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by Chin Lapidante on Academic Clinic Fanpage

NCAE “Controversies”

With the Filipino’s penchant for looking up controversies, you can expect that some folks have tried searching for and posting less-than-edifying stuff about the National Career Assessment Exam (NCAE) on the Internet.  Don’t just accept everything you read or hear about as law, folks (yes, not even this article).  It always helps to listen to both sides of the issue and then make an informed decision about something.


On one hand the basic premise behind the NCAE is good.  It’s supposed to help the DepEd help the student choose a specific career path and avoid career-aptitude mismatch.  It’s a tool that helps assess the students’ strengths and weaknesses, hence its name.  It’s also a good excuse for taking a breather from one’s classes and the usual grind of high school life.


On the other hand, there are naysayers who claim that the test is a waste of the DepEd’s resources and your resources as well.  Previous test-takers have complained of some utterly outrageous results that don’t square with what they know of themselves or what they think they’re good at.  Students who are interested in a particular college course may be disheartened to find a low aptitude score the relevant section.  They may feel that it threatens their chances for landing a slot in the course they want.


Remember, the test is recommendatory at best—it’s not an academic test.  Colleges look at a lot of other things besides NCAE results (grades, entrance exam results, etc.)  Besides, a lot of things can happen between the time you take the test and the time you start a career after college.  Who knows?  God may even lead you to excel in a field you never considered before or studied for.


Our advice:  take the NCAE with a grain of salt, but don’t think of it as Gospel Truth.  All assessment tools are precisely that—tools to guide you down a potential path, not orders that dictate where you should go.  Go for it, note your results, weight them against what other people and tools say about you and what you know about yourself, and then go and choose the field you feel God is leading you to.



NCAE Top Performers

It’s a very human tendency to want to be recognized for one’s efforts.  For students, that would be making the honor roll or even getting the high score on an exam—even when that exam is the National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE).


For this particular exam, the highest possible score is 99+.  It’s interesting to note that there is an unofficial club based on it called “Club 99+”—a listing of all those who received this percentile ranking during an NCAE session.


As with any exclusive club, only a few students ever really find themselves in it.  Here’s another interesting tidbit: not all of the club members are from private schools.  That’s right:  an update on DepEd’s official website placed thirteen public school students as members of the elite club.  The number tends to vary per year—in fact, there was a time when only five students received the coveted score.


Here is a partial listing of students who have made it to Club 99+ in years past:


Public School Students




Karl Jeffrey E. Murillo

Regional Science HS

La Union

Ralph Francis A. Birung

Regional Science HS


Mark Joseph A. Tiongson

Sta. Monica HS


Meawyn A. Millan

Negros Occidental HS

Negros Occidental

William Robert H. Yasi

Cebu City National HS

Cebu City

Mary Lorainne B. Fernandez

Kapangan Central National HS


Lea Angelica R. Alhambra

Baguio City National HS (Main)

Baguio City

Armin N. Tajanlangit

Quezon City HS

Quezon City

John Lorenzo T. Bautista

Mandaluyong Science HS

Mandaluyong City

Lara Alessandra C. Aragones

Rizal High School

Pasig City

Jewel Len B. Sabaupan

Camarines Sur NHS-ESEP

Naga City

Caryl A. Gerarcas

Calbayog City HS

Calbayog City

Francino P. Delima

Cebu Normal University

Cebu City

Private School Students

Lee Robert F. Legaspi

San Lorenzo Ruiz Academy

South Cotabato

Sharla Raye Y. Billena

Gen. Santos Hope

Christian School

Gen. Santos City

Katrina B. Villanueva

La Immaculada, Concepcion School

Pasig City

Marie Therese A. Floro

St. Paul College

Pasig City

Axel Philip C. Advento

Montessori De Sto. Nino

Meycauayan, Bulacan

Luis Anthony A. Mariano

Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation


Rose Ann G. Magnaye

Casa Del Bambino Emmanuel Montessori

Batangas City

Efren John O. Misagal

Holy Cross College

of Carigara




NCAE Tips: Basics of NCAE






Whoever said that “life it a test” knew exactly what he or she was talking about.  It’s easy to think that college entrance tests are the only major tests to look forward to (or to shy away from), yet there is at least one other test that deserves mention:  the National Career Assessment Examination or NCAE.


The Nature of the Exam

The NCAE first saw the light of day in 2007, when it replaced its predecessor, the NCEE.  Developed by the DepEd National Education Testing and Research Center (NETRC), its main purpose is to reduce or prevent the occurrence of unemployment due to employee-career mismatch.  The government surmises that people are most likely succeed if they pursue endeavors that suit their natural talents and abilities, and the exam aims to steer them (particularly third year high school students) in the right direction.


As its name suggests, it is also a government tool for checking what students’ strengths are.  It measures their skills and aptitudes and calculates the best-fitting field or discipline for the test takers to pursue.  Besides general scholastic aptitude, the NCAE also takes entrepreneurial skills and technical-vocational aptitude into account.  It also has an interest inventory.


Besides career guidance, the NCAE also serves at least one other purpose:  it is one of the requirements involved in the CHED and TESDA scholarship application process.  The scholarship option is open to fourth year high school students, provided they meet the criteria below.



If you’re going for the scholarship, please take note of the following:

  • Academically speaking, applicants must belong to the upper 10% of their fourth year high school population.
  • They must have a minimum general weighted average of 80.
  • Their parents’ gross annual income must be no higher than 300,000 pesos.
  • They must present a letter of intent to apply for a CHED or TESDA scholarship.


The test, however, is for high school juniors and seniors from either public or private schools.  While the NCAE is a tool for career assessment and prerequisite for a college scholarship, its results aren’t mandatory by themselves—they’re recommendatory.  Think of the test as a potential guide to a matching course and a fitting future career, not just another test to be taken and passed at all costs.


Miscellaneous Details

The NCAE for this year will take place on September 28, 2011.  It will be held between 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the applicants’ very own high school.  Beginning next school year, it will fall on every last Wednesday of August.


NCAE Coverage:

ncae coverage1. General Scholastic Aptitude

* Scientific Ability [40 items]
* Reading Comprehension [60 items]
* Verbal Ability [60 items]
* Mathematical Ability [60 items]

2. Technical-Vocational Aptitude
* Clerical Ability [20 items]
* Manipulative Ability [30 items]

Non Verbal Ability [30 items]
Entrepreneurial Skill [30 items]
Occupational Field of Interest


If you have any questions about it, feel free to contact the NETRC folks at (02) 631-2589, (02) 687-6717 and (02) 631-2571.  You may also send SMS (DepED <space> message/ name) to 0919-4560027.  Alternatively, you can send e-mail to or visit this webpage and send them a message.



Ms. Aurora Fernandez of the NTRCE test department division