by Gowiskan Nageswaran, 28 September, 2018
It’s getting down to the wire and the HSC is creeping up. It’s been a long year of hard work and the marathon is nearing its finish line. It is very easy to get stressed and panic as the exam day comes along so here are some final tips to help you get in the zone before the exams and get the ATAR you deserve.
Remember that you will have been pacing yourself throughout the year so you know much more than you think! As it gets down to crunch time it’s important to expose your weaknesses and try and cover any areas that you may be a tad unfamiliar with or something you haven’t covered in a while.
Remember that your English score is a mandatory component of your ATAR! Following from this, it can be helpful to go over any notes you may have made throughout the year (if you are a notes person) or read over some material that you may be unfamiliar with. For the dreaded subject of English, ensure that you have your essays down pat and practice writing these to different questions under timed conditions, which brings us to tip 3.
Past papers are your best friend and it’s a good idea to continuously do past papers in the lead up to the exam. It’s best to do these under timed, exam-like conditions to simulate the actual exam.
This will help you get used to the timing of the exam and get a feel for how much time you may or may not have left over. If you don’t know something on the practice exam, make a note of the broad topic and go over it again in detail!
Personally, I prefer to start with the older exam papers and work my way up to the more recent exams in the lead up to the exam, just so the more recent style of questions are fresher in your mind.
It may also be helpful to have a timetable or calendar to demonstrate when you completing past papers. It’s a really good idea to pace these throughout the lead up to the exam too, or you might find yourself with nothing much to do a week or so before it!
One of the most important tips I can give you is to not burn out! In the lead up to the exam it’s natural to want to spend every minute you can studying, but make sure to take enough breaks and partake in some of your hobbies!
As I have mentioned before, the majority of the work is already done and it’s just a matter of refining and tweaking your knowledge and exam technique. I can’t emphasise enough the importance of taking appropriate stress-relieving activities to prevent yourself from burning out.
Finally, in the last week or few days or so before the exam, most of the study should pretty much be done and it’s just a matter of finishing those recent past papers and covering anything extra to not leave any stone unturned.
Again just remember that the HSC is a marathon and not a sprint and you have done the majority of the work earlier on in the year. Use the lead-up to the exam to consolidate the things you’ve learned, identify weak-points and practice working under exam conditions.