Preparing for examinations
This factsheet was written by Kathy Daniels, FCIPD, HR Consultant and revised in June 2011.
Preparing for an exam
Before starting any revision it is important that the student takes time to think about what is being examined. This is likely to require some advice from the tutor.
In some examinations all topics are examined. In other examinations some topics have been assessed using coursework and only certain topics are actually examined. It is important, therefore, to be clear about which topics could be included in the examination. Some students look back at past papers and try to work out which topics are most likely to appear by looking for topics that have not been on a recent paper. This is a risky process. Unless a tutor has specifically indicated that topics on recent papers will not be examined, there is no guarantee that this will be the case.
It is important to understand the structure of the exam. How many questions will there be? Will they require short answers, long essay style answers or are they multi-choice questions? It is also important to know whether all questions are compulsory or whether students will be allowed to choose to answer a certain number of questions. Again, care needs to be taken here. If, for example, the requirement is to answer four out of eight questions, just revising four topics could be risky. It is possible that a question will be asked on a topic that has been revised, but that the student feels unable to answer it. It is also possible that one question draws on learning from more than one topic area.
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- Preparing for an exam
- Planning revision
- Dealing with revision difficulties
- Addressing practical issues
- Sitting an exam successfully
- Addressing CIPD exam issues