Thursday, July 10, 2014

Direct School Admissions (DSA) Interview Worskshop

DSA Interview Skills Workshop:

Date: 19/7, 26/7 (Saturday)
Time: 6 pm to 9 pm
Total duration: 6 hours

Call 96701894 for registration or more details

Friday, June 27, 2014

Hwa Chong Direct School Admission Interview

Hwa Chong Institute DSA Round 1 Test: 12 July (Saturday)
Hwa Chong Institute DSA Round 2 Test: 2 August (Saturday)

Our DSA interview skills workshop can help you prepare well for the upcoming interview.

Highlights of the workshop:
Common questions asked during the interview (School Specific)
Interview Etiquette
Making yourself stand out among your peers
Emotional preparation for unexpected situation
and many more.....

Our next schedule for the DSA interview skills workshop:
Date: 19, 26/7 (Saturday)
Time: 6 pm to 9 pm
Fees: $480 (before GST)

Limited vacancy 
Call 96701894 to book your place now.

For individual coaching, please call to find out more.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Direct School Admission (DSA) Workshop

Direct School Admission (DSA) Interview Skills Workshop

Registration for our July DSA Workshop has started. Please see below for more details:

DSA interview skills workshop:

If you are interested, please call or text us, drop us an email or fill in the contact us form below.
For other schedule for the DSA interview skills workshop please call or email to register your interest.

Alternatively, you can opt for individual coaching. Please call 96701894 to find out more.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

DSA Interview Skills Workshop

This could be the last of the series of workshop conducted this year. 
No new schedule has been fixed at this moment. 

Date/Time: 21/6 (11 am to 2 pm) and 28 June (1.30 pm to 4.30 pm)  (Saturday)
Total duration: 6 hours

Call 96701894 to register now.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Direct School Admission Preparation

Direct School Admission Interview Skills Preparation Workshop

Tentative schedule for our next workshop: 5,6 June (Thursday and Friday) 4 pm to 7 pm.
Please call 96701894 for enquiries and  reservation.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Direct School Admission: Spotting Questions

There are many, many questions worth spotting in a Direct School Admission (DSA) interview. Spotting questions and providing a 'model' answer for your prospective teachers may not secure you a spot in your desired secondary school/institution but it will give you an edge above those who do not do so. Of course, spotting these very common questions will also give yourself a confident boost during the interview.

Some very common questions which do come up in DSA interviews most of the time include the following. We have classified them into three main categories, school-relatedpersonality-related and interest-related.

School Related

1) What do you hope to achieve when you come to our secondary school?
2) What do you like about the facilities in our school?
3) Have you ever considered what CCA or special programme you would like to join upon joining our school?
4) What makes you choose our school instead of another?
5) Did you apply to get into another school through DSA?
6) What do you think are your chances of getting in into our school through DSA?

Personality Related

1) Describe yourself.
2) What are your studying habbits?
3) What is one of your best characteristics?
4) What about yourself do you want to improve on the most?
5) If you were given one special power, what would that be?
6) Is studies or giving to the community more important?

Interest Related

1) What are some of your hobbies?
2) What was the last book you read?
3) Any movie you really enjoyed?
4) Do you go explore further in your interests or even participate in competitions?
5) How do you think our school can support your interests?
6) Would you compromise on your interests or passion because of a busy study schedule our school may give you?

These are just some of the questions which our students have told us about and we think that it would be useful for the next generation of students going through DSA to consider. While this may not be a very comprehensive list, we hope that these can help you prepare a little and give yourself a confidence boost. Remember that in an interview, the interviewing teachers love to see a calm and confident student, these are the people who will truly stand out from the rest.

Do keep visiting our blog to check for new updates. More on DSA will be posted on our blog.

For more posts related to Direct School Admission, please click DSA.

Friday, March 7, 2014


How can you prepare for the DSA interview?
The main objective of any DSA interview preparation is to allow your child stand out in his/her interview.

So, how can you help your child prepare for it?
There are several general guidelines that are very similar to our own job interviews.

