Being good at memorisation can only only help you out in the soft subjects such as History, but also in hard subjects, such as Chemistry. Although Chemistry does not have as many formulas unlike Physics or Maths, it does contain a lot of chemical names and equations that students have to become familiar with in order to do well in exams. In addition, certain problem solving techniques are also essential for some types of questions. There is no doubt that a student who excels at this will have an easier time applying his knowledge appropriately.
There have been an entire catalogue of reading materials or videos that talk about memorisation techniques. Below are just some of the many memorisation techniques that you can adopt as a Chemistry student.
(i) Chemistry visualisation tools like diagrams and charts
Making use of the various visualisation tools available at your disposal serves as an effective method which can aid you to improve the way you memorise things. Through the use of diagrams and charts, you have a visual reference which help you to recall Chemistry concepts, ideas and formulas more easily and for extended periods of time.
(ii) Cue cards for Chemistry concepts
By breaking up complicated Chemistry concepts and ideas into smaller pieces and jotting them on cue cards that are pocket friendly, you will be able to revise for Chemistry on the go or wherever you are. However, it is important to note that randomly plucking excerpts of Chemistry information may be counter productive if you do not know what you are doing, hence it will be advisable to create these cue card with the help of your Chemistry tutor.
Each cue card may have a Chemistry definition or practice question on the front and the answers on the back.
Cue cards are meant as an alternative way to absorb information slowly and that will entail the need to start early as it is not meant for last minute revision or cramming of loads of information just before your exams.
(iii) Prepare Chemistry handwritten notes as you go along
There have been many studies which confirm that act of writing actually help the person to retain information better. This means that writing down Chemistry concepts on a piece of paper can actually help you to remember them more effectively. Having handwritten notes can double up as your Chemistry revision notes down the road, when you do not have the luxury of time to revise for your exams. You will find it easier to recall Chemistry conventions and equations compared to just reading from the textbook or handouts that others have provided to you. If necessary, you may want to rewrite certain topics multiple times in order to get it ingrained on your memory.
(iv) Coach a classmate or junior student on Chemistry studies
Do not underestimate the power of learning through teaching. There will be certain topics that you will be able to understand better than your classmates. This is a good time for you to explain and educate a friend who does not understand the syllabus as it prompts you to firstly revise through the concepts so that you do not embarrass yourself in front of others. You will also be in a position of engaging yourself with the various possible approaches towards giving a good explanation to Chemistry concepts when you start to coach your classmates.
(v) Use acronyms and mnemonics to assist in recalling of Chemistry concepts
An example of of acronym is Fat Cat: electrons flow From Anode To Cathode.
Besides acronyms, mnemonics can also be used to help you recall information. Please Stop Calling Me A Coloured Zebra is used in chemistry to assist in remembering the electrochemical series.
(vi) Clear any doubts with your school teacher or Chemistry tutor before memorising
Always try to clear any questions or doubts that you may develop over the course of learning with your school teacher or Chemistry tutor before actually memorising. This is to avoid confusion while trying to remember formulas or definitions, which will not make studying as effective and may even be detrimental to your revision since you may remember concepts wrongly. Try to achieve a complete understanding of the material first before you proceed to memorise the associated Chemistry definitions or equations. This will allow you to not only recall the material faster and more efficiently, but also knowing when to make use of them when you encounter questions. On the other hand, if you have not mastered a certain topic and start to engage in memorisation of that topic, you may find yourself intimidated by the foreign information and that will dampen your efforts towards learning Chemistry in an enjoyable fashion.