Final Instructions to Attempt ECAT (For Higher Scoring)
ECAT is an exam conducted for students aspiring to get into the University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore. The remaining students not selected in the Lahore campus are selected for the Taxila and KSK campus respectively. UET is a historic public University, which is the holy grail of public engineering universities in Punjab without a doubt.
The ECAT entry test is conducted each year and thousands of students participate in the exam in the hope of getting selected in UET as a student. The test is very difficult and highly conceptual, so any student aspiring to step his foot in UET as a student must prepare with all zeal and zest to have a chance.
The Format of ECAT Punjab
The format of ECAT Punjab is different from other entrance test exams but can be compared to MCAT, which is reserved for medical aspirants. The main format of the exam is based on 100 MCQs that come from different subjects taught in F.Sc.
- Number of MCQs
The ECAT test is divided into four sections based on subjects; Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry/Computer, and English. Out of 100 MCQs, 30 MCQs come from the Mathematics section, whereas the Physics section also covers 30 MCQs. For the remaining 40 MCQs, 10 come from the English section and 30 from the Chemistry/Computer subject area. One thing to keep in mind is that Maths and Physics sections are very, very challenging.
- Total Marks
The total marks of the ECAT test are 400. For every correct answer, 4 marks are given, whereas, for every wrong answer, the concept of negative marking exists. For un-attempted questions, 0 marks are allotted.
- Time Allowed
The total time permitted for the test is 1 hour and 40 minutes or simply 100 minutes. That equates to roughly 1 minute per question, so there isn’t any time for dwindling or sticking to one question for a considerable period, or else you’ll fail to attempt some other questions due to a shortage of time.
The complete syllabus for the exam is F.Sc/A-Level books. There is no rocket science involved as far as the overall syllabus is concerned, and one must prepare completely to have a chance of acing the test.
- Computer-Based or Paper Based?
In the past, ECAT exams were paper-based, but as of late, they’ve been conducted as computer-based exams. There are a few things students have to keep in mind as most have arguably never attempted a professional exam on the computer. The following instructions for the computer-based exam might help.
- Never shut down the browser window as that will close the whole test
- Do not press the browser back button. You are only permitted to use the on-page navigation buttons for switching between questions.
- You’ll be given a set of options for each question. Choose the option that you believe is right. After you attempt the particular question, the question box at the bottom will turn green, which means you’ve attempted it.
There are various sections of a page in a computer-based test. We’ve divided them into sections to make things easy to understand for you.
- Top Section of the main screen
The top section of the main screen contains a lot of student-related information. It has the course description, student name and ID, the current question you’ve opened, and the total number of questions in the exam. The total marks and the allocated time for that question are also mentioned in the top section.
- The bottom section of the main screen contains the following things.
- Timer having a start time and time left for the student to know how much time is remaining.
- The instructions button that guides the student about the user interface.
- Question navigation buttons to move to the next or previous question. The first button refers to the first question. The second button takes you to the previous question. The third one goes to the next question, while the last button takes the student to the last question of the test upon clicking.
- The save answer button. Make sure to press your save answer button every time you attempt a question so that the question gets saved in the database.
- You can also see the status of attempted and un-attempted questions in the bottom section.
- Conduct Instruction.
- The finish exam link is located in the bottom section too.
- The instruction icon available at the bottom of the main screen will allow the student to open and read the Software related instructions to get him/her more attuned to the user interface.
- Multiple Choice Questions
- Select the desired option as an answer to the question by clicking the radio button.
- Press the save button (floppy disk icon) to save the selected option, and your answer will be saved.
- If you want to move to and from different questions, you can use the navigation buttons to move to the previous or next question.
- Fill the exam feedback if available.
Instructions for Combating Test Anxiety
Test anxiety is something that bothers just about everyone. There are numerous ways to tackle it, but suggesting someone do something is one thing, and implementing it is another. It is very difficult to combat test anxiety, but we’ve got a few ways to counter that, and it will make you feel better and confident before you step your foot in the exam room.
- Setting Test Kit Early
We recommend setting your test kit the night before the exam. You should carry all the materials, which you are supposed to take to your exam. For example, you can set the admit card, wristwatch, pen/pencil, chocolates, or anything you’re permitted to take to the exam hall the night before the exam.
- Get Proper Sleep
Bad and disturbed sleep can have a detrimental effect on the mental ability of a person. So, as you’re appearing for ECAT, you must get a sound sleep of a minimum of 6 hours before the exam. That will result in you being more focused on the exam.
- Be More Comfortable
Being uncomfortable can also disrupt our attention while taking the exam. So, get a nice bath on the morning of your exam day. Put on very comfortable clothes and head over to the exam center brimming with confidence.
- Proper Breakfast is Important
Before you head over to take your exam, having a proper breakfast is very important. So, have a nice breakfast with a cup of coffee/tea to keep you active during the day.
- Be Punctual on the Exam Day
Punctuality is something we have to follow in all aspects of our life. But, on the exam day, you’ll have to take it up a notch. We recommend heading over to the test room early and be seated. It will help keep you relaxed and save you from rushing over to the exam center in a hurry.
- Focus on Yourself Only
When we enter the exam center, we see so many people gossiping with each other. That can harm the way you’re feeling and can result in stress/anxiety. So, stay away from the herd and just focus on yourself. After the exam, there will be plenty of time for gossip.
- Don’t Expect to know Everything
ECAT is a very complex exam and requires a great deal of hard work. So, it isn’t practically feasible that you’ll know everything in the exam. There will be some odd questions you wouldn’t know anything about, but don’t worry about them and keep believing in your ability.
