As you study for written tests, there are many resources available – books, apps, websites, etc. We will discuss some of those in future posts.
One resource that is available, and yet hardly known (by students, at least), is the School Norms Report. This report is compiled quarterly by the FAA, and gives written test result statistics for every approved AMT school.
How can this be useful to you? Well, it could help you be better informed when you choose your school, but if you are reading this, it is likely you are pretty much committed to a school already.
But, the other thing the report offers is a glimpse into the subject areas where your school might be a little weak. For example, if your school is below the national average in Fire Protection Systems, perhaps you can put a little more self-study into that area.
The reports look intimidating at first, but it is not that complicated. Download it (it is a pdf), search for your school name, and you will find tables like the one at the top of this post.
The numbers in the columns indicate the average percentage of questions school graduates got correct on the written exams. If the number is red, that means the school average is below the national average in that subject area.
So, for example, if I were a Central Georgia Technical College student (just choosing at random), I would feel a little more confident in Aircraft Covering (100%) than in Communication and Navigation systems (66.7%).
There you go, another tool in your test preparation toolbox!
A common problem we see here at AMT-Testing, is applicants who have gone through school, and then delay several years before testing. This is a big mistake!
The reality is that a person’s knowledge will not improve over time without concerted effort. And, frankly, life just gets busy … too busy to spend the time necessary.
So, graduates who think they will take a couple of months to get “better prepared” usually take a lot longer than they think, and generally end up less prepared, rather than more.
Some, realizing that they are never going to pull it together by themselves after too much time has passed, choose to go to a “Test Prep” course. Sure, that may help, but is paying someone to teach you what you already once learned the best use of your money?
The solution to this is twofold:
First, learn as much as you can in school, don’t waste your time and money! Show up, on time, every day. Give it your best on all projects and tests. Use the school’s resources (instructors, equipment, tools, etc.) as much as you can.
After graduation (or even before), hit the books for a maximum of a week or two. Then do the writtens, and go for the O&P as soon as you practically can.
Your chances for success will be greatly improved if you do these things!