Tips for PPL Exam Success

  • FirstOfficerAnthony
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FirstOfficerAnthony created the topic: Tips for PPL Exam Success

G'day Bob Tait Forum members and guests,

Firstly, I'd like to thanks Bob, Richard and various other forum members for answering the few questions I had about the PPL syllabus and obscure CASA questions. Yesterday morning, I successfully completed my CASA PPL(A) exam, scoring 95% and thought that I'd provide some quick exam tips for success.

If you are one of those people that are able to zoom through the exam within an hour, than there is no doubt it my mind that you probably didn't read the question correctly the first time and got it wrong.

READ THE QUESTION CAREFULLY! I'm sure you have heard this a million times from your teachers, parents and peers, but it's easy to misinterpret what the question is asking you or miss vital clues/information, especially considering the information is on a computer screen and isn't presented on paper.
  • You will have plenty of time to complete the exam, so don't rush. If you complete it with 2 hours left, than start reading over your answers, making sure you are 100% certain that it's correct
  • If there are multiple elements to a question, use the scribble pad provided and list all the important information. It's much easier to manipulate and visualise questions on paper than it is to absorb the information and spending time going over in your head.

I was quite confident the first run through my exam, however, once I went over the answers again, I found various mistakes. The questions that I was most confident with, tended to be the ones I made the most mistakes on.

A good portion of the exam will challenge your ability to understand concepts, but there is plenty of easy marks for you to obtain. These mostly involve answers that are in your reference material. Take advantage of the material you are allowed to bring. Most of the answers will have you basically quoting paragraphs or interpreting graphs.
  • Label your AIP (10 Tags) and ERSA (5 Tags). Although, you have plenty of time to complete the exam, tagging this material will have you focusing on on the question rather than on the index. I'm not sure about you guys, but I always seem to get lost in my ERSA. Nothing worse than spending five minutes looking for conversion tables
  • If you are bringing in your CAR or CAO, highlight important sections. If you look in the forum, you will find Brenton's Law guide. It details sections that appropriate for the exam. I have a similar document and If I find it, I'll upload it.

Download and find a way to print a copy of the VFR Guide. It's unfortunate that CASA does not publish a hard copy of the material any more and I have found a few errors (Needs to be updated I believe), but it's a wonderful guide If you struggling to find answers in your law documents, all of the sections provide references to the regulations, so you can always cross check with the current documents (Considering you will be examined on the most recent changes).

With all the reference material you are provided, you also want to go back to my first point. Ensure you are reading the material carefully. e.g. Using your ERSA to find out the headwind competent and you mistakenly use the crosswind section of the table.

I just realised that I said this was going to be quick, so I'll shoot off some quick pointers to end this:

1. Master your flight computer/whiz wheel. And if your not confident with your wheel, know how to solve the questions using a calculator. If you are using Bob Tait, read up on the first few pages in the PPL book and the navigation section.

2. It's multiple choice, so if you can't answer the question directly, your best bet is to use a process of elimination. It should cut your choices down 50/50 if you are unsure.

3. SCRIBBLE PAD IS YOUR FRIEND! Use it! (Obviously use it productively, don't be drawing airplanes in clouds) Draw up weight and balance sheets and various other concepts.

Hopefully I've given you guys some tips for the exam. I'm more than happy to answer more questions about about the exam or studying.

Good Luck to Future Pilots!

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