"Me? Study? But I’m 40!

These were the exact words that went through my head (and possibly out of my mouth quite publicly) when it was suggested to me that I should study for a CIPD Level 7 Advanced Award. I have been a recruiter for a few years now and so it was a logical step to have a qualification in this specialism. A CIPD award was an obvious choice and I deduced quickly that the Resourcing and Talent Management qualification would fit what I do to a tee.

Choice made, it was now time to decide who to study with. I wanted a company that would be there when I needed them to be, that wouldn’t require me to “check-in” every week as if I was on probation but who would have the necessary expertise to advise me on anything I was unsure of. Value for money also was a consideration as I work for a charity.

ICS Learn was the only choice that met all my criteria.

I remember sending payment off and a few days later a box came addressed to me*. Inside were all the workbooks I would need to obtain my qualification! There was only one problem…Me? Study? But I’m 40!

It had been, admittedly, a long time since I had last “hit the books” and got into the brain zone for competent study. However in addition to the reading (and there was a lot to be done) I would also have to write “assignments”. To me this was a mighty task to conquer but how was I going to do it? I knew I needed a plan, but not just any plan, I needed a study plan! And so I got to thinking…

“Now where would I be spending most of my life over the next 9 months?” The answer was of course “Work”.

And then I had it, my study plan would include studying during my lunch hour in a quiet room. Our office being small, this was achievable and so it began, for 45 mins – 1 hour per day I would take my books and read, read some more and occasionally highlight. Each Wednesday evening I would also continue the reading at home.

Repetition when studying is a good thing and it soon becomes normal practice and part of your routine.

However there is only so much reading that can be done and soon it was time to write the dreaded first assignment. I did a lot of planning for the first (and subsequent) assignments. Planning is a great idea; if you want a good tip for your assignments, then planning is it. Construct it, mould it, list things you want to cover off but beware the word count and watch your referencing, I don’t think you can ever do too much referencing!

I also did around 10 different drafts, each one tweaked to improve on the previous but you know… there comes a time where you have to just submit it!

I did just this and I cannot tell you the feeling of euphoria that I had when I saw that word “pass” in the feedback comments page of the first assignment I had done in nearly 20 years. Let me say it again: “Pass” Isn’t it a great word?!

Following that first assignment success I had a renewed confidence in myself and in my abilities. I can do this!  

The next assignments came and went with passes each time and the final assignment – affectionately known as “the biggie” – also came back as a pass and on top of that wasn’t far short of a “merit”.

I am now proudly awaiting my CIPD Level 7 Resourcing and Talent Management certificateand am keen to do another advanced award soon.

I’m thinking “Employment Law” because, hey, I’m 40 and with ICS Learn I can still study!"

*Please note that our CIPD courses have now been digitised and therefore you will no longer receive printed materials in the post.