For the last couple of months, I have been working on taking the CPHQ exam.
It has been one of my goals on my performance reviews to investigate and study for the exam.
I have been freaking out about it for a long time.
In high school and college, I did not have good study skills. I was that person that could attend class and get by, usually with an A or a B with an occasional C. If I only applied myself, I could have easily had straight A’s.
Since getting my Bachelors degree, this is the first time that I have taken an exam that relates directly to my job.
A bunch of people in my department are currently studying for and taking this exam. I know of two who have recently passed and two who recently did not pass.
The last couple of weeks, I have studied my ass off, but last night I still did not feel prepared. I took a couple of practice tests last night and did just "ok" on them. I had definitely improved my scores on the practice tests, but I still did not feel "ready".
During the exam this morning, my heart would not stop pounding. I used to be that person who was always the first person done with tests. I had to work to slow down. There were three computer spots to take the exam and I was the only one there to take this exam, so I had no one to compare to.
The exam has 140 questions with 15 throw away. You have 3 hours to take the exam. You can bookmark/skip questions to come back to later. There is a button to go to the next/previous question and a button to only go to the bookmarked questions.
In the first hour, I went through all 140, and that was me trying to be slow. We were allowed to go to the bathroom so I went just to take a break.
Then I went through all 140 again, bookmarking a couple of more to triple check. That was another hour. I went to the bathroom yet again to take another break.
Then I kept going through the bookmarked questions and checking until I felt I was able to take the bookmark off every question.
I was finally done.
Then they make you take a 15 question survey about the testing process/facility. My heart was pounding harder and harder just trying to get through those questions.
When that was done, the screen just told me it was done and I had to go find someone to give me my printout.
She wasn’t allowed to look, just hand me the paper.
I couldn’t believe it when it said that I passed. I needed 91 out of 125 questions and I got 100 right!
I’m so relieved, but I’m still so emotional. I’m sure I’ll calm down eventually.