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A-Level Physics Singapore – The Full Guide to H1/H2 Physics

Physics is one of the most competitive subjects in A-Levels, as it includes the sciences, math, and much more. Besides that, the bell curve is also steep, which means that it is challenging for the students to have good grades. Because of this, it is crucial to have a solid foundation in O-Levels so that you can build on these concepts in A-Levels.

So, if you want a complete guide to A-Levels physics, you have come to the right place. Here is an in-depth guide to H1 and H2 physics that will help you understand this subject even better.


What To Expect From A-Level Physics

Before you select H1 and H2 physics, it is crucial to know what you can expect from the subject. The subject is in high demand in the science stream, which is why you will find it to be challenging. You can expect lots of equations, a detailed syllabus, equations, critical thinking skills, and much more.

You will have to carve out a lot of time to study and make sure that your foundational skills are strong to excel. The key is to balance physics with other subjects so that you can score better. Keep in mind that you should not expect to memorize everything because you will have to apply the concepts in the examination, which is why understanding is crucial.


A Detailed Guide To The A-Level Physics Exam Format

Now that you are familiar with the expectations, it is also crucial to understand the exam format so that you can be prepared. Here is a detailed breakdown of each level so that you can ace the exam in no time:

H1 Exam Format

The H1 exam is divided into two papers, which include Paper 1 and Paper 2. Paper 1 is for thirty marks and lasts for an hour. There are thirty MCQs that you will have to answer.

Paper 2 is a much more detailed exam, as it includes structured questions. The paper is eighty marks and lasts for two hours. There are two sections in this exam, which include Sections A and B.

These include the following:

  • Section A (60 Marks): There are different structured questions that also include data-based questions. Such questions will carry between fifteen and twenty marks
  • Section B (20 Marks): There will be two questions for twenty marks in this paper, and you only have to attempt one

Both papers will enable you to apply what you have learned in the classroom and integrate knowledge with application. So, you will have to prepare accordingly.

H2 Exam Format

The H2 exam format is much more extensive, as there will be four papers in this format. Paper 1 will have thirty MCQs that will be of thirty marks, and the paper will last for an hour. Paper 2 will include structured questions that will be eighty marks, and it will last for two hours.

Paper 3 will have many in-depth structured questions of eighty marks, and the paper will last for two hours. The paper will be divided into two sections, which include:

  • Section A: All questions will be compulsory, and they will consist of sixty marks
  • Section B: The paper will consist of two questions, and you will have to choose one. It will carry twenty marks

Finally, you will have to give Paper 4, which will be a practical exam. This will consist of fifty-five marks, and it will last for 2 hours and 30 minutes. The exam will include planning, observation, analysis, evaluation, and much more.


Why Should You Take A-Level Physics?

It is always good to have a reason for why you want to do something. It will provide you with a vision that will help you stay consistent and focused on your studying. Here are a few reasons you can take A-Level physics:

Gaining Scientific Knowledge

The first reason to take A-Levels physics as your subject is to gain scientific knowledge. The field of science is incomplete without physics. The subject will allow you to gain a deeper knowledge and understanding of physics.

Practical Application Of Knowledge

Learning a new subject is not just about gaining knowledge but also applying that knowledge in the real world. Physics will allow you to apply your scientific skills and the knowledge you have learned. If you plan on pursuing a career in sciences, then this subject will be incredibly useful for you.

Evaluation And Observation Of Data

We are living in a technological world, which is why data is everywhere. Specifically, in the field of science, researchers and scientists need to evaluate and observe data. A-Level physics will provide you with the tools and knowledge to evaluate data and observations.


Why Students Find A-Level Physics Challenging?

A-Level physics is a competitive subject, which is why most students find it to be incredibly challenging. Here are some reasons A-Level physics is challenging so that you can prepare for it accordingly:

1. A Lot Of Content

The top reason that A-Level physics is challenging is because there is a lot of content that the students need to cover. You will have to master a lot of concepts in a short amount of time, which can be overwhelming. Keep in mind that physics is not just about memorizing the content.

Instead, it is crucial to understand the concept because you will have to apply it practically in the examination. This is why it is important to revise the concepts from time to time and carve out time to study this subject daily. It will help you cover the content much more easily.

2. Topics Are Advanced

If you have taken physics in O-Levels, then you will find it to be much easier than A-Levels. That is because A-Levels physics has advanced topics that will be much more challenging. You will need to have a solid foundation of the concepts so that you can understand the advanced topics even better.

