BlogStudyHow to Manage Multiple VCE SACs at Once and Still Perform Well

How to Manage Multiple VCE SACs at Once and Still Perform Well

VCE SACs are stressful enough on their own. However, the very mention of the phrase ‘SAC season’ is enough to instill fear within any VCE student.

Studying for multiple SACs at the same time is one of the most difficult tasks for any VCE student. We’ll walk you through some strategies to help navigate and hopefully succeed in this challenge.

Let’s get started!

Planning and Effectively Managing Your Time
How to Study for Each VCE SAC?
Piecing It All Together

Planning and Effectively Managing Your Time 

Why should you plan and manage your time?

Planning and Time Management just might be the most important skills in VCE. Learning them to the best of your ability can significantly reduce the amount of stress you feel throughout the school year. It does this by:

  • Specifically allocating time to study and rest, reducing the amount of guilt you feel when not studying and ensuring you do take a break.
  • Avoiding the need for last minute cramming by reminding you of upcoming SACs, tests and assignments.
  • Creating an idea of what you have on during the week and how you will complete those tasks.

How can you plan and effectively manage your time for VCE SACs?

Just like study techniques, everyone should have their own planning and time management technique that works for them!

The best technique is the one that makes you feel comfortable and confident, but here are some examples to get you thinking!

Need more advice? Watch a video on How to Avoid the “Boom and Bust” Cycle!

#1: Weekly Study Planner

Weekly Study Planner - Exemplar

Here is an example of the study planner that works best for me. I’ve used this planning technique since year 11. It worked for my SACs, and it did wonders for me during my exams.

The reason I like the above technique is because it’s simple, efficient and easy on the eyes.

However, some people might like a bit more structure, personality, or freedom to their planners. I’ve seen these planners below work really well!

Organise all your study and commitments with an Art of Smart Weekly Study Planner!

VCE SAC Planner

#2: The Eisenhower Priority Matrix

Eisenhower Priority Matrix AoS

The Eisenhower Matrix is a simple tool that focuses on what will make you most effective, not just most productive. Using this technique will ensure you complete all your most important tasks on time, preventing you from wasting time on a task that could be completed later or just not done at all.

The best part of the table is it helps you visualize all your tasks and their level of urgency and importance. As a result, clearing your head of stress that may be caused by a feeling of disorganisation.

Therefore, the matrix is perfect for SAC season, as it can prioritise and organise your SAC preparation, and make you feel more in control of your week.

#3: Daily Timebox

Daily Timebox Exemplar

I’m sure we all waste time when moving from one task to another. Procrastination tends to be at its worst when you are moving from one piece of homework to the next.

However, Timeboxes prevent this procrastination by creating a schedule that you need to stick to. The visuals of the Timeboxes also make it quite satisfying to complete work, as you mark off what you have done for the day.

Additionally, the goal oriented nature of the timebox encourages you in completing your tasks!

Try out an Art of Smart Daily Timebox and see if it works for you!

Timebox Sample for Managing VCE SACs - AoS

How to Study for Each VCE SAC?

The key to VCE SACs is preparation. You have to make the most of all the materials you have available to you in the most effective way possible. We will cover how and why you do so in this section.

Want help with the GAT as well? Read our comprehensive guide!

#1: Making the most of SAC preparation material

Types of Material for the VCE SAC

Managing Multiple VCE SACs at Once

There are many different types of material that you can use to prepare for SACs. For instance, you could try using:

  • Past SACs provided by teachers
  • Past VCAA questions relating to the topic
  • Questions from the recommended textbook
  • Reviewing and refining your notes (only do this if its absolutely necessary)
  • Study groups!
  • Free videos and content summaries!

These are just some examples of what you could do. Obviously, what material you use to prepare will vary on the subject, type and nature of the SAC you are doing.

However, it is always best to use a wide variety of preparation techniques because it will really test your knowledge and understanding of the content in many ways!

Making the most of the material is a completely different question altogether. Being able to do so relies mainly on being in the correct headspace and environment.

Being in the Right Headspace

Mindset is key in VCE. It affects your SAC performances so significantly. What’s important is that you focus on what you are doing in the moment and not letting your mind wander elsewhere.

Staying in the present is a difficult but vital mindfulness practice, not just for VCE SACs, but for life. It is obviously far more easily said than done, but trying to do it as much as you can will reduce the level of anxiety you experience quite a lot.

I’ve seen students do this in many different ways. Some like to listen to music, others like to read. Just remember to do something that makes your brain work before you study! There’s no point studying if you can’t focus.

Creating an Comfortable Study Space

Managing Multiple VCE SACs - Study Space

Your study space is a really under valued topic by all students of any level! It can affect how well you recall information, learn information and perform under timed conditions.

For example, if you study in the same spot all the time, the information you learn can become associated with that spot, meaning it’s harder to recall it in other spaces (3/4 Psychology students are rolling their eyes right now)!  Furthermore, a good study space can help you relax and ‘get in the zone’ for your study or SACs.

It’s really important to have multiple good study spaces, these could include a room at home, a space at your local library, or a place in your school. Make sure they make you feel comfortable and to vary up the spaces often.

#2: Replicating VCE SAC Conditions

Rehearsal was my favourite way to prepare for SACs and exams in VCE. What you do is replicate the SAC or exam conditions as much as you possibly can. This can include replicating the time you sit it, the timed conditions, the amount of questions and the material you have available.

Rehearsal provides the following benefits

  • Gives you an idea of what ‘the real thing’ will be like.
  • Prepares you for strict time conditions.
  • Creates a sense of comfort about the SAC or exam.
  • Allows you to test your knowledge in a stressful environment.

#3: Consistent Study

I touched over this in the planning and time management section, but it’s just so important not to cram for a VCE SAC. Cramming is stressful. It is hard and makes you want to study less in the future because of how unenjoyable it is.

Instead, do your study over a prolonged period of time.

It’ll allow you to study less, in a more productive and enjoyable way!

Piecing It All Together

Let’s get back to our overall topic – preparing for multiple VCE SACs at once. By combining the two skills mentioned above (effective study and time management), you will be sure to smash out a round of SACs to the best of your ability.

Overall, these two skills will help reduce the amount of time you need to study and ensure that you also do the study in a timely manner, avoiding that last minute cram and allowing you to complete those SACs in a healthy condition!

Remember that your health always comes first and to do what works best for you!

Need more VCE resources?

Use our comprehensive list of past VCE exams to start your exam preparation!

Boost your chances of acing VCE and check out our other resources!

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Max Huyton is the VIC Growth Marketer for Art of Smart and a Laws and Commerce student at Monash University. In his other life, Max spends his time reading and writing whenever he gets the chance and cooking extremely mediocre dishes for friends and family.

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