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The importance of homework, mock exams and feedback for PM trainees

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Published: 18th May 2022

At Parallel we firmly believe in the importance of homework and mock exam papers can offer to delegates looking to do really well on the APM PMQ courses. We spend a lot of time marking both homework and mock exam papers in order to offer the right feedback that will help our delegates to see where they might need to improve their understanding of the course material. We have a fantastic pass rate as a result of the work that we put into this marking and the feedback that we give. We want to go that extra mile in order to help our delegates achieve the best possible results – and we believe that our high pass rate pays testament to this.

Many people working in project management will pick up invaluable tips and skills whilst they work in the position. It may, sometimes, even be a position that they have drifted into as part of their current job role. However, when it comes to those vital project management skills, and how to use them to help your team to achieve their goals, there really is no substitute for the in-depth training that can be gained by taking a professional qualification. Project management courses offer the type of professional qualification that many employers will be looking for alongside skills gained on the job so are a very worthwhile time investment. Of course, studying for a project management qualification is more of a commitment than simply reading a few textbooks or watching a few videos. It’s certainly something that requires time and effort, but you can really reap rewards by committing, especially when the course is designed to commit to its students just as well.

The importance of homework

If you thought that when you left school, you left the idea of ever doing homework again behind you then it might be time to rethink that concept. Studies have shown that it is linked to positive academic achievements by students, and this is at any level; school, college, university and even for those who are studying for professional qualifications like the APM PMQ.

If you are studying for your APM PMQ then set homework, mock exam marking, and feedback can all play a valuable part in your learning process. These are tools that can be used by whoever is delivering your course learning in order to help you not only retain the important course information but also to help you improve your understanding of that knowledge in order to achieve a fantastic pass rate.

importance of homework and mock exams

Lets look at each individual component and why it might be beneficial.  

Set homework         

If you are learning your course material over a number of weeks, then it can be incredibly helpful to ensure that you have completely understood everything that you have learnt before moving on to the next topic. At Parallel we firmly believe that this is one of the best ways to check that our delegates have understood the course information. It helps us to make sure this is the case and shows us if there are any elements of the course that haven’t fully been understood.

We understand that when you are working, studying and trying to fit in home life things can become a little bit hectic. Promising yourself that you will re-read the course material and even self-test your knowledge can often get put to one side as a result of these other factors. The importance of homework cannot be under-estimated – it offers a more structured help that means making time to sit down and do the additional work. Of course there is no better way to boost your confidence and proving to yourself that you know the material than completing set homework and getting it marked with a good score to confirm that.  

Set homework also offers a great way in which you can draw a line under each topic of your study and move on to the next one, confident that you are studying effectively.

Mock exam marking

For many of those individuals sitting a professional qualification, it can be a good few years since they actually sat an exam. Sitting exams can be a stressful experience and if you haven’t got any recent knowledge of the exam process to draw on then mock exams make sense. This is just one of the reasons that those students sitting GCSEs and A-Levels actually sit mocks. They are designed to help familiarise students with the set up of an exam room, the dos and don’ts of examines, the techniques that will help you to get the best from your answers and, perhaps more importantly, where you might need to revisit a topic.

Mock exams alone can only do so much though. It is the marking of these papers by qualified individuals, as opposed to self-marking, that can make a huge difference. Whilst there is no problem with delegates marking their own multi-choice answers where there is really only one correct answer, the marking of any questions requiring a written answer is different. For written answers there are often good answers that will get you some of the marks, and great answers that will get you more marks. Detailed marking of mock exam papers will show you what you did well and where you could improve your answers to do even better. It can help you to tailor any revision that you might be doing to those areas that were your areas of weakness.

Feedback

The feedback that we offer delegates on both their set homework and mock exams helps to dissect the answers that they have given, show them where they might be missing information and also help them improve the way in which the information has been presented. We understand the importance of homework but only when constructive feedback is offered. Whilst to some this may seem like stepping back into the classroom, it is a proven method that gets great results and there is plenty of evidence in the form of educational research that backs this method up.

If you want to ensure the best results possible from your APM PMQ exams, then it really is worth putting the extra work that these measures involve.

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