One of the greatest challenges for IGCSE Biology is the breadth and depth of the material covered. This makes your study strategy and your time management critical for success. Students often focus only on completing past papers and miss the larger picture. There is no point in completing many past papers if you do not learn from them. Mastering the content requires a strategic and organized approach.
Your first step should be to look at the syllabus and divide up the content into key concepts. Think of the syllabus as your road map to the content you need to master for IGCSE biology. It tells you exactly what you need to know for the exam, so don’t neglect it. When you revise the material, organising it into these key concepts and using tools like flow charts, mind maps, flash cards, summary notes, and even videos or PowerPoints will help you retain information. Many pre-made notes are available online, but they are no substitute for creating your own, which will help reinforce the content you have learned and help you to absorb the material more thoroughly.
Try revising in study groups or pairs and teaching material to another student. The best way to be sure you have truly mastered material is to attempt to teach it to someone else. An IGCSE biology tutor can also help you target areas of weakness as you organise and revise material. Use your course text as a primary source for revision and supplement with online materials.
Once you have a firm grasp of key concepts, it’s time for past papers. Do not look at mark schemes until after you have attempted the papers! This will fool your brain into thinking you have a better grasp of the material than you do. Students often write poor answers to past papers, review the mark scheme, and think they have grasped the question. Try re-writing and see if you do better the next time! When you review the mark schemes, you can improve their usefulness by also reviewing the examiner reports and analysing where you missed the mark and where your answer could be improved.
Once you are hitting the mark on past papers, it’s time to really focus in on time management. Make sure you practice under timed conditions so you don’t overestimate your skills! Contact us to discuss how our top IGCSE biology tutors can help you make the most of your exam preparation.