Post by will on Aug 9, 2017 14:02:15 GMT
Dear Nick and the Astranti Team,
I would like to say thanks for providing, what must be a market leader, in Strategic Case Study mock exams and answer feedback. Over my three attempts (third time lucky) at revising for the Strategic Case Study exam I always used Astranti as the go to provider for mocks and answer feedback. I’m sure like myself many others students searched for mock exam providers in order to mix up question styles and after spending hours of doing internet searches I can say there are no others that provide such depth of mock variants. Whilst I found these slightly tougher than the actual exam the detailed answer feedback and planning format suggested were invaluable to me passing the Fizz case study. So Astranti.. thanks very much!
On a second note I would just like to share with yourselves and other students a brief summary of my CIMA journey, as for me it became far more than studying for a qualification it became many years of struggling that were embedded into mine and families lives. I’m not really one for writing into forums and I’m sure not any different to any other student studying for a professional exam, but if there is one student who has failed exams time and time again and on the verge of being so disheartened to the point of giving up then hopefully this may spur them on to give that exam another go.
I started my CIMA journey many years ago after completing my AAT and was lucky enough for my employer to sponsor me to attend the large professional colleges in London. However after my first exam I soon realised how diverse and tough the CIMA exams were, and how much time you had to devote to studying, which was reflected in my embarrassingly low fail of 19%.
Over the years of late nights, sacrificed weekends, missed family occasions and what honestly felt like I was a failure, especially sitting the E1 paper around 8 times which I was told was the easier subject, I arrived at the new format Strategic Case Study.
I knew it was going to be very tough not only meeting the 60% pass mark but also the 4 competency areas, which combined with the pressure of time management was making me wonder if I would ever get through it. So I attempted the first case study on ADF Milk and whilst I had completed 3 mocks my low fail mark added to my fear that I would never have enough time or planning to be able to pass!
After a few days of being very down that I’d come this far and felt unless a student’s competency could be examined outside of the traditional time pressured format of the exam room I was never going to become CIMA Qualified. So again I went and attempted the Evestar case study.
This time I wanted to focus my exam preparation on planning and formatting answers, such as how deal with an Ethical question. I felt good going into the exam and confident that the mock exam and answer feedback had assured me that my integrated knowledge of the strategic level combined with real life business scenarios was enough to get me that pass mark, thanks to the Astranti strategic products.
Then bang.. exam melt down! A blank memory turned into focussing on the clock ticking down. A total disaster and what felt like wasted weeks of learning.
After pulling myself together I looked through all the pages of revision material I had wrote up and at least felt good that I put the effort in and certainly had a solid technical understanding, I just needed to find out why my time management seemed so bad which contributed to me panicking.
Following discussions with family members I decided to get professionally assessed for learning difficulties, which turned out to be one of best things I’ve done. All those years through school and professional exams where I’ve constantly struggled with reading and time management .. failing exams.. struggling again until I passed… I was diagnosed with Dyslexia.
Understanding that to this point over many years, a massive part of my exam failure has been down to a condition that effects millions of people, many of which are extremely successful household names, and not from any lack of knowledge or subject competency.
So back to my third attempt at the strategic case study and Fizz!.. I decided to focus on the planning steps recommended by Astranti and put this into practice attempting as many mocks as I could and learning from the answer feedback. This was combined with continually reading and writing summarised notes on the technical subject areas of the Pre Seen and Astranti real life scenarios making sure any financial info and ratios were memorised to avoid any wasted time in the exam.
So on the 6th July 2017 I got the CIMA email saying I’d Passed… still can’t believe it… after so many years of hard work, self doubt and most importantly the determination to never give up I got there to become a passed finalist and apply for my membership.
As I said I’m sure everyone has a unique CIMA journey but for anyone struggling and doubting that they’ll never get through.. You Will.. just keep determined, keep going and keep that belief.
As Colonel George Custer once said “It’s not about how many times you get knocked down that counts, it’s about how many times you get back up”
All the very best