Rarest
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Hey guys, I was planning to do a few courses over the summer, read a few books and start CSAT and STEP prep but I kinda procrastinated quite a lot and I haven't really started much. I've read a book and done a course but I have not done any CSAT or STEP prep. STEP I have a lot of time for but CSAT is only in December, will I have enough time to prep to do decently?
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Doones
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(Original post by Rarest)
Hey guys, I was planning to do a few courses over the summer, read a few books and start CSAT and STEP prep but I kinda procrastinated quite a lot and I haven't really started much. I've read a book and done a course but I have not done any CSAT or STEP prep. STEP I have a lot of time for but CSAT is only in December, will I have enough time to prep to do decently?
Are you applying for the CompSci with Maths option?

I'm moving this to the Cambridge forum...

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Rarest
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Are you applying for the CompSci with Maths option?

I'm moving this to the Cambridge forum...

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Yeah, either that or just computer science.
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Doones
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(Original post by Rarest)
Yeah, either that or just computer science.
Ok, so as you may know, STEP isn't needed unless you are applying for Maths or CS/maths. But this prep thread will be useful if you are considering it:
https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5537494

For CSAT have you seen https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=4949576 ?
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Rarest
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Ok, so as you may know, STEP isn't needed unless you are applying for Maths or CS/maths. But this prep thread will be useful if you are considering it:
https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5537494

For CSAT have you seen https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=4949576 ?
Thanks, I'll check those threads out!
I'm planning to take step regardless of whether I need it or not (already raised the money x.x) for both a challenge and to improve my maths ability. (Also I'm hoping to get a few reduced offers from it eh bath and I think Imperial sometimes include step as part of their offer)
So for these reasons I'm not as worried for step, just a little disappointed I haven't been able to start. But I know I have a chunk of time as opposed to CSAT which is actually required but has much less time to prepare for
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Doones
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(Original post by Rarest)
Thanks, I'll check those threads out!
I'm planning to take step regardless of whether I need it or not (already raised the money x.x) for both a challenge and to improve my maths ability. (Also I'm hoping to get a few reduced offers from it eh bath and I think Imperial sometimes include step as part of their offer)
So for these reasons I'm not as worried for step, just a little disappointed I haven't been able to start. But I know I have a chunk of time as opposed to CSAT which is actually required but has much less time to prepare for
Many people don't start serious prep for STEP until January (when they get their Cambridge offer) - you aren't too late at all.
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Rarest
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Many people don't start serious prep for STEP until January (when they get their Cambridge offer) - you aren't too late at all.
That's relieving to hear. What about CSAT? I can only start preparing sep 10th onwards. What can I realistically expect with that amount of time if I dedicate a small (but increasingly larger) portion of my day towards it?
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Doones
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(Original post by Rarest)
That's relieving to hear. What about CSAT? I can only start preparing sep 10th onwards. What can I realistically expect with that amount of time if I dedicate a small (but increasingly larger) portion of my day towards it?
I'm sure that will be fine. The CSAT (and all admissions assessments/tests) aren't designed to require huge prep, but someone like CompSciCat can give better advice than me about it

Also this https://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/admissions/...t/#faq-prepare
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CompSciCat
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(Original post by Rarest)
That's relieving to hear. What about CSAT? I can only start preparing sep 10th onwards. What can I realistically expect with that amount of time if I dedicate a small (but increasingly larger) portion of my day towards it?
It depends alot on your starting point and how fast you learn, so no one can tell you what to expect, but I think that's plenty of time to do well.

There were quite a few threads recently regarding the CSAT (https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5444158 , https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho....php?t=5538976 , https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...4#post79439204), so maybe some of the information in them could be of interest to you.

Personally I started at a point where I could barely solve the simplest questions on sample paper 1 this time last year, and with an increasing amount of practice (like, a couple of hours a week but not every week because of school and stuff) until december I was around average (though my guess is the average was very low last year) in the actual test.

