The VCE. Rough Road Ahead.
Part 1: Minimising the Impact

 

May is a really challenging month for Year 12 students. In almost all cases, there‘s a SAC in every subject, and to make matters worse, most come in at the same time, creating huge workloads and stress levels for VCE students.

Is there anything students can do now to minimise the impact of the SACs when they start piling in?

  • Ask recent VCE graduates for copies of their SACs so you can get an idea as to what to expect. Note that some teachers will not hand out copies of SACs to students.
    a
  • If you’re behind in any subject, get up to date as fast as you can. Concentrate on the weaker subjects that are likely to make up your “Primary 4”.
    a
  • Start preparing for each SAC as early as possible so you can spread your learning out across a longer time frame. You will learn more and will get higher marks by investing 1 hour towards a SAC each night for 14 nights as compared to spending 7 hours on both Saturday and Sunday.
    a
  • Catch up on missed sleep and decrease your sugar intake at least one week before the SACs start. A low sugar diet has been repetitively shown to significantly improve concentration and academic performance.
    a
  • Don’t forget to check out the free resource portal on the TSFX website for worksheets, tests, prac reports, notes and sample A+ English essays. Select “ATAR Central” from the top menu on the TSFX website (www.tsfx.edu.au) followed by “A+ resources”. There’s over 9,000 VCE related resources there so you should find something to help you prepare for most of your SACs.
    a
  • Ask your teacher for copies of previous SACs on the topic. If they’re not reusing SACs then there’s no reason why they wouldn’t make past assessments available for you to peruse.
    a
  • Read the study design carefully to make sure you’re aware of everything that can be examined. Note that different subjects present their study design in different ways. For example, the key
    knowledge that will be assessed is usually listed under each outcome, by area of study. The maths study design, however, describes each area of study first, providing some information, but the specific, or key knowledge isn’t provided until after all the areas of study have been presented. Some subjects, like the sciences, list important examinable topics at the beginning of the study design mixed in with administrative notices – areas where students aren’t likely to look through at all. This section is titled “Cross-Study Specifications” – and usually counts for up to 15% of the exam mark. Read through every page of the study design and locate every section that lists examinable materials, just in case. There is no point in revising extra material that isn’t on the study design and won’t be examined.
    a
  • VCAA has provided sample SACs for many, if not all subjects on its website (www.vcaa.vic.edu.au). From their home page, click the link that will take you to the study design and you’ll find beneficial resources at the top of the page. Check the bottom of each subject page as well – some subjects have additional materials listed there as well.
    a
  • Start taking a quality multivitamin each day. Extended periods of stress deplete the body of Vitamin B and other nutrients that are essential for proper brain functioning and general management of stress.