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Coping with Exam and Assessment Stress

Jenefer Wiltschut (Head of Wellbeing)

As we begin the final term of the school year, a big consideration for many of our students, particularly in Years 9 to 12 is the impending schedule of exams and final graded assessments. Assessments have been a part of schooling for decades and serve a purpose for understanding our ability to demonstrate knowledge and achievement, but they can also be a source of unwanted anxiety and stress. This week the Wellbeing Team would like to share a few strategies and ideas to help support our students as they work through the next few weeks; these ideas have been adapted from Headspace, and further details can be found on their website.

Creating a study plan or timetable

Creating a schedule for the term ahead, including time for rest, hobbies, prior commitments and important due dates, can help reduce anxiety of the unknown as well as minimising procrastination. Being realistic in setting aside time for revision and working towards deadlines can help students stay on track and avoid last-minute panic.


Looking after yourself should be the top priority when preparing for exams. Just like an athlete preparing for a competition, keeping your mind and body healthy puts you in the best position to achieve your best. Self-care can look like getting plenty of sleep, eating nutritious meals, staying hydrated, avoiding too much caffeine, and limiting social media. Enlist the help of friends and family around you to help reach your goals.

Ask for help

All of the staff here at Kolbe want our students to succeed, so if you are struggling, please seek assistance from your classroom teacher or any of the learning support staff as soon as possible. We can help with fine-tuning your study skills, providing practice questions or scenarios, or simply getting you focused and organised for what you need to accomplish. If you don’t want to ask your teachers, forming a study group with friends can be a great way to support and help each other.

It is important to remember that while you should always try your best, and continue to work towards realistic goals, one single grade or exam result will never define who you are as a whole person. You have many God-given gifts and talents to share with our community and taking care of yourself is vital to your wellbeing. If you need further support, please reach out to our Wellbeing Team, or PC teachers for assistance.

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