This is why it is crucial to have resources at your disposal that will help you gain a deeper understanding of the topics. You can overcome this challenge by revising the topics again and again.

3. The Practical Paper Is Not Everyone’s Strong Suit

Many students have this misconception that the practical paper is not important, which is why they don’t pay attention to it. However, you need to ace this exam if you want to move further in your studies and get a good grade. The format is completely different than the rest of the exams.

This is why it is vital to make the practical paper your strong suit from early on. Understand how to conduct and investigate experiments. Once you know how to do this, the practical paper will also become a breeze.

4. Students Get Nervous With Such A Challenging Exam

Finally, it is normal to become nervous, and students get really nervous about A-Level physics because the exam is challenging. It is important to do some relaxation activities to recharge your mind and body so that you can give the exam without any anxiety.

A great way to decrease anxiety about the exam is to master the subject so that you are confident when you enter the examination room. It will enable you to stay calm and poised so that you can get good grades. When you are stressed about the exam, your body releases cortisol, which can affect your memory and learning, which will hinder you from getting a good grade.


How To Study For H1/H2 Physics To Get The Best Grades

The most important thing you should know is how to get the best grades so that you can work hard all year. There are many tips and guidelines you can follow to ace your physics exam. Here are some of the top tips we recommend so that you can master A-Level physics in no time:

1. Keep Revising Your School Notes

Revision is your best friend when studying A-Level physics because it will help you have a solid foundation to build on advanced concepts. This is why when you come back from school, make sure that you go through your notes and absorb everything you learned during the day. Because of this, it is also just as crucial to create good-quality notes while you are in class.

Having such a practice will also allow you to take less time to study before your final A-Levels physics exam. In the long run, regular revisions will enable you to master the subject. You will retain what you have learned, and you can apply this learning to your exam.

2. Strengthen Your Foundational Knowledge Through Basic Equations

There are a lot of equations in the subject, and most of these equations are needed to answer questions in the exam. Keep in mind that many students just memorize the equations and formulas, but this will not help you at all. Instead, you need to understand the reason behind the equation and how it is applied to certain questions.

First, learn the basic equations and practically apply them. Once you master this, you can move on to more complex equations that will form an important part of your exams. So, make sure that you are learning the reason behind the equations and how to apply them to get higher grades in the exam.

3. Practice A Variety Of Questions

Invest in A-Level physics past papers and keep practicing them from time to time. Doing this will help you understand what to expect from the exam when you give it. Solving past papers will also open you up to questions of various difficulties.

When you solve these papers, you will be much more confident while giving your A-Levels physics exam. That is because you will know what kind of questions the examiner gives. So, you will have a good idea of what to expect and what you can do to meet those expectations and get a good grade.

4. Create A Study Plan

Planning is important to study A-Levels physics; otherwise, there will be chaos during your study time. As soon as the academic year starts, make sure that you create a plan that includes studying physics almost daily or every other day. Carve out a set time each day when you will sit down to study physics.

However, it is also just as important to carve out leisure time in your schedule. This will help you stay consistent and motivated to study A-Level physics even better. So, create a study plan at the start of the year and stick to it to reap incredible results by the time you give the exam.

5. Get The Help Of A Tutor

Finally, we recommend that you get the help of a physics tutor so that you can learn even better outside the classroom. They will help you create a study plan and make sure that you stick to it so that you can gain a deeper understanding of the subject. Besides that, they will also provide you with resources to reinforce your learning and study better.

The best part is that a tutor can also come to your home and ensure you study on your own schedule. So, if you think you can’t study on your own, you can always opt for a tutor. They will help you excel in this subject in no time. Or you can check our top 30 physics tuition options.


Final Thoughts

That was your complete guide to H1 and H2 physics in A-Levels. Now that you are familiar with everything you need to know about A-Levels physics, you can decide whether you want to select this subject or not. If you are planning on pursuing sciences in the future, then having A-Level physics will be a mandatory requirement.

So, make sure that you think about your future and then select the subject accordingly. It will also give you more motivation to study as you will have your future to look forward to. Keep everything in mind before you select this subject in A-Levels.

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Tutor City's blog focuses on balancing informative and relevant content, never at the expense of providing an enriching read. 

We want our readers to expand their horizons by learning more and find meaning to what they learn.

Resident author - Mr Wee Ben Sen, has a wealth of experience in crafting articles to provide valuable insights in the field of private education.

Ben Sen has also been running Tutor City, a leading home tuition agency in Singapore since 2010.