How I kept my motivation sky high whilst studying

aat comment

Meet Sarah Eve Tucker, an Assistant Manager from London, who is currently studying AAT with Home Learning College.

We spoke with Sarah about why she heading into accountancy, what helps her stay motivated, her highlights and challenges so far and her hopes for the future.

How I got interested in accountancy

I’m currently working as an assistant manager at an electrical wholesaler; I have a very varied role in managing people and serving customers, but I also do a bit of purchase ledger, sales ledger and credit control. They certainly never advertised that aspect in the job role but it’s really enjoyable.

I chose to study AAT as I really enjoy the accounting side at work, and in the sales and retail industry there is only so much you can do – I felt like I’d reached a dead-end. In accounts the possibilities are endless, which is what really attracted me; there can be flexibility in working for yourself or for a company.

Gaining confidence

The course has given me so much more confidence in the work I’m doing in my day job. Most importantly, it’s giving me a foundation in accounts and exposure to software such as Sage which will make me more employable when I go for an accounting role.

Keeping my motivation high

The way the course is structured allows me to plan ahead and to meet targets, which is great as I tend to be really intense on occasions and then at other moments slacken the pace.

This course has a structure that is manageable and most importantly keeps me constantly engaged. I like that I can easily contact the tutor by phone or email and talk to my class mates on the student forum giving each other tips and encouraging each other to push through.

It has that normal class structure like at a college but in the comfort of my home. It’s done in a way that, I think, makes it impossible for you to fail if you follow the steps in the lesson plan, making me confident that on assessment day I will succeed.

Pushing through the challenges

In the initial part of the course I found it challenging as I was learning about the double entry system and what debits and credits are, which was alien to me.

But once I understood it I was able to apply it easily.

I really worked hard to gain that understanding as I was studying every day after work and had a full weekend studying but it was worth it.

My highlight

I did really well in the exam part of all the units. I called my mum immediately to tell her as soon as I stepped out of the building – it felt great.

I also enjoyed learning Sage which makes trial balance, reconciling and correcting errors super easy; I really enjoyed that module.

Looking to the future

I hope to continue on in my AAT studies and find a job in accounts while studying so that I get more of the practical experience rather than just relying on the qualification to land that big break. I am also looking to become chartered.

Inspired by Sarah’s story?  Here are 6 top tips to stay motivated whilst you study

Picture your end goal

Visualising yourself in that new job or the great feeling you will get when you pass your exams can help you get through those times when you’d rather be doing anything else than studying.

Find an image that reminds you of it and make it your screen background or stick it by your desk.

Get together with a group

Whether you meet online through your virtual learning campus, chat via social media or study together in person, sharing the journey with other learners will help you stay on track.

You can encourage each other and even increase your understanding by swapping stories from your own work experience. Plus you’ll have a ready-made network when you finish your course to help you in your career.

Plan ahead and reward your own progress.

Create a realistic study plan that allows you focused periods of work as well as downtime to relax, taking into account busy periods at work or social events.

Tick off your achievements and reward yourself with your favourite activity or treat when you have completed each step of your plan.

Read more on staying motivated while studying;


AAT Comment offers news and opinion on the world of business and finance from the Association of Accounting Technicians.

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