1. Basics + Techniques.
The CSE is an exam of academic content, laws and treaties, and logic. Since it's an exam, then typical exam techniques would apply. One classic technique is quickly looking through the questions and working on the ones you find easy, to get as many points as you can. You can then work on more difficult questions later. Other people, however, feel that they get better scores if they work on difficult questions first. Find out which technique suits you better.
There are many other techniques that you can use to help you gain more points. However, techniques alone won't get you through the test with flying colors. But you can't really expect that you will get a question a hundred percent right if you don't now the answer.
Your preparation should be a practice of techniques and a review of the content.
2. Build test-taking stamina.
There are about 170 questions in the CSE and you're given 3 hours to finish everything. It's going to take a LOT of willpower and stamina to finish. In fact, many people fail the CSE because they get mentally and physically tired in the middle of the exam. Build your stamina by taking practice examinations as part of test prep.
3. Be smart and guess.
Can't answer a question? Don't leave it blank! Remember the stats: If there are 4 options, then there's a 25% chance that you'll get it right. If it's five options, then your chance of hitting the correct answer is 20%. If you skip the question and not answer at all, then those numbers drop to 0%.
Here are some tips on guessing smart:
- Choose the longest answer.
- Choose the shortest answer.
- If there are two opposite options, then the answer might be one of them.
4. Get help when you need it.
Need a little extra boost to help you reach that passing score? Ask a friend who's good in math for some coaching or someone who passed the CSE for tips on the exam. If you think you need more push, enroll to a review center so you can strictly dedicate hours to studying and getting expert help especially on the topics you're having difficulty with.
5. Remember that the difference between a pass and a fail is YOUR effort.
Real Talk: Help from review centers, friends, and family would be futile, however, if you don't do your part of the work. At the end of the day, you'll be the one to sit the examination. Do your best to prepare. Set aside time for studying and study seriously. Don't be daunted when you make mistakes during your practice test and take each mistake as a learning opportunity. Nobody gets it perfectly right the first time anyway, unless you're an utter genius.
Test prep isn't just what's in your head, it's attitude too. :)
Top Tips to Ace English in the CSE
Top Tips to Ace Math in the CSE
Sample CSE Questions