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Tips for Surviving Your Final Year of High School

AUG 24, 2020 • 8 min read

Navigating the final year of high school as a student aiming for entry into medicine is a mammoth task! Not only do you have the plethora of entry requirements to worry about fulfilling, but it is both physically and mentally taxing!

However, it is important for students to understand that with the right balancing of priorities in this busy time, it is possible to achieve their goals without derailing in high school. This blog post will outline some of the key tips for making some of the toughest years of your life, that bit easier.

The most important realisation that students should have, before and/or during their final years of school get underway, is that they are not alone. Teachers, parents, guidance counsellors, peers, and siblings can all provide some level of support. The power of disclosing how you are feeling to someone close to you who you trust, cannot be understated! For tailored med school support tap into the MedView support system and give yourself the best chance at achieving your medical school goals!

Take a Genuine Interest in Your Subjective Subjects

Teachers respond very well to students who are genuinely interested in their subjects. This applies especially to those where the content being studied is subjective and where said teachers can get to know how you write or what kind of ideas you like to express in your written work. Such examples include humanities subjects like history, economics, psychology or business, and of course English. While it it true that a lot of the assessment for secondary school curriculums in these subjects is marked externally, teachers are not only more willing to invest time in keen students, making their work incrementally better throughout high school, but they are also more likely to pick up on the smaller consistent errors that students make in the way they structure arguments or the flow of ideas. Overall, overtly expressing interest in subjective subjects increases your chances of receiving feedback that will yield you better results in your final exams.

Set Goals, Not Time Limits

Among the most common questions that high school students ask is: “How many hours should I be studying per night?”. The answer to this question is: You are asking the wrong question. Designing a study schedule with a specific amount of time allotted to each subject per night is ironically a time-waster. This is because it is impossible to ascertain how long one will need in order to learn new content. Reaction kinetics in chemistry might be easy for you, but photosynthesis in biology, not so much. A proper understanding of the latter might require you to spend a disproportionate amount of time on YouTube looking at videos to help it make sense. It is for this reason that goals that are not time-based should be set by students.

Furthermore, past-papers and practice exams at the back of textbooks make for excellent study resources once students have learned their content to a sufficient extent. In this way, students can set goals like “1 past paper per night every night this week”. This not only helps to solidify knowledge and assess how well one can apply it under simulated exam conditions, but it gets students out of the habit of formulating time-based goals. Speak to an Academic Advisor today, to learn more about effective study preparations techniques!

Study With Your Friends

While often a (very welcome) distraction, studying with friends can be very productive. Dividing a large amount of content between members of a group, summarising core topics and then presenting to one another is not only an excuse to remain social during extremely stressful times, but helps to broaden your ideas and ways of compartmentalising study material. A subject in which group work can be particularly useful is surprisingly English. This is because performing well in subjects that require an element of creativity are best practiced and workshopped with other minds present. If there is a text you are studying at school, get together with friends and brainstorm the main themes, share notes, suggest unique avenues that you could take in your essay-writing, and write down each other’s ideas. High school is a competitive game, and you are all in, but you don’t have to do it alone.

Schedule in Time Off

Perhaps the most important point, and there’s not much more to it than this. Make time to go to that party, enjoy spending the day with your family, watch Netflix, or get Ubereats. You don’t have to go at 100km per hour every day of the year.

Be patient

Perhaps the most important piece of advice. You are going to face an uphill battle with the balancing act that takes over your life in this period, so approach this time with the knowledge that good grades takes training, and learning how to organise your priorities takes experience. Each of these takes time. Keep your head up and stay the course! You have what it takes to achieve your goals.

Final Thoughts

Preparing for medical school is a huge commitment, give yourself the best chance of getting accepted with MedView! We are the Medical School Admission Experts - here to help you successfully get into medical school. Get in touch with the MedView team today to start your journey!

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Speak to the team today and begin your medical school journey!