Exams advice from the NRC

Examinations can be stressful, but the right information, plus a little planning and preparation, can help you stay calm. Read on for tips from Mat Stringer of the NRC, a Birmingham exam venue that sees thousands of students take examinations each year. Mat advises:

  • Leave enough time prior to exams. If coming from a distance you may want to travel the day before and utilise the wide range of accommodation close to NRC
  • Why not use public transport or get a lift from friend or family to NRC as your mind might be in exam mode?
  • Bring a healthy lunch or snacks depending on the time of the exams. You might need brain food in between sessions or when you finish. Remember, however, there may be rules against bringing food into the actual exam.
  • I advise that you aim to arrive an hour before exam. This takes the pressure off if there are delays.
  • Don’t forget to bring your proof of examination entry, including you confirmation letter and ID. Check the specific requirements for your exam.

The NRC is designed to be user friendly, and Mat explains what to do if you are attending for an exam.

  • On arrival use intercom to access the NRC.
  • One of the team will let you in. Take the lift. There are signs to the 4th or 5th floor.
  • You can use the waiting area to relax, have a drink and prepare yourself.
  • Bring a re-useable drink cup to make the most of refreshments on offer.
  • Don’t forget to bring cash or change for vending machine.
  • If you forget lunch, NRC staff can order you one if you place your request before 8:30am.

Every exam will have essentials that you need to complete it. Here is a short checklist to help you. Have you packed:

  • Pens
  • Pencils
  • Eraser
  • Calculator
  • Ruler
  • Specialist equipment if needed
  • Spare equipment and/or batteries.

If you are attending an exam at the NRC and you have any queries, please speak to an examiner or member of NRC staff. They’ll be happy to help.

During the pandemic, candidates for ABDO exams should follow the procedures already emailed out via the ABDO Examinations department :

  • Remember your Covid-19 declaration form, confirmation letter and ID.
  • Follow one way system inside the NRC .
  • Wear a facemask.
  • Stick to 2m social distancing. 
  • Only 2 people should be in the lift at any time.
  • Regular hand washing/sanitising keeps everyone safe.
  • Please stay at your allocated desk where possible.

More questions? Email enquiries@abdonrc.org.uk. And Good Luck!