(1 )   Be familiar with the school and why this particular school best suits you

Knowing the background and culture of the school is of paramount importance. A good grasp of its motto, vision and even the student culture can give you a comparative advantage that makes you shine out.

The interviewer may want to know how your child’s special talent can contribute to the school or how well your child can fit with the school’s beliefs. Just imagine a top gymnast applying to a school that doesn’t even have gymnastics as a CCA.

It will be beneficial if you had gone to the school’s open house. If you had not, then a check on the school’s websites or online forums will be useful.

(2)   Be familiar with your strengths, weaknesses and goals

Knowing yourself well is as important as knowing the school. Some conventional questions about your hobbies, achievements and projects can be expected in the interview.

The answers of these questions can be prepared and rehearsed beforehand. Don’t just say “I like reading.” But explain why do you like reading and perhaps lead the interview by talking about an interesting book that you have read recently.

It is crucial that you display your strengths with confidence, understand your weaknesses with humility and be clear about some of your goals.

(3)  Expect the unconventional

There is little surprise in knowing that certain interviewers have a tendency to ask the unexpected, questions that are out of the ordinary. The interviewers want to see your child’s performance when under pressure. These questions include, “What is your view on global warming?” or “If you are being send to Mars alone and you are only allowed to bring one item, what will you bring?” There are no ‘correct’ or ‘incorrect’ answers.

However, one must remember that sensibility and creativity have to be balanced carefully when answering such questions. If stumped, try not to leak out expression of confusion or anxiety. Rather, appear to be considering the question with thought. If necessary, also ask the interviewer to rephrase or repeat the question, so that you may have more time to construct a coherent response.

(4)   Expect the current

It is critical for good students to be in the know regarding current issues. Interviewers expect students to be knowledgeable not only in the in-betweens of your textbook, but also about important current affairs.

“How is the haze affecting you?” or “What is one News Headline that had caught your attention lately?” These are questions that can be asked. Since they are about current issues, do not dig up news that was donkey years ago. Interviewers want to know that you are in touch with the world.

(5)   Display a good amount of confidence, respect and etiquette

Be confident but not arrogant. Be critical but not disrespectful. Be expressive but do not forget basic etiquette. Maintain eye contact with the interviewer and wear a smile.

You must understand that body language is very important, as these are things that the interviewer will notice and based on which, they will form their first impressions.

The interviewers can tell if the child is nervous or indifferent through his/her body language. If in a group interview, show interests in your peers’ answers, don’t barge in. Wait for appropriate moment to give your opinion.

Dress neatly. (Usually the child will be asked to wear their current Primary school uniform). Be their early so that the child can have time to compose himself/herself.

Also, pay attention to minute details such as greeting the interviewers and thanking them at the end of the interview.

Although these are just some simple guidelines on DSA interview, they are a platform for a child to be ready for various situations that may arise. Remember, being prepared and informed will help you create good first impressions.

Krtc@Marine Parade conducts DSA Interview Skills Workshop for students who would want to receive in-depth coaching and gain a added advantage to stand out among his/her peers in their DSA interviews. 

What makes our workshop different from others DSA workshops/seminars?

We do small group coaching rather than giving general talks. Our coaching targets at individual schools/the specific domain (GEP/Mainstream/Sports/CCA/Music/Arts) that the student is applying for.

We conduct mock interview to let students experience what they can expect (the norms/odds) in an interview and to teach them how they can handle it better.

We are planning to conduct a DSA iterview skills workshop in May. Please see details below:

Call us at 63450444/96701894 to find out more about our DSA Interview Skills Workshop.

For more posts related to Direct School Admission, please click DSA.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

DSA - How many schools should I apply?

Whether GEP, or non-GEP, the worrying and always frustrating questions is, how many schools should I apply for?

The truth is many students would only have one or two 'dream schools' but many times, they worry that they may not get into their 'dream school' and hence they would apply for other schools through DSA. However, the problem is DSA may not let these students secure a place in their 'dream school' and only for their less desired schools. Out of anxiety, they would just accept their fate and select for these less desired schools. Disappointingly, and not surprisingly, when these students receive their PSLE score sheet, many students find out that just based on their T-Scores they can actually apply and get in successfully to their 'dream schools'! Unfortunately, they had already opt for the less desired schools which they got in through DSA. There is hardly any chance of turning back now.

