25% of young people want to become civil servants, but this requires a great deal of effort and training

Unemployed youths see public examinations to the civil service as an open door to the job market. One in every four hopes to get a job in the civil service according to a study conducted by Círculo de Formación among the 17,872 attendees at the latest edition of UNITOUR in Spain, a university guidance fair.

However, getting good marks in a public examination is not an easy task. Those who have never taken an exam of this kind think it is a matter of luck, but expert candidates will have gone through hours of study and preparation. If this is your first time, these tips may help you.

The first thing you should consider is whether you see yourself doing the job. Do you want to be an orderly but hate hospitals? Are you trying to become a firefighter but you’re afraid of fire? Once you know what jobs you want to apply for, find out about the syllabus and the requirements candidates must meet.

After this, it’s time to decide whether you want to prepare the exam at a specialized centre or on your own. Academies provide you with specific training, tests and a team of teachers with extensive experience in these examinations. If you decide to enrol in one, make sure it guarantees the syllabus is up-to-date and that it provides any other material needed, such as guides, tests, mock exams. It must also employ expert teachers and professionals with experience in the sector; it must be able to provide proof of a decent percentage of students who have passed and be of good repute.

If, on the other hand, you choose to study on your own; we suggest a number of tips to make it easier for you.

To begin with, prepare your place of study. For a mind to be organised, the environment must also be organised. Be tidy, get a light and study materials – pens, sticky notes, highlighters, a diary, and a board where you can hang your schedule or motivation phrases.

Organise your study time because there is no point in studying a full day and then not touching a book for five days, and because your performance will drop the longer you spend studying without a rest. That is why it is best to plan short study sessions -45 minutes, for example- and rest between each one of them. And while you are studying, ignore your social media, WhatsApp, the TV and any other distraction.

Are you ready? Get the syllabus, read it, look for the words you don’t understand and replace them with synonyms. Prepare summaries that include the main ideas and make diagrams because, while you are preparing them, your brain will memorize the information. And underline what is important, because this will help you to organise mental maps and visualise the data.

To sit a public examination, all you need is to spend hours studying or preparing the necessary physical tests. You will also need certain skills, such as perseverance and willpower because it is a long process and there will be days when you are not in the mood. When that happens, remember your goal. And to strengthen your resolve, you can place motivation messages to inspire you at those moments.