Last Minute Preparation for Physics: What’s the Best Thing to be Doing?

The HSC Physics exam is on Friday and I’m sure there will be a few nervy thoughts among students. It is absolutely critical to ensure that whatever time you have left, you are putting it to use. There are a number of study techniques mentioned below that are sure to enhance your returns on your time-wise investments!!


Make sure you have finished BRIEF notes. The reason why I stress ‘brief’ here is because you should know your content inside out by now. You should only need brief memory jogs from time to time. Go through the syllabus on NESA’s website (link below) with a fine-tooth comb and make sure you’ve hit all of the inquiry questions with your notes.

Using the Sample Questions:

Have a go at ALL of the sample questions that were posted by NESA at the beginning of last year. Being a new course, and hence a new exam, relevant and up-to-date resources are scarce. The sample questions are a nice way to gauge difficulty of questions while also seeing some suggested NESA-developed responses to those longer response questions. You should already have ben working through these throughout 2020, so hopefully there aren’t too many more to do.

Using the 2019 Paper:

Put aside 2hr 30min of dedicated time to do the 2019 paper COMPLETELY. Yep, that’s right, only 2.5 hours. The reason that it is beneficial to try to do the exam in a shorter time period is to get you familiar with the perceived pressure you will be feeling on Friday. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable, that way you will think the actual exam is a breeze! After doing the exam, go through the suggested solutions and mark yourself as harshly as possible. Try to diagnose any weak areas now and take appropriate action to fix these areas up! When in doubt, questions, questions, questions!

The Night Before:

The most important thing to do, however, is to take control of your sleep/wake-up pattern on Thursday night and Friday morning. Go to bed at 7 or 8pm on Thursday night, then wake up at 4 or 5am on Friday morning. Then on Friday morning with all your extra time, do some moderate difficulty exam questions. This ensures that you get a good night’s rest, while also having your brain switched on and ready when you walk into the exam. There is nothing worse than walking into the exam room with a blank mind, make sure it’s warmed up and firing!


The best of luck to all of the Physics students for their exam, as well as the best of luck to all students in all their remaining exams!!

If you have any last-minute burning questions, please feel free to contact myself or comment below.

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