How to Pass the WAMITAB Operator Continuing Competence Test Without Feeling Stressed!

“Fear”, “anxiety” and “dread” are words we’ve heard some candidates use to describe how they feel about sitting their WAMITAB continuing competence test. If you’re experiencing it for the first time it can be especially daunting and nerve-racking.
So, we’ve put this guide together to dispel some of the myths that contribute to the stress that candidates can feel and to give you the key steps to test success.
Let’s take a look at the myths first.

Myth 1 - It is impossible for a first-time candidate to pass the test
At Elleteq, we’ve worked with many candidates over the years and in our experience, it is absolutely possible... in fact all our first-time candidates have had a 100% first time pass rate!

Myth 2 – There is hardly any time to do the test questions
It’s actually a relaxed atmosphere and you get as much time as you need in the initial tutorial on how the questions will appear and how to answer them. The test is available for all. WAMITAB will also consider applications for reasonable adjustments (e.g. a reader or extra time) on a case by case basis.

Myth 3 – The centre is full of noisy teenagers doing their driving theory tests
The centres are extremely efficient in managing candidates coming through the door. There is very little chance of noise as candidates are worked through in limited batches. The test room is a sanctuary of silence, you have your own allocated booth, and headphones are provided to block out any external noise.

Myth 4 – The questions won’t be based on the work I do at my site
The generic questions shouldn’t be curveballs, they are based on knowledge you should have whatever type of permit site you manage. The activity specific questions can sometimes be more challenging, say if your site is operating at a basic level e.g. you run a small scale outdoor aerobic compost site. You will be sitting the same test as those running a large scale in-vessel composting site with sophisticated odour abatement systems and managing Animal By-Products. But if you follow the revision tools out there, you will be able to answer those questions.

Now we’ve got the myths out of the way, we’ll focus on the steps to a successful test. We hope the following tips will help to make any anxiety you have subside.
1) Booking Your Test

Book Early:
Around three months prior to your WAMITAB certificate expiring, go onto the Pearson Vue centre website and check availability of test dates https://home.pearsonvue.com/wamitab. (COVID-19 has had an impact on test slots, some centres could be closed, or some are operating with limited slots.)

De-Stress Your Test Date:
Find a date that doesn’t conflict with other activities that could lead you to have increased levels of stress for example completing a major site maintenance overhaul or moving to a new house the week before!

If you’re the only person with the WAMITAB qualification covering a site give yourself breathing space and book a date that will allow time to rebook if needed, it will take the pressure off.

Check the COVID-19 Requirements:
When you get confirmation of your slot look carefully what conditions you have to comply with. COVID-19 is being interpreted differently from centre to centre. Some may require the wearing of masks and gloves or extra time to go through booking in procedures.

2) Prepare for Success

Double Check Which Test You’re Taking:
Make sure you know which test you’re taking – it has been known for candidates to choose the wrong test on the day! You can do a quick check on the WAMITAB website by clicking on the activity specific test https://wamitab.org.uk/competence/continuing-competence/.

Revision, Revision, Revision:
We cannot stress the importance of giving time to refresh your knowledge. We recommend the WAMITAB revision guides, they are available from the WAMITAB website https://wamitab.org.uk/products-services/shop/.

You will need the three generic knowledge ones; legislation, environmental protection, health and safety plus the discipline you are sitting i.e. aerobic composting, end of life vehicles, etc.
Create Some Revision Aids:
Producing your own revision cards are a good way of being able to look at key information quickly. There are colour index cards out there so you can have a different colour for a different subject area.

Voice record the knowledge from your revision cards or the WAMITAB revision books, you can listen back at any quiet time to help retain the knowledge, and it beats counting sheep!
 
3) The Day Before the Test

Check online that your booking is still showing as valid, some candidates are experiencing postponements due to COVID. You should get an email if this is the case, but it may be late in the day.

Check what you need to take along to the test, there will always be a proof of ID requirement so passport or driving licence but at the moment due to COVID some centres are requesting disposable gloves and masks.

Plan your route so you know timings including walking from the car park and the cost to park. In addition, due to COVID it is taking longer to complete the initial registration process so allow the time specified in your confirmation email.

Get some quality sleep.
4) The Day of the Test 

Remember to pack your photo ID plus take along your confirmation email.
Take in minimal items you will be asked to place your phone (turned off), keys, personal items into a locker. You will be allowed glasses, but the case will have to go in your locker.
The centres are very well laid out so you know where to report to and the process should be explained throughout.

Normally you will be given a whiteboard and pen in case you want to write notes and then taken to your booth by a member of staff who would have already logged you into the system and have your name there ready to start the test.
Take some deep breaths and follow the instructions on the screen on how to start your test. The system allows you to flag and go back to questions if you have doubts so do not be afraid to do this.

When you have completed the test and before leaving the centre, they will print a set of results for you which will tell you if you passed. You need to achieve at least 4 out of 8 on your specific activity test and 13 out of 18 on the generic in order to give you a minimum pass mark of 65% overall.

5) After the Test

Sit back with a well-earned coffee and reflect on the questions you have just answered, check against your revision notes any you were unsure of look up the answers in order to learn from the test experience.

Buy a frame ready for your certificate to arrive in the post!
Elleteq Mentoring Option

We hope that you find this guide helpful and you’re ready to rock your test on your own, BUT, if you would like extra support to refresh your knowledge and build your confidence then we can help.
• Coverage of both the generic knowledge and your own site-specific test area questions, so that you feel confident you’ve covered everything you need to kick start your own prep. 
 • Real life examples to help cement the learning for you, so that it’s easier to pull the answers from your memory when you need them.
• A mock test to help you get a feel for what the test questions will be like so that you know what to expect on the day and are ready for success. 
If you would like to find out more about mentoring email us at hello@elleteq.com 
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