With the November Energy Risk Professional exam just behind us, many ERP candidates will now register to take the exam in May. I often get emails from candidates asking how to best tackle the ERP challenge: Which study material to use, how to study, and (most importantly) when to start with exam preparations, and I will address these concerns below.
I wrote an article about ERP preparations entitled “How To Master The ERP Exam in 10 Steps” where I outline the study strategy that I used to prepare for the exam in 2010. I believe it is essential to factor in enough time for your preparations, as this part is often overlooked. The original readings of the GARP study material are much deeper than one would expect looking at the ERP registration website. It will take you quite a lot of time to just organize the material, let alone read through it once. The next task is memorizing the most important concepts, and finally, solving practice questions.
If you’re registered to take the ERP exam, you should start preparing at least six months in advance to work through the curriculum comfortably. Sure, you can also do it faster (as outlined in Energy Risk Professional Exam Preparations In A Hurry), but if you work full-time and have other commitments, you should really make enough time available for proper preparations.
I would advise you to use the original GARP readings to get an overview of the material and make notes on your own. For review and to practice the most important concepts, you can use third-party study material such as the ViveraRISK Concept Checkers for the ERP Exam, which will complement your own notes. After reviewing the study material, you should solve as many practice questions as possible to see where your knowledge still lacks. You can then go back and review those subjects again.
Before you start, map out a reading plan for yourself, and make sure you admit at least two months for review and one moth for practice exams and final review. Roughly speaking, such a study plan would be based on the following parameters:
- 3 months for reading the original readings.
- 2 months for review of your notes and Concept Checkers
- 1 month for practice exam and final review
If you can structure your study plan in this way, I believe you will be able to get through the material in time. Of course, using more time, perhaps up to one year, for preparation is only better, but for most of us, this is not possible. I had six months for preparation while working full-time, and passed, so I believe you can do that too.