What was the key to your success?
For the SCS exam I realised that getting my approach to the exam right was more important than revising the theory which is tested within the strategic objective tests. The Astranti videos covered time management and question planning which are crucial to a good exam technique. The more focused and efficient your answers are, the more points you'll have time to make.
What revision techniques proved most effective for you?
I went to my local university library to revise, it gets you away from the distractions you get a home and allows you to switch off for . I also made sure that my revision had emphasis on areas where I wasn't strong. With the SCS exam I recommend knowing the key points identified from the preseen off by heart, Nick provides an excellent review of the preseen material and tells you exactly how you can use the presen in the actual exam. The preseen is provided in the exam but if you want to score highly you shouldn't need to look at the preseen during the exam because it will waste valuable time.
Which of the Astranti course materials did you find most useful? and how important was the marking and feedback service to you?
It's hard to choose which material I found most important but I will give you my top 3. I found the course videos fantastic because they explain how to approach the exam and how to plan your answer and manage your time. Even though I scored the highest mark I still felt the time pressure during the exam and felt like I could have done with a few more minutes in every section. The next most important thing was the preseen analysis, Nick's videos explain the information in the preseen from the perspective of e3,p3 and f3. These videos will show you how to make a point in the exam and relate it back to the preseen.
Finally having marked mocks enabled me to identify areas of my technique and theory which I needed to improve on. My marker was Bethan Norman who is a very experienced marker and has worked at a high level within accountancy for many years. Her feedback was very focused and concise. It allowed me to focus my revision on areas where I needed to improve and give a real insight into how a marker views your script.
What would your advice be to future students?
Make best use of your study/revision time. Try to start early in the evening so you're not working too late. I found that a good night of sleep is the best way to keep motivated and keep study time productive. I would also say keep calm in the exam when you come across tasks which seem daunting, I had a few daunting tasks in the actual exam but instead of panicking I kept my mind on the question and just made sure that I planned my answer out in a way which would effectively tackle the tricky questions. My final bit of advice came from another student who had failed the SCS exam who I was talking to during Nick's first masterclass. This was to do ALL of your mock exams timed because that is the only way you can truly understand the time pressure of the SCS.