Erlyn Eloisa Valdez: Journey to Success in the Special Professional Licensure Examination (SPLE) 2023 Interview

April 2023 Special Professional Licensure Examination for Professional Teachers Board Passer: An Interview with Erlyn Eloisa Valdez

Erlyn Eloisa Valdez, a triumphant TSOK (Teachers Specialists in Kuwait) board passer, shares her journey of preparing for and conquering the SPLE.

Here’s an up close and personal interview with Erlyn Eloisa Valdez:

How do you feel about receiving the news that you passed the board exam?

She expressed surprise and disbelief upon learning about her success in the board exam. The night before, she prayed, accepting whatever the result would be. She felt a sense of peace in her heart. On Friday morning at 11 am, she received a message from Minister Irene and her cousin, ate Shiela. They congratulated her on passing the board. At first, she couldn’t believe it because no one in her family knew about her exam, except her three sisters. She messaged her youngest sister to verify the news. She even messaged Sir Edmund on WhatsApp to confirm it. It was only then that she truly believed it, and she was overwhelmed with joy.

Have you received such recognition before? Please give details.

This achievement marks her first-ever recognition, making the moment even more special for her.

What is your job here in Kuwait? How long have you been OFW?

As a Bellwoman at Royale Hayat Hospital in Kuwait for nearly a decade, she shared insights into her overseas work experience.

Who do you attribute your success to?

She attributes her success to her mother and her late father, who passed away in 2020. He had a dream that one day she would pass the board exam.

Who has inspired you to take up SPLE?

In 2017 and 2018, she failed the SPLE. However, in 2022, when Sir Edmund passed the board exam in the Philippines, she became inspired to take the exam in the Philippines during her vacation. Her mother also inspired her to pursue the board exam, as she wanted to return to the Philippines to care for her.

What were the reactions of your family to this board’s passing?

Those in her family who were unaware of her board exam were surprised when they heard the news. Those who knew about her plans were delighted and proud.

To what extent was TSOK helpful in your success story?

TSOK played a crucial role in her journey, providing guidance and support since her initial attempts in 2017 and 2018.

What is your plan for the future or your dream after passing this exam?

Her plan is to return to the Philippines to continue her profession as a teacher.

Is this your first licensure exam? Do you plan on taking other exams in the future, and what would it be?

Yes, this is her first licensure exam. If given the opportunity, she may consider taking the civil service exam in the future.

What message would you like to give to the upcoming board exam taker?

Don’t stop dreaming, don’t stop reviewing, and, most importantly, don’t stop praying.

How did you know about the SPLE?

She learned about the SPLE from her workmate at PLAY, Kuya Edward. He provided her with the contact information of Ms. Nova, one of the TSOK officers, in 2017. Kuya Edward informed her about an ongoing teacher exam in Kuwait, which led her to become a member of TSOK.

When did you decide to apply: after graduation or after finding a job? Why?

She decided to apply for the SPLE after her graduation because her father had a dream of having a professional teacher in the family. She was the first to graduate as a teacher, and now they are three teachers in the family, all LET passers.

What did you expect from the SPLE regarding the content of the exam? How different is it from college entrance exams?

The content of the SPLE is different from college entrance exams. College entrance exams primarily cover the content studied in high school. In contrast, the SPLE requires a broader understanding, as it spans topics from grade 1 to current issues.

What questions did you find easy to answer (e.g. solving, logical reasoning, abstract reasoning)?

For her, solving questions were easier to answer during the exam.

Did you attend a review center? Which review center? (a.) If yes, how did it affect your preparation for the SPLE? (b.) If not, how did you prepare for the exam in terms of resources and review materials?  

She attended a review center, and it helped her a lot. From 2017 to 2018, every time she took the exam, she was not prepared, even though she had a reviewer. She didn’t take it seriously. However, when she attended the CBRC review center, it helped her a lot. She created a calendar to organize her studies, set specific goals for her review, and learned techniques for answering questions correctly.

How many of the things you reviewed appeared in the exam?

She can’t remember how many, but thanks to the techniques she learned from CBRC, she was able to answer some questions even if she hadn’t reviewed them.

How many weeks or months did you prepare for the exam?

She prepared for the exam for almost six months because she took the exam in the Philippines in March 2023.

How much did preparing for the exam cost you? Is it worth it?

Preparing for the exam was quite expensive. She paid 5,000 pesos for the CBRC online review, and she also attended the final coaching session at Arena, which cost 4,000 pesos. Additionally, she had to rent a room for the final coaching. Despite the cost, she can say it was worth it.

Do you have a daily study routine? (a.) If yes, what is your daily routine, especially the specific time you study? (b.) If not, how did you manage your time, especially for reviewing?  

She had a daily study routine. After work, she makes sure to watch the lectures and complete the pre-tests and post-tests every day.

How did you balance your work and review? How did you manage your time?

She created a calendar to guide her on which topic to study each day. She managed her time by giving up activities like watching TV, specifically “Eat Bulaga,” to focus on her review.

How did the SPLE affect your time with