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15 May 2020

Our top 5 tips for getting ready to complete your exam replacement tasks

As you know, each of your unit sites has now been updated with a new exam replacement task for T1/S1. It is essential you take the time to review this updated information and familiarise yourself with your new exam replacement task(s) and your requirements.

We understand that the change from final venue-based assessments to online replacement tasks may be causing students to feel stressed, especially as it is normal to feel some anxiety regarding your performance in final assessments.

As the time for your exam replacement tasks draws closer and you’re in revision mode, remember these tried-and-tested practical tips for exam preparation so you can manage feelings of stress effectively and get a strong end result for your units.

#1 Start your revision early (the earlier the better)

It’s important to start revision early so if you need help, you still have time to seek guidance. Start to prepare questions for content you’re not clear about, and get clarification from your tutors or peers via your unit site discussion forums. Forming an online study group can be an active and efficient way to review content. You can share questions, quiz each other, and test your understanding by explaining a concept to someone else. Check out some of these useful Study support tips for exam preparation.

Make an online appointment with the Writing Mentors, or the Maths Mentors, for tips on understanding and remembering information, or make an online appointment with Language and Learning Advisers for more exam preparation strategies.

If you’re still stuck on subject material, try the discipline specialist tutors on Smarthinking – Deakin’s online tutoring service available 24 hours for students.

#2 Summarising what you’ve learnt

It can be hard to keep track of large amounts of information. A good technique for synthesising information is making summaries – keep notes from each week in your own words (if you haven’t done this through the trimester go back and work through the content). Summaries can be written in full sentences, as dot point cheat sheets, or even verbal (recorded on your phone). Anything that gets you actively recalling what you’re revising will be useful.

Brain dumping can also be effective – this is when you get everything out of your head on to paper. At the end of a long study session, write down everything – key points, questions, areas for further study. You’ve just created a handy collection of things you’ve learnt and a starting point for next time.

#3 Be kind to yourself

Study hard and study smart but make time to go for a walk, play with your dog, talk to friends and family, eat healthy and most importantly get plenty of sleep. 

Introduce relaxation exercises into your daily routine. By practising relaxation you can develop a sufficiently strong relaxation response to counteract the physical symptoms associated with any excessive anxiety (like getting stressed about final assessments). Here’s a guide to progressive muscle relaxation you might like to try.

If you need extra support, please reach out to your friends or access support online from Student Life – you can get health and wellbeing support from Deakin.

#4 Be prepared

Start times for exam replacement tasks are listed in your examination timetable in StudentConnect

Ensure that you have double (even triple!) checked what exam replacement task you will have for each unit in your unit sites and record all the essential details (including start times and time-limits) in your diary so you’re prepared.

Once you know what type of task you will be doing, get all of your allowed materials ready as early as possible. You can refer to Deakin’s exam replacement FAQ page for more information.

#5 It’s normal to be nervous – use it to your advantage 

Everyone gets nervous before an exam or final assessment. Research indicates that mild levels of anxiety can improve alertness and provide the burst of energy needed to get through demanding situations.

However, too much anxiety can be debilitating. Before you are set to begin your exam replacement task, don’t stress about the things you think you do not know.

Focus on the task ahead and have confidence in what you do know. A small amount of anxiety together with confidence is the key – accept your anxiety and don’t let it overwhelm you. Here are some resources on how to do this.

For more information about T1/S1 exam replacement tasks, including information about the revised T1/S1 grading schema, see Deakin’s exam replacement FAQ page and our recent blogs Your guide to T1/S1 final assessments and Revisions to the T1/S1 grading schema: what do these changes mean for me?

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