Studying for the NEBOSH General Certificate Courses

In the below article, we will guide you through what you can expect from your NEBOSH learning experience with us, from starting your course right through to sitting your exams.

Before you start

Good planning is particularly useful for you to manage the months ahead with a focus on achieving the NEBOSH learning outcomes. Before you start your course, Get a calendar and make a note of important dates. As a classroom learner, you’ll receive confirmation details with the date, time and location of your course, as well as the date of your exams.

For online learners, you’ll need to be aware of assignment submission deadlines, exam registration deadlines, and any webinars revision sessions you want to attend.

How you’ll learn

You can choose to take your NEBOSH General Certificate course via classroom or online learning. Depending on your learning method, you’ll touch upon a number of different types of learning techniques throughout your course.

During a classroom course, your tutor will guide you through the course using their industrial experiences to put key topics into context. You’ll be given a coursebook for each unit with studying questions for you. You can expect to take part in group discussions, interactive activities, questions and answers and homework etc. to help test and develop your understanding.

Studying via an online course, you’ll work through interactive course materials at your own pace. You’ll also have access to:

  • Interactive activities
  • Coursebook
  • Pre-recorded exam preparation videos
  • Videos
  • Learner community
  • Tutor support

You can ask your provider for a free trial of your online course before you book so you get an idea of how you’ll be learning.

Planning your study 

The NEBOSH General Certificate will take between 80-120 hours of study. This is broken down into taught hours, self-study hours and exam hours.

As an online learner, you’ll find everything you need within the online learning platform. It’ll have learning materials and course content, as well as extensive resources so you can immerse yourself in research.

If you’re taking your course in a classroom, the taught hours will be split across 2 weeks and you’ll be expected to carry out private study in your own time, too.

It’s useful to create a timetable and set yourself targets. Remember to be realistic; short, regular time slots are better than long sporadic ones.

You should read the NEBOSH Syllabus Guide for Learners to understand the learning outcomes, the assessment criteria and syllabus content. It gives you a clear indication of what you will be examined on and ask yourself:

  • What do I already know?
  • What’s the gap/what do I need to revise? (Gap analysis)
  • What do I know, or can I remember, from the course learning?
  • Can I apply what I know to workplace situations?

Then you can identify the gaps of your current level of knowledge against the syllabus contents, focus on the weak areas identified and work on closing the gaps. It makes no sense that you spend a lot of time on what you already know but spend little time on your weak areas. Take a gap analyses process would help you best achieve your goals.

You can work backwards from the exam dates to create a basic study plan. Once you have this, plot your available periods of study and revision time before exams. Next work out how many elements or topics you need to study per week or each day. You may also need to factor in additional reading e.g. NEBOSH recommended reference sources.

Preparing for your exams

Whether you study in the classroom or online, at the end of your NEBOSH General Certificate course you’ll need to complete an open book online exam and a practical risk assessment.

We will provide you with revision and exam support, either through classroom sessions or online, but you’ll be expected to do your own revision too.

While focusing on detailed topics is important, it is imperative to see the bigger picture first. Our brain looks for patterns and sees the big picture easier than linear text. Looking at the bigger picture helps you understand where it is that you’re heading and gives you a clearer vision of your goals and learning outcomes. See a big picture can help you:

  • Be systematic, be structured.
  • Connect your knowledge to each other.
  • Model the learning process.
  • More organised

Reflect your learning

It is a more effective study if you can reflect on your learning from time to time. For example, identify gaps in your existing knowledge; reflecting what you have learned at a later stage; link your knowledge gained to your work or other rea life situation; You can compare the good practices you learned with the actual practices in your workplace.

Be organised

During the Open Book Examination, you want to be able to focus on the scenario and the questions being asked and be capable of retrieving relevant information fast. To do this you must be familiar with the NEBOSH Syllabus Guide, your coursebook, your course notes and any other materials available to you, organising them in advance so you can find anything you need quickly during the examination.

You might want to use different study aids to better manage your time and organise your course note.

You need to conduct wider research and reading to understand how your studies relate to the real world, so you don’t have to spend too much time do this during the examination. NEBOSH has supplied the reference sources to aid learners as part of their studies, these can be accessed by clicking the link below:

You’ll have access to NEBOSH General Certificate past exam papers, so try sitting them under exam conditions to give you a sense of the amount of quality information you can get down on paper. You can send the mini-mock exam answer sheet to a tutor who will mark them and give you valuable feedback.

Check out our blog post for Your NEBOSH General Certificate Exam Preparation

Study support

Whichever methods of learning you choose to take your NEBOSH General Certificate, we are always here to support you. We have prepared some helpful tips to help you complete your study, please visit Guide to the NEBOSH General Certificate Unit NG2/IG2 Risk Assessment

Join our LinkedIn General Certificate Learner community or online groups with other learners to discuss any areas of the course you don’t understand and share revision tips and techniques.

If you want more information on the General Certificate, take a look at our course introduction here:

Your tutors are there to help you, too. They’ll be able to give you support and guidance throughout your course and answer any questions you may have about specific topics, revision, or exams.

COVID-19 Health and Safety Tips
Horizon Risk Consultancy Ltd are proud to be a NEBOSH Gold Learning Partner