How2become disappointment

Discussion in 'Railway Jobs & Careers' started by Adrian_london, 20 Jun 2019.

  1. Adrian_london

    Adrian_london Member

    18 Jun 2019
    Hi all.

    I decided to pay the £12ish +VAT for the online version of the How2become a train driver.

    To say I'm disappointed is a bit of an understatement. Maybe I was asking for more than I got. Does anyone else have the same opinion?

    1) Chapter two (Checking test) is a very simple version. The real test involved trying to solve two aspects. Firstly, which dial is in which sector. Secondly (and most importantly) if two dials are in the same sector then there is more working out to do. It should be made as realistic as possible.

    2) Is Chapter three (TRAIN DRIVER ERROR CHECKING TEST (TD-ECT) even part of the actual assessment? It certainly wasn't in the first group of tests I had to do

    3) Is Chapter four (NUMERICAL CONCENTRATION TESTS) even part of the actual assessment? It certainly wasn't in the first group of tests I had to do

    4) The Dots concerntration test I took did not have boxes for each 'cell'. The page was just full of dots. Also there were about 25 per row and not 11 as in the book.

    5) In Chapter six (OBSERVATIONAL ABILITY TEST (OAT)) the actual assessment was looking for double symbols with no telephone numbers. In fact, telephone numbers weren't even mentioned in the actual assessment.

    6) In Chapter eight (TRAIN DRIVER AWARENESS AND RECOGNITION TEST (AART)) from what I've been told, it will not be the type of questions in the book. It will be one or more of the following: Car, Bike/Bicycle, Pedestrian, Road signs, Traffic Lights.

    Am I the only one who is disappointed in the structure of the book? Surely they could have made it as realistic as possible.

    I hope I haven't upset anyone with this thread. If I have, sorry in advanced.
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  3. Jimathy

    Jimathy Member

    17 Aug 2018
    Exactly why I never bothered with it, and I passed easily.
  4. UpRoad

    UpRoad Member

    12 May 2019
    That’s a real shame. Especially after taking the initiative to try and develop. I found the books by Richard Mcmunn to be quite beneficial when I started. All they really are is more extensive practice material. Although I recall There was a book for mechanical understanding like pulleys which they no longer test for. Perhaps some of these may be better?

    However like Jimathy it probably wasn’t needed. Just decided the cost of a few books to better my chances was worth the investment. For the £12 you paid I’m sure you could find some value in the material you received.

    Best of luck
  5. kickin aff

    kickin aff Member

    16 Oct 2015
    I purchased 3 different books from them and found them to be most helpful. From memory im sure they do state that the tests are similar but not exact matches. It maybe the case that they are not allowed to produce exact copies of them. They get you into the right way of thinking and understanding the tests.
  6. Cyclist

    Cyclist Member

    5 May 2018
    Everything you need to know about OPC assessments is searchable on these forums for free
  7. Stigy

    Stigy Established Member

    6 Nov 2009
    I bought the book a year or so ago and there are good parts, but I found it mostly outdated. Reading the blurb alone, which suggested train driving is a well paid job, often attracting salaries of over £35k a year suggested this :s

    The MMI part only took on to consideration the older style, CBI (competency Based Interview) which few TOCs carry out now. Most was pre-2011 I found.
  8. mresh91

    mresh91 Member

    30 Aug 2013
    It it can play a part in you passing the tests/interview, however small, than it is worth every penny.

    But I've said this before, the information here is more than sufficient. The how2become YouTube channel (careervidz) is very good though especially for interviews. As for assessments, then the free group bourdon tool is the most useful of the lot. All assessment tests are fairly straightforward and they don't expect superhuman abilities.

    Good luck
  9. Trainguy90

    Trainguy90 Member

    8 Sep 2016
    Overall any advantage from things like this are minimal, psychometric tests are designed to test natural attributes and not things that we are taught.
    However it can help to know what to expect but all this is freely available in forums like this
  10. Adrian_london

    Adrian_london Member

    18 Jun 2019
    I'm sure they can't stop them printing replica questions, as long as they haven't actually copied the exact questions from a stolen test centre.
  11. Adrian_london

    Adrian_london Member

    18 Jun 2019
    In a weird way, it's actually a disadvantage to read this book. In the sense that you expect a certain thing and then something else appears. A little bit like the 'dials test' not having a second part to get to the correct answer.

    Just my opinion.
  12. oz220

    oz220 Member

    29 Oct 2017
    It's just another form or preparation. You did what you could to prepare but in my opinion expected too much.

    You should get sent training material from the TOC you applied for. With all this preparation you have plenty of material to practise.

    Don't expect either of these to be identical.

    The most important thing is to know what roughly to expect when you sit the assessments.
  13. PaulBusDriver

    PaulBusDriver Member

    26 Jul 2018
    I bought the software from Amazon for about 45.00.
    The gbt software was of a poorer quality than the software available here. The telephone directory test I personally found very useful, I practised by counting High and Low tones, I found it very easy on the actual test by being very over prepared.
    The rest of the software helped, not by massive amount but combined with other things I did to improve my reactions such as using the "bop-it" and Gbt my dexterity and reactions really improved.

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