Journey to My Technican License Part 3: The Week of the Test
It's the week of the my technician license test, and I can feel the butterflies in my stomach starting to spread their wings and flutter.It's not that I'm overly nervous, but I think that's just sort of just the way I am when it comes to test taking. You may be a person who can walk in, take the test in 10 minutes, and be on your way, but I'm the kind of guy who reads questions two or three times before I feel comfortable putting anything down on paper. It's a blessing and a curse because a little extra brainstorming can lead me to the right answer, but sometimes it causes me to question what I know. No matter if your anxious and uneasy, or confident and optimistic, the thoughts going through my own head as I prepare for the big day may help ready you for your own Technician test someday (maybe in the near future). If I can do it, I assure you anyone can, and to get you ready to go, here are some thoughts, tips, and tricks you can use to ready for the day of your test.1. There is a lot of information to understand
This test consists of 435 possible questions with the actual test consisting of 35 questions from that group of 435. This means that there is a lot of information you will need to grasp and retain in order to pass. Don't underestimate the amount of material and the time it will take to learn it. If you are pretty inexperienced when it comes to ham radio it might be wise to take some extra time to get prepared and to ensure you have all the concepts down. There are multiple formulas, schematic symbols, and definitions that you will need to memorize to be able to handle questions that may require you to do some math, or know a specific answer. We are about 4 weeks in to studying and I am finally feeling comfortable and have been passing most of my practice tests. Make the most of the time you have to study, it will come in handy later.2. Don't Give Up or Get Discouraged
It's so easy to feel like you are behind when there is a lot to learn, especially if you have missed a day or 2 of studying in a row. Now is not the time to give up or get discouraged. If you've followed along with our previous blogs, you know that one of our biggest recommendations is to start studying early so you have plenty of time to take the test. When you continue to study and start to retain the information, you will feel a weight lifted from your shoulders now that you are starting to get a couple things down.
Set your test date with plenty of time to study, try to study the materials every day, and don't give up if you miss a day or two. This will only set you behind the curve. Keep at it, once you start to get a few questions right, you will see the results you are after and it will inspire you. You can do this.3. Study Every Day
It's time to make studying for your Technician test a part of your normal everyday routine. One way we've been implementing this is by setting aside some time each day to make studying a priority. My typical study sessions are every morning and then every night for 30 minutes to an hour for each session. My biggest tip for all the social media lovers out there: instead of hopping on Facebook or Instagram, hop on your phone and get to studying. I've poured hours into studying sites just by sitting on the couch and getting on my phone. This has been one of the most effective ways I have been able to retain and study information.
I've found that missing a day or two can really effect my percentages on practice tests and cause me to miss more questions after not studying for a short period. Don't make that same mistake. Hit the book everyday for an hour or 2 and more than once a day if possible. You will thank yourself later.4. It's the Week of the Test - It's Time to Cram!
The week of the test isn't time to start panicking, it's time to start studying, and even more then you have been. This last week is a good time to start assessing how much of the material you have down, and how much you may need to study this week to ensure you have the materials down. Sometimes it's hard to tell how much you know with this vast amount of information, so be sure to be aware of where you think you are at in the journey. For me, I felt like a really needed to hit things hard this week to retain everything. I hit the study materials hard on Sunday and Monday, and started feeling better about the test on Tuesday. I have been taking practice tests throughout the studying journey, but this week I have started to pass more and more.
You should be getting about 80% of your questions right the week before your test, and if you are indeed hitting around 80%, you should start to feel a little more confident that you can pass. After all, there are 35 questions on the test, and you need to get 26 of them right, or 74% to get your Technician License. You know what they say, "C's get degrees", and in this case, you basically just need to get a 'C' to pass. Strive for 100%, but know if you are scoring in the 80's and 90's, you are probably in great shape.
Now that you know the steps it takes to prepare, it's time to buckle down and start studying so you can feel confident for the week of your test. I know I always have a few butterflies, but overall, I feel I have done what it takes to be prepared and for the most part, confident for our test tomorrow. Study your material every day, don't give up, and cram the week of the test to ensure you have the information down. Follow these quick steps and you'll soon find yourself on the air making new friends.
Stay Tuned for our Final Part to our Technician License journey next week where we will reveal how we did on the test, and will also go more into some of the questions that were hardest, and the questions you need to be ready for.
Miss Part 1 or Part 2? We've got you covered.Journey to My Technician License Part 1Journey to My Technician License Part 2: Studying Tips
Head to the Last Part of Our Series. Click here for Part 4