How to Ace Any Standardized Test

Tom Corley boats - crop

Acing standardized tests comes easy to only a select number of individuals. Unfortunately, most perform at a subpar level and this holds them back from getting into their school of choice or getting licenses that will help them in their careers. But I figured out a process that will virtually guarantee that you will ace every standardized test you take in life. This process assumes that you will be using a topic-based study guide which includes practice exams. If you follow this process you will perform above your wildest expectations and leave your competition in the dust. I’ve successfully used this process over the years to obtain my CPA, CFP, Series 6, 7 and insurance licenses. In my last exam, the CFP exam, I used this finely tuned process to pass the CFP in one sitting. The pass rate on the CFP exam is less than 50% for those taking it the first time, so this process will ensure you do your absolute best the first time you take any standard exam. Here’s the process:

Step #1 Read Topic Material

Step #2 Re-Read Topic Material and Highlight Important Information

Step #3 Create Note Deck

Review highlights. Summarize important concepts/info in a 81/2 inch by 11 inch notebook for that specific topic.

Step #4 Review Note Deck

Step #5 Take Topic Test

Step #6 Review Topic Test

After taking your Topic Test, read every answer, right or wrong, and summarize new information onto you Note Deck.

Step #7 Create Index Card Deck #1

Add key information (from Note Deck) onto your Index Card Deck #1 for that topic.

Step # 8 Topic Practice Test #2

Take 2nd Topic Practice Test.

Step #9 Review Practice Test #2

Read all answers and include new information onto Note Deck.

Step #10 Amend Index Card Deck #1

Add new key information from Note Deck into your Index Card Deck #1 for that topic.

Step #11 Index Card Deck #2

Summarize key information from the topic onto Index Card Deck #2. Index Card Deck #2 should include key topics that have a high likelihood of being tested.

Step #12 Repeat Steps #1-11 For Each New Topic

Step #13 Take Full Test

Step #14 Review Full Test Incorrect Answers

Review your incorrect answers to the Full Test and incorporate new information onto your Note Deck. Then transfer new key information onto your Index Card Deck #1. Any new information included on Index Card Deck #1 that has a high likelihood of being tested should then be included on Index Card Deck #2.

Step #15 Take Full Test #2

Once again review your incorrect answers to the 2nd Full Test and incorporate new information onto your Note Deck. Then transfer new key information onto your Index Card Deck #1. Any new information included on Index Card Deck #1 that has a high likelihood of being tested should then be included on Index Card Deck #2.

Step #16 Study Index Card Decks #1 and #2

Step #17 Full Test #3

By the time you take Full Test #3 you will be testing well. Your test scores will be significantly higher.

Step #18 One Week Review

Spend the week prior to your official exam studying Index Card Decks #1 and #2.

Step #19 Cram & Sleep

On the day prior to your official exam, study Index Card Deck #2. Then get at least 7 hours of sleep.

Step #20 Ace The Exam

Final Point: Getting a full night’s sleep is critical. Sleep helps consolidate memories. That’s one of it’s main purposes. You must, therefor, get at least 7 hours of sleep every night throughout this process and especially that week prior to the official exam. The more sleep you can get during that week, the better you will do on the official exam. Good luck. Never stop dreaming and never quit on your dreams!


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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley understands the difference between being rich and poor: at age nine, his family went from being multi-millionaires to broke in just one night, due to a catastrophic fire that destroyed his Dad's thriving business. For fourteen years they struggled with poverty. There were eleven in Tom's family, and they lived in constant fear of losing their home.

Driven by the desire to unlock the secrets to success and failure, Tom spent five years studying the daily activities of 233 rich people and 128 poor people. He discovered there was an immense difference between the habits of the rich and the poor. During his research he identified over 300 daily activities that separated the “haves” from the “have nots.” Tom decided to write a book to share what he learned. That book, Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals (1st Edition), went on to become an Amazon Bestseller in the United States forty times over a three year period. To give you some perspective, in order to be a true Amazon Bestseller in the United States, where you actually receive a specific Bestseller designation from Amazon, you need to be in the top 100 of all books sold by Amazon in the United States in a given day. Rich Habits did that for nearly thirty straight days, rising as high as #7, eclipsing such Bestselling authors such as Stephen Covey, Robert Kiyosaki and J.K. Rowlings. Imagine that - an unknown, first-time, self-published author selling more books than J.K. Rowlings!

Tom now travels the world, sharing his Rich Habits and motivating audiences at industry conferences, corporate events, universities, multi-level marketing group events, and global sales organizations’ presentations and finance conferences. He has even spoken on the same stage with famous entrepreneurs and personal development experts, such as Sir Richard Branson, Robin Sharma, Dr. Daniel Amen, and many others.

Tom has shared his insights on various national and international network, cable, and Internet television programs such as CBS Evening News, NBC News, Yahoo Financially Fit,, India TV, Australia, and a host of others. He has been interviewed on many prestigious nationally syndicated radio shows, including the Dave Ramsey Show, Marketplace Money, and WABC.

Tom has been featured in numerous print magazines—such as Money magazine, Inc. Magazine, SUCCESS Magazine, Entrepreneur magazine, Fast Company magazine, More magazine, Epoca Magazine (Brazil’s largest weekly) and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine—and various online publications, including USA Today, CNN, MSN Money,,, and the Huffington Post. Tom is a frequent contributor to Business Insider,, and a few other media outlets.

National publicity has garnered international media attention for Tom and his Rich Habits research spanning 23 countries. Broadcast media, online publications, and television throughout Asia, the South Pacific, Europe, the United Kingdom, and Central and South America have shared his powerful message.

In an effort to help parents, grandparents, teachers and adults become success mentors to the younger generation, Tom released his second book, Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to be Happy and Successful in Life in 2014. This book was the self-help category winner of the 2015 New York Book Festival and Runner-up in the prestigious 2015 Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards Contest. In 2016 Tom released his third book, Change Your Habits, Change Your Life. This book provides the latest science on habit change as well as more of Tom's unique research on the specific habits that helped transform 177 ordinary individuals into self-made millionaires.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, and hold a master’s degree in taxation. As president of Cerefice and Company, CPAs, Tom heads one of the premier financial firms in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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