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Study Smart With Practice Tests and Past Exam Papers

Study Smart With Practice Tests and Past Exam Papers

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Published by roythom
Adult students can face the daunting task of going back to studying after a few years gap, or even many decades after leaving school or college. Learn how to help your own success with three powerful tips to boost your chances of success. Whether you are studying for GED tests in math or for a professional qualification, this short report may tip the balance in your favor.
Adult students can face the daunting task of going back to studying after a few years gap, or even many decades after leaving school or college. Learn how to help your own success with three powerful tips to boost your chances of success. Whether you are studying for GED tests in math or for a professional qualification, this short report may tip the balance in your favor.

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Published by: roythom on Jan 20, 2013
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Study Smart With Practice Tests and Past Exam Papers
Preparing the Way For Success

© timestuition.com 2013

It does not matter what you are studying. If there are tests or examinations at the end of your courses, there will always be ways to improve your chances of succeeding. Not only passing those tests and exam papers, but doing so in style with excellent grades. The same applies whether you are studying for a Masters Degree, a GED or other high school diploma alternative, a professional qualification such as accountancy or any other other profession. For mature or adult students, it can be even more important to sharpen their study skills. The longer a person has been out of formal education, the more difficult they might find it to study and succeed. They are also more likely to have other commitments such as job, family and children. However, there are some advantages as well to being an adult student, such as: 1. That extra maturity brings with it a bit of wisdom and, usually, more discipline. Both these factors can benefit the adult student of any subject at any level. 2. While high school students and younger are engaging in compulsory education, the adult student embarks on a course of study out of choice. To make a choice to do so means they are more inclined to be determined to succeed and make sacrifices. Although mature students may have to fit in with their family and employment responsibilities, a high school or even college student will most likely have other distractions. Understandably, the younger students are still finding their way into the world and many want to have a good time without all this study nonsense. I know that was true in my own case, but more of that later. 3. An older person is more likely to have self knowledge of their strengths and weaknesses. If someone is self aware and honest with themselves, they can exploit that knowledge and use it to plan the best course for study success. It really does not matter what age an adult student might be. It can be anything between post high school or college, and 120, but the above advantages still apply. In the past week alone, I have read of about four people in their late 70's or 80's passing their GED tests. Stories such as theirs can also be an inspiration to much younger students as well.

Returning to Studies As An Adult Student
For those at high school age, for many it is probably difficult to comprehend that anyone would ever want to return to studying after leaving high school or college. I can easily empathize with that. In fact, my own story from several decades ago may offer some useful input to some returning to study after a long gap. Back then, I still lived, and received my education, in England, but the experiences are valid in the US too. After all, people are pretty much the same the world over. As I intimated earlier, my heart was not really in studying when I had to, which was up to the age of 18. I could not wait to leave school at 18 and get on with my life. From the age of 14 to 18 I simply did enough to get by and pick up some passes in key subjects. I say passes, but the grades I got were more like "scrapes" than passes. The main reasons at the time were my other priorities: girls, beer and football; the top priority of those depended on time of day and which day of the week it was. That was enough to allow me to get by with modest and reasonably paid jobs until the age of 30, when a life changing event occurred: the birth of a son. I found myself thinking that I needed to do something to seriously improve my income prospects. Luckily, out of the blue, an opportunity came up to study for a professional qualification, management accountancy, while carrying out a job on full pay. © timestuition.com 2013

As I came to realize the magnitude of what I had taken on, I quickly started to think about study techniques. I had to, as each stage of the course was competitive. On average only 37% or so got through each exam; and there were 18 exams to pass over 5 stages. The normal timescale was 5 years; I was trying to do it in half that time. Plus, nobody got beyond a stage without passing each exam in that stage. To make things worse, most of the other students (competitors) were graduates straight from university, who had not yet been out of formal education and were tuned in already to heavy study. The prospect of going back to studying was daunting to say the least, but one thing I do like is a challenge. But there I was, someone who was not academically inclined, in an out and out competition with fresh young university graduates. I needed to find ways to succeed and compete in the exams. What I did could apply to any courses with tests or exams at the end of them, and some of the strategies and tactics I used are summarized here; I hope they will help some of you: 1. Improve Memory On looking at the syllabus for the 18 exams, I soon realized that there was a massive amount that required memory rather than any sort of skill. That was particularly so with two very boring (to me) subjects, and they were business law and company law. At school, my memory had not been particularly good, so I needed to change that. Before the course started, I had several months to prepare, so I studied memory improvement, and bought a manual on improving memory. There was no internet at the time, so I had to rely on more traditional published material. That memory manual proved to be a wonderful asset. My memory improved no end, and there is no doubt that it made an enormous difference to my results. The beauty of it was that the memory techniques were easy, yet effective. 2. Go for Gold Not Bronze One thing I knew all too well was that for the whole of my formal education at school, all I ever did was enough to get by. That was simply not good enough, as it left no room for error. I knew I had to be in the top 35-37%, so aiming for the top 34% was a very risky strategy, and there was so much at stake. I made a simple decision. Instead of trying to scrape through, I would go for the top in each exam. Unlikely as that may seem, I think that one shift in my mental attitude was a major contribution. I aimed for 18 straight A grades, as A always meant a comfortable pass. Nearly 3 years later, I had 16 A's and 2 B's. That is not to boast, but to illustrate what can be done with a confident shift of attitude. 3. Practice Tests I have absolutely no doubt that by buying up all the past exam papers I could, and using them regularly for review purposes, I was able to train myself very well for the real thing. By the time I sat down for the first exam, it seemed like I had been through it all before; I was so familiar that only a completely new type of question could throw me off course. The combination of memory improvement, using practice tests, and aiming for the top instead of trying to scrape through, enabled me to approach the real examinations, over a 2 and 1/2 year period, with confidence that was not misplaced. I have no doubt that you could take a similar approach with, for © timestuition.com 2013

example, going back to studying to get a high school equivalency such as the GED. Today we have the internet, and in that example there are an unlimited number of GED practice tests available online. There are also a lot of free memory aids online; but when it comes to going for gold instead of bronze, that really is down to you. The latter is a shift in attitude you do not need to make, but for those who do, it can dramatically affect the outcome of your studies. Practice tests are especially effective for those subjects you really do not like. For me that was anything to do with law. For many GED students, GED math can be daunting. After all, not many people have a natural affinity to math generally, and it may put off some from studying at all for GED tests. 1With plenty of practice, you can remove that fear and approach the live tests with confidence.


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