How Maggie scored a 99+ ATAR and got a State Rank

Dymocks Tutor and high achiever Maggie Du, breaks down how she managed to get a state rank in Legal studies and her study routines. Read more to find out how you can apply Maggie's tips and tricks to your study!

By Maggie Du, Dymocks Economics and Legal Studies Tutor.


Stepping into Year 12 was undeniably one of the most challenging parts of the Human Experience I had endured in my life. Though I had known it wouldn’t be all sunshine and rainbows, the year, coupled with the ongoing global pandemic, remote learning and cancellation of social events, was truly a torrent of never-ending stress. But with the support of my wonderful family and a meticulously planned study timetable, I saw the light at the end of this tunnel called HSC, and finally, I have emerged through the other end. 


One of the most useful study techniques that helped me work towards achieving my goals was making an after school study timetable that corresponds with the classes I had that particular day, and allocate a designated 20-30 minutes per subject period to review content learnt in class or read ahead for the next lesson (something that I will come back to later in this blog post).

A study conducted by researchers (known as the Forgetting Curve) has shown that the most effective way to consolidate knowledge is through revising information learnt regularly and periodically. Revision should be done on the day of learning, 7-10 days later, a month later and then 1.5-2 months later. I always made sure to review notes after school ended, and then on the weekend (when I had more free time), use notes I had gathered throughout the week to create my final exam notes. Then, every couple of weeks, I would read over the new information added and highlight things I needed to revise on and then come back to the highlighted items 2 weeks before exams to further boost my memory.


Another thing that allowed me to stay on top of work was reading ahead for the next lesson. For all HSC subjects, a very in-depth syllabus is provided. One thing I found very useful was making notes with headings that explicitly followed what was listed in the syllabus.

Thankfully for me, Dymocks Tutoring’s notes are all perfectly aligned with the NESA-provided syllabus (shoutout), and I often found myself heavily relying on the notes that Dymocks provided me with, to help me navigate extremely content-heavy subjects such as Legal Studies and Economics.

Reading ahead not only allowed me to keep on top of work, but it further boosted my understanding of the content when I was taught it at school, allowing me to participate more in class discussions and ask questions to clarify finer details.  


For some subjects, particularly Economics and Legal Studies, changes in the global/domestic economy or the law are common aspects in the dynamics of a functioning society. Acing these kinds of subjects requires extreme attention to detail (such as amendments to outdated legislation), watching out for announcements (such as the RBA cutting cash rates to stimulate the domestic economy’s growth) as well as incorporating watching/reading the news in your daily routine (I particularly love watching ABC News at 7 pm).

Dymocks Tutoring also helped me immensely in this aspect through proficient tutors providing handouts of recent changes or notable economic/legal events, which, in the long run, saved me a lot of time spent on research and allowed me to focus more on consolidating knowledge as well as doing practise questions/exams. 


Though I wouldn’t want to relive my HSC experience, it is undoubtedly one that I will cherish forever and I am glad that I experienced in my life. It taught me so many unforgettable lessons, such as the importance of time management, planning and filing. Thanks to Dymocks Tutoring, I can boldly admit that my HSC experience was most definitely easier than it would have been if I was forced to go through it alone. Best of luck for your studies and see you around the Hub!

If you want to try our HSC Economics or Legal Studies sessions for yourself, you can test out our lessons with a free trial. It’s as easy as clicking here:

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