Tagging ImprobableCacti and Faction Paradox because they sat the test and then actually got in When did you guys start?
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FuryBall
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(Original post by CompSciCat)
It depends a lot on your starting point and how fast you learn, so no one can tell you what to expect, but I think that's plenty of time to do well.
Hi,

I struggle to solve the section B questions! Would doing STEP 1 questions help with that?
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CompSciCat
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(Original post by FuryBall)
Hi,

I struggle to solve the section B questions! Would doing STEP 1 questions help with that?
STEP itself has a very different question style in comparison to the CSAT (longer questions, often with several steps usually building on each other vs. short questions), but it can help with general maths ability, so you could definitely try. Though depending on question/what style of questions suits you better you might find STEP I questions even harder than the section B questions. Have you tried the STEP foundation modules?
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FuryBall
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(Original post by CompSciCat)
STEP itself has a very different question style in comparison to the CSAT (longer questions, often with several steps usually building on each other vs. short questions), but it can help with general maths ability, so you could definitely try. Though depending on question/what style of questions suits you better you might find STEP I questions even harder than the section B questions. Have you tried the STEP foundation modules?
No I haven't gone through the STEP foundation modules. Would that help with section B in CSAT?
Also, what A2 content is needed for CSAT? It seems like there's a lot needed to know.
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(Original post by FuryBall)
No I haven't gone through the STEP foundation modules. Would that help with section B in CSAT?
Also, what A2 content is needed for CSAT? It seems like there's a lot needed to know.
They helped me

Regarding content: there has been a thread with a similiar question, https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...4#post79439204
Short answer: nothing in particular, as you can choose your questions.
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(Original post by CompSciCat)
They helped me

Regarding content: there has been a thread with a similiar question, https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...4#post79439204
Short answer: nothing in particular, as you can choose your questions.
Alright, thanks!
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RickHendricks
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Hey guys, I was planning to do a few courses over the summer, read a few books and start CSAT and STEP prep but I kinda procrastinated quite a lot and I haven't really started much. I've read a book and done a course but I have not done any CSAT or STEP prep. STEP I have a lot of time for but CSAT is only in December, will I have enough time to prep to do decently?
its cool don't worry

Just study systamically now covering everything you need.
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Rohan77642
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(Original post by FuryBall)
Hi,

I struggle to solve the section B questions! Would doing STEP 1 questions help with that?
In my opinion STEP 1 questions wont really help. Its not because of difficulty (both are equal in difficulty), but STEP questions are completely different to what they are trying to test compared to CSAT. The CSAT problems are much more shorter and often have a trick that you need to be able to spot. STEP is much more about guiding you through a question and testing how well you can use your knowledge of previous parts to answer the later parts. Use the MAT questions (5,6,7). They are much better for the CSAT.
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FuryBall
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(Original post by Rohan77642)
In my opinion STEP 1 questions wont really help. Its not because of difficulty (both are equal in difficulty), but STEP questions are completely different to what they are trying to test compared to CSAT. The CSAT problems are much more shorter and often have a trick that you need to be able to spot. STEP is much more about guiding you through a question and testing how well you can use your knowledge of previous parts to answer the later parts. Use the MAT questions (5,6,7). They are much better for the CSAT.
Alright. I'm thinking of sticking to Oxford CS anyway actually. I think CSAT will take up too much of time during November and December
Are you in year 12? I see you a lot in the MAT forum.
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Rohan77642
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If anyone has been to Cambridge compsci interview, would you say the hints the practice + forum provides on the csat questions is similar to the hints in the interview?
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Rohan77642
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(Original post by FuryBall)
Alright. I'm thinking of sticking to Oxford CS anyway actually. I think CSAT will take up too much of time during November and December
Are you in year 12? I see you a lot in the MAT forum.
No hahaha. I am a gap year applicant for maths (not CS but the i do the CSAT questions just for fun). I did STEP this year, and MAT last year so that's why you might have seen me.

CSAT will definitely help with oxford cs though.
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(Original post by Rohan77642)
No hahaha. I am a gap year applicant for maths (not CS but the i do the CSAT questions just for fun). I did STEP this year, and MAT last year so that's why you might have seen me.

CSAT will definitely help with oxford cs though.
Oh right. How do you find CSAT section B questions? Would you say they're more difficult to prepare than questions 6 & 7 for MAT?
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