ASSISTING YOUR EMPLOYEES/MEMBERS IN TEST PREPARATION
Taking a test is stressful for everyone. The “Fight or Flight” syndrome is very real. The process of taking an exam is painstaking for most people and there’s a lot at stake. For individuals who have not taken examinations since leaving school, the very thought of test-taking is even more intimidating — even if the person is a highly skilled and experienced professional.
This form of stage fright can be a real hindrance to any examinee. If the examinee is your employee/member and you are supporting their effort to become ETCP certified, it is in everyone’s best interest to prepare the person as thoroughly as possible. ETCP offers the below suggestions in the spirit of trying to make the exam process less stressful for all.
Encourage your employees/members to:
- Take the ETCP Practice Exams
- Use the bibliographies provided on the ETCP Website
- Thoroughly examine the full test Content Outline found in the ETCP Candidate Handbooks to help identify areas in which they need additional study
- Seek advice from others who have taken the test
- Participate in all available training
- Review the test-taking tips posted on the ETCP website and included with their registration packet
Practice Exams – http://etcp.esta.org/practiceexams
These low-cost ($35/exam) on-line tools for self-assessment can be taken in private and at any time. Each exam has 50 multiple-choice questions that can help candidates become familiar with the testing process, as well as timing.
Score reports are provided immediately upon completion, giving candidates an opportunity to direct their study to target areas of weakness. Currently, there two versions of each rigging practice exam, and one electrical. A second electrical practice exam will be available summer of 2016 and a power distribution exam will be available in 2017.
Bibliography – a list, with links, to helpful texts, standards and resources:
Power Distribution: etcp.esta.org/pdt_bibliography
Exam Content Outline
The Candidate Handbooks and the website contain an outline of the knowledge tested on each examination. Candidates need to be familiar with this information and to strengthen their knowledge base as necessary. Keep in mind that everyone’s knowledge base has both stronger and weaker areas. Most important is that individuals identify what they do know and what they don’t in order to guide their studies.
Power Distribution: etcp.esta.org/pdt_outline
The ETCP website has a database of every current certificant and their contact information if provided. They are searchable by certification, location and union local.
There is also the ETCP Study Group on Facebook where certified technicians will answer questions. An extension of this approach is participation in study groups formed to prepare for the examination. Investigate if there are any in your area by contacting the union local or start up a group with others interested in taking the exam.
ETCP Recognized Trainers and Training Programs are “Recognized” to provide Renewal Credits to those who are already certified, however many of them offer courses that address portions of the ETCP Content Outlines.
Recognized Training Programs
Tips for Hiring a Trainer
You may wish to hire a trainer for your members/employees to strengthen their knowledge in areas in which they may not be as strong. As a suggestion, the trainer can teach for two or three days and then you can offer a paper and pencil examination on the last day or shortly thereafter while the information is still fresh.
Here are some tips that may help you find a trainer to suit your needs:
- Interview two or three trainers to see who might be the best fit.
- Make sure the trainer is familiar with the Content Outline of the examination. Explore the exam’s Content Outline to determine exactly which portions you feel present challenges to your technicians, and communicate those needs to the trainer.
- Be clear about your expectations, objectives and goals for training. Consider students’ level of experience and what specific skills they need to have in order to best serve your business.
- Ask the trainer for references from recent training sessions.
ETCP has shown…
Certification credentials greatly benefit the entire entertainment industry by providing assurance to you, your clients, and other crew, as well as performers and attendees, that your technicians are competent in their craft and work safely to the benefit of all. Many technicians have said that studying for the exam has increased their knowledge and made them better at what they do. ETCP has raised the bar.