Examinations are a stressful and daunting time for many, even if they are well prepared to sit for the exam. Professional assessments are especially stressful because not only are they testing your practical knowledge, but they also are central to your career progression. Different professions require you to augment your expertise with related courses and innovations in the field. On a similar note, you are also required to clear specific exams during your career to move to the next stage.
CACS is one such exam that has to be taken by banking professionals to provide financial advisory service to a specific client base. CACS is an abbreviation for Client Advisory Competency Standards. As the name implies, it tests whether a banking professional is competent enough to provide an exceptional service to a client in an advisory role. This exam separates into two papers, where each paper tests knowledge in a specific domain. It makes it a little easier for the one taking the exam, as the preparations have to be carried out in two phases. Highlighted below are some tips to prepare the CACS exams.
ORGANIZE YOUR STUDY MATERIAL
It will save you a lot of headaches if you organize your study material before starting your preparation. Do thorough research beforehand of multiple resources that may include available study material, past papers, discussion forums, etc. It will be better for you if you do not add more study material midway through your preparation. Not only can it increase your stress levels, but you can also get behind on time. You can consult additional resources for questions you may have during your study, but do not keep on piling stuff during your preparation. There is too much resource material available in this day and age. It is a massive task in itself to filter out the required from the repetitive and redundant content. Therefore, the organization of study material before starting your exam preparation is a must.
ORGANIZE YOUR STUDY SPACE
Talking of which, organized study space is as essential for the mind, and it won’t be an exaggeration to say that they are correlated. If you have an organized space to study with all your resources neatly stacked and labeled or named (in the case of computer folders), you will find it very convenient for a consultation anytime during your study time. In contrast, if your study space is haphazard and disorganized, you will find it hard to get motivated to study. Not only that, it will take a lot of your precious time to find the relevant document or a book. An organized space leads to an organized mind; so do not ignore your study space during your exam preparation. Ask for help if you cannot manage to find the time yourself but do organize your study space!
PREPARE A SCHEDULE
Prioritize your responsibilities and tasks throughout the day. Decide upon a set schedule for study each day. Having a plan is an excellent impetus for studying daily. It does not have to be at the same time every day. You can always vary it, deciding which time suits you best during the day for study. However, choosing a specific period to study each day is a better choice. Depending upon your other responsibilities, prepare a flexible schedule. If you can study according to your initial plan, you can make time for it later in the day. Decide beforehand what you will be reviewing each week. It will prompt you to be regular and would be extremely helpful in completing your study goals.
STUDY THE OFFICIAL GUIDE
Singapore private banking professionals testify to the importance of the official study guide during CACS exam preparation. So don’t ignore the official study guide during your exam preparation. It helps you identify the core concepts that you need to learn. You can also compartmentalize your study schedule with the help of the guide.
Discussion is an integral part of exam preparation and specifically for an exam like CACS. You need to discuss either within a study group or teachers or professors about the ideas you learn and their possible practical implementations. Discussion augments your learning and thus proves especially useful in exam preparation. It is instrumental in conceptual knowledge. If you are unable to find a discussion/study group in your vicinity, you can always look for an online discussion forum. Do not ignore it during your CACS exam preparation.
CONSULT THE PAST PAPERS
Studying the past papers help you to get familiarized with the types of questions. Approaching your study resource material in the context of the previous exam papers will help you to internalize the key concepts. Since the exam will test your practical and technical knowledge, past papers are useful in managing the study accordingly.
LEARN THE PAPER FORMAT
You should be aware of the CACS paper format and paper duration. The study approach differs according to the paper format, so know beforehand through research and past papers what to expect. You can practice based on the knowledge of several questions and the exam duration. Even though some problems can take more time than others, but still you can learn to manage your time more efficiently and effectively if you are well aware of the paper format.
TAKE THE MOCK EXAMS
There is nothing like mock exams to get you ready for your actual exam. Mock exams help you practice for the final exam in addition to showing you where you stand in terms of your knowledge and capability to complete the exam. You can use past papers as mock exams and time yourself, or you can register with online platforms that provide mock exams in a timed format. Such mock exams can help you better as they try to mimic the original papers in its entirety as much as possible.
DO NOT STRESS
Stress is a natural phenomenon, but you may have to manage it effectively to focus on your preparation. It does not only mean organizing your study material. You need to take appropriate study breaks, sleep properly, and eat properly. When preparing for exams, be careful about your sleep pattern and food intake and also remember to keep yourself hydrated. It ensures that your mental faculties get fully engaged during studying, and you can understand and retain knowledge. Moreover, it prevents you from panicking about the exam.
If you follow all of the above tips during your exam preparation, then neither would you find your training difficult, nor would the exam be tough for you. Your score then would only depend upon your aptitude.