Coming up to your VCE years can feel a bit daunting. By now, you’ve spent 12 years in school and are faced with the constant pressure of knowing that this is the year that will have the biggest impact on what career paths open up to you. To help you make the most of this time, here are five tips for getting through these final years:
1. Seek Extra Help
The biggest difference when it comes to the VCE is that your study scores aren’t being graded against your class or your school. Instead, they’re stacked up against every other student doing the same unit in all of Victoria. So, regardless of how good your grades are, getting the best VCE tutoring you can find is definitely worthwhile. Your VCE tutors will not only help you stay on top of your coursework but will also teach you how to best navigate these years and how to approach studying outside of class so you can feel confident.
2. Build and Maintain Healthy Habits
The VCE is important, but it’s definitely not worth compromising your health. While feeling a little bit of stress in this time is normal, if your sleep, mental wellbeing, eating, and exercise habits are constantly being affected by stress or your study schedule then you need to reorganise your priorities. There are various healthy habits you can practice to help manage stress, enhance productivity, and feel your best during Year 12.
Discuss any health concerns with your GP as they arise, and if you are feeling overwhelmed about high school, do not hesitate to reach out to your friends, family, tutors, and support network who are all in it with you.
3. Practice Using Past Year’s Exams and Tests
The VCAA website includes past exams in all VCE subjects. This is one of the most underrated publicly accessible resources available. Access it, and you’ll be setting yourself up to sail smoothly through this otherwise difficult time. One of the best ways to prepare for your final exams is to take practice tests outside of class hours so that you can get used to working under exam conditions in your subject area (your VCE tutor can help you with this).
With this in mind, it’s well worth your time to download past exams and include them in your preparation strategy. While the same exam problems are unlikely to be repeated, the format and types of questions will match past years in a general sense, making past exams an invaluable resource.
4. Start Exploring Your Tertiary Education Options Now
If you haven’t already, start exploring your post-high school options today. Read through different websites from universities, education providers, and programs so that you can be clear on what type of prerequisites are necessary for the fields that interest you.
Some programs require that you take certain subjects, some have super-high ATAR entry scores because they are competitive, while others don’t require an ATAR at all but may have other requirements like an interview or folio. Having an understanding of entry prerequisites will help you prioritise your study and determine where you should dedicate the most time.
Even the best planner cannot prepare for everything coming their way in one year. Unexpected events, like pandemics, can happen anytime. Remember, there are always alternative pathways for getting into new careers and education programs at any age. Keep these tips in mind, do the best you can, and don’t be so hard on yourself during your VCE prep. You can do this!