How to use IB Physics Past Papers to Improve Your Exam Technique

exam technique ib physics ib physics past papers

You've heard it before...

"You should use past paper questions in your revision for IB Physics."

This blog post will talk you through a specific tool that will help you improve your exam technique and learn from your mistakes quicker than just 'using past papers'.

If you make mistakes when completing past paper questions, it is really important that you learn from those mistakes. It’s not enough just to chalk up your marks and hope that you’ll do better in the next paper. 

There are three mind shifts required to be a successful physics student:

  1. Learn to love problem-solving
  2. Be resilient
  3. Become an independent learner

I am about to introduce you to a tool that will help you embrace all three of these mindshifts AND help you improve your exam technique in IB Physics in the most effective and efficient way.….

This is my magic marking grid and it will help you improve with every past paper (or class test) you complete. It is a tool you can use to receive personalised feedback on your performance in topic tests and past papers.  

Get Your Magic Marking Grid HERE!

I guarantee this marking grid will will: 

  • Provide outstanding, individualised feedback on your performance in tests 
  • Improve your exam technique 
  • Engage you in your own learning and self-development 
  • Encourage you to self-analyse and improve.

Take a look at the example below. The question numbers are along the top row. The concept of each question is listed in the associated column heading. Each row lists a reason that you lost the mark. 

You can see from this example the the students needs to work on the following areas:

  1. Practice answering “explain” questions
  2. Familiarise themselves with the data booklet to help work out which formula to use
  3. Practice diagrams
  4. Get better at judging how reasonable their answers are
  5. Revise topics of double-slit interference, circular motion and capacitors.

So often we’ll complete a past paper and focus only on that final grade, without really analysing the exam technique and subject knowledge thoroughly enough. By taking time to complete this grid - a visual strategic plan has appeared allowing you to focus on the areas that need to be improved. 

NOTE TO PHYSICS TEACHERS: This grid can help you write reports! Simply hand it to your students after their mock exams, collect them all in and you have instant, personalised and focussed feedback for each student. 

I encourage you to use my “Magic Marking Grid” after completing your next topic test or past paper.

Here’s what you do:

  1. You complete the past paper to the best of your ability
  2. You use the marking scheme to correct the past paper
  3. You get a clean copy of the marking grid and place a cross in the box that identifies where you lost your marks.

You can then get a clear trend of what areas your exam technique is lacking and you can focus on improving these areas.

Get Your Magic Marking Grid HERE!

GradePod's Magic Marking Grid will help you quickly identify any exam technique weaknesses and gaps in your subject knowledge - allowing you to focus your revision better.


How to use IB Physics Past Papers to Improve Your Exam Technique?


Use GradePod's magic marking grid after completing any past paper. Then follow the step-by-step instructions above to identify areas of weakness in exam technique and subject knowledge. SORTED!

Get Your Magic Marking Grid HERE!

Hope this helps

Don't forget to download your
FREE IB Physics Syllabus 2025 Checklist

Thumbnail for the IB Physics Complete Checklist with a female student smiling and holding books, advertising GradePod's Free Learning Objectives Checklist for exams in May 2025, featuring the text 'Know What You Need to Study in the New IB Physics Syllabus with Our Easy-to-Understand Guide. Download Now!