You're standing at the start line of your NEBOSH Diploma journey. You're armed with your study materials, computer and notebook. You've got 4 units and 500 hours of study ahead of you. Then someone yells - GO!
The problem is, you haven't studied in a long time. It suddenly dawns on you how much work you've got and you start to feel a little bit anxious.
Don't worry - we've all been there.
The first few days of your course are some of the most important. That's because they're going to set you up for your journey ahead. We've seen lots of learners get off to a rocky start because they haven't been organised. Then they've stopped, made a plan and powered through it to get great results.
So before you set off, take a look at our essential tips to help you plan your NEBOSH Diploma study.
Set your goal
The first thing you should do when you set out on your NEBOSH Diploma journey is set yourself an end goal. Trust us, without an end date you'll just float through your course and it'll end up taking you twice as long.
Grab yourself a diary or calendar and make a note of your chosen exam dates. Units A, B and C exams happen in January and July each year. You can check the exact dates on the NEBOSH website. Your Unit DNI can be submitted 4 times throughout the year in February, May, August and September.
You should also make a note of your exam registration deadline. This is usually 12 weeks before your chosen exam date.
Create a study timetable
Each unit in the NEBOSH Diploma has a recommended number of study hours. These include taught hours and self-study hours and you should use them to form your study plan.
But be realistic. Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day.
Don’t get bogged down by attempting to learn everything in one go. Short, regular study sessions are more effective than long, sporadic ones. So it's better to break up the unit into chunks and give yourself time slots to study each one.
You should also think about opportunities to study that won’t disrupt your daily schedule. Like, reading on your lunch break or listening to audio books while travelling to/from work.
Here's an example:
Top tip - The NEBOSH Diploma requires you to have a good foundation of knowledge in health and safety and basic maths and science skills. So give yourself leeway to catch up on areas you may be a bit rusty on.
Use a mix of learning techniques
Every person is different. And research has identified over 70 different major models of learning. Some people will be happy to re-read notes. Others prefer something visual to help them remember key pieces of information. Here are a few things you could try out:
- Draw visual diagrams - summarise information into bullet points or key words and draw sketches or diagrams to link them together.
- Use images - look up images of features you aren't sure of on the internet, like certain tools or machinery. It’s a lot easier to work out the control measures of a piece of equipment when you can visualise how it works.
- Use audio and video - If you're studying in a classroom, record your lectures so you can listen to them again. Or use Podcasts and YouTube videos to get extra insight and tutorials from industry professionals.
- Read/write - use flash cards/memory cards to make notes on the key issues. Stick them up around your house so you can be reminded of them. And when you're ready, get someone to test you on them.
You can learn more about learning techniques in our post Exams, Revision, Tomatoes, Flashcards and Voices.
Put your knowledge into practice
It’s important to test what you’ve learnt to give yourself an idea of how much you’ve actually understood.
Multiple choices quizzes will help test your short-term memory and what you know. Discussions with your colleague, tutor or other learners will help test how well you can articulate what you know. And practising past exam questions will help test how well you can apply what you know.
Make use of extra support
The amount of support you get will depend on your provider and learning method. But the most popular features include:
- Tutor support by email and phone
- Mock exams with feedback
- Past exam questions with feedback
- Revision webinars
- Practical activities
- Community forums
- Extra resources, like whitepapers and journals
Check with your course provider on what's available to you. If they're included in your course, then use them! They're there to help you.