Exam Preparation
4 Tips To Minimise Careless Mistakes During Math Exams
8th August 2021 at 8:43am
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Score better in Mathematics

Ever look at your child’s examination papers when they get it back and realise that they did not score as well as you thought they would have? If you believe that your child comprehends all the concepts, loss of marks is likely due to careless mistakes.

Careless mistakes shouldn't be attributed to a lack of competence - often, the student recognises the error when it's highlighted to them. Hence, it feels doubly as bad when marks are lost. Here are some tips to reduce marks lost due to careless mistakes during examinations.

1. Encourage your child to be extra neat

With limited time in examinations, one may tend to scribble or write in a way that may be illegible. Sometimes, this leads to students getting confused, resulting in them making careless mistakes. Thus, developing a habit to be neater and more systematic will reduce careless mistakes caused by accidentally reading the wrong values.

2. Write working down instead of relying on mental sums

Some students tend to cut short on the intermediate workings by doing them mentally. Such a process may help them save time, but it can also lead to careless mistakes. Thus, students should cultivate a habit of showing all workings, which can help them to track back and see where they went wrong.

Plus, even if their final answer is wrong, writing down all the workings would give them method marks as well. Students can learn more about the necessary steps they need to get to the answers by attending classes on the topics. GenieClass, for example, has our teachers explain in clear detail the steps needed to derive the answer. Better clarity means that the students will be able to show their answers better in the papers.

3. Reverse-check all answers

Create a habit of getting your child to always reverse-check their answers. For example, one way is to substitute their final answers into the equations given in the question.

If the resulting equation is wrong, it means that there may be a mistake made in their calculations. If students have written down all their methods, it will aid them in their checking process, and they will be able to spot their errors swiftly.

4. Highlight relevant keywords

This process may seem to be trivial but having this habit may be useful in decreasing careless mistakes. By highlighting keywords in the question, it helps students focus on crucial points and facts in the questions. It can also help to reduce transfer error to their workings.

However, it is important to note that all these tips should not be done only in examinations. By allowing your child to develop these habits regularly during practice, careless mistakes can then be minimised.

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