UPCAT Tips Issue 7

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Issue #7

How to Ace Any Multiple-Choice Test Like the UPCAT

Part 2
Lost in Numbers? Would you agree that most students have difficulty in solving numerical problems? Are you one of them? Do you spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to set-up the equation, or use the formulas in Physics, or balance a given chemical reaction, or factor a certain trinomial, or solve an equation in two variables, and so on and so forth? You simply CANNOT afford to do that when you are taking a time-pressured, highly-competitive college entrance exam like the UPCAT!

For a numerical problem, solving it for more than a minute will surely kill you! As much as possible, you should NOT sacrifice speed over accuracy and vice versa. You need them both for you to maximize your score in the UPCAT. And how could you possibly have both speed and accuracy in your arsenal if you are a self-proclaimed Math-hater? First, of course, is that you need to condition yourself that you really like (if not love) Math! Anyway, you have no choice but encounter mathematical problems in the UPCAT. Positive mental attitude is a key. Second, you need to master our…

Test-Taking Strategy #2. This strategy applies best to numerical problems and it is a time-saving strategy because you will, in a way, take short-cuts in solving mathematical problems. The principle behind this strategy is this: The answer is in the choices. The beauty of answering a multiple-choice type test is you are pretty sure that one of the choices is the correct answer! So you might as well use the choices themselves to figure out which of them shall fit-in to the solution of the problem. This strategy is what we call:

Working Backwards. Instead of starting with the given information, establishing the equation, solving for the unknown and then looking for the answer among the choices, it will save you a lot of time if you will begin by fitting-in each of the choices to the given information. The one that satisfies all the given conditions would be the correct answer. In a matter of seconds, you would be able to get the one correct answer without doing the rigors of setting-up the equation and solving for the unknown! Combining this strategy with the first one (Eliminating Wrong Answers) would be a very powerful test-taking skill. And as I have said in the previous issue, any skill should be mastered before you can have the confidence of bringing it in the battlefield as your deadly weapon against the dreaded and sometimes frightening numerical problems. With these two strategies, you won’t fear numbers anymore in any multiple-choice test!

To learn more about Test-Taking Strategy #2, watch this video:




Our next issue shall tackle how to answer ALL of almost 300 questions in the UPCAT given a very limited amount of time. Don’t miss it!


Helping you pass the UPCAT the Sure Way,

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