How to Plan Ahead for the HSC and VCE Exams

How to Plan Ahead for the HSC and VCE Exams

Around this time of year, many HSC and VCE students start wondering why the year has flown by so quickly. Final exams are approaching very fast, and for some, panic has started to set in. 

Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do in the final weeks before exams to help you get ready. The more prepared you are, the less stressed you’ll feel on the day.

Here’s how to plan ahead for your exams.

Schedule Study Time 

Up to now, you may have been studying when you felt like it. This is fine when exams are several months away, but time is precious at this point, and you need to make the most of it. 

Work out how many hours you need to devote to each subject per week. Block out 2 – 3 hours each day and list the subjects and topics you will study in these sessions. Your schedule may change over time as you pinpoint which areas need more work, but this provides a foundation to start with. 

Organise Your Space

It’s tempting to study while lying on your bed, but this is not good for learning and memory. Your brain associates bed with relaxation, so it’s easy to become inattentive and drowsy here. 

If you don’t have a dedicated space to study, now is the time to create one. All you need is a desk in a quiet spot. Any devices you don’t need should be out of sight so you’re not tempted by them. After you’ve worked here a few times, your brain will automatically switch into study mode when you sit down.

Use Visual Aids

Diagrams, charts and graphs are excellent for helping you retain information. You can create these on your computer or use a whiteboard or some butcher’s paper. 

Transferring information into a different format helps you remember it in more detail due to the extra attention required. This creates new neural pathways in your brain, allowing for deeper learning. It’s also a fun way to study and will help keep you motivated. 

Complete Past Papers

Past papers are one of the most beneficial things you can do to prepare for exams. They help you understand the types of questions you’ll get and refine your study methods.

There are many approaches you can take with past papers. Use them to break down questions, brainstorm answers and write essay plans. Now is a good time to start completing full papers with a timer so you know how much time to devote to each section. 

Share Your Knowledge 

Sharing your knowledge with classmates is not only a great way to inject some fun into studying, but it’s also a proven way to boost your memory. When you have to verbalise a concept, it forces you to really break it down, ensuring that you’ll remember it.

If you have trouble explaining something, you probably need to devote more time to it. Studying in a group allows participants to share their knowledge and fill in the gaps for each other.

Look After Yourself

In the busy lead-up to exams, it’s easy to overlook your health. This is a mistake as it can really affect your performance. 

It’s vital to drink plenty of water as you won’t think clearly if you’re dehydrated. Avoid junk food and eat regular healthy meals. Exercise and relaxation are more important than ever right now to keep stress levels down.

Plan ahead now to perform at your best in your exams.