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Study Support

Academic success at Auckland Grammar School is attained when students achieve to their full potential, regardless of their form class, stream or academic pathway. Defined in these terms, the keys to academic success are simple. They are to:

Attend school every day
While inevitably there will be instances of absence due to illness and injury, bereavement, sporting commitments or family circumstances, students should only be absent from school when it is absolutely unavoidable. There is a clear correlation between attendance and achievement levels.

Courses are delivered sequentially and knowledge and skills are developed cumulatively. Frequent or regular absences result in students getting behind or having gaps in their knowledge and this is inevitably reflected in their performance in assessments.

Work hard in class every period
Students who consistently work with application and focus are likely to achieve their learning objectives and earn the respect and support of their teachers. They will find that their teachers are prepared to ‘go the extra mile’ should they need individual assistance.

It is important to be an active rather than a passive learner in class. Learning involves the generation of synapses in the brain. The more active the learning, the stronger the synapses and thus memory, and the deeper the learning

Complete homework every night
Teachers set homework for a variety of reasons: to complete tasks; for students to apply and deepen the knowledge and skills developed in class that day; or to conduct independent learning in the form of research and inquiry. Review of the day’s classwork should be part of your daily homework routine and involves:

  • Ensuring you understand the work covered in class and in your notes
  • Recording notes accurately in a way that you will understand as you are taking the notes will help you to remember when you revise them. Try to use your own words – if you can’t, it probably means you don’t understand the work
  • Memorising: you need to learn the work ‘off by heart’. This is a skill that needs practice – the more you do it, the easier it becomes
  • Reviewing daily, weekly, and monthly is the key to transferring information from the short-term to the long-term memory, thus turning it into knowledge

Seeking help with Schoolwork

While most students who approach their schoolwork in the manner outline above will make good academic progress there may be occasions when extra support is required. This is available from a variety of sources. Download a revision timetable that you can fill in yourself to help with your exam preparations or read the Effective Revision Study Booklet.


GrammarNet is the School’s virtual learning environment where you can access resources from a number of different departments. Academic Department pages can provide you with staff directories, course information, subject syllabuses and schemes of work, past examination papers and links to study and research skills websites and software, NCEA and CIE revision courses.

Library – links to information and websites:

  • The School Library catalogue
  • Online databases and search engines
  • Evaluating online resources
  • Referencing for academic assignments (including citations, footnotes and bibliographies)
  • The research process
  • Guide to essay-writing
  • Resources and pages for specific subjects and topics

Click here for the Cambridge website for students.

External Support

Typing How to Revise, How to Write Essays or How to Sit Exams into a search engine results in a huge number of websites, links and YouTube clips. Students may find the following links particularly useful:

  • The NZQA website includes information about the qualifications and standards provided by NZQA. The ‘For Students’ section includes login access, examination timetables and detailed information regarding NCEA, Scholarship and University Entrance
  • NCEA Subject Resources pages has resources including Achievement Standards, Assessment Specifications, examination papers, mark schedules and exemplars of assessed student work
  • NCEA Revision Classes: all classes are taken by experienced New Zealand secondary school teachers and are open to all NCEA students from all Secondary Schools, held in the Term 3 Holidays and on Saturdays in Term 4
  • The main CIE website – see the ‘For Learners and Parents’ section. Resources include syllabuses, examination papers, learning guides and links to other online study resources
  • The Association of Cambridge Schools in New Zealand includes general information about CIE in the NZ context. Registration for annual CIE Examination Revision programmes

Paid Tutors

Each year the Deans compile a roster of high ability senior students who are suitably qualified to provide paid tutoring at reasonable rates in a range of subjects and levels. Interested students and parents should contact the appropriate year level Dean to arrange tutoring.