CSET Multiple Subjects-PASSED! (& tips for those preparing)

Discussion in 'Multiple Subject Tests' started by rgs77, Jul 16, 2016.

  1. rgs77

    rgs77 Rookie

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    Jul 16, 2016

    I just received my score report for the CSET Multiple Subjects, and I passed all three subtests on my first try! I was confident with subtests 1 and 3, but not too sure about subtest 2 (math/science). The waiting game was not easy. It turns out that multiple choice scores for all three subtest were ****. I received scores of **** for constructed response on subtests 1 and 3, and *** for subtest 2. I am so relieved I won't have to retake any of the subtests.

    Here are some pointers for those thinking about taking the CSET multiple subjects or in the process of preparing (it's very detailed!) :

    -Give yourself plenty of time to really study-I studied for about 2 months but got the most studying in the final month. Plan on spending a few hours preparing per day (I averaged at about 4 hours). Also, do not study too much the day before your test! A very brief review is fine, if desired. Treat yourself to something too- a massage, nice meal, etc. You'll psych yourself out if you don't take some time to relax and remind yourself that you've got this. I truly believe that half the battle is your state of mind before and during the exam; the other half is just knowing the material well.

    -Materials: I used school textbooks at the library, especially history and science; I made sure they were current and alligned with common core. I focused more on the upper grades (5-6). Outlines and notes really helped me, as did reading material over and over, and revisiting information to refresh my memory. The Cliffnotes book was good for general overview of what is covered but make sure you use outside sources as well, even online research. Cliffnotes definitely helped with all subtests but it is abridged, so I supplemented with outside material including textbooks and the "Everything You Need to Know" series (I used science and US history-US history was particularly helpful).

    -Study in depth, especially your weaker subjects. Any content that is covered is fair game, so make sure you know the ins and outs of basically everything that can be tested. I found that there was a lot I knew, but some questions were quite detailed/complex and left me puzzled, especially on science. I know the time I spent studying paid off overall, but there were some questions that I had to make an educated guess on. You will also probably encounter some random questions you're not sure of---the point of the exam is not to get everything right, just enough make 220. So if you come across difficult questions on the exam, flag them for review, move on to easier questions, and then go back and try your best to figure it out. But always take an educated guess.

    -Try not to stress too much-stay focused and take care of yourself mentally and physically. I know it's easier said than done but eat well, keep active, socialize when needed, etc. When you study, study hard and stay focused, but don't beat yourself up over needing a break now and then. Burn out is real, so you do want to make sure to have some downtime too. Just don't make it a habit.

    -Day of exam: I HIGHLY recommend taking one subtest at a time to avoid burnout. Have a good meal beforehand, and if you find yourself feeling anxious, periodically pause to take some breaths before and during the exam. Use the dry erase markers/plastic sheets they provide you to write out answer choices A-D and eliminate, especially on more challenging questions. Jot down info - you don't need to keep all the info in your head. Also, manage your time wisely! Don't get caught up on difficult questions-simply flag for review and go back to them later. Make sure to allocate enough time for both multiple choice AND constructed response.

    -Guess when needed, and for constructed response, never leave anything blank--you'll likely know how to write an acceptable response even if you feel a little shaky. Remember, your responses should be relatively brief, something like 100-200 though you won't get docked down for going over; try to be detailed but concise (this can be a balancing act). Remember to get to the point. Just try not to write less than 100 or way above 200 words- honestly I thought 100 was too little, and somewhere in the 200's to be adequate for most questions, though I did have around 325 words on one essay (probably said more than I needed, but I ended up doing well). On CR, make sure to use the relevant terminology, answer exactly what the question asks, give brief examples/explanations- if you feel you don't know how to respond properly, write what you do know for some credit. The examiners are looking for content knowledge and thorough enough explanations.
     
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  3. WalterGaffney

    WalterGaffney New Member

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    Aug 18, 2016

    thanks for tips and congrats
     
  4. rgs77

    rgs77 Rookie

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    Aug 19, 2016

    No problem WalterGaffney, hope it helps!
     

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