Really need help. Best way to get through science passages, time and comprehension issues

phixius12345

5+ Year Member
Aug 16, 2014
97
3
Status
Pre-Medical
So I've gotten my content decently down, and have been taking NS Fls. My concerns here are for the Physics Chem and Bio sections (bio is a big problem). After reviewing the FLs I have noticed that most of my mistakes are from not understanding the passage material, missing information from the passage, not understanding what the passage was trying to say etc.
In addition, I don't finish passages on time, at the very least it takes me 9-10 minutes. I'm doing okay on exam scores (around 126-128) however, I am not taking the test timed, (just timing myself per passage) and I usually go over 8 min for science passages (average 10min).

I really need a strategy on how to speed up the process of getting through the passages faster while still being able to understand what's going on.

For example, I've tried skimming for the main idea of the paragraphs, and where things are in the passage, then I find that by the end of it I don't know important details necessary for the questions. And then I go back to the passage, but can't find the necessary information because I didn't take enough time to understand what was going on, etc.

Can anyone give me some advice on how to best tackle science passages? As it is, when I skim, I feel super unconfident when I get to the questions that I can go back and find the info their looking for and end up wasting a lot of time. And when I read the passage trying to understand, Im just too slow and take too long. Any advice or help would really help me out. My test is in a month. Thanks so much!
 
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phixius12345

5+ Year Member
Aug 16, 2014
97
3
Status
Pre-Medical
Bump, any advice would be really appreciated as I'm kind of lost on how to improve my getting through the passage. Like how much I should be understanding the passage the first read through. I've received advice on just skimming and coming back but I feel super lost when I do this. Anyway Thanks in advance!
 

alpha-GTP

Where's my 5' UTR?
Jun 16, 2016
389
520
Some membrane somewhere
Status
Pre-Medical
I would skim the passage while not wasting time on looking at the graphs/data/equations. I would highlight key terms including anything notable about how experimental data is obtained. The physical science section is notorious for including experimental data and equations that are not used in the questions just to throw you off, so I would only look at them when prompted by a question. There is always 1 or 2 questions that can be answered without looking at the passage, I would do these first and then save time for the data interpretation questions. Also, pay attention to data that has statistical significance between experimental and control groups, because this can result in a wrong answer when the question is asking you to make conclusions from data. I would also practice doing ballpark calculations because answers are usually significantly different from each other (sometimes order of magnitude) that rounding off will still get you in the proper range. I would also know common things line sqrt(2), sqrt(3), log(2), log(3), logarithms in general, 90-45-45 triangle and 90-60-30 trigonometry, and other common things that will save you time on the test.
 
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