Review Blog

May 27 2010

Max Your Marks by Rowena Austin and Annie Hastwell

cover image

Allen and Unwin, 2010. ISBN 9781741758795.
Target: senior secondary students. Each year about 200,000 students around Australia sit Year 12 exams.
Probably all experience stress to some degree or another and wonder just how they will survive to the end.
Max Your Marks was created for this niche market of senior secondary students after the authors experienced their own children going through 'the dreaded Year 12'. Fifty students who scored over 95 in the tertiary admission rank from throughout Australia were interviewed to find out the strategies they used not only to survive but to be very successful in year 12. The introduction states: 'they're been where you are about to go. The stories they have to tell will help demystify what's ahead, and inspire you to shine'.
The book is divided into 6 parts including Looking After Yourself, Getting the Balance Right and Study Tips and Tricks. The 23 chapters are on specific topics, such as goal setting; dealing with stress; to party or not to party and sisters, brothers and boarding house mates. Each chapter includes a summary page and then advice and anecdotes from the recent graduates in paragraph form. At the rear of the book a 'meet the students' section gives the first name, summary and photo of each contributor.
The informal nature and presentation of Max your Marks will appeal to teenagers and the capacity to just read certain chapters and gain some useful insights is a real plus. I'm sure that all readers will find something of use from this self help guide.
Kay Haarsma

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