6 Tips to Prepare for Exams - a student perspective!

Feature Articles Friday, 03 Mar 2023

Written by Lilly Hayes - 2023 Academic Captain

Whether you’re a nervous student, or curious parent, I hope that I can share some important tips with you, that are not only useful for academic results, but also success in your regular day-to-day lives. With the lead up to the assignment and exam period, for all students, I feel it’s incredibly important to address several key points in this article.

As a year 12 student myself, I certainly understand the pressures of school life, thankfully, we are not alone! Having spent all my schooling years at Mary MacKillop Catholic College, I am very glad to say that the support you or your child will receive here is extraordinary. The teachers, and heads of curricular staff are fantastic and always willing to answer any question that you may have, regarding subject or academic matters. 

The first thing that I wish to convey to you, is that assessment time is nothing to fear. Along with generous support, it’s important to understand that learning is a journey, not a race, and is something that can’t be rushed. Obviously, not everyone's going to be an A grade student, and that is completely reasonable, some prefer sports, arts or even part time work. However, you will get out of it, what you put into it, meaning that no matter how bad you think you’re going to do, just try anyway. What's the worst that could happen right? In the end you just have to be honest and open with yourself and give it a go!

So, to help you with that, here are six tips for academic success, that I prepared earlier.

1. Get into a good routine.

If it means getting up at the same time every morning, or dedicating an hour every afternoon for schoolwork, then just do it! Studies have shown that having a regular routine vastly improves your mental health, while also creating healthy habits, and fostering positive relationships.

2. Don't leave everything to the last minute / plan your time.

Believe me, I know how easy it is to unwillingly let an assignment due date creep up on you, luckily, there's a simple fix. Plan out your free time, invest in and actually use a diary, start an assessment more than a week before its due, and do not just study the night before an exam.

3. Don't become burnt out.

As hard as it might be, keep studying, keep applying feedback, even up to the last week. We all get tired; we all want to give up. Sadly, this achieves nothing, so in order to make the most out of the time you have to spend at school, keep doing and striving for the best that you can do, and remember to make some time for yourself to do the things you enjoy.

4. Ask for help if you need it.

It doesn't matter how embarrassing you might think a question is, chances are there's another student in the room wanting to know the same thing. If for whatever reason you don't want to ask a question in class, email your teacher, or find them after. If you never ask, you'll never know!

5. Hang out with the right people.

Stereotypes and social dynamics of school absolutely influence academic performance, hence it is extremely important that you put yourself in situations, with people who want to support you. If your 'friends' discourage you, or joke about you trying in class, then they aren't really in your best interest.

6. Reflect on your successes and learn from your mistakes.

Let’s face it, nobody's perfect, and everybody makes a mistake every once in a while. Therefore, it is crucial that you evaluate where you went wrong, but don't dwell on this. I can assure you; it’s not going to change the course of your life. In saying that, don't just shrug mistakes off either. If you don't learn from them, then they remain negative, but if you can take messages from these mishaps, then you have learnt for next time.

I genuinely hope that these tips can help you in the hastily approaching future.

Thanks for reading.

Lilly Hayes
Academic Captain