I PASSED THE CSET...here's how

Discussion in 'Multiple Subject Tests' started by msday, Mar 23, 2019.

  1. msday

    msday New Member

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    Mar 23, 2019

    alright, I was literally reading old threads on here trying to figure out how to pass the cset, and reading while I was waiting for my scores. And I swore I'd do this when I finally passed. (I'm also going to type my notes into a google doc. to share with my family members/friends. but i wanted to get this out) this is going to be very long, and I genuinely think this may help someone struggling, because I was!
    I passed the first two subtests, and I'm still waiting on the third.
    I failed subtest 2 back in November 2018 and I was pissed, because I'd spent so much time studying for it. I took this first because math/science were my hardest subjects. But I realized quickly that I had studied incorrectly for it, and planned to attack it differently. The first time I studied, I solely depended on the cliff notes 3rd edition. nothing else. This time, I literally read the front of the book (I KNOW), and figured out how the test itself was made. And I found out that there were content standards literally posted on the CTC's website. I printed the ENTIRE thing out at work, and it was about 20 pages long. And went by EACH standard.
    The cliffnotes book does not prepare you for the history section, it is like an outline. So when I realized there were standards, I literally took each, and created several constructed responses for them. I do not struggle with multiple choice, just essay type questions in tests. It's why I didn't do well in my AP classes, so that's what I focused my attention on. I made the questions very broad, and something that could possible be on the test. (And in creating these constructed responses, in return, I was studying for the multiple choice too.) I also looked at the constructed responses provided in the cliffnotes book, and on CTC's website, and created several variations. Like the cliffnotes book has one that asks about ancient egypt, and like how important geography was for their development (?), and I took that question and created one for each of the civilizations. So one for mesopotamia, etc. And in these constructed responses, I concentrated on making the responses as narrative like, and basic, as possible so that I would be able to remember the information.
    From the threads on here I realized that it was important to focus on the BIG picture questions...like...it was more possible for their to be questions about sparta vs athens or the fall of rome, rather than something very specific. like...name all of china's dynasties and the rulers. (if there were a question about china, it'd probably be about the physical geography in its early civilization. and if there were a question about dynasties, it would like ask you to name three of them, and provide a few details about one.)
    World History was VERY hard for me...I took APUSH and APGOV in high school,and I really do love US HIstory, so while I studied a lot for that section, I didn't study as much as I did for the world history section. My high school world history class was a complete joke. This was all new information for me.
    Right after I actually took subtest two in 2018, I began studying for subtest one. And freaked out because there was so much information! I studied for three months on just history. Mainly world history, with a little bit of the English/reading thrown in. I knew that if I did exceptionally well on one section, it would probably cover the other and it did lmao.
    Here is some of the stuff I used to study for subtest 1 :
    i couldn't for the life of me figure out where to find content on geography of ancient civilizations. or california. Especially California history. It was hard to find like...BASIC, information that was super easy to understand. Until I found online California textbooks. And the big fat middle schooler notebooks at costco ($10 each).
    • They won't let me post the links, but i found a great source for online california middle school textbooks.
    • Ace world history/ us history. Big notebooks. they're on amazon.
    For the reading section, I used the cliffnotes book, and created constructed responses as well.

    Ok...science...and math. This is crazy, but I took this test twice and received the same test. It was the EXACT same test. and I took them both within about three months. Has that ever happened to anyone?
    I didn't study much for math, and I think that it is kinda easier than the science section. It's not easy, but with science there's so much information, and with math, you can figure it out one way or another if you know basic math. So if you are struggling with math, I suggest you get a prealgebra book, and start warming up with the basics, then pinpoint what you are struggling with the most. That's what I did. My basic math skills were horrible, and I literally spent days filling out a prealgebra workbook
    It may have been a waste of time, but I really think that if you have issues with math, you should start with the basics and build up on those skills. most math questions, all you have to do is pick it apart, and make it more manageable and that book helped me!
    If you look at cset practice tests, you will see what questions pop up the most, and understand how they are worded. I had the most problems with geometry and stats. I also had issues with writing constructed responses for math, because I've never explained a math problem in that way before. I printed out math worksheets that focused on geometry questions (surface area/volume of cylinders and prisms,that's what will appear on the cset). plus stats questions about flipping pennies.
    To help with math, I found a google doc a lady made with several constructed response examples. I also printed out california STAR testing questions. The test is defunct, but it kinda covers the same standards. I was sitting at home one day, and randomly remembered taking them in high school. my class was one of the last to take them all the way to 12th grade. You can google them and find old pdfs. they are not exactly like the cset, but I found they were really good for just practice. I used the 10th grade geometry test, and the 9th/8th grade math tests. I also bought two for dummy prealgebra books.

    Ok science.......
    Like with history, I went down each standard, and made sure I had some knowledge of each of them. This section was really hard for me, because there was so much information, and nearly NONE of it is covered in the cliffnotes book.
    Science and History are the sections I focused the most on. i was going to post photos of my notes, but I don't know how to do it lmao.
    I used a crash course playlist, and the ace science for middle schoolers, big fat notebook thing. For science I also printed out several california star testing packets. you can find one for each subject, life, physical, earth/space. And Crash Course!
    I'm tired of typing now. I hope this helped someone. i'll answer questions in the comments if there are any.
     
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  3. msday

    msday New Member

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    Mar 23, 2019

    Why won't they let me post links!
     
  4. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Mar 23, 2019

    You don't have that privilege yet. It is related to time as a member, I think, and number of messages, which is not a concrete number that anyone knows. Don't take it personally - it protects the forum from spam attacks. It is not a reflection on your post.
     
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  5. Mylia

    Mylia New Member

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    Apr 16, 2019

    Msday, I'm interested in the link. Is there anyway to PM it?
     
  6. HN3

    HN3 Rookie

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    Apr 16, 2019

    I am interested in the link too. Thanks.
     

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