As the school year continues on, it can be easy to lose motivation and consider whether the hours and hours of studying will even pay off. You may begin to see other students become complacent and lose the determination to succeed in their HSC and you may align yourself into this path. Although the HSC is a stressful period for every teenager, it is the stepping-stone for one’s future success and beginning of a journey for many looking forward to university. With these 5 tips, I am here to encourage you to stay motivated during the HSC.
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Think about your goals
University may seem like a year away for many students, but the race towards the HSC will flash by you. While being caught up with the tonnes of content dropping onto you, students may forget about the purpose of all this studying. This may be maximising your marks so you can enter your dream course at university. This extra effort that you may need to put in will drive you closer to this goal. By continuously reminding yourself of these goals, students will strive to keep up with all assessment tasks and complete all homework and study notes as we know it has to get better from here! Many have other sources of motivation aside from university.
These may include wanting to make your parents proud, determination to beat a friend, or even developing your own sense of achievement. We all have our own personal goals, but more importantly, we need to remind ourselves of these goals to motivate us to achieve them.
Get enough sleep
Sleep is crucial to anyone’s success in the HSC. Students who attempt to cram extra knowledge before an exam or panic in the final moments that their assignments are due are those who tend to gain the most stress and lose motivation in the HSC. It is essential to get enough sleep during the year, especially considering most students have to wake up between 6 and 8 am to commute to school. By constantly being tired during the day, students will be unmotivated and not take in any class information, leading to exhaustion for any extra study at home. By focussing on the correct sleeping patterns, students can wake up refreshed and prepared to undertake another day of learning.
I get it, you are sacrificing 8 hours a day at school and then a few more hours at home. It may look like there is no chance for personal time to browse social media, go for dinner with friends or even spend the day at the beach. By NOT rewarding yourself, students will develop anxiety and boredom by continuing the “eat, sleep, study, repeat” cycle. So I’m suggesting that you can break this cycle and insert your own free time in these spaces. You may have received a really strong mark for your English exam, so reward yourself with a movie night. You may have completed all your Maths homework for the week, so reward yourself with an extra 2 hours to sleep-in. This will help you avoid unnecessary procrastination and allow you to be more motivated and driven to achieve these rewards.
Create a study planner
It is important to be prepared during the year to stay motivated to do well. A study planner will allow you to visualise all the work that you are required to complete and will demonstrate to you what you have accomplished and learnt in the day. I found I would sometimes study 6 hours on a weekend and when it’s all said and done, I would completely forget what I had learnt that day. By not having a set of goals before you begin studying each day, you may lose motivation to study again as it feels like you are in the same position as before.
I began creating study planners later during the year and I found that I could complete work in a more efficient and timely manner, providing me with the opportunity of greater free time. Simply ticking off the work you have completed increases your motivation each day. Want to find out to prepare for HSC during the holidays, check out my guide .
Try to make study fun
Nobody enjoys studying, that’s probably why you are reading this article. But by rejecting the opportunity to diversify your study patterns, studying becomes, even more, draining each day. So don’t just sit at your desk summarising a textbook. Move around the house. Try studying outside, go to a library, meet up with a friend. By being creative with your studying methods, you will be more motivated to try new things. So avoid repetition and try watching a video, drawing a mind-map or alternating between hand-written and typed notes. I found this the most useful tip during my own study and by the end of the year, enjoyed experimenting new study methods that were even more efficient than traditional textbook and paper tactics.
By following a few of these above tips, you can be creative in your thinking and aim to make HSC study more enjoyable. Understanding that after this year you have so many aspirations to look forward to is essential in allowing you to stay motivated throughout the year.
Joshua Salameh is a former HSC student, achieving his certificate in 2019. He is currently attending the University of Technology Sydney completing a Bachelor of Business / Bachelor of Laws. As a dedicated NESA Distinguished Achiever, he has a passion for assisting fellow students and providing advice on the misery of school and university.