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Spaced Repetition is Everything, Especially for CPE Exams

Studying StrategyEarning your CPE credits can be likened to taking a walk in the park — a Jurassic park, that is.

To fulfill your dreams of serving through numbers and taxes, taking the time to study all there is that needs to be known regarding the matter is important. The sleepless nights and endless reviewers will undoubtedly be tough, but will be worth it in the end, especially when you get your credits. While you wait, however, it’s important to step up your studying game.

Experts at recommend reading your notes every day to remember. But if you want to relax a bit before D-Day itself, try spaced repetition.

It’s All About the Spacing

Spaced repetition (also known as distributed practice) is a primary teaching method that helps the brain retain information for the long-term. For you to learn something, cover it once then do it again until you truly understand it. Unlike regular repetition, you wait for a bit longer before recalling the information.

Psychology calls this the “spacing effect,” which proves to be effective in helping people learn new skills and recall more information.

The Space Between Recalls

For this method to work, it’s important to keep the spaces between recall shorter at first then increasing the space with the following recalls. Some studies show that if you must remember something for several days, the last recall should be at least a day after the second to the last one.

If you wish to remember something for a longer period (e.g. 3-4 months), space the last recall at least a week before the second one.

Don’t Just Read Notecards

When you just read your notecards, you’re not helping your brain build new circuits to make room for new information. Actually remembering the information involves active recall on your part, which means forcing your brain to recall information.

Notecards serve as your crutch and since the brain can be lazy sometimes, relying on notecards means spoiling your brain. As long as you use these cues, your brain doesn’t form new memory pathways. It’s okay to take a peek every now and then, but that’s it.

Earning your CPE credits is a challenge you can overcome seamlessly with the right strategy. With spaced repetition, you can still pass the exam and take a day off to rest.

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