Thoughts from one of our ACCA prizewinners (June 2013) Steve Jackson

I work for a Big 4 firm and some of my colleagues at the time studied with BPP and recommended it. I wouldn’t have studied anywhere else, the quality of teaching, exam focus and support is superb.

I studied face to face at a BPP centre which was great as I am a very inquisitive person and was able to ask lots of questions! My tutors were great, they had a good depth of subject knowledge, answered all my questions and had a good exam focus. They were very approachable and friendly, and there are a couple I can think of in particular without whose assistance I am pretty sure I would have failed those exams.

The study materials, especially the Practice and Revision Kits, are very exam focussed. Additionally the course notes must be a very good summary of the textbook as I never actually used the textbook at all, in any one of the 14 exams I sat; I only used the course notes and the revision kits.

The biggest challenge I found while studying was sitting inside at home when it is a gloriously sunny day and you have to trawl through practice questions instead of doing something outside! I would find it so tough to actually get going, but once I did get going I got into “the zone” and made good progress.

I found the only way to get through the challenge was discipline and routine. I would have a week or two off before exams and divide my day into three sections, morning, afternoon and evening. I made myself study two out of three of these. This meant that I had time to do other things (and thereby remain sane) but it also meant that I had to work productively in those slots in which I was studying.

My experience from having sat all 14 exams is that exam technique became more and more important over time. You need to learn the materials, but I don’t think people give exam technique the emphasis it deserves. BPP revision courses are very exam focussed, but also their written materials contain lots of guidance on exam technique. Read it, learn it and apply it – because it works.

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