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Student? Studying Long Hours? Read This

By Brian Ellis

My name is Brian Ellis and I work in the insurance industry with qualifications now.

The Qualification Need

My job seemed fairly safe with my firm. I was a good worker, no problems and achieved my targets without any problems. My bosses were obviously happy enough for me to continue working there.

However, due to new requirements being brought in by the regulatory authorities that govern financial type companies, I needed a qualification. It wasn't concrete, but it seemed fairly certain that to continue to work there I would eventually need the 'Insurance Foundation Certificate'. Oh dear I need my job and I wasn't any good at studying I failed miserably at school.

The Course

The certificate study course consisted of two large volumes, levels I and II and a 2 hour exam for each level. Each volume was studied in a classroom once a week for 6 months with homework.

Difficulties Faced

Level I wasn't too difficult apart from being a very uninteresting subject to study. Think about it, the background of insurance and how it works etc. Level II, however, was going to be the problem. I knew that there was a 70% failure rate for this exam. As soon as I saw the material we had to learn I could see why.

What I did

At the beginning of studying for level I there was a need for me to find out the best way to study due to the large amount of technical data and jargon. I asked my tutor, got books from the library (boring) asked friends and scoured the Internet. What did I learn? Just the same old methods everyone seems to be using. I began to think that there just wasn't a better way and face up to the fact that I'll just have to do my best and keep my fingers crossed.

However, one day I saw an ebook on the web called "The Quick Way To Study For Exam Success". (Available at

I must admit I was sceptical at first due to all the rubbish I had already seen. However, my gut feeling said try it, after all it was on "5.27.

When I got it I was pleasantly surprised. I found it straight to the point, easy to understand and could apply the method straight away. I decided to test it on learning all the spirits and prices down the local pub. It worked with surprising ease.

My Study Day

Straight away I got out my study volume and following the instructions starting filling up a 100 leaf duplicate book. On the bus to work each day I'd get it out, quickly scan through and that was my study complete. Thank goodness, no more evenings having to stir myself to get out the volume in an attempt to memorise what was there. Ok, I admit it, I didn't do this everyday, but it didn't seem to make a lot of difference to the results.

No Revision

Coming up close to the exam the tutor starting blasting us with the words "don't forget to revise" and we were given test papers in order to give us practice for the exam. Not just to the surprise of my tutor but also myself, I either came first or second in these mock exams. When others were revising, allegedly, I found I didn't need to, as the way I was studying was just an efficient way of revising anyway.

My Confidence

When the first exam came up we went to the hotel that was booked for us to take the exam. There must have been 150 people there. We were all told to turn our papers over. I found it surprisingly easy and finished in 45 minutes. I had to wait because we weren't allowed to leave until 60 minutes. I was one of the first 5 to finish. Guess what? I passed.


Level II was somewhat different, a lot more difficult. However, I continued to study in the same way.

Before the exam I was a bit more worried whether I would pass due to the publicity of the 70% failure rate. I didn't find the exam as easy as the first but I was able to answer with confidence.

The Results

During the wait period for the results other staff and myself had found out that very few had passed this time. My heart sank at the news expecting failure. Then it came, I was asked to call personnel for my verbal results. What a sense of elation when I heard the words, "I am pleased to tell you that you have passed. Congratulations." Yippee. What me? The x school dunce. Thank goodness, no more boring study of the world of insurance.

The Future

This is such a good way to study, I am planning to go to night school and try to get better qualifications. Then I can get a, hopefully, higher paid job.

About The Author

Brian Ellis is an ex student, now a professional in the insurance industry.


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