I gave up on my combined science

September 19, 2015

I believe in life, there are things we want to give up on. Relationships, friendships or even studies.

I made a decision, recently.

To give up on Combined Science.

It was really difficult, because I worked hard for this subject in the past couple of years. But then I realized, as I transit to Upper Secondary; things were very different.

I remembered in my first Chemistry lesson, we were given a test. Of atoms, molecules and solutions.

Out of 15, I scored 13, The highest. I didn't study beforehand because it was a surprise test and my chemistry teacher was impressed, for I was absent frequently in class.

As time moved on, in 2014 (Sec 3) I got hospitalized and stuffs, I felt that I wasn't catching up. To be honest, I was those type who could only ''study by themselves''. And so, I read my textbook and wrote notes.

I tried to understand by myself, I thought I could.

In my Mid Year examination, I topped my Physics class by getting 43.5/65 just by doing the physics practice papers in topical form thrice. Once with guidance & answers, twice and thrice just by myself. I did it!

But for chemistry? I failed. I remembered I got 23.5/65.

In my End Of Year examinations, things took a change.

I passed my chemistry with 33.5/65 marks. However, the paper was easy. And my marks for physics dropped because I didn't do enough practice.

In secondary three, I maintained my science results at a B4-C6 grade.

Background information of me, I was faring poorly in primary school for science.

Remember OAS 60 marks MCQ? It was suppose to help you score yet it was the factor that killed me instead. I never passed my MCQ until prelims. But I still failed in the end for overall.

To me, primary school science was rubbish. It was totally different from secondary school science (for the exception of Systems aka Biology in secondary school). I found it harder. Why would you know the results of some random experiment and knew what things to use etc? Damn.

In Secondary School, during Sec 1, I scored an A1 for science. It was easy, for me. First lesson was on laboratory rules and the dos and don'ts. Then things got interesting. I basically never failed science in secondary school until I went upper secondary.

The situation now.

I failed my MYE back then in May, scoring only 24/85 for Chemistry and 42/85 for Physics. Overall, I failed. I got an F9. Shocked? Not really, because I realized I was losing interest in the subject.

Although for MCQ, my physics got a 14/20, my paper pulled me down due to careless mistakes. I didn't practice, that's why.

But even if I passed Physics, I would still fail.

In my class, there's a guy; just call him X who's very good in his Chemistry. And it was really, good. His paper scored 57.5/65 And with MCQ I think it was 70+? He wasn't that good in physics, but even if he failed, he would still secure a B4 at least.

I wasn't in the same situation as him. I didn't had a strong physics foundation neither do I look like I could ever understand chemistry.

Main reasons why I couldn't study Chemistry would be because I am not a maths and science person, something that I have emphasized for the 100th time since I blogged on this blog. And my interest was really low. I preferred Biology but in my school, the combination of Physics/Bio stopped due to lack of teachers and only the NA classes could have. You may ask, what about express? There is, however it's a pure biology subject hence the teacher was assigned to them. Thus, the amount of teachers were limited and the subject combination was stopped in 2014 although the 2013 batch of Sec 4s had a 100% pass in O levels. Also, due to the fact that the teacher's style of teaching didn't suit me. She is a good teacher; don't get me wrong. Especially when in smaller groups and in 1 to 1. But in class I just couldn't understand nor get her.

I got a mixed response from my juniors as well as my cohort friends. Majority of them didn't understood her and relied on themselves, and one of my junior didn't understood her too however he told me he is trying his best to understand. But, at the same time one of my junior was doing really well in pure chemistry and she told me that she's a good teacher.

I realized it's really different for everybody, hence I feel that I am pretty unlucky that I couldn't understand the way she teaches. But still, I could absorb some of the key things taught; yet it wasn't enough for me to score a pass.

My marks for chemistry deteriorated day by day and for prelims; I admit I didn't put in any effort at all to at least read something related to chemistry BUT that was my best in the examination with everything I could ever remember written on the paper. I scored 15/85 for prelims. As for physics, no longer that Rachel who would do lots of practices I ended up scoring 25.5/85. I passed my mcq, though. I finished the physics paper 2 in 15 minutes time. So, I don't expect much as well.

