Help prepare for taking your exams – know what to expect in the exam room and the exam paper, including where to write your answers.
There are certain pieces of equipment you can and can’t take into each written exam. Don’t bring electronic devices, including a mobile phone, smart watch or tablet, notes or paper into the exam room.
You can only bring items on the approved list into the room. You should also write in black pen.
Find advice about these exams specifically on the NESA website: math, music, VET, languages and drama performances examinations.
For each course you are studying, know the rules and requirements, and what to expect in each exam.
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To prepare you should read
The syllabus, particularly HSC content and outcomes, to see that you have covered everything you need to learn, the course assessment and reporting guide, past exam papers, and exam paper marking guidelines – these can help you to understand the nature and scope of the responses that are expected of students.
Also read exam paper notes from the markers – these contain comments on candidate responses from past HSC exams, indicating the quality of the responses and highlighting their strengths and weaknesses.
Standards materials contain examples of real HSC responses from students whose exam performances place them on the borderline between two Performance Bands. They illustrate the level of performance required to achieve these marks.
The Glossary of Key Words contains some terms commonly used in exam questions. It is a useful guide to question formats, but it is not exhaustive and you must be prepared for many kinds of questions.
Multiple-choice question quizzes – test yourself with questions from some past HSC exam papers to help you better understand the kinds of multiple-choice questions you may be asked.
You may want to buy HSC exam workbooks for a range of courses on the online shop containing exam questions, guidelines provided to exam markers to assess student papers, real examples of top-scoring student papers with comments by the official marker, and tips for creating a plan and setting timings during the exam.
There were 27 cases of cheating in last year’s exams and with the risk of receiving a zero mark for the exam you cheated in and possibly being ineligible to receive your HSC, it is just not worth it. Presiding officers are vigilant in the exam room and will ensure that any instances of cheating are quickly identified.
Before you go into the exam room, check all your pockets for any study notes, palm cards or mobile phones and make sure to remove any notes you may have written on your hands or arms.
Just do your best – that’s all you can do.