Knowledge Tests > Help

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by libertyboy33, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. libertyboy33

    libertyboy33 New Member

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    My DS is a 1st year cadet who attended the P-school, IC athlete, and he says he keeps failing his Knowledge Tests despite feeling like he's prepared. He hasn't come out and said so, but I can tell he's feeling a little desperate...

    Just a couple of questions:

    1. How important are these tests?
    2. Is it typical for Cadets to have a hard time with them?
    3. What are the typical consequences if he keeps failing?

    All and all perspectives are welcome.

    Thanks!
     
  2. 24601

    24601 Member

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    ICs typically get out of training sessions because of their sport. Blame it on not having RAMP anymore. Maybe his coach can bail him out? Maybe the copy of the contrails they used at the prep-school is outdated? Have him consult a NARP to help him out.
     
  3. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    1. Not all that important
    2. Some who don't know how to study that well
    3. Sometimes restricted to base until they start passing
     
  4. USAF463

    USAF463 Member

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    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
  5. CadCandMateus

    CadCandMateus Recent Grad

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    Each freshmen is usually paired up with a Coach (typically a C3C/Sophomore). They are there to help make sure the freshmen are passing their knowledge tests and are overall performing well. It would be beneficial for your freshmen to touch base with his squadron Coach or maybe any other squadron mate who is willing to help (i'm sure there are some).
    While K-tests vary in difficulty each year, alot of times it depends on how much effort they put into studying for them. For some it takes a few minutes to memorize everything, for others it can take up to a few hours. If he is demonstrating effort in trying to pass his K-tests, then that's the most important thing.
    Responsibilities within the squadron increase each year the cadet moves up in cadet rank. For a 4dig, their main responsibility/job in the squadron is to pass that K-test. While it isn't all that important in the grand scheme of things, how freshmen take on that task says alot about them.
     
  6. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    Here are some major issues people have with k-tests:

    1)Not studying until the day of the test.
    2)Only reading the information without copying it out.
    3)Only verbally repeating things like quotations.
    4)Expecting that quiz/review sessions with upperclass/peers are enough.

    I've gotten pretty good scores on the k-tests, but it's only because I spend a decent amount of time studying for them on weekends. Some things that have helped me:

    1)Making flashcards and reviewing them in between classes, before bed, whenever I get bored studying.
    2)COPYING all the boldface. Seriously.
    3)Counting punctuation marks.


    Sophomore coaches and upperclass can be really helpful in helping with study techniques or review, but everyone has to put in the work individually.

    You'll hear people say that k-tests don't really matter, but at the end of the day, it's pretty much the biggest component of our MPA. Also, especially with athletes who miss training sessions, getting good grades on k-tests is an easy way to show the squadron you do still care about the military side of things.
     
  7. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17

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    It is hard to balance how much time to spend studying for knowledge tests and school, especially for ICs who have practice starting right after classes get out. The rest of us have two-three free periods to get some studying done that they don't, and you can tell it makes a difference.

    I have a couple friends from the Prep School who are ICs, and I'll run errands for them on occasion during my free periods, simply because they don't have time to get everything done themselves. One of those friends tearfully shared with me her fear of being on academic probation while also being under the stress of passing knowledge tests that she is continuously failing.

    Simply put, your DS is not alone. Make sure he gets sleep and studies when he gets the chance, but academics come first.

    Disciplinary measures for failing these tests vary by squadron, but to give you an example, my squadron will restrict us the following weekend for failing our test for the week.
     
  8. John41057

    John41057 Member

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    K Test

    My DS passed the last one and said he failed this one. I asked him why he did not pass this one and he said as an IC he had to make a choice. Study for an important Calculus test tomorrow or study for the K-Test. He said it had to be the Calculus as there was only so many hours in a day. Being an IC does impact the availability of study time.
     
  9. shellsea

    shellsea Member

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    HELP!!!!!!!

    My DD has not passed a single k-test and is now be brought to the Training Review Board. She was told she is a poor cadet and may not pass freshmen year. Her academic grades are all A's and B's. She has passed all her fitness tests (I'm guessing average scores), but the only thing is she is not passing k-tests. She studies for them each week, copies them over and over again. What should she expect at the Review Board and what should she say to them.
     
  10. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    This is a great opportunity for parents to get out of their kid's lives and let them solve their own problems. The system is deliberately designed to overload the cadet to the point they must start making choices and priorities between immediate and long term crises. A shocking point here, I know, but academics is NOT the no.#1 priority at any service academy. It is only A priority among many including sports, sleep, military life, and keeping upperclassmen off your back. When a cadet's life begins unraveling and they are scrambling to keep on track, the service academy learning they came for begins. The final exam comes years later as an officer commanding airmen in combat.

