Don't waste time - it's vital you make the most of this last period before the exams start.
With this in mind, I am going to share with you
the key points from the latest OCS
Examiner's Report - learning lessons from those who mark and assess the exam
themselves could be all the difference between a pass and a fail this November.
For every sitting I
analyse the report and to share the key findings, and there is almost always one
or two points which resonate with a lot of students.
The examiner's get
tired of having to repeat themselves on where students are going wrong, so here
are some of the key themes from the latest OCS report so you do not make the
An early point made
in the report was about candidates being able to apply their knowledge:
“In some tasks it was clear that candidates had knowledge
of a particular area, but were unable to apply it effectively to the case study.
It is important to prepare for this examination by studying previous case
studies and practice putting knowledge into context by answering past
knowledge is very important - but it how you use it that is more
important. Make sure you always answer the question directly and are
always referring back to the industry, examiner's want to know your answer is
relevant to the question.
Don't waste your
time with introductions and pointless models!
This is a point that we
have raised on numerous occasions, and it is one which the examiners also are
frustrated by: “It is not necessary to
write long introductions that explain the business context or embellish the back
story to the case. The random inclusion of models for the sake of it earns no
It's tempting for
students to feel they need explain their answers through long introductions and
models, however as the examiners say clear, you are not getting marks from this.
In a time pressured exam, stick to the bulk of your answer rather than details
such as random models and complex introductions.
Much like the advice we
give, the examiner's also like planners: “When sitting an Operational level case study
examination, it is important to take time to plan your answer so that you are
able to apply your knowledge to the specifics of the case. I would suggest that
for certain tasks you plan your answers in the answer screen itself".
Not only does planning
give structure to your answer, examiner's will also give you credit if they see
you have made a plan - this could make up those crucial marks to get you that
It's important to look at what the examiners have found
in previous sittings as you can then ensure you have considered these issues
before your exam.