How I passed Comptia A+ 220-1002 with a 783 on my first try

I'm glad to say I finally obtained my CompTIA A+ certification about a week ago. I gotta say, it was a nail-biter towards the end. But thanks to my family's constant support I was able to lock myself away in my room and hack away at my study materials. 

As I mentioned in my previous post about studying for the CompTIA A+ exam, I was using the Jason Dion training course on Udemy, his practice exams, professor Messer's video course on YouTube, and Anki to memorize basic concepts. I kept using these exams, but after taking my first 1002 baseline exam, and scoring a 70% just from watching the Professor Messer Videos on YouTube, I felt I didn't really need to memorize the concepts on the Anki cards and went ahead and highlighted the Professor Messer using Adobe Reader and screen-shoting the portions I thought I should be more familiar and making mnemonic devices to keep the order of a variety of troubleshooting procedures, for example what to do when you encounter a bluescreen. I had the mnemonic Blue Light Rick Roll Summons Read Heads. or Bluescreen Last working configuration, Resotre, Rollback, Safe Mode,  Reseat, Hardware diagnostics to work through troubleshooting the BSOD. 

My second time around, it really became apparent to me that this exam doesn't reward understanding of the process but more familiarity with a response as Jason Dion says. So, I changed my Anki cards to reflect this. Instead of trying to use cloze deletions to be able to recall specific information, I relied more on simple recognition from my highlighting and underling of the PDF and making cards from that. Here's an example in recall and recognition below.

Cloze Deletion Recall Card

Highlighted Information Passive Review Card

I wound up making a total of about 1000 cards and reviewed each card maybe 2-3 times. I was making cards at about a pace of 300 a day for 3 days while reviewing what I could. I finished the last 300 cards two days before my scheduled exam and managed to cram those in the day before the exam. I took three practice exams, taking notes on subjects I didn't understand. 

I feel there is one thing that many people taking the exam forget to take into account when they say go for a certain score on the Jason Dion Exams (there are 5 exams on his practice exams only course, those are the onces I used.)  or any exam for that matter, and that is, don't count the cards Jason Dion recycles between his exams towards your total. Just mark them as seen before on a sheet of paper while taking the exam. For example a score that I had on his exam that I scored an 85 on went down to an 80 when I took out the questions I had already seen before that he recycled. As I took my exams while making the Anki cards I mentioned above, my adjusted score went up and stayed at an 80, that's when I knew any additional study wouldn't really help me and I sort of chilled out. And sure enough during exam time, I was comfortable and got a 783 which is close to an 80% as expected. 

So, definitely follow the oh so popular Professor Messer, Jason Dion, Anki blueprint if you want an easy time about passing this exam.

Good Luck everyone!