How to crack ACCA exams in the first attempt
The following article is to prepare for ACCA exams, however, these tips can also be used to prepare for other exams.
As ACCA is a globally recognized qualification, the exams, along with the Ethics and Professional Skills module, aim to prepare students for the real world and be competent. Therefore, exams can be difficult or challenging. Yet, the right kind of preparation can ensure that you pass in the first attempt. A student used the following types of preparation and scored 98/100 in MA (Management Accounting), an ACCA knowledge level paper.
Exams can be a stressful time if not prepared for beforehand. Studies should be planned well to avoid stress. It is important to study with a clear mind to help with concentration and focus. While studying one should start with a positive outlook and aim to finish what is planned. Here are a few tips to help you pass exams in the first attempt and manage stress effectively:
Step 1 - Plan:
Have a look at the syllabus.
Allot a chapter for each day and then revise everything you have studied so far at regular intervals.
Week 1: Monday to Friday - Chapters 1-5, Saturday and Sunday - Revise Chapters 1-5
Week 2: Monday to Friday - Chapters 6-10, Saturday and Sunday - Revise Chapters 1-10.
Create such a time table weekly or monthly and place it where you can see it everyday.
Tick as you progress.
Step 2 - Study and Practice:
For each chapter or section:
Read the textbook
Solve questions in the exam kit related to the respective chapter or section and try to complete it in the designated time.
Solve questions online on websites such as www.acowtancy.com, www.opentuition.com, etc.
Mark questions which you find difficult and for which you feel the need to revisit.
Step 3– Revise:
Read the textbook again. It will be helpful for conceptual clarity and to link the topics together after studying all chapters.
Solve marked questions in Step 2 again.
Go through all the study material provided on www.accaglobal.com - e.g. Technical articles, examiner's reports, videos on specific topics.
Solve mock exams and past papers under timed conditions.
After each mock, have a look at your mistakes so you don't repeat it in the next mock/final paper.
A few additional tips are:
1. Organize your study space
Make sure that you have everything you need for studying before starting so that you don’t leave your study space again and again. Ensure that the space is well-lit and well-ventilated. Remove distractions such as novels and avoid using your mobile phone. Try finding something to help you to concentrate better.
2. Eat healthy
For healthy snacking while studying, eat dry fruits, fruits, nuts, salad, etc. Avoid sugary, oily or processed foods like candies, cookies and chips. Caffeine, sugar-laden and high fat treats refresh you instantly by increasing the dopamine level in your body. Soon, dopamine levels drop and it leads to an emotional low and feelings of dehydration or fatigue. Junk food and energy drinks should be avoided as they serve only as a temporary fix, whose effects can be seen fading away quickly.
3. Believe in yourself
Whenever you feel like giving up but you have not finished completing your target for the day, remember why you started pursuing the qualification. Have faith in yourself that you can study well, earn good marks and get a good job.
4. Avoid procrastination
Procrastination is the action of delaying or postponing something.
According to Mel Robbins, a CNN reporter and the author of the best-selling book “The 5 Second Rule”, there is a rule that can help you stop procrastination. She says, “The 5 Second Rule is simple. If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it.
The moment you feel an instinct or a desire to act on a goal or a commitment, use the Rule. When you feel yourself hesitate before doing something that you know you should do, count 5-4-3-2-1-GO and move towards action. There is a window that exists between the moment you have an instinct to change and your mind killing it. It’s a 5 second window. And it exists for everyone. If you do not take action on your instinct to change, you will stay stagnant. You will not change.”
Overall, planning your studies well in advance, consuming the right kind of food items, organizing your study space appropriately and most importantly, believing in yourself will help you deal effectively with exam-related stress and pass your exams in the first attempt.
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