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How to Prepare for CSS Written Examination?

By | on October 26, 2016 | 0 Comment

htdtsCSS is all about relevant, consistent and focused study. You cannot read all the prescribed books nor you can remember everything you have read in the course of your preparation. Accordingly, I suggest keeping these guidelines in view when making out your strategy

  • Syllabus and Past Papers

CSS is all about focused study for which syllabus and past papers provide excellent guidelines. Go through these two at least once a fortnight to ensure you are not reading irrelevant material. Try to answer the questions which appear regularly in past papers to have firsthand experience. Prepare a guess paper of your own and solve those in simulated conditions for practice

  • Guides and Notes

Do buy them and go through them when starting the preparation. They will give you an overview of the subject matter of the paper. However these are just what they say-guides and notes-and that’s all. You must supplement your study with other relevant material

  • Internet

Internet is now what used to be libraries in our days. There are virtual libraries everywhere on the net. But there are three problems-information overload, biased views and surfing temptation. Be very selective-start with Wikipedia and browse the websites and sources suggested there. Cross check the facts, figures and opinions given by an author with other sources. Avoid surfing when studying-the biggest time waster of modern times

  • Newspapers and Magazines

Despite the availability of information on internet, these have not become irrelevant. You must have subscription of one good English newspaper and a weekly. Do keep clippings of relevant articles in files. Make notes from these magazines as you will be doing from the internet

  • Prescribed Books

Most of the books prescribed are text books and can be used for background knowledge about a subject. You must thoroughly read two books out of the all the books prescribed for a subject. However buy their new editions if published. Also buy one or two relevant books which have not been listed as suggested reading

How to Study

Everyone has his or her own way of studying and should not be abandoned simply for the reson that someone else did well by using a different style. Success or failure in examination is a complex issue depending upon several constants and variable. Having said that I am reproduciung below the method I used throughout my academic career for preparing myself for the examinations. Go through it and if you like any idea,give it a try

  • Reading and Highlighting

Depending upon your retention power, less than 25% can be retrieved if you just study a text. However, highlighting important points increases this to more than 40%.Be very selective in your highlighting as too much of the underlining will defeat the very purpose of the exercise. Do not undertake this activity in the first reading, rather do it when rereading the same .Rule of thumb-do highlight the first, the middle and the last sentence of a paragraph

  • Summarizing and Note Taking

If highlighting increases the retention and retrieval by 40%, then preparing notes of the text will increase it still further to 60%.Summarizing and note taking should be done after at least third reading of the text and must be supplemented by additional reading from other sources. Rule of thumb-summary of the text should be one third of the text and end in bullet points of the main ideas

  • Self-Lecturing and Teaching

Excellent way of remembering a text is to explain what you have read to your colleagues. It will not only improve your learning and retention but will also increase your knowledge base when your colleague, in turn, teaches you what they have learnt. If no colleagues are available, then try to lecture yourself in front of a mirror

  • Acronyms Making

An acronym is an abbreviation pronounced as a word which is formed from the initial components in a phrase or a word. Usually these components are individual letters (as in NATO or laser) or parts of words or names (as in Benelux). Take out the first letter of main ideas of the text and try to build a word, even a meaningless one. For example in physics the colours of the visible spectrum are ROY G. BIV (red-orange-yellow-green-blue-indigo-violet

  • Framework Analysis

Frameworks analysis is the technique of using one framework in different subjects for understanding and also for remembering complex issues. All subjects are now becoming multi-disciplinary as they use the terms and analytical framework of one another with suitable adaptation

  • PowerPoint and Instagrphics

PowerPoint presentations and Instagraphs have become extremely useful methods to jot down your ideas in a very presentable form for remembering. They serve as the outlines of the entire text which can be used for quick revision near examinations

  • Blogging and Commenting

Finally the best way of learning is to share your opinions and thought with others by starting a blog of your own .Commenting on the articles written by others on the topic you are studying will also help you in improving your grasp of the topic

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