Monday, May 18, 2009

My Thoughts on the April 2009 PhilNITS FE Exam

Why is that when you're confident that you will pass a test, you don't pass? Conversely, when you're not confident, you pass? I experienced this contradiction today, after receiving my scores for the April 2009 PhilNITS FE Exam. I already mentioned that the exam has two parts- the Morning exam, which covers basic IT theoretical knowledge, and the Afternoon exam, which covers practical skills in analysis and code-tracing. Both the exams are selection type so there's nothing to worry about if you don't know the answer- you can easily pick from the choices given. Guess what? I passed the Afternoon exam!

To see the list of passers, visit

Even in the beginning of the review, I was not confident about the Afternoon exam. I know, for a fact, that I am not good in programming. I lack practice and I just plain find it difficult. I can barely submit a fully-working and error-free program for our programming subjects at school! (Yup. This is true.) So when I took the Afternoon exam, my head started hurting at question number 2! (I am in no way exaggerating or overreacting. It's the truth.) Not long after, I could barely comprehend what I was reading. I had to reread a single sentence or line for three to four times before I had any idea what it was about, and a couple times more before it made any sense to the whole program. I kept turning pages because I had to reread things and the sound of papers turning distracted me very much and made my head hurt more.

I felt miserable during the Afternoon exam! Not to mention really sleepy. Right then and there, I made it clear to myself that I'm not going to pass. Not with how I approached the rest of the questions in the Afternoon exam. My scratch paper was clean, I didn't solve anything, and I just picked the first answer that I thought was correct. After the exam, my scratch paper only had a few scribbles and a drawing that I drew to ease myself. (Haha, yeah. I somehow still found the time to draw.) I just made sure to fill up all the necessary details in the answer sheet, such as my examinee number, birthdate, and my choices for the later part of the exam- these are very important because without them, all of your answers would go to waste!

At home that day, I reflected on the exam. It was clear to me that I'm not going to pass (and I didn't :D) and if ever I pass either of the AM or PM exams, it would be the AM. Honestly, I was pretty confident about the AM exam. It was theory and required memorization- something that I excel more in than tracing someone else's code and filling in the missing lines.

However, much to my surprise, today at our Post PhilNITS Exam Get Together, I learned that I passed the Afternoon exam. It was surprising news for me and, to think that I scored higher than some of the people that I thought would do better, it made me feel not happy but relieved. Happiness came later. I was relieved that I wouldn't have to retake that awful afternoon exam. I wouldn't say that it was because of my knowledge in programming that I passed. It was more that I was blessed with a humongous amount of luck. Then I thought, so confidence is not always directly proportional to your chances of passing. (Haha. Sorry, Sir Loy. This is just my reflection... :D)

Right now, I feel so happy that I could say that, figuratively, one-half of my body is in Japan and the other half would have to catch up this October. Yes, with or without a sponsor, I am going to take the Morning exam again and hopefully, will be able to pass it on my second try. To the passers, CONGRATULATIONS!, and to the "almost there", well, we're almost there!


  1. hehe. confidence isn't always enough :) but it sure helps to have one when you are taking the exams :)
    congrats again for passing the PM part. i promise to help you out (should you want) to prepare for the next.
    good luck.
    by the way, enjoy your hiragana and katakana worksheet. i am sure you will find it interesting, not mention useful once you are in Japan already :)

  2. thank you, sir! :D

    of course i am willing to accept any help you can offer. we can always use your help!

    the hiragana and katakana worksheets are really fun. finally i can read some of the raw manga that i download. heheh.

    thanks, sir!

  3. Makakatulong

  4. @ sheila

    thank you for sharing that link. i found it very helpful. :D

    hope you don't mind me sharing it to the other reviewers. thank yoU!

  5. I just saw this site today and it gives me courage to take the exam :D :)

    Hope someone helps me for reviewers. I really don't have any idea about the exam.

    please feel free to get in touch with me at