The Road to VCE Exams Success

Our High School year 12 students have started the last leg of their marathon VCE year.  They now have about 10 weeks to go before the first VCE exam on the 30th of October. (English) From that day forward they will have about 3 weeks of exams to get through and most of our year 12 students will have completed all of their exams by the third week of November.

Here at Ozford College our last school day of study will be on Friday the 18th of October, giving our students a two week “SOWT VAC” opportunity to get ready for their exams.

So as the last stretch of this marathon appears on the horizon here a 4 tips to help our Year 12 students get the best ATAR result they can.

  1. Create winning study habits;

Be creative with your note-taking, drawing a diagram or picture next to a specific piece of information can help you to recall that piece of information in an exam just by thinking of that picture or diagram.

Your teachers want to see you succeed, so use them as a resource while you still can!  Ask all the key questions you can think of  in and beyond the classroom, you’ll find a lot of helpful hints and tips you would not have by just attending class.

  •  Keep a good work/life balance;

Giving yourself a break is as important as working hard. Rather than “study” for four hours straight, do 30 minute study sessions with five minute resting periods in between. In doing so, your brain will not wander off as much and you’ll maximise productivity.

To succeed and perform at your best academically you need an “outlet”. An activity outside of studying that allows you to step away from the books for a few hours each week and reenergise. Part time job should be limited to 10 to 15 hours a week and social activity while limited should not be totally removed from your life. It’s impossible to be switched on and studying all the time, your brain will simply be overloaded. Allow yourself to step away from the books. You’ll return more focused and motivated to excel.

  • Find a stress defence that works for you;

Take your time in the exam. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, just close your eyes and give yourself a 30 second breather to ground yourself. This will prevent you from rushing your work.

Towards exam time, try to relax and take the stress off yourself. Make sure you have done the best you could and realize that while the exams are important being stressed will not help and may affect your health.  

  • Think outside the box – exams aren’t everything;

Exams can seem like the be-all and end-all. But, in reality, they’re not. It’s important to remember that they don’t define you and they don’t make or break your future. You are much, much more than an ATAR score and there will be other opportunities for you, and you have an exciting life ahead of you regardless of what happens at the end of the year.

So spare a thought for our Year 12 Students as they count down to their exam dates and times wish them good luck and keep them in mind.

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By John Calsimsek, an Ozford High School Educator