This is the truth and it is not something rare to see since the introduction of the Direct School Admission programme. It is pretty much just like making any decision in life - if you know you want something, why settle for second best? Our advice to students? Only apply for schools through DSA which you really want to get in. No point applying for a school which you do not want to get in. Most likely, you would regret your choice.

So back to the point, how many schools should you apply for? We must weigh the pros and cons here. One, there is a lot of stress every time you apply for one more school. We know Primary Six students are really just 12 year olds and their PSLE preparation period will clash with the DSA selection tests and interviews. So if unnecessary, we think that students should apply for only schools that they want to get in. Three should be the maximum. Spend the rest of your time preparing for PSLE! Who knows, maybe it would be YOUR PSLE T-score which brings you to your desired school.

Two, waiting for the results of your DSA is definitely going to be a depressing time. Why depressing? Many times, it is only MONTHS after your DSA interview when you get back the results. Even then, it may not be a definite yes or no. Sometimes, you get into the waiting list, which makes it all the more a hanging-on-the-thread feeling. This may not be the case for everyone, but there are students who would be very distracted by this waiting time, and they may not be able to concentrate on the preparation for PSLE.

Of course, if you are accepted into your desired school of choice. Congratulations. A large load of stress has just been unloaded off your back and your parent's back. PSLE would have been reduced to a little hill from a fearsome mountain everyone else still has to fear. But NEVER not prepare for your PSLE. Still work hard, many secondary one programmes in your desired secondary school will still look at your PSLE T-score. So, prove your worth through PSLE.

Registration for our July DSA Workshop has started. Please see below for more details:

DSA interview skills workshop:

If you are interested, please call or text us, drop us an email or fill in the contact us form below.
For other schedule for the DSA interview skills workshop please call or email to register your interest.

Alternatively, you can opt for individual coaching. Please call 96701894 to find out more.

For more posts related to Direct School Admission, please click DSA.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

How to prepare for General Ability Test (GAT)

Non-verbal reasoning test involves pattern recognition. There are many forms of pattern recognition exercises. Some may be identifying the odd or similar shape; some may be looking for the hidden shape in a pattern; and some may involve the recognition of sequences. Here, we will focus on the recognition of sequences.

When come to recognition of sequences, you need to employ your inductive reasoning abilities to identify the pattern that comes next in the sequence. Inductive reasoning abilities are cognitive abilities that help you to manage uncertainty, to infer and to draw conclusions that go beyond the information given.

To identify the pattern in a sequence, you need to focus your attention and evaluate each pattern in the sequence in a systematic way. You need to identify the underlying rules of the sequence, how the pattern evolves to the next. You need to analyse each pattern in details. Here are some basic attributes that you need to look out for:

Changes in colour/shape/size

Increase or decrease in shape and size
Shrinkage or expansion of a shape
Changes in position of symbols
Rotation of shape in a certain angle or direction (clockwise or anticlockwise)
Changes in number of symbols
Look at general changes and similarities, between each pattern
Look at the different changes one at a time
Make possible conclusion of which one comes next?

To do well in a non-verbal reasoning test, you must keep clam and stay focus to examine the pattern.

Planning your test time:

The duration of the test and the number of questions tested vary from school to school. 
In general, you should approximately give 30 seconds for each question.
The level of difficulty increase as you goes along.
The most difficult questions are generally placed at the end of the test.
Do not skip a question (Attempt it and circle it).
Don’t be a perfectionist.
Avoid shading any of the shapes.
Should you have time left over, go back to those you have circled.

If you are looking for some practices to try out your non-verbal reasoning skills, you can fill in the practices exercise request form below. 

For more information about our DSA Interview Skills Workshop, please call us at   6345 0444 or drop us email at

Registration for our DSA Interview Skills Workshop in May has started. Limited vacancy.
For more details, see below:

For more posts related to Direct School Admission, please click DSA.