    Let them go.
     
  11. shellsea

    shellsea Member

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    Spuds - I was sent the email from her Squad Training person (I don't know the title) that is why I am involved!

    I am just a parent who has little to no knowledge of military life. The only thing I know is that my daughter completely loves USAFA and does not want to leave. Growing up she has never been in trouble before and it is a very unfamiliar place for her. I was just asking for some advice/suggestions. I know she has to do this on her own, but a little help would be nice.

    I was under the impression this forum was a place to ask questions not get scolded!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  12. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    You are correct. I sent you a PM. Hope it helps.
     
  13. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    shellsea,

    Why did they email you? Not trying to be antagonistic, trying to understand their train of thought.

    Did they think you could sway her in anyway shape or form?

    I understand that this is something she has always wanted this, but from one Mom to another, sometimes what they want/desire is not always what they will get.

    I am not saying she will leave. I am saying as a Mom, sometimes you have to also say words of encouragement while accepting what MAY happen in their future.

    The key word is MAY. You will not sleep, you will not lose that pit in your stomach until she knows. Every board is unique. Just BELIEVE.
     
  14. shellsea

    shellsea Member

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    Not sure why I got the email, but it came as a forward from her head Training Officer.

    That was the only reason I came here for help because I am so "green" when it comes to the military, service academies, and everything else!
     
  15. aseanag

    aseanag Eagle2013

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    Shellsea
    Do you belong to your local parents group or have you meet any 2017 parents? Talking with people who are going thru some of the same trials and tribulations will give you the support you need. What you need now is someone to listen and understand. Hang tight and by all means be supportive of your DS or DD. It is truly a roller coater ride.
     
  16. Packer

    Packer Member

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    I do not know why anyone would expect that you would know why you received the letter. I don't have any specific advice for you or your daughter but I would suggest continueing to post your questions on here. You sometimes have to sort through the chaff to find the kernels of wheat but they are here. I wish your daughter the best.
     
  17. tutmom

    tutmom Member

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    I know that alot of freshman have trouble with knowledge tests. My DS is a firstee who aced who his knowledge tests when he was a 4 degree. I asked him for tips to give to freshmen who are struggling and this is what he said:
    1) Expect to spend about 8 hours a week on studying for knowledge.
    2) Everyone memorizes things differently-- some by listening, some by reading and some by writing. So you need to figure out the way you memorize things best (it is a good awareness to have because you will need it alot at the academy).
    3) Do not be content with just saying or copying the knowledge. You have to have it memorized enough to write it down (optimally twice) from memory with correct punctuation and spelling.
    4) The punctuation is sometimes the killer, so he would practice writing the first letter of each word with the correct punctuation or he would memorize how many commas were in a sentence.
    Hope that helps someone!
     
  18. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    An upperclass cadet e-mailed you?
     
  19. melindayching

    melindayching Member

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    You can remind your daughter to reach out to her coach, a C3C whose military grade is in some way dependent on the success of the C4C he or she coaches. If she and her coach aren't meshing, she should discuss with her element leader. Also, her fellow C4Cs should be there for her too. See if she is seeking support and guidance from them. My daughter would take a whole Sunday at her sponsor's house and study...between laundry and eating...and she and her C4C sponsor brothers would quiz each other.
    K tests are important as a C4C and she needs to do well. Since her academic grades are strong, she is obviously a smart kid and can learn the material. She just needs to spend the time and plan her schedule so that she can put the necessary time in. Yes, they really do need to give the K tests their best effort in addition to everything else!
     
  20. USAFA10s

    USAFA10s USAFA Class of 2012 WPAFB

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    I'd like to emphasize FINDING HOW YOU MEMORIZE BEST. Everyone is different. Some things I have seen work for 4 digs in my time at USAFA:

    1. Copying it out until you can copy it without looking and with 0 mistakes
    2. Repeating after someone else (like a coach or classmate who is reading it)
    3. Reading it to yourself, but out loud
    4. Reading it silently to yourself/looking at it whenever you have a free moment
    5. Typing it out (this worked for one person...never met anyone else but I thought I would include it)

    And always practicing everything before a test
    I discoverd my memory is almost photographic. I couldn't memorize anything until I stared at it for a while, then I would just remember the image and it was easy from then on.
     

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