5 Questions You Should Ask Yourself If You Fail the Firefighter Promotional Exam


Let’s be honest, finding out you failed your firefighter promotional exam sucks, but it doesn’t mean it’s over. Take some time to reflect on what went wrong. The best place to start is by asking yourself the following questions and getting back to your firefighter promotional exam prep. 

1. Did You Wing It?

It is so important that you are honest with yourself about how much time and energy you devoted to studying. Did you study a ridiculous number of hours and still not pass? If so, you need to reevaluate what you studied, and how (we will get into the how next). Maybe you just focused too much time and energy on the wrong area, which is really unfortunate, but now you know what to do the next time around. It is possible you also just didn’t devote enough time to studying for your firefighter promotional exam. It is hard to study, it is even harder to study as an adult with a full time job and other responsibilities. It is so important that you have a study plan and schedule time solely for studying and commit to it. 

2. How did you study?

Now that you have determined if you put the time in, it is time to evaluate your study methods. Did you study by yourself every time? Studying alone is probably the easiest way to do it, but it might not always be the most successful for everyone. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to studying alone versus studying with a group but if you did only one method last time around, switch it up next time and see if you retain more information. 

Did you only use flashcards or study guides you made? Flashcards and homemade study guides can be effective learning tools for some, and they have the benefit of being portable, but there are other options out there that you may have not tried as well. For one, firefighter promotional exam prep online study guides are a great source of material for studying. They let you know where you are at and what you have missed so you can just focus on the information you need to. They also figure out where you are excelling and where you need more work and should focus your attention. 

3. Did You Read the Books?

This follows suit with the last one, but did you actually read the books. I mean did you really read the books. Did you ask yourself the questions at the beginning and end of the chapter and not move on until you could answer all of them, or did you just skim? It is so easy to lose track of information as we read, especially a giant boring fire textbook, and especially if you haven’t had to do much reading in the past several years, but you have to do it to pass. Or maybe you didn’t even buy the books because you thought you could pass without them. Well, it may be time to buy the books and read them in a manner to retain the information in them. It is important while you are doing these tasks that seem so boring and meaningless to remember the end goal, and not give up or get lazy when it comes to reading those textbooks. 

4. Where Did You Study?

When you study every little thing matters, including where you studied. Think about the location where you studied wherever it was. Studying in the comfort of your own home can be a great thing, if you live alone and have zero distractions, which is not the case for most people. You need your study space to be in an environment that is the most conducive for you to retain information. So think about the last place you studied to determine if it was set up for your success or not. You may want to try a new place to study, or even a few to find the perfect spot to continue studying for your next fire department promotion test.

5. What Did You Do The Morning of the Test?

So, what did you do before you went to take your test? Did you have a heart healthy breakfast, or rush through the drive through on your way to the testing center. Eating a good hearty breakfast is so important on test day, it will keep your stomach from growling and your mind and body focused on your firefighter promotion test in front of you. 

What did you wear, the suit that makes you feel like a king, or the pajamas you slept in the night before? If you go into your test wearing old dirty clothes your confidence will be low, you need to pick an outfit that makes you feel your best in order to do your best on your exam. 

Were you stressed or panicking even? Taking your firefighter promotion written test is a huge step and being stressed and anxious is understandable, but you don’t want that stress to stop you from doing your absolute best on your promotional exam. Do what you have to reduce that stress so your brain can function at its fullest come test day. 

The Takeaway

You didn’t pass your firefighter promotional exam, but now you have a head start. You have seen the test and know what you should see next time. Sure, the questions will likely be slightly different but you have been in the environment and had a sneak peek, that should at least ease some of the test day anxiety. Go through these questions and do a little self evaluation to determine what to do differently this time around then get back to work so you can ace your firefighter promotional exam next time.