How to Prepare MCQ’s for CSS Examinations

Multiple Choice Questions account for 20% of the total score of every CSS subject, except English Essay. Part 1 of every paper consists of 20 multiple choice questions with 4 options each, carrying a weight of 1 mark per question. That means that there is a potential of scoring 220 marks just by answering the MCQ’s correctly. To pass the CSS examination, one needs at least 600 marks, and if at the very least, one is able to score 50% in the MCQ’s, that means that that they have already secured 110 marks out of the total.

Aspirants should remember to never underestimate the importance of the MCQ portion of any of the CSS subjects. If one knows the answer, they are guaranteed the score. Hence, they should dedicate special time and effort to its preparation. Like everything else, there are several methods to conquer this challenge.

First, one should remain vigilant when generally preparing for any CSS subject and highlight any little details that seem significant, such as names, dates, locations, figures, etc. A lot of MCQ’s are from general course content. In Gender Studies, several MCQ’s will ask for authors’ names, in Pakistan Affairs the MCQ’s will ask when or where a treaty was signed, and in International Relations the MCQ’s will ask the name of a theory based on a definition.

CSS examinations are unlike most others in the sense that they do not ignore the present world. Most examinations in universities and schools do not relate learned content to current events or incidences. However, CSS subjects are all unique because they also focus on what is currently happening in the world. For questions that focus on present or recent world events, one must remain up-to-date with the news. The best way to do this is by reading the newspaper daily and marking significant information.

Another source for preparing MCQ’s are online apps specifically designed for the preparation of CSS that can be downloaded on one’s cell-phone. These apps are easily available on android and iPhone platforms and at minimum have content for compulsory CSS subjects, if not all the optional subjects. Dedicating half an hour daily to these apps can be very helpful in preparation and leave one feeling confident.

Finally, and arguably one of the most important sources of MCQ’s is past papers. Almost all questions, except those related to recent events, are repeated in one way or another. Therefore, it is vital that every aspirant spend time preparing past papers. One cannot stress enough the importance of preparing from past papers. They not only give the student an idea of the types of questions to expect, but also provide insight into the mind of the examiner.

After compiling all the data and organizing all the information needed for the preparation of MCQ’s, it is up to the student to choose their method of revision. They can choose to make several 4×5 flashcards with the question on the front and answer on the back. That way they can test themselves every time they revise. The student can also create a facts and figures sheet where they have all the information compiled in one place and they look over it every day for memorization. Even the apps downloaded for data have test modules that are helpful in revision.

At National Officer’s Academy (NOA academy), teachers provide tips and guidance specific to the CSS subject they are teaching. Students will be given advice as to how to approach every aspect of the paper, including the MCQ portion of the examination. NOA academy believes in a comprehensive and smart approach to studying and part of that is realizing the potential in every single question of an examination.

Written by,
Zareen Nayyar
PR Coordinator
National Officers Academy