By Clarice Joy Ching

Each year, thousands of high school students prepare themselves for college, taking entrance tests at colleges and universities. They review for the exams, and sometimes take advance courses. But the question is, How do schools help their students be ready for college entrance exams?

Every high school institution has a program aimed at making its students excel and have a better chance of making it to college, especially the top 3 universities in the country, namely, University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University, and De La Salle University. These programs vary, but are all unified by a common goal, and that is to provide the students with the best academic skills as well as arm them with knowledge that will help them hurdle the tough challenge of college life ahead.

Making it to college, however, is not a walk in the park. There are many challenges and obstacles along the way, which are enough to discourage the weak of heart. One of these is passing the mandatory college entrance test (CET). This is when a school should play its part well.

The author shares what her school is doing to prepare the students for college:

I think a good learning institution must instill in its students the confidence and courage to persevere and not be easily overwhelmed under pressure. It must make sure that the students understand the challenges that lie ahead and are fully equipped to overcome them.

That’s why in my school, preparing for the college entrance test is given utmost importance because one of its main objectives is for us to be accepted in prestigious universities, especially UP, Ateneo and De La Salle. We reflect the quality education our school offers so our academic accomplishments strengthen our school’s reputation and help it to earn a place among the country’s best learning institutions.

What is your school doing to prepare you for CETs? I’ve listed below what my school is doing, and maybe it would be a good idea if we compare notes, don’t you think?

1. Part of our school’s preparation for CETs is incorporating advanced lessons in its curriculum. At the start of the school year, students are given a refresher course on the lessons of the previous year. The first quarter is actually designed to include a review of all past lessons, from as early as the freshman year. In fact, the lower classmen are taking up basic lessons designed for senior high school students who are getting ready to enter college.

2. In preparation for the big day, our school conducts mock tests to familiarize us with possible questions as well as the atmosphere inside the actual examination room.

3. Our school also trains us to answer questions in the proper way, according to the CET guideline, in order to minimize errors. Exams in specific subjects are also conducted to fully prepare us for the big day.

4. Our school also encourages us to attend a series of seminars with the guidance counselor who orients us on the proper guidelines to follow throughout the examination period. In addition, he gives us an outline regarding the true nature of the tests and how they will be conducted. He also tells us that not everyone passes the tough CETs so if anyone should fail, that person must accept it, assess what made him fail, and then move on with his life, which includes preparing for the CET of other schools.

5. And to ensure that we pass the CET, our school goes out of its way to consult with different review centers, even asking their staff to evaluate our performance. Realizing the help that a good review center can offer, our school made a deal with one and together, they conducted an in-house seminar. Then our school shared with us the things they’ve learned from the review center. Such a gesture shows not only the school’s sincerity and good intention but also its concern for their students to pass the college entrance test.

Now that we’ve compared notes, can you say that your school is really preparing you for the college entrance test? Whether your answer is a yes or no, I think enrolling in a review center would be a great help in acing the exam”¦ And that’s the first step in our college life, right?

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