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7 things you should know about CXC CSEC Exams.

Updated: Jul 2, 2023

There are many misconceptions and just plain out misinformation when it comes to the CXC CSEC exams. Thankfully, now you can go directly to the source to clear up any questions and queries that you may have. The CXC website is very easy to use and has much of the information that you need. And whatever information you cannot find, you can always request the information by filling out a simple form on the website. Use this link to visit the official CXC website:

However, if you have a few minutes, read on for some facts about CSEC that you may or may not have known:

  1. CXC is not the name of the exam that students take at the end of Form 5 - Previously known as O' Level Exams, the CSEC (Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate) exams are typically taken at the end of form 5. CXC (Caribbean Examinations Council) is the name of the organisation that is responsible for setting the CSEC exams and other regional exams such as CPEA and CAPE.

  2. There is no age limit to take the CSEC exams - Learners of ALL ages can sit the CXC CSEC exams.

  3. There is no limit to the number of times that you can write the CSEC exams - You may write the CSEC exam as many times as you wish. However, all Trinidad nationals are entitled to ONE free chance to take CSEC exams as a private candidate.

  4. Once you are not registering for CSEC exams with an official secondary school, then you are a private candidate

  5. There are no "distinctions" in CSEC exams - This is probably one of the most common misconception about CSEC Grades. The highest grade that a student can receive in any CSEC exam is a Grade 1. However, the word "distinction" has been widely used to refer to receiving all As in profile areas. It's just what people say to highlight their accomplishment but it is not an official award from the CXC.

  6. A student with a "distinction" may not have gotten 100% in the exam - CSEC Grades are not awarded merely based on the percentage a student receives. In fact, a student with a Grade One with all As in the profile areas may not have necessarily scored higher than another student with a Grade One but not all As.

  7. You can write CSEC and CAPE at the same time - Once the dates of the exams do not clash, a student is allowed to write both CSEC and CAPE exams.

I have been preparing students for CSEC exams for over 5 years and I have found that many of them do not know the actual facts about the exam. This lack of information can cause so much unnecessary stress and anxiety. As such I've decided to host a free webinar to give the full rundown on the CXC CSEC exams. If you are a parent or student preparing for these exams, you might find this free webinar very useful. Click below to reserve your spot:

Good luck in exams!

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