First off, lets talk test taking for the ...ehem...mature gals (and guys) out there...I am not quite sure what happens to us as we age, but I promise you I was a decent student at one point in life, (do the 1970's count?) and I do consider myself as a person with a high level of common sense, and good strong work ethic. In my past jobs, I was always one to catch on quickly to new software programs and trainings, and I am not lazy, by any means. My experience this go round was very much in-one-ear-and-out-the-other. I'd read a page, and then not have a clue what I had read. I would feel like I grasped a chapter, and then fail a practice quiz. My self confidence took a beating.
Studying appraisals, metes and bounds, plats, easements, and appurtenances (huh?) are a far cry from flea markets and home decor, and to be honest with you, I had serious doubts as to whether I was actually going to be able to retain anything long term, let alone long enough to pass the tests, but miracles happen every day, and low and behold, I made it through.
I took the test a little over a week ago. (Here in Washington, the questions for state and national are mixed into a single test; 100 national questions, 30 state related questions, and 5 they are just "trying out" to see just how much they can jack you up.) I passed the Washington state one, (Yay!) and missed the national passing rate by two points.
I was devastated, but, after I calmed down, I figured it must mean I retained some things, and it was better than failing by a huge amount. I signed up the next day to re-take the national test three days later, being told that there were ten versions of the test, so you would get a different version if you needed to take it multiple times, which is common.
Taking this test once was difficult enough for me, (and my pocketbook) and now, looking forward to taking it a second time was caused me to break out in a complete sweat, but there was no turning back now. It had to get done.
I was completely and totally stunned when I sat down to retake the test and discovered it was the identical test.
(A gift directly from God!)
At first, I thought maybe it was just a few questions, but then my unsure wait-can-it-really-be-hopefulness turned to giddy-tapping-my-toes-at-my-testing-cubical-desk-all-out-euphoria.
I tried not to get cocky with myself as I navigated through the retake of the national test, as I would hit questions I had researched after my first failed-by-two-points attempt. I completed the test with over an hour to spare, so I went back and reviewed my answers thoroughly.
(I wasn't about to miss victory by two points again....)
I passed just fine on the second attempt, and I have been doing a happy dance inside my head ever since. I start my new career on May seventh, just one week from today.