Don’t leave HSC study to the last minute
Casimir College HSC students Kate Grabowski and Pesharar Dasesh
By Marilyn Rodrigues
How are our Year 12 students coping with the high-pressure of HSC exams? Well, it varies, according to Pesharar Dasesh, of Casimir College, Marrickville.
Pesharar says that he is fairly relaxed, but most of his friends are “really stressed”.
“Some have been crying over the phone to me,” he says.
“But some are going to do a trade so they don’t really care. It depends on the person.
“The media hypes the HSC exams up a bit. My parents are pretty cool and our teachers are good; they’re confident in us.
“But other people have got pressure from their school, their parents and the media and all of that together is too much.”
Pesharar has put consistent effort into his assessment tasks through the year (which count for half of the final mark), so he’s confident of attaining a tertiary entrance rank (TER) in the high 80s.
That’s what he needs to study economics at the University of Technology, Sydney, or the University of Western Sydney.
His subjects are advanced English, general maths, modern history, business studies, economics and religion.
The 18-year-old began studying in earnest in late September, but has scaled down his social life this year including foregoing playing tennis in his local competition until after the exams.
His last one is on November 12, and after that he will work part time during his three-month break from studies.
Kate Grabowski, 17, also from Casimir, had just finished her ancient history exam when she spoke to The Catholic Weekly.
It was better than she expected, she said.
But studying “pretty hard” at the last minute for that and her other subjects – two and three-unit maths, advanced English, religion and visual arts – was taking a physical toll.
“My sleeping patterns have changed which gets annoying. I’m doing more work at night and sleeping much later, and then I’m often tired during the day,” she said.
Kate admitted to nerves and said she got frustrated when her parents nagged her to study, but her teachers “tell us not to stress too much”.
“During the trials they told us not to even think about the HSC, just to focus on what we were doing,” she said.
She and her group of friends test each other on their set subjects.
Kate hopes to study psychology and arts at university, but in the meantime will go to Europe for two months with her family after the exams finish.
What advice do she and Pesharar have for the Year 11s who will face the HSC next year?
Pesharar says not to leave it until the final exams to put in your best effort.
“The assessment tasks are worth half of the TER so they should be given more importance,” he says.
“Our teachers have always told us to maximise our marks in our assessments and so I’ve put in the time and done all right.”
Kate agrees: “Space out the work and make sure you are constantly studying through the whole year.
“I know it’s hard but I didn’t do it and I wish I did.
“You think you’ve got plenty of time to do the work later but you really don’t.”