I am Fan and I am happy to provide tips and mentorship for all of you going through HSC. It might be stressful, but have faith! I graduated in 2010 with ATAR 99.85, came 1st in State for Maths Ext1, 98% in Ext 2 Maths, 96% in Chemistry…Yes I know I am a big nerd. But being that nerd and through the years of tutoring, I have gotten a few tips that I want to share for you to maximise your potential and study smarter.
1. Using time slots, shorter chunks of focused study interval is better than 2 hours of doing maths homework while watching YouTube music videos and also Facebook messaging your friends. Personally I like 45 minutes study, then 15 minutes break etc.
2. Use technology: using outlook/calendar to schedule your studies, segment into homework, assignment, note making, doing practice papers etc and dedicate time according to the subject.
3. Didn’t understand a topic? Try watching a video, read a diagram, ask someone or try to draw out flow diagram your self – use a variety of mediums
4. English – ever got into a writing task and didn’t finish writing because you ran out of time? I feel your pain. Tip: write faster (duh), but try time yourself how much you can write within that 45mins/task time limit and do a word count. E.g. you can write 1000 words in 45 minutes, use this word count as a guide for exams, don’t try to fit a 1500 words essay in…you won’t finish.
5. Subjects like VA – it is very easy to get carried away with your art piece/project that you end up spending waaaay too much time for the amount of marks it may be worth.
6. Science: always use the dot points in your syllabus as a reference material. Make your notes accordingly and don’t spend too much time making notes for the sake of making notes. Your notes should be succinct and written in a way you can understand it easily – great for last minute reviews.
7. Study in groups can be fun and helpful but be careful not to turn into a social event where agenda from reviewing the metal topic in chemistry turning into what dress you will wear to the social… have a list of things you want to achieve and tick those off so you don’t sway during study groups.
8. Have a good life balance: sleep well/enough so you don’t end up looking like a panda but also sleep helps your memory and not having enough is detrimental to your health. Eat well, do some exercise and remember to have fun still.
9. Check your knowledge after each topic by doing a few past papers for that topic.
10. Maths – make sure you understand the core concepts behind each topic and why things work the way they do. Having that fundamental knowledge will then allow you to apply this to all sorts of questions in the exams. Good luck.
PS: found some interest notes styles that you can get inspiration from when making studying notes.