. You can either buy it through your school or through online at http://www.ictscoreaplus.com/
- When studying a chapter, read through all the explanations in the reference book sentence by sentence. Make sure that you truly understand each sentence before moving on to the next sentence. Certain topics may require understanding of earlier topics, so make sure you understand those topics. You should also try to relate them to what your teacher had taught in school.
- Then, you have to remember everything that you understood. You can memorise the sentences in the book, or you can also create your own sentences that have the same meaning and memorise them. If you create your own sentences, make sure that you do not change the original meaning, do not leave out any important points and do not change the important keywords and ICT terms. However, do not just memorise without understanding. Once you have understood, it will be quite easy to remember and you will be unlikely to forget any of the points.
- For certain facts, there may be no explanation for them so it is not possible to understand them. In that case, you have to remember and memorise those facts.
- You have to regularly revise every topics again and again. When revising, go through all the explanation and facts in the book. Make sure that you do not forget anything that you have understood previously. Regular and repeated revision will help you to remember all the explanation and facts for a long time.
- Then, you have to do exercises. You can buy some ICT exercise books online at http://www.skygt.net/v3/news.php . You can start by doing topical questions topic by topic. When you have understood all topics, proceed with doing past year SPM trial questions and past year actual SPM questions. They should be available from your teacher or through the internet. After doing the exercises, refer to the suggested answer or mark scheme and do self marking.
- You should sometimes refer to the mark scheme of past year SPM trial papers to find out how every question is marked and which points need to be included in the answers for every question. Usually, the same types of questions will have similar mark scheme, so this can help you when answering exam questions.
- When doing revision before exam, you should first go through the subtopics that you think is more difficult or that you may have forgotten. Then, go through other topics as well if possible.

2. Section A
- When answering, read the questions carefully.
- For multiple-choice questions, cancel off the options that you consider as definitely wrong. Then, choose the most suitable answer among the 4 options.
- For true-false questions, give the answer as 'True' if the entire statement is completely correct. If any part of the statement is wrong, you should give the answer as 'False'.
- For questions on matching, you should match the statements that are most closely related to each other.
- For questions on filling in the blanks or short structured questions, give the most suitable answer according to the question. Your answer must be specific and not too general. The spelling of your answer must also be correct. Do not use any short forms in your answer. Your answer should be short and precise. Do not add in any unnecessary details in your answer.
- For all questions in Section A, you are not allowed to write extra answers. If you do so and any of them is wrong, marks can be deducted.

3. Section B & C
- When answering, read the question and all information given carefully. Make sure that you know what the question is asking for. Answer the questions based on your knowledge and understanding on the relevant topic in ICT. For some questions, you may have to apply what you have learnt in ICT in order to answer them. You have to think carefully and relate the question to what you have learnt. You may also be asked to give your own opinions.
- When writing your answer, you can use the same or similar words or sentences as those in revision books if possible. However, sometimes you may need to make some changes in order to suit the question. You can also answer in your own sentences that have the same meaning. If the question asks on something that is not in revision books (the question requires you to apply what you have learnt in ICT or to give your own opinion), then you have to answer in your own sentences. For all questions, your answer must be specific and not too general. Give the most suitable answer according to the question.
- You should use the correct ICT terms in your answer. Do not replace them with other terms that are inappropriate, even if their meaning are the same. The spelling for all ICT terms must also be correct, otherwise marks may be deducted. For other non-ICT terms, marks is not deducted for wrong spelling. If your make grammatical errors in your answer, marks will not be deducted as long as the examiner can understand what you are writing. Do not use any short forms in your answer, otherwise marks may be deducted.
- It is not compulsory to answer in continuous writing form. You are allowed to answer in table form or other suitable forms. However, you are not advised to answer in point form. There is not penalty for answering in point form, but some inexperienced examiners may deduct your marks if you do so.
- For questions that require explanation or description, your answer must be very detailed. You are advised to answer in complete sentences so that your answer can be easily understood. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of points needed in your answer. 1 mark is given for each correct point. Do not miss out any important points in your answer. You are allowed to write extra points in your answer, but you must be careful not to write any points that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct points. For points that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for points that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the points, even if one of them is correct. You are advised to write extra points if you are not completely sure of what the question is asking for.
- For questions that do not require explanation or description, write the answer straight away. You need not answer in complete sentences. The number of marks allocated for the question usually shows the number of answers needed. You are allowed to write extra answers, but you must be careful not to write answers that contradict one another. Marks will only be given for the correct answers. For answers that are not acceptable, whether they contain wrong facts or not, no mark will be given or deducted. However, for answers that contradict one another, no mark will be given for both the answers, even if one of them is correct.

If you need help in doing the ICT coursework, you can use my coursework as a guide. Download my coursework here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2011/09/ict-and-moral-folio.html


Tips for other SPM subjects can be found here:
http://daniellimjj.blogspot.com/2013/06/complete-tips-for-spm-examination-first.html