Reason behind why I didn't even  bother to read up on the subject even for prelims was because, I made a decision on the midnight of Chemistry paper day that I would want to ''drop'' combined science.

I am a reader of Regine's (my junior's sister cum my future mcm senior in NP) as I found out her blog while I was researching for Mass Communications and tada! I found her, and she was my junior's sister. She too, dropped her combined science and I read about it about last year, when it was nearing october.

I didn't had this thought at all but eventually, the thoughts of dropping combined science resurfaced in my mind. And on that night, I stared at my chemistry notes and told myself, that I couldn't understand science at all. Is it time to give up?

I thought and I thought. And I eventually came to a decision. However I really never heard anyone; besides Regine who dropped science; hence I became anxious and asked her a lot of questions through my junior and eventually just DM-ing her on twitter to ask her my burning questions regarding the dropping of science. Before that I texted my English Teacher cum FT who was away at that point of time of my decision. However, she said it was impossible to drop science officially; the only way to drop it was that students don't attend the exam at all.

And after discussion, she told me to talk to my science teacher. Being closer to my physics teacher, as she was my FT during sec 2, I confided in her instead of my chemistry teacher although she is also the HOD of science as she has a on and off bad temperament sometimes.

After telling my science teacher, she told me that since I have thought it far and considered possible consequences, she was with my decision and she understood me.

So, here are the main reasons behind my decision.


  • Science was not a subject that is required in my L1R4. 
Most of you would have known that, I got accepted for my DPA in Mass Communications (I will blog on this in time to come on what happened that I made it in the end) and would know that for MCM, the L1R4 requirement was a L1R2B2A which is; 


As you can see, my first required subject is only Combined Humanities and there is no combined science at all. 



The highlighted subjects are the ones that I take, however as you can see in my entry requirements, Maths is a compulsory subject hence I can only use Maths. 

The rest of the B2 will then be up to me, which will be my Chinese and Food and nutrition. 

  • I was failing terribly.
If you read the above carefully, you would have know that I scored two F9s for two of my major science exams this year. 

  • There is not much time left for improvement nor further understanding. 
O levels is around 32 days away. And the thing is that I still have other core subjects to focus on, and that even if I focus on science, I am still at risk of scoring a F9 or even if I passed the subject, it won't make any difference because I am confident in my Humanities and F&N which I am (yes at this point) going to score distinctions if things goes well. 

  • I need to focus on my maths, which is a determining factor for my entry to MCM. 
My maths is also at a F9 grade, and if I were to fail maths, I can't get into MCM or any other courses. I need to at least pull it up by two grades, hence I need that extra time for maths. Whereas even if I fail science I have other subjects to replace it. But for maths? Impossible. 

And thus, I decided. 

I know that I may be a loser. But I strongly feel that one should not waste time in things that will not benefit them at all. And that this was the best I could do instead of toiling everyday just to pass Science and neglect other areas which are far more important. 

I considered the possible ramifications that I may risk of getting rejected in University due to lack of science subject if they were to look at my O levels. 

I have checked, and they will do so; at a 20% rate and the remaining 80% will be my GPA, Which I am determined to do very well in Poly to get that 3.96. 

And if they were to reject me; let's say I got my interview for Law and reason being I didn't take my science and they didn't like my perseverance or determination, I will not regret. 

I will tell them the truth and the story behind it. And that I chose to believe in what I believed that I shouldn't waste time on things that won't benefit me at all. 

Things happen for a reason and perhaps then, I won't be even meant to be a Lawyer or so. 

If I had a choice, or you would ask, which of the two I'm weaker in? I would say; Maths. 

I still have my interest for physics, but I have to give up. If I could do so for Maths, I would. But the thing is, I can't. 

I need to remind myself again and again that I gave up something I once loved for the sake of making the other better. And I better do so otherwise I would really regret dropping Science. That I wasted my time for nothing and that I didn't do what I promised myself. 

I am determined, to pass my maths. And I will do so. 

I'm sorry Science. 

But sometimes, you just have to give up; whether people call you a loser or whether you had didn't try hard or whether you think that you had enough of it. These are my reasons, or some would say excuses. 

I won't regret. 

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