The NEBOSH General Certificate course is often referred to as the ‘gold standard’ in health and safety courses. You might already have an interest in health and safety matters at work, have been asked to take on more health and safety responsibility or want a career in health and safety. Whatever your situation, you’re thinking about booking the NEBOSH National General Certificate and want to know how best to prepare. We have some top tips in preparing so your course is smooth sailing and most importantly, you get the most out of it!
Is the NEBOSH General Certificate hard?
If I told you it was easy to complete the NEBOSH General Certificate successfully, I would be lying. However, you can make things easier for yourself by preparing for it.
Most people will get a little nervous about the prospect of a two-week course with a written and practical assessment. However, there is no secret to success here. Good preparation is the key.
“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”
Alexander Graham Bell
The NEBOSH National General Certificate will give you a broad foundation of knowledge regarding health and safety, which is applicable to any industry. At the end of your course, you will be able to apply your knowledge to complete risk assessments, be involved in the planning and implementation of a health & safety policy and develop and carry through detailed action plans. You can’t expect to be able to do these tasks confidently and competently by attending a quick freebie course online. The NEBOSH General Certificate course is completed over 2 weeks (10 working days) completing a minimum of 68 hours in the classroom. You will be taught by an expert trainer with extensive knowledge of the industry when you study with Project Skills Solutions.
We would recommend the following actions to help you prepare for your NEBOSH General Certificate:
- Get there early on the first day to find your way and ensure you have a positive start to your course
- If you are attending a virtual course, make sure you have a dedicated area at home or work and a supply of pens, highlighters and a notepad
- Give yourself time in the evenings of the course to complete any tasks that might be set for the next day
- Remember that your classmates may feel a bit nervous too and worried that it may be harder than they expected
Project Skills Solutions and your expert trainer will do what we can to support you through your NEBOSH course. However, you are responsible for the time you commit to preparing for the exam – which will be needed during the course and leading up to your final exam.
Getting prepared for your NEBOSH General Certificate course
There are no formal entry requirements for the NEBOSH General Certificate. However, if you have been asked to take on health and safety responsibility at work and your employer has asked you to book the course, then you might be wondering what will be covered and if there is any reading or preparation you can do before your course starts. Health and safety can be a little intimidating, especially when different legislations come into it. Even so, the most important preparation you can do for your NEBOSH General Certificate is commit the time. By giving yourself time, you will be able to complete the course to the best of your ability.
Time commitments include:
- Time in the evenings during the course to complete homework and self-study tasks
- Reading back through material in the textbook
- Deepening your understanding through researching case studies or industry-specific knowledge applicable to you
- Exam preparation and revision when your course finishes up until your exam date
- Give yourself a day of no distraction to complete your open book exam
The First Day
Our NEBOSH trainers always tell us that one of the best pieces of advice they would give for preparing for the NEBOSH General Certificate is to be early to the course on the first day. No one wants to be rushing around and arriving a minute before the course start time because they were driving around in circles trying to find the venue! Tea, coffee and water are refreshments that are provided on the course but lunch is not included. It might sound obvious but try to make your lunch the night before. Alternatively, plan where you might get lunch from on the day so it is one less thing for you to worry about.
If you are completing the course virtually, it will be run on Zoom. There is nothing worse than clicking on a Zoom link that doesn’t work two minutes before the meeting starts. The Project Skills Solutions team are happy to set up a test Zoom meeting before you start or book your course, to check everything is order. Just give us a call and we can book in a time with you.
Homework and Home Study
You will be expected to complete 40 hours of self-study during the NEBOSH National General Certificate course in preparation for your exam. This will be a mixture of reading, activities and completing homework. Homework will usually involve mock exam questions. Below is a homework task to give you an idea of the questions you will be asked to complete in the exam. You will receive feedback on your answers. So, giving yourself time in the evenings of your course to complete it and submit it to your trainer is important.
The NEBOSH National General Certificate is meant to equip you to be able to put your skills into practice. Therefore, your mock exam questions and the real thing, are based around a company and a health & safety scenario. You are given a one-page scenario that sets the scene for a workplace. Then you will be given a series of questions over a few days based on that scenario like the example above.
A 10-mark question, like the ones above, should be roughly 330 words. You can expect to spend 1 – 2 hours on this task.
Time Commitment is the Key to Success
the NEBOSH General Certificate course is an essential step for anyone seeking to enhance their knowledge and skills in health and safety. While it may not be easy, proper preparation is the key to success. By dedicating time to studying, completing homework, and deepening your understanding of relevant topics, you will be well-equipped to handle the course and excel in the final exam. Additionally, being punctual on the first day and setting up a conducive learning environment, whether in-person or virtual, will contribute to a positive and focused experience.
Remember, the NEBOSH General Certificate is designed to provide a comprehensive foundation in health and safety applicable to various industries, and the skills you acquire will be invaluable in implementing effective policies and risk assessments. So, embrace the opportunity, commit yourself to preparation, and make the most out of your NEBOSH General Certificate journey.