- Stay Relaxed and Confident
Believing in your ability is something that can make human beings overachieve at times. So, you should stay relaxed and confident during the exam, and keep the belief in your ability that you can do it.
Approaches for Better Time Management
In every field of life, the key is managing time. Time management is becoming an issue for people in this ever quickly transforming the world, and those that can manage time are very successful these days. We refer to time management as a skill that can lead to success. So, make sure to manage your time wisely and not using it on overthinking during the exam. We’ve written a few approaches you can follow during the exam down below.
- Plan your Time
During your exam, you’ll have very limited time. So, maximizing all the available time for attempting as many questions as possible is something we highly recommend. Similarly, pacing yourself according to the situation also comes in handy during stressful situations.
- Do Easier Subjects First
The best approach for acing ECAT is by getting your hands on the easier section first before getting your hands dirty with the difficult ones. For example, if you find the section of Physics easier, do it first and then go towards attempting another section.
- Attempt Easy Questions First
Always make sure to do the easy questions first before heading over to the difficult ones. We have a strategy for that, which we call “The Cycle Strategy”. You might be confused about what it is, but we’ll try to make it easy for you.
The cycling strategy involves attempting easier questions first. In the first cycle, do the less difficult queries and skip the problematic questions without spending any time on them. In the second cycle, do the tough questions. In the third and final cycle, attempt all the leftover questions to wrap it up.
App#3 Attempt easy questions first and then tackle the harder ones (Use cycle strategy)
Approaches for Better MCQs Solving
How you approach MCQs while sitting in the examination hall will create a big difference in your score. So, make sure to attempt every MCQ very wisely as that can have a huge impact on your final score. We’ve discussed a few approaches for better question solving down below that will help you to do well in the exam.
- Depend on Yourself Only
Never go to an exam thinking that others will help you. Be prepared to think fast and read on your own feet, and abstain from seeking help from anyone. Prepare in a way that makes sure that you wouldn’t need anybody’s help anyway.
- Have a Backup Plan for Solving Queries
One should always have different plans for solving different kinds of questions. A backup plan means that there are a lot of ways of solving questions of variable kinds. Question-solving involves using different approaches. For example, some questions require solving them and take a lot of time whereas some other questions’ answers are just in your mind, and without even looking at the options, you just go for what’s in your mind and choose the answer that was in your mind at that time.
Similarly, in Mathematics and Physics, back solve strategy is very common, which means going from the option and reaching the answer. These are some of the different strategies that could help you reach the correct answer in a quick time. So, always have a backup plan for approaching ECAT questions.
- Read All the Available Choices
There are multiple choices to choose for each question in ECAT. So, make sure to give all the options a read and only then decide on the choice you’re going to make.
- Choose the Answer in the Right Spot
Always ensure that you chose the answer you wanted to choose. For example, if you’ve decided on option A as the right answer, don’t choose option B by mistake. Always guarantee that you choose the answer you wanted to select.
- Never be Afraid of Changing Answers
If you’ve chosen an answer to a question and moved forward, and suddenly a different answer to the previous option comes to your mind, never hesitate on making the necessary changes. Just go back to the previous question and make the appropriate change.
- Always Answer the Question Properly
When you’re answering a question, always see the intent of the question. Don’t assume the logic of the question that you expect, but solve it according to the exact meaning that the question shows.
- Inform the Authorities of any Issue
If you believe that the correct answer to any question is not given in the options, you can always inform the authorities, and they’ll get in touch with the officials and decide on it accordingly. Then you can follow whatever solution they recommend for the issue.
- Never Leave any Question Unanswered
The biggest rule of ECAT is to never leave any unanswered question. Students, due to the threat of negative marking, leave some questions unanswered. By looking into the details, we’ve found unanswered questions to be far more dangerous to your overall marks than guess attempted questions. So, even if you don’t know the answer to a question, you can always guess the answer.
Tips for Making an Educated Guess
Guessing isn’t just about choosing a random answer from the list of options. There are so many things one should keep in mind before choosing an option with guessing. We’ll discuss some of those tips you should keep in mind for guessing down below.
- If two responses appear to be equally correct, eliminate the response that appears to be the least related to the question being asked. In short, go for relevancy.
- Choose the most general answer when other choices are specific and vice versa.
- Choose the longest answer when others are much shorter as that can be a clue for the correct answer.
- Choose the answer with a mid-value when other answers are higher or lower. To be specific, find the middle point for a question with numerical options.
- Choose neither of the similar answers. Choose one of two opposite answers.
- Choose the answer that agrees grammatically. For example, ‘A’ and ‘AN’ are singular, while ‘ARE’ is plural.
- Choose the answer most synonymous with keywords in the question statement as that can be a hint to the correct answer. Sometimes, examiners can match the correct answer in terms of synonyms.
- Choose familiar versus an unknown option as greater risk is involved in choosing the unknown choice most of the time.
- Choose the option that sounds the most logical to you and go for it with authority.
- Avoid answers with absolutes in them. Statements with absolutes usually contain the words always, never, ever, none, only.
- Finally, have faith in God and trust your abilities to do well in the exam.
In the article above, we’ve written in detail on how you can ace the ECAT exam by just keeping in mind a few things that we would usually ignore. When we prepare so well for something and mess things up in the exam not due to our lack of knowledge, but due to our failure to handle the situation and manage our time, it is a moment of sheer disappointment. So, always keep these instructions in mind during the exam, and you will ace it.