Struggling To Balance SAC preparation & Exam study? Read This To Avoid Going Crazy This Year!

April 27, 2018
Posted in ATAR, HSC, QCE
April 27, 2018 Tutors Australia

Important Times Ahead

So there’s no denying Year 12 is a massive year. Not too long ago, I was a humble Year 12 myself, wide-eyed and positively freaking out about the overwhelming stress of SACs piling up in a week and the impending exams in November. Fortunately, I was one of those students who did quite well by applying the 4 hacks below.

Please make sure to only read this, but to also apply what you feel would work for you!

1/ Use your SAC study as exam preparation:

Don’t forget, what’s covered on the SAC is part of the curriculum, and the exam is designed to test your knowledge of the curriculum. Though some subjects involve SACs that don’t relate to the exam, such as English with the oral SAC, most SACs will in some way relate to the exam. Therefore, studying for SACs is exam preparation itself. Use each SAC to become an expert in that area of study.

Don’t fret about revising notes from March when you’ve got the September SAC coming up in a few days. When it comes to exam time, you’ll feel more confident knowing you became a mini expert for the SACs.

Of course you can’t rely on your SAC marks to equate to a study score, but it sure is a boost of confidence knowing you’ve got decent SAC marks for the year.

2/ Keep all your notes in the one place:

If your subject requires a lot of note taking, keep all these notes in the one book, or document. Come exam time it will be significantly easier for you to study when all your notes are compact in the one place. If you haven’t been doing this, now’s the time to start!

I used different notebooks for each subject whenever I was taking notes in class, or at home. I’d go over the notes and practise questions for SAC preparation, and when it got to exam time, all my notes were in the one place.

Going through the same book of notes I’d used all year helped me remember studying for the certain SACs, and the knowledge just came flooding back.

3/ Create a study checklist:

I may sound a little crazy here, but I loved making a checklist to study last year! After school, or on a weekend morning, I would create a checklist of the study tasks required for the day.

There is nothing more satisfying than putting that little tick next to the task when you’re done. This can also be a good way to create a balance between SAC study, and that crucial exam revision.

For example, you could create tasks such as ‘write 1 essay to prepare for English SAC’ and then have ‘review Area of Study 1 notes for French for 30 minutes’ as your next task. The task of writing an essay is SAC preparation and a task that is only completed once you’ve written the essay. Once you get through the pain of hand cramps and, in my case, being annoyed at Tim Winton, you can reward yourself with a tick, or a chocolate.

Then it’s time to move onto exam preparation, and you’ll probably be relieved to break up SAC study with a different kind of study.

4/ Take a break:

I know teachers are always telling you not to burn out, and you may be thinking that only those who study 24/7 do well, but let me tell you, honestly, it just isn’t true. I still managed to achieve a 95+ ATAR while going to 18ths, playing sport, working part time, and sometimes just watching a movie, or taking a relaxing bath.

Rather than “dedicating” 6-8 hours a day on your studies and just procrastinating for 90% of the time. Sit down and do a whole hour of complete focused study. That is the intelligent way to study.

Wishing you the best of luck, happy studying!


Bridgit Nugent, English & Health tutor with LGT Tutoring.


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