Monday, 26 September 2011

Top tips for your WACE History exam

Looking for more general information on using past WACE exam papers to get the ATAR score you want? Read our top tips to really be able to use them effectively.

In previous study seminars students have come away saying, that as far as studying for the history exam goes, these are the top 10 tips:

We really do hope that you have all been to the Alexander Library before now but if you haven’t (shame on you!) it is a pretty cool place even if you’re not studying for History. There are plenty of nooks and quiet seats to settle in and do some learning, gets you out of the house and makes an ideal alternative study spot if there are too many distractions at home (like ice cream in the freezer or noisy brothers and sisters). Additional bonuses: the library provide past papers and study guides in the Group Study Area on the first floor and you can access FREE wireless courtesy of the Perth Cultural Centre.

And, since analysing cartoons was a popular topic here is a quick de-brief on what to look for in political cartoons of the past:

Caricature – exaggerations and distortions of people and objects that aim to provide humour. For example Tony Abbot is always depicted in cartoons with extremely large ears.

Stereotypes – an oversimplified view of something which is often insulting but provides a way of quickly communicating a point. For example “cashed up bogans” was a term introduced into Australian dialect to describe people from blue collar backgrounds who now earn a rather generous salary and noticeably spend their earnings on expensive consumer items.

Determine the audience for whom the cartoon was intended – where and when was it published and what portion of the population was it aimed at (hint: the publication it appears in will help you determine this).

Symbols and metaphors – symbols stand for another thing (people, place, event) and are often easily recognisable. For example, the Kangaroo is often used to symbolise Australia, how the Kangaroo is portrayed will indicate how the cartoonist is representing Australia. A tired and hungry looking kangaroo may indicate a slumped and weak Australian economy.

Get practicing your Modern History and download the 2012 WACE exam papers. Or if Ancient History is more your thing the 2012 WACE examinations are also available.

Next steps:

Top tips for your WACE Human Biology exam

Here are some top tips that students have suggested in past years for how to effectively study for the Human Biology exam:

To help you with top tip #3, download the 2012 WACE Examinations for Human Biological Science.

Remember that information like the WACE syllabus and past exam papers can be useful tools to help you get the ATAR score you want. Check out our blog post on using past exam papers!

Next steps:

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Top Tips Roundup: a summary of key advice from the WACE preparation seminars

To help year 12s prepare for Maths exams we asked expert Graham Braid to share his top study tips with you. Graham is a year 12 maths teacher at Canning College and has marked Year 12 WACE Mathematics Exams for 6 years. Through his time he’s seen some fantastic exam results, which he thinks is a result of students  doing as many practice questions as they can, and starting a solid study program at least 4 weeks before the exam.
Here are Graham’s 9 Top Tips to a great study plan for Mathematics :
  1. Download the Mathematics Syllabus from the School Curriculum and Standards Authority and check-off every thing (check for any changes made to the syllabus).
  2. Build up your confidence by doing problems you’re good at – gradually get better by tackling harder ones.
  3. Do everything from your textbook – and only check the answers when you get stuck.
  4. Use your teacher!  If you don’t understand something – make sure they explain it to you.
  5. Use the Academic Associates Study Guides, or free online tutoring programs such as Maths Online.
  6. Put together exam notes as you study.  Piece together your 2x A4 written exam notes as you go - include worked examples you know are right.
  7. Practice in exam conditions – no music, internet, or TV - use only what you’re allowed in a exam. Give yourself a time limit and stick to it!
  8. Test yourself.  In the week or two before your exam, complete a 2012 WACE Mathematics exam paper  under exam conditions.  Check any areas you need to work at.
  9. Do lots and lots (and lots) of questions!