Before you’re ready to sell Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans during this year’s AEP, most carriers will require you to obtain AHIP certification. This means you have to pass the AHIP test with a score of 90 percent or better.
Don’t worry. You have what it takes to be a straight A student. Here are seven strategies you can use to ace your AHIP certification.
1. Study before the test. The test is online and open book, but it’s also timed. You won’t have time to learn the material as you go; you need to master it before the test.
The AHIP training consists of five modules. Review each one and answer all the practice questions. You should be confident about your ability to get all the practice questions right (without relying on lucky guesses) before you feel ready to take the AHIP test.
2. Watch out for changes. AHIP certification is a yearly requirement. Even if you passed the test last year, you still need to pass it again. Study the practice material carefully and watch out for updated or new information.
3. Get organized. During the open-book test, you don’t want to waste time searching for information. Get organized ahead of time so you’ll be able to check your facts quickly when needed. Your study materials can include the training modules (downloaded or printed) and any additional notes you’ve taken.
You can have your electronic materials open in a separate window, or on a second device, during the test. For print or handwritten materials, consider using highlighters and sticky tabs to mark any key information you think you might need.
4. Get a good night’s sleep. You probably know that you’re more likely to make mistakes when your tired. But did you know that sleep can actually improve your memory and problem-solving skills? According to Harvard Health Blog, multiple studies have found a link between sleep and learning. Rest up so you’ll be at your best!
5. Remove distractions. Some people pride themselves on their multitasking abilities, but a test as important as this deserves your complete concentration. Make sure that nothing will distract you during the test.
Let your family know that you are not to be disturbed – or better yet, send them out of the house for a couple of hours. Make sure your pets won’t distract you, either. If you live in a noisy area, consider using noise-cancelling headphones. And if you can’t work when it’s too quiet, play some music that will help you focus. Just make sure the music doesn’t become a distraction – classical music or other songs without lyrics might be your best bet.
Hunger and thirst can be distracting, too. Have something to eat before you get started. That way, you won’t be tempted to sneak out to the kitchen for a snack. Have a beverage nearby, ideally in a water bottle that’s hard to spill. (That last thing you want to do is spill your drink all over your computer in the middle of the test.) You can also keep some non-messy snacks nearby if you want.
6. Pace yourself. It’s a timed test, but it’s not a race.
You need to answer 50 questions in two hours. That means you have just over two minutes per question. Some questions might take longer than others, but plan on using all the time available. Read every question carefully, and don’t select an answer until you’ve read all of the choices.
If you have extra time left at the end of the test, go back and review any questions you had trouble with. Remember that this is an open-book test, so you can use your training materials to help you pick the right answer.
7. Don’t wait. The new AHIP training season has already begun. Don’t put off this important requirement. The sooner it’s done and out of the way, the better you’ll feel.