We wanted to create a focussed and supportive learning culture that would be successful in helping people in their preparation for CTA. From our own experiences we have developed the following key elements to be part of the our Exam Preparation Group:
One of the early tasks of the group will be to help each member to calibrate where they are against the EATA competences that are being assessed through the exam process. This will happen in a variety of ways including playing and talking to tapes, talking theory, engaging in mock exams. Working together to establish where you are in your readiness, what the gaps may be and what learning and development needs to take place; both in and outside of the group to be ready for exam.
Getting on with it – setting goals and getting support in meeting them
From the outset you will be encouraged in setting goals for what you want to achieve in the group, based on how you are calibrating yourself. There will be regular discussion of progress towards the goals and support in how to meet them.
Dealing with myths, anxieties and knowing what is expected
This might not sound very exciting but understanding the exam process is important for candidates as it helps settle anxieties. So, we will be helping with this by providing a handbook/folder with the necessary documents compiled for each member of our group. These documents are all available from the EATA and UKATA websites, we are taking the task of pulling all this together to make it more straightforward. Along with some additional ideas from us, this will form the basis of your preparation for your CTA.
The Written Exam
There will be plenty of guidance on writing the CTA exam and opportunities to discuss the various sections and questions to be answered. We will look at approaches to writing, getting feedback on first drafts, final polishing. We will also look at questions like; who to choose as your case study client and the different sections A,B, C, and D.
Familiarisation, Practice and Coaching for the Oral Exam
Another key aspect of exam preparation is about getting familiar with the oral exam process. We think this has two main elements. Both what actually happens in the exam, the practicalities, and the process of the exam. We consider the process of the exam is about the experience for examiners and the candidate of being in an assessor/evaluator and assessee relationship and what is evoked in this experience. We see this as different to the types of questions that might be asked and the playing of tapes and talking to them. There will be opportunities to practice, experience and be coached on both these aspects through mock exams, practicing playing tapes and talking TA.
As a group we will spend time thinking about and talking about the process of the exam and what exam boards are like. Dispelling the myths and being comfortable talking about your work to colleagues.