So your SAC is tomorrow, and though you told yourself over and over "I'll study tomorrow." you're now 12 hours away from your SAC. Basically, you think you're screwed. Every student has probably had this experience before, or is experiencing this right now.

Instead of wallowing in self-pity watching some reality show, eating your sorrows away, wondering why you didn't study earlier you should get into study mode (or panic mode if that suits you). Make use of those remaining hours.

Note: Full disclaimer here that we don't really recommend studying for your SAC the night before, but we realise you guys do it anyway so these are just some tips to help you study the night before if you ever find yourself in this situation.

What you should have done (or hoped to have done)

Know what to study for

First things first, you need to have known what the SAC is about. You don't want to rock up to your SAC realising you studied nothing on it. Your teacher may have given you a checklist on what you need to study on. If not, you should email your teacher and ask your friends what you're meant to be studying for that SAC tomorrow.

At least have the skills

Hopefully, you shouldn't be exactly clueless as to what you have to relearn, as well as knowing the skills for the SAC tomorrow. This means that if you have an essay tomorrow, you should at least know how to write an essay using the TEEL structure, or if you have a Maths SAC that you should know how to use a calculator (if it's a Tech Allowed SAC).

What you should do now

So you may or may not have done the above, but it's too late and you just want to pass at this point (well, hopefully do well right?). What do you do now?

Write a checklist

You need to know what to revise for, and writing a checklist allows you to focus on a specific item to revise. You don't want to aimlessly revise anything that pops to your head. Make sure it's achievable, because you don't want to overload your mind and possibly forget everything!

Focus on the main concepts and skip past the known

This is the content that your teacher seems to go on and on about while you were looking out the window in class wondering what you were going to eat for lunch. These main concepts are the ones that are going to be a big part of your SAC.

If you do know some of these concepts, you will not need to dwell on these concepts. All you need to do is confirm that what you remember is indeed the correct content.

Practice SACs

If your teacher gave you a practice SAC and you can mark it yourself, then a practice SAC is worth doing even at this point, because the layout and question types are going to be similar to that SAC tomorrow. Try to do the SAC closed book, skipping over the unknown ones. You can then correct it and answer all the unknown questions. This is most beneficial in subjects such as Maths, in which you can correct it yourself but you are also applying your knowledge.

What not to do

Just reading the textbook

This is the biggest trap people who study the day before the SAC do. You feel like you need to learn absolutely everything and you just knuckle down, trying to read several chapters (and if this is history, this is entirely a bad idea, trust me).

If there is a summary or shortened version, this is much better. You can add extra details as you learn the main points. If you have the time, you can summarise chapters so you can make sense of the textbook as well as being valuable material for the end of year exams.

Time heavy revision

There are many ways to revise, and each is suited for a different person. But it is best to avoid revision that takes a long time to prepare or undertake. Those DIY videos that promise to help you study but actually takes an hour to create a fancy looking board is not going to help you absorb the content. Instead of decorating and making your notes painstakingly perfect, just make sure they're legible.

Staying up too late

I know, I know, you're only a few hours away from your SAC and you really haven't studied that much. You still need sleep, really. Only stay up as long as you know you can reasonably function the next morning. Taking an all-nighter is guaranteed to make you crash during the day, possibly during your SAC. If you can function on an hour or two of sleep, great! But if you can't like the rest of us, it's better to go to sleep

After that, hopefully you have an inkling on what to study for, because time is ticking, every minute could be used for studying (don't forget your breaks though!) . Smash this SAC and next time, try not to study the night before.

Written by Mark