7 top tips you NEED to succeed in year 12

Person writing in a book in front of a computer

So you’ve just started Year 12. It can be an extremely nerve-wracking time, but there are certain tried and tested habits and techniques that you can use to make your final year of high school much less stressful. Here are 7 tips to keep in mind as you progress through Year 12!

1. Discover subject specific study techniques!

While it’s great to have a stash of broad study techniques, different subjects usually require tweaking in terms of how you study for them. This can be due to differences in content volume, content style and even your attitudes towards that subject. So invest time into looking for effective study techniques for your unique combination of subjects.

For example, most science subjects usually have a study design that contains all the information you will need to know to answer the questions on the exam. So if you’re studying a science subject, use the study design as a reference when revising for assessments and exams. For a language subject, most of your study may be concentrated into practicing essay writing and speaking in the language. Consult a tutor or a past student to get more ideas about how to study for your particular subjects!

2. Have a balanced lifestyle from the very beginning of the year 

Although going into Year 12 is scary, don’t just throw out all your extracurriculars and hobbies! It’s important to have a balance throughout the year to prevent burn out later on. Try making a list of the hobbies that you enjoy most. Ensure that you schedule them into your week so that you maintain this important balance between study and leisure. 

3. Don’t be afraid to seek out support when you need it!

It is not a sign of weakness to admit that you need a little extra support when it comes to your final year of high school. A great way to get support is to get a tutor or a mentor who can offer you subject-specific advice, exam and assessment techniques as well as plenty of support for you throughout the year. The benefit of having a recently graduated tutor is that they have gone through the same experiences as you, not too long ago! They will likely have experiences and advice that can really help you in your own educational journey.

4. Reframe the way you view “failure”

Despite putting in the work, not everything will turn out amazingly in Year 12. Although this can be quite a disheartening experience, it is important to reframe your mindset to view “failures” as opportunities for learning. Fostering this growth mindset ensures that you are continually improving in your work! Try to focus on what you did well in your assessment as well as what you can improve. Take time to process what was good about what you did so you can keep demonstrating these in your next assessment. Keep an open mind and contact your teachers to get more specific advice about where to improve and exactly how to do it.

5. Find ways that encourage you to enjoy learning

There’s no doubt that when you are interested in the content, you are more likely to actually want to learn and master it. So why not find out ways to make all your subjects interesting for you? For example, you can connect the content in your subject to your own interests and hobbies. 

Do you love sport? Then connect human biology content to how it helps your favourite athlete compete in their sport. This may increase your curiosity in your work and motivate you to learn for the sake of improving your knowledge.

6. Revise, revise, revise

It’s not rare for students to leave their revision up until a few months before exams…or even the last few weeks. The most underrated study technique is to regularly practice what you have learnt so that you better understand it, and don’t have to relearn it when it comes to the exam. Although constant revision may seem daunting, it can simply be done through doing exam questions each week from the topics you have already learnt and mastered. By doing so, you are challenging your brain to recall information which is exactly the skill you need when it comes to your end of year exams.

7. Create smaller goals for every big goal

It’s great to have overarching goals for the year and your future. However, if you stop there, it’s likely that you’ll feel totally overwhelmed by them! The solution is to write smaller goals under each of your big goals. For example, if you really want to achieve a certain score for English, write smaller goals that will help you accomplish this. For example, you may strive to write an essay a week and get detailed feedback from your teacher. This breaks your goals down, so that they are more tangible and achievable.

Written by

  • Sharnica is a medical student at Monash University. Passionate about Biology and Chemistry in particular, she tutors a range of VCE students and is excited to continue to pursue her interests through studying Medicine.

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