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Saturday, June 24, 2006

Entrance Exams Tips + Let's Go UP!

Isa na namang nakalkal na artik sa aking baul, haha! Pang-high school students na naman, galing din sa survival kit ng org namin last year. Obviously, biased ang tips na ito for UP and its UPCAT. Syempre, love your own diba? Kung love mo school mo, edi go post your own artik, hehe! Peace! Anyway, I'm not bashing any other school in this article, so I guess this should be harmless.

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Entrance exams: major alalahanin kapag fourth year ka na. Syempre, hindi ka makakapasok sa isang matinong university kung hindi ka magte-take nito. By this time, only a few of your fellow seniors ang nakapili na ng course at college or university. Yung ilang naman, iniisip pa kung dito pa rin sa Pampanga mag-aaral or luluwas ng Maynila or aakyat ng Baguio. At mas marami sa inyo ay ni hindi pa sigurado sa kanilang napiling course. Although majority sa inyo naman ay napilit ng mga magulang na mag-Nursing, diba?

Anyway, hindi naman dapat katakutan ang mga entrance exams. If you think about it, wala naman silang itatanong na hindi mo pa napag-aralan nung high school diba? Problem is, naalala mo pa kaya lahat-lahat ng itinuro sa iyo mula 1st year hanggang 4th year? Haha! Isa pang problema ay kapag pataasan ng scores ang labanan. Kapag kasi marami ang gustong pumasok sa isang university, hindi enough na passing ang score mo. Dapat ay one of the best ka talaga – gaya ng sa UPCAT. Each year, more than 60,000 students from both public and private schools take the UPCAT, umaasang makapag-aral sa premiere state university ng Pilipinas. At dahil around 10,000 lang available slots sa lahat ng UP Campuses nationwide, kailangan na paghandaan mo nang maigi ang UPCAT. For example, alam niyo ba na sa mahigit na 14,000 applicants for BS Nursing sa UP Manila, 70 lang tatanggapin?

Most common preparation for an entrance exam are review classes like UP Aguman’s College Entrance Exam Review (CEER). I'm sure yung iba sa mga classmates mo ay nag-review lessons na nung summer pa. Hindi mo nga naman kasi ma-re-review sa isa or dalawang araw at gabi ang more than 3 years worth of lessons. Reviews are always a great help but they’re not guarantees.

Don’t expect that doing some studying the night before your exam will do you any good. The probability na lilitaw ang mga mismong ire-review mo ay napakaliit. Mas maganda na matulog ka na lang nang maaga or huwag kang mag-puyat para maganda ang feeling mo when you take your exam. Research studies have proven that when you feel okay during an exam, your mind will perform better and you’ll actually improve your chances of remembering and analyzing things properly.

Ang pinaka-effective na paraan to get flying colors sa iyong entrance exam ay dapat na sinimulan mo na 3 years ago pa: ang mag-aral nang mabuti mula 1st year pa. Aside from the fact that some entrance exams like the UPCAT take into consideration your high school grades together with your test scores, ang pag-aaral nang mabuti ay ang iyong ultimate review. A dependable stock-knowledge is a big contributing factor to ace your entrance exams. There’s a saying that only the real geniuses get into UP, not the bookish ones who know nothing more than what is in your textbooks. The inside joke is that while only the geniuses enter UP, ang mga masisipag naman ang nakaka-survive at guma-graduate on time.

If you’re not the honor student type, don’t fret na wala ka nang pag-asang pumasa sa UPCAT or sa mga ibang admission tests. Meron akong personal testimony dito. Out of the 15 who passed the UPCAT in our 180-strong batch, only 5 are medalists during our graduation. At eto pa, 3 sa kanila ay iyung tipo na hindi mo iisipin na may tinatagong talino, iyung paloko-loko lang. at huwag ka, ECE pa ang course nung isa while not even the 1st Honorable Mention awardee made it, kahit non-quota pa ang course niya.

Just so you know, UP Colleges don’t sort their applicants entirely based on the applicants’ overall UPG (University Predicted Grade – which is a weighted score of your high school grades and UPCAT results). Your UPG is divided into different subgrades – the different subjects included in the coverage of the UPCAT. Certain colleges sort their applicants according to subgrades more crucial to their academic fields. For example, Engineering students are preferred to be good in Math, so all engineering courses sort their applicants according to their Math UPG. Simply put, kung importante ang Math (or other subject areas) sa course mo, yun ang may mas mabigat na bearing sa final score mo. Syempre, sa mga medicine-related courses, mas importante ang medical sciences grades and scores like Biology and/or Chemistry UPGs. Sa mga social sciences and arts-related courses, mas importante naman ang English UPGs. And so on and so forth.

Lastly, hindi mawawala ang factor ng luck. Kaya samahan mo na rin ng taimtim na dasal kay Lord ang iyong exam preparations. If it’s meant to be, it will happen. Kung hindi ka man pumasa ng UPCAT, don’t worry. May kinabukasan pang naghihintay sa iyo. Mag-aral ka na lang muna nang mabuti sa ibang university at transfer ka na lang sa UP after 1 year. Hehe!


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When I was in 4th Year HS, I only took 3 entrance exam tests: UPCAT, ACET and the UST exam (damn, I don't know what they call UST's entrance exams, hehe, sowee.. =p). I took the UPCAT at UPEPP at Angeles City, the ACET at the Holy Angel University and the UST exam, well, at UST.

For the record, (pero hindi ako nagmamayabang, ok), hindi ako nag-attend ng review classes except for the UP Aguman's CEER during my time (but only because 90% of the batch is attending, hehe). I did not review at all for the UPCAT and ACET -- I didn't have any of those MSA reviewers. Because I didn't take them seriously at that time. I only bought a reviewer for the UST exam because I really wanted to study there. Luckily, I passed all 3 entrance exams, under my respective 1st choice courses (Computer Engineering at UPD, Computer Engineering with Physics at ADMU, and Information Technology at UST). I also applied for a scholarship sa Ateneo, pero hindi ko nakuha yung scholarship. Pinaka-nahirapan ako sa ACET. Easiest for me was the UST exam.

Gusto ko sa UST kasi doon ang gusto ng mga barkada ko, hehe. I didn't have any idea that UP was the prestigious university. So when I was one of the few who passed from our school, casual ko lang na tinanggap ang balita, parang wala lang sa akin. Sa isip ko, so CoE pala ako sa UP, oh well, natural lang naman iyon, dahil iyon ang inapplyan ko.. I didn't know I won a slot versus 50,000+ other hopefuls, hehe. Tinawag pa tuloy ako na mayabang. Haha!

When my father learned I preferred UST over UP, sabi niya, "Kung hindi ka mag-UP, huwag ka nang mag-aral! Hindi mo ba alam kung gaano karami ang gustong mag-UP?!" O diba, may ganon?! Being the good son I was, I relented. In the end, nakasama ko rin sa UP yung isa kong kabarkada na nakapasa din sa UP. So ok lang!

And now, after 5 years in UP Diliman, well, eto lang masasabi ko:

U-NA-I-BA-E-RA-SA-I-DA-A-DA
NA-GA-PA-I-LA-I-PA-I-NA-A-SA!
U-nibersidad ng Pilipinas (8x)
Matatapang, matatalino
Walang takot, kahit kanino
Hinding-hindi magpapahuli
Ganyan kaming mga taga-UP!
U-nibersidad ng Pilipinas (8x)
U!


Yak, ang yabang ko, parang kailan lang eh muntik na ako masipa sa UP, haha! ^_^
Haha! Excited na ako sa Cheering Competition! =p

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