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Course P test taking strategies?

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  • Course P test taking strategies?

    For those of you who have passed Course P, what was your test taking strategy?

    I did not have a test taking strategy and I think that will lower my score.

    For example, I did not look at the answer choices before answering the question..
    That hurt me on a problem with an exponential joint distribution with the constant lambda. The SOA/CAS did not want me to solve for lambda because the answer choices were in terms of lambda. If I looked at the answer choices before answering the question, I would of answered it correctly.

  • #2
    Didn't really have too much of a strategy when I took formerly Course 1 in Nov. '04; I hadn't even taken a timed test, either, which was somewhat risky, I guess. The one thing I do remember that I did, though, was if I didn't know HOW to do a problem immediately or after looking at it for 15 seconds, I moved on to the next problem. I think I left 14-16 of the 40 questions blank on the first pass through because of this. I then went back to the ones I had skipped, had become more focused, I presume, or saw a later question that helped me realize how to attack previously skipped problems, and I had about 5-6 left untouched on the second pass through. I think after second pass through, I went back and rechecked every problem I had gotten an answer for and then tried to somehow get something for those last 5-6, and I guess this worked out well enough.

    Moral of story: Be careful about going in with the ego that you will get every problem immediately. If you don't know how to do one right off the bat, come back later and something will probably click.
    act justly. walk humbly. .

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    • #3
      If you have negative variance, you probably did something wrong. Skip and come back.
      Whether you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up, you better be running.

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      • #4
        Study strategies

        One important study strategy is that you should take a practice exam from some source under real exam-like conditions, with the real three-hour time limit and then have a look at your score. If you score more than 70%, you are probably in great shape. From what I have observed, many candidates do not do this, and, as I see it, it should be done.

        Also, time yourself. Do not spend too much time on one question. Give yourself a limit for struggling with a question, then go on, possibly come back.

        If you get stuck and hate everything, start doing problems from the last one back -- very early problems and the ones at the end tend to be easier, so you may recover your composure after getting some problems done nicely.

        And relax. Despite appearances and nerves, you have plenty of time on the test.

        Yours,
        Krzys'
        Last edited by krzysio; October 3 2005, 01:16 AM.
        Want to know how to pass actuarial exams? Go to: smartURL.it/pass

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        • #5
          3 hour time limit?
          Whether you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up, you better be running.

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          • #6
            3 hours, indeed

            My apologies, I meant 3 hours -- or, more precisely, I meant the same amount of time as the real exam. I will edit my post to say "3 hours." Thanks for the correction.

            Yours,
            Krzys'

            Originally posted by Ken
            3 hour time limit?
            Last edited by krzysio; October 3 2005, 01:18 AM.
            Want to know how to pass actuarial exams? Go to: smartURL.it/pass

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            • #7
              The best advice I can give regarding the exam period itself, aside from what others have mentioned is to read the questions carefully. If you're nervous or excited, it's easy to misinterpret the questions. I'd often mix up values, like, say, mean and variance, and end up with the right answers to the wrong question.
              Last edited by Arnold Kim; October 28 2005, 01:36 AM.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Ken
                If you have negative variance, you probably did something wrong. Skip and come back.
                Just saw this; that is funny.
                act justly. walk humbly. .

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