5. When you have a general idea of what is in the training manual and how it is organized, fill in the details by intensive study. In each study period, try to cover a complete unit it may be a chapter, a section of a chapter, or a subsection. The amount of material that you can cover at one time will vary. If you know the subject well, or if the material is easy, you can cover quite a lot at one time. Difficult or unfamiliar material will require more study time.
6. In studying any one unitchapter, section, or subsectionwrite down the questions that occur to you. Many people find it helpful to make a written outline of the unit as they study, or at least to write down the most important ideas.
7. As you study, relate the information in the training manual to the knowledge you already have. When you read about a process, a skill, or a situation, try to see how this information ties in with your own past experience.
8. When you have finished studying a unit, take time out to see what you have learned. Look back over your notes and questions. Maybe some of your questions have been answered, but perhaps you will have some that are not answered. Without looking at the training manual, write down the main ideas that you have gotten from studying this unit; do not just quote the book. If you cannot give these ideas in your own words, the chances are that you have not really mastered the information.
9. Use nonresident career courses whenever you can. NRCCs are based on rate training manuals and basic manuals. As mentioned before, completion of a mandatory rate training manual can be accomplished by passing an NRCC based on the rate training manual. You will probably find it helpful to take other courses, as well as those based on mandatory manuals. Taking a course helps you to master the information given in the training manual, and it also helps you see how much you have learned.
10. Think of your future as you study rate training manuals. You are working for advancement to third class or second class right now, but some day you will be working toward higher pay grades. Any extra information that you can learn will help you both now and later.