It’s Not Rocket Science: How to Ace Your Science Class

Are you or a student you know taking a challenging science class this year? From biology to chemistry to physics, ACP-Erie offers a wide array of options to prepare oneself for a career in a science field. Science courses are some of the most difficult classes, so let’s take a look at some tips for acing your science class:

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Don’t be afraid to ask for help!

If you aren’t understanding the textbook’s explanation for how DNA replicates or oxidation-reduction reactions occur, don’t worry. The teacher is there to help!  When you are confused by part of the teacher’s lesson, immediately asking a question can make a big difference. There are probably a bunch of other students asking the same questions.  If you still don’t understand, try visiting at office hours or asking for help when there’s free time in class.

Don’t memorize…understand.

Most science teachers will ask questions beyond simple memorization, so striving for a conceptual level of understanding will make the tests go far smoother. For example, rather than memorizing five different formulas for determining how gases change under different circumstances, simply memorize the ideal gas law (PV=nRT). Then, learn how to derive the other formulas from this one basic  formula through understanding how the variables relate.

Keep asking why.

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From “Why does the sun revolve around the earth?” to “Why does gravity exist?”, asking why is an incredibly important skill in science. Through encouraging more comprehensive understanding, asking why will both satisfy your curiosity and deepen your knowledge of the subject at hand. It is much easier to be motivated about a topic when you have a level of personal engagement, which can stem from simply asking “Why?”.

Stay engaged.

After a long night of homework, working, video gaming, eating, and doing whatever else you like doing in your free time, paying attention in class may seem impossible. However, try to keep your mind focused on what your science teacher is saying, and avoid drifting off into space. While every day does not bring an exciting chemical explosion or fascinating lab about natural selection, there’s still plenty of interesting knowledge to be gained from your science class.

Do all of the test corrections.

When teachers give you the opportunity to improve your grade, take advantage of it! Manage your time outside of class so that you have enough time to do your test corrections. At the end of the quarter, those few extra points from corrections really add up.

As an ACP student, trying to decide how to manage one’s extracurriculars and still be successful in class can be a challenge. With these tips, though, hopefully you feel more prepared to ace your next science test!