I know It’s been AGES since I posted another board exam tip. It did not help that my first three posts of board exam tips got lost in the last hacking attack on Helena blog. Sorry to that guy who emailed to ask where the other three posts are; even I do not have backup copies. I hope you are still reading this blog because I was unable to email you back that time.
I will be revamping this blog very soon (as soon as my poor head comes to a decision on how to revamp it), but I can no longer ignore the emails I have been receiving from board exam reviewees who are waiting for another post. I am thankful and blessed to hear stories of people who passed their exam or find this blog useful. I am kind of hoping that beyond the board exam tips, I can still offer other valuable posts for more readers.
For this post, I am going to answer a popular question which I recently answered to this year’s batch of GE reviewees in UP in our organization. Some of the people I talk to keep their jobs; some take a leave one or two months before the actual board exam. It’s different strokes for different folks.
But I did not work at all while I was reviewing, not even to do freelance writing. I was sorely tempted, yes. But I gritted my teeth and focused on becoming an engineer.
Honestly, I cannot really tell everyone to quit their jobs because reviewing for a board exam and taking review classes cost a lot of money. And those who have families to support immediately after graduation will not be able to do this. I was only able to focus on my board exam review for nine months because my father agreed to give me a monthly allowance. I am forever grateful for that. It was good that my own father agreed that he wants me to achieve the highest possible grade I can get in the board exam and made sure I eat three square meals per day despite my unemployment.
Now, during my time, I had 4 hours per day in Review Innovations Study Center from Monday to Friday. It was from 5pm to 9pm. Basically, I had the mornings and afternoons to myself. But I used them well.
I followed a rule of three for mastery: tackle a concept three times and you will master it. The first time, you go through it during your personal review. The second time, you go through it during review classes. The third time, you go through it during refresher classes.
I was unable to study thrice for all topics covered in the board exam. I was only able to do two for some and 2.5 for the others. There were some which were easy to go over three times because I naturally liked those subjects.
But here’s the thing, even if your parents cannot support you, you can take a personal loan for at least 4 months before your board exam. Sure, it will cost you an arm and leg and this giant utang na loob to your “financer” because you will basically find a job after board exam and you might have to suffer more financially at that waiting period. But during review, that debt may psychologically push you to do better in your review. Umutang ka na rin lang, itodo mo na ang pag-aaral, diba. But it’s quite risky.
I have seen working reviewees and I was convinced that all that fatigue I witnessed from them is something I cannot handle. My schedule during review was made in such a way that I get a full 7 hours of sleep every night from January to August. A week before my board exam, I slept 8 hours per night. I ate vegetables, soya milk, and all those brain food I can get my hands on. I avoided getting sick and I only missed one day during review because of a lousy asthma attack. Even when my gold earrings got snatched in a jeepney going to Recto, I still went to class.
I humbly acknowledge that my style may no longer be feasible for some of my readers. But my advice still stands: if you can find a way or afford not to work while reviewing, do it! 😀