Thank you so much! this wold really help, A LOT. a great site and a great post. :) ) i loved reading this.

by theamariemhernandez on UPCAT Math Portion Tips and Strategies

Increasing Your Chances of Passing the Philippine Science High School Entrance Test

With its reputation as the premiere secondary institution in the country, it’s no surprise that a seat in the Philippine Science High School (PSHS) is highly coveted. Nearly 100,000 grade school graduates compete for a mere 240 slots, and competition is always stiff. That doesn’t mean, however, that you should go down without a fight.

Take Grade 7

One of the more recent trends observed in PSHS enrollment is the increasing number of graduates from private high schools. Many believe that the extra year private school students have compared to their public school counterparts means an advantage in the entrance tests because of the additional preparation and the better grasp of lessons.

Mathematics, in particular, is a major component of the Philippine Science High School entrance test. Private school graduates who complete Grade 7 have an edge here, as the test covers basic to intermediate algebra and geometry – something that’s barely discussed in the Grade 6 curricula of public grade schools.

The last few batches of Philippine Science High School freshmen have a considerable population of private grade school graduates – over half, in fact. Schools like Ateneo, Claret and Miriam typically compose over 20% of the batch populations between them. The extra year is a year worth taking if you’re serious about passing into PSHS.

Practice Logic, Not Numbers

Many aspiring entrance test passers make the mistake of focusing almost entirely on the Mathematics aspect of the exam. But Math is just one component of the test, and the level of the questions usually requires just a basic grasp of the concepts involved. You may want to turn your attention to the Logic or Non-Verbal Reasoning portion instead.

One of the more overlooked components of the entrance exam, the Logic portion can be just as helpful in giving you a score that’ll get you into PSHS. Not everyone, however, is gifted enough to decipher patterns within such a short period of time. It’s a skill you’ll want to hone during your review, especially in the last few weeks before the test.

Don’t bother with memorizing things like complex numbers or basic trigonometry. While some questions do involve that kind of higher Math, they’re not numerous enough to give you a very big boost in your score.

Test-Taking Skills Count

If you weren’t one to listen to all those lectures on test-taking techniques back in grade school, now is the time to start. The best strategy for attacking the PSHS entrance test involves not just preparing for the questions themselves, but planning an approach to the test as a whole.

It’s not unheard of for the makers of the test to put in a few unanswerable or extremely hard questions here and there to give test takers a challenge. Yet many aspirants have fallen by the wayside exactly because of these trick questions. Because they wasted too much time answering just one item, they were unable to finish a larger chunk of the test.

Remember that almost all of the items in the test have an equal weight, and that there’s a very real element of time in test-taking. Do all the items that you can readily answer first so that you already secure yourself a score, and then come back later on for all the other items. That way, the difficult questions will just act as boosters to the score that you already have.

Too many people think that the Philippine Science High School entrance exam is very hard, and that a genius-level IQ is required to pass. In reality, your IQ doesn’t matter as much so long as you have the right strategy to take on the test.


While every effort has been made to keep this website accurate and updated, makes no guarantees about the veracity and accuracy of the information it provides. has been established to provide students and their parents an additional source of timely and relevant information.  It is not meant to serve as nor claim to be a replacement for the information portals of universities, schools, government agencies, private organizations, and any other entities we may have used as references.

Please be advised. Thank you.

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21 thoughts on “Increasing Your Chances of Passing the Philippine Science High School Entrance Test

  1. Hi good day to you there! My daughter is a top student in their school. She still in grade 5. I want to enroll her in PSHS. Since our place is quite far from Davao City. I just wanna know if your campus in Davao City has a dormitory which she will live there safely. When will be your posting of entrance exam schedule for school year 2011 to 2012?


  2. Actually, I.Q does matter. We had IQ Tests back in 1st year and the IQ’s of most Pisay Scholars don’t go under 125.

  3. hi, im francis of so southern leyte. an incoming grade six and i really wanted to study in Philippine science high school. maybe you could help me find a review center here in leyte where i can enroll this summer. thank you.

    • @Francis,

      I don’t know any review center there, I’m sorry. But following is my shoutout on your behalf:

      Can anyone out there help Francis find a review center in Leyte, pretty please?

  4. can’t u please increase the number of the examinees that can pass the exam?
    if u increase it,many student will be more happy because their chance in passing the test will increase.
    although i think its imposibble,i just want to share what i want to happen.but i’m not hoping for these to be granted i just want to show or say what my opinion or suggestion is.

  5. how do you like, know who passed?
    Do you get for example the top 50 scorers or those who passed 75% of the test?
    I don’t have any idea.

  6. Pingback: Phisci, MaSci and QueSci Admission Procedure Basics | Academic-Clinic

  7. @ mysterious student:

    It’s not that you’re being banned from taking the test. The Philippine Science High School System offers a very competitive 4-year curriculum and putting these grade restrictions assures them that the examinees– potential Pisay students– have been well-trained in handling the stress of competition, thus the upper 10% rule.

    While it is true that some tests require you at least a tiny bit of stock knowledge, it is not case for the PSHS. You need a strong grasp and understanding of the lessons taught in Elementary, especially in Math, Science, and even English. But this does not mean that students below the upper ten percent are not capable of taking up the challenge, and this is speaking from experience. Being a proud graduate of Pisay myself, I have had batchmates who did not belong to the honor roll in their grade school but ended up graduating with highest honors in Pisay.

    Remember that the PSHS System is the only high school funded by the Department of Science and Technology, and they have to get the best out of stepping up to the ordinary public school system in the country.

  8. hi! i have a question..

    why is it the number of students that will attend the pshs is limited??

    10% of graduating students??

    only the section A.. 🙁

    why don’t you give us a chance, actually i’m one of the students that is not allowed to attend..

    like what i’ve said, why don’t you give us a chance..??

    we, other section have different mind and we are really very different fr0m section A..

    do you know how determined we are? just to attend this exam?

    exams are not only studying, you cannot pass all of the exam if you don’t have a stock knowledge..!!

    PLEASE! allow us to attend..!




    • Hi mysterious student!

      Thanks for visiting. Unfortunately, though, we really can’t give you the answer you want. It’s better to ask PSHS directly about this. You can make a request to PSHS, probably through your school officials, that you and your classmates be allowed to take the exam with the section A.

      Let me hazard a guess, though. Like any other science high school, PSHS has to limit the number of examinees. The easiest way of doing this, of course, is by setting up a cut-off percentile, thus the upper-10%-of-the-graduating-class limit. This, as you have said, typically means the Section A if you have homogeneous sectioning, but not if you have a heterogeneous sectioning system in your school. I really don’t think the upper-10% rule is meant to discriminate against anyone. It’s basically saying that PSHS trusts your school’s grading system.

      In any case, I understand how you feel. I and the rest of Academic-Clinic wish you great luck. Cheers!

      • hi gud day po im a currently grade 5 student unfurtonately transferee student nagkaproblem po ako sa date ng pasok exam na po ng 2nd grading ako naka attend ng klase which means alanganin ang grades ko for 2nd grading kahit top po ako sa results sa exams at aspiring valedictorian for grade 6, ang questions ko po ay d po b ito maka affect sa requirements ko by nxt year para sa admission ko po for school year 2013-2014 since napag alaman ko po na early po ang submission ng requirement for the said school year? at isa po kc sa requirements yong report card ng grade 5. need an advice po thanks and god bless

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