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  • DTP Success Team

Top 5 Test Tips For Preparing For Your DSST Exam

Updated: Feb 21

Students sitting at graduation.

Preparing For Your DSST Exam

Preparing for your DSST exam requires careful planning and effective study strategies to ensure success.

The DSST exam covers a wide range of topics and can be challenging, so it's essential to approach your preparation with diligence and focus.

To help you prepare effectively, we've compiled the top five test tips that will set you on the path to success on your DSST exam.

From choosing a subject you're familiar with to practicing time management, these tips will help you maximize your study efforts and achieve your desired score.


Table of Contents


1. Choose a Subject You're Familiar With

Choose a subject that you're already familiar with.

Choose a Familiar Subject

When deciding which DSST exam to take, consider selecting a subject you're already familiar with.

If you have a background or experience in a particular area, you may find it easier to grasp the concepts and perform well on the exam.

For example, if you have work experience in business or accounting, you might consider taking the DSST Principles of Finance or DSST Money and Banking exam.

If you have a strong foundation in science, the DSST Environmental Science or DSST Astronomy exam could be a good choice.

By choosing a subject you're familiar with, you can leverage your existing knowledge and skills to earn college credit.

This can save you time and money and boost your confidence as you tackle the exam.

However, even if you're not an expert in a particular subject, don't let that deter you.

Use your familiarity with a subject as a guide, but be willing to put in the effort to learn and understand new concepts.

You can succeed on any DSST exam with the right preparation and study habits.

2. Take Practice Tests

Take practice tests.

DSST Practice Exams

Taking practice tests is an essential part of preparing for your DSST exam.

These tests allow you to become familiar with the exam format and the questions you'll face.

They also help you pinpoint areas where you may need to study more.

When you take practice tests, treat them like the actual exam.

Review your answers carefully to understand why certain choices are right or wrong.

Practice tests can also help alleviate test anxiety by giving you a preview of what to expect on exam day.

The more practice tests you take, the more confident you feel when sitting for the exam.

Practice tests are an excellent tool for assessing your readiness for the DSST exam and improving your chances of success.

The more familiar you are with exam-style questions, the better prepared you'll be when test day arrives.

During the test, take your time and double-check that you're answering questions correctly before moving on to another one.

It's easy to get flustered during high-stakes tests like this.

You can review and alter your responses if you complete the examination within two hours.

But remember, your first choice is typically the correct one.

Our practice exams can help you become comfortable with the environment of taking an actual DSST exam, which can be nerve-wracking if it's your first time!

3. Time Yourself When Testing

Time yourself when testing.

Simulate The DSST Exam

Timing yourself when taking practice tests is crucial for preparing for your DSST exam.

Simulating the actual exam conditions helps you improve your time management skills and understand how long you have for each question.

This practice prevents spending too much time on difficult questions, ensuring you complete the exam within the allotted time.

Replicate the exam environment by finding a quiet workplace, setting a timer for the exam's length, and avoiding interruptions. This helps you focus and gauge your pacing accurately.

As you take practice tests, note the time taken per question and how much time remains.

This information helps refine your approach and enhances your time management skills for the actual exam.

Overall, timing yourself during testing effectively prepares you for the DSST exam's time constraints, ensuring you complete the test within the allotted time.

You'll have two hours to complete the 100-question exam, so use this time wisely to avoid rushing and missing essential questions.

On average, most test-takers spend about one minute per question, so pace yourself accordingly to complete all 100 questions within the allotted time.

4. Answer Each Question

Answer Each Question

Answer All Questions

You are not penalized for wrong answers on the DSST exams, so it's important to answer every question.

Unlike some standardized tests where incorrect answers can result in points deducted from your score, DSST exams operate on a different scoring system.

On the DSST exams, you earn points for each correct answer, but do not lose points for incorrect answers.

This means there is no penalty for guessing, so it's in your best interest to answer every question, even if you're unsure.

By answering every question, you give yourself the opportunity to earn points for correct answers.

The more questions you answer, the better your chances of earning a higher score.

You never know which ones you might get right; every point can make a difference in your final score.

So, when taking the DSST exams, answer every question.

If you're unsure of the correct answer, it's worth taking a guess, as you have nothing to lose and potentially much to gain.

5. DSST Exams: The "B" or "C" Rule

5) When in doubt, choose "B or C” consistently.

Strategic Guessing

When faced with multiple-choice exams like the DSST, it's common to encounter questions where the correct answer is uncertain.

In these situations, a helpful strategy is consistently choosing "B" or "C" when guessing.

This approach may seem counterintuitive, but statistics indicate that, on average, "B" or "C" is more likely to be the correct answer than "A" or "D."

This tendency is due to how test makers construct questions and distribute correct answers.

By consistently selecting "B" or "C" when unsure, you increase your chances of guessing correctly over time.

This strategy can prove especially beneficial when time is limited or when confronted with challenging questions.

However, it's crucial to use this strategy judiciously and not rely on it exclusively.

Carefully reading and understanding each question to the best of your ability is still paramount. Guessing should only be a last resort when the answer is genuinely unknown.

So, when in doubt during your DSST exam, remember the "B" or "C" rule.

It could provide the edge you need to improve your score!

Another helpful tip is to answer all the questions you know and mark those you're unsure about for later review.

If the exam time expires and you haven't completed all the questions, consistently choosing "B" or "C" for the remaining items can increase your chances of getting at least one correct answer.

You can always revisit your answers to make changes, but only if time permits.

Ensure you're fully prepared before starting the test to avoid surprises on test day.

Thorough preparation will help you confidently approach the exam and increase your chances of success.

It's important to note that you should choose "B" or "C" consistently, not both.


Two DSST students taking a picture during  graduation.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, preparing for your DSST exam requires careful planning and effective study strategies.

By following these top five test tips - choosing a subject you're familiar with, taking practice tests, timing yourself when testing, answering each question, and using the "B" or "C" rule when in doubt - you can maximize your chances of success.

Remember to dedicate significant time and energy to preparing for the exam and to use practice tests to assess your knowledge and identify areas for improvement.

By taking advantage of preparation courses, you can set yourself up for success and take the next step in your educational journey with confidence.

With the proper preparation and a focused approach, you can confidently ace your DSST exam and earn college credit.


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