1. Set A Test Date
Pick a date to take your test between two and six weeks away. Don’t set your date to far away, the longer you drag it out the more likely you will be to procrastinate or not take the test at all.
Put the date on your calendar in your phone, on your desk or wall calendar. Better yet, put it on all three of them. Then put reminders every week prior to your test date listing how many more weeks or days you have until you take your test.
Contact the VE team that will be giving you your test and schedule your test. Making an appointment with someone else will help motivate you to keep up your end of the appointment and help you meet your deadline.
2. Study Time
Study for a minimum of 20 mins a day. Anything less you will not learn anything because your brain is still in review mode and will not retain anything new. Shoot for an hour day. You can even break it up into two 30 minute sessions. In the last few days leading up to the test increase your study time to 1 1/2 – 2 hrs a day.
3. Skip Math Questions
Skip math questions if it takes more than 30 seconds to answer. On your Technician class test you will only have basically two types of math questions, ohms law and frequency conversions. Both are relatively easy to do and shouldn’t take you to long to answer.
The most you will have a a test is four questions for technician, five for general and 12 for extra. On the Tech and general tests you can miss up to nine questions and still pass; On the extra you can miss 13.
4. Read Only The Correct Answers
By reading only the correct answers, it will help you recognize the answer when you are taking your test or quizzes. By reading all of the answers you will be inadvertently memorizing all of the answers instead of just the correct one.
5. Don’t overthink the answers
Don’t overthink your answer when taking a quiz, practice test or the actual test. Don’t change an answer unless you are 100% positive that you are wrong.
There have been many tests that I have graded where the person taking the test will have wrote down the correct the first time and then second guessed themselves and changed it to a wrong answer. More often than not, your first answer is the correct answer.
6. Find A Place To Study
Find a place to study like a bedroom, office, living room, library, outside, etc. You can mix it up as well. Study the same material in different location. This will help your brain retain the information.
Turn off your computer or put your phone on silent. If you need some kind of noise in the background to study well, turn your radio on low. It also best to listen to a soothing type music rather that your favorite radio station.
If you need total quiet like me, find some place that you can study where you will have quiet. Tell your family your studying and ask for some time without distractions.
7. Don’t Study Past Your Normal Bed Time
If you normally goto bed at 10pm, don’t stay up until 11pm studying. On the flip side, don’t wake up earlier than you normally do either. Your brain is use to going to bed a certain times and waking up at certain times. Studying outside of those times, will affect the way your brain learns.
Get plenty of sleep while studying and especially the night before the test. This will keep your brain working at optimal performance.
8. Eat Healthy
Eat food that will release energy slowly like meat or nuts while studying. This will give your body and your brain a constant flow of energy over a longer period of time. Avoid sugary food because the energy that you get from it will run out in a short amount of time and your body will crash or you will get tired and your brain won’t function as well.
Make sure that you eat a good meal before you take your test. The last thing that you want is to be sitting in your testing session and your stomach start to rumble.
9. How Do You Study Best
Do you learn better by reading, writing or talking. Whichever way you learn the best, do it that way. Studies have shown that writing things down rather than typing on a computer helps your brain remember things. Talking out loud helps your learn in two ways, both reading and hearing.
10. Ask for help
Find someone that can help you with questions that you are not sure of. If you are taking a class, get together with others that are taking the class and study together. Maybe they will understand something that you don’t and visa versa.
You can even ask your instructor or a friend that is already a ham. Hopefully, your instructor will assign an Elmer that you can contact for help.
Whoever you can ask for help from, make sure you do. Don’t be afraid to ask for help on something.
These are my 10 Study tips to help you get your Ham Radio License. If you can think of a tip for studying, leave it in the comments below so that others may try it as well.
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Until next time…
73 de Curtis, K5CLM
Creator and Owner of Everything Ham Radio
Owner of 2xC Products at 2xcproducts.com