Exam tips


The best way to prepare for exams is to go through past year examples. You should thoroughly read, discuss solutions, and understand the exercises completely.

For psychoanalytical exams, there are additional points you should consider:

  • Be confident, which should include:
    • Check out the test site before the exam
    • Chose your breaks
      • When they say “go”, take a 15 second break. This is because you’re so nervous, you start to read, and when you’re at the end of the passage, you notice you haven’t understood anything!
      • Between each long passage (usually several questions relate to a single passage), have a 15 second break. Do this because if you don’t select when to break, your mind will do it automatically
      • After finishing a block of long passage answers, transfer them to the answer sheet. This will prevent incorrect transfer, but also give you a short break.
    • Note the time. When half time is, and you haven’t gone through half the paper, speed up
    • Eliminate: Don’t focus on finding the right answer, but crossing out the wrong ones. First, cross out the obviously wrong answer. Then cross out the answer which is wrong with a bit of insight. From the final 2, guess the answer that most correctly answers the question, because:
      • It doesn’t require additional information not found in the passage.
      • It doesn’t have words that are too strong, such as “must”, “always”, “never”, “only”, etc
    • Don’t skip questions: Questions that look hard may be easy, but questions that look easy may be hard. You don’t have the time to skip around.
    • Sit upright, don’t lean back whilst taking the exam. Even when reading the passage, sit upright.
    • During the breaks, exercise: wriggle your ankles, close your eyes, stretch muscles
  • Think quickly and clearly, because of the pressure of time, which will leave most candidates an uncomfortable feeling when finished. Keep your mind on the ultimate goal, which is to finish as many questions as possible; not getting stuck on interesting passages, becoming obsessed with answering each question perfectly, or introducing your own ideas
    • Write on the answer sheet. To ensure you move on after reading, feel free to cross out the words as you read them.
    • Move on. If a question is taking you too long, You must move on from important questions with a guess.  Randomly choose one of the answers you haven’t cancelled out yet, then circle the question to come back if you have additional time at the end.
    • Read to understand the main idea, like you do in a daily conversation, skipping words you don’t understand. The key to doing well is to understanding why the person is saying what they’re saying.
    • Don’t go back to the passage. After reading a passage (to understand it), don’t go back to it. The right answer is usually not there, but you can be sure the wrong answers definitely will. Remember what you find hard, others will also find hard.
  • Stamina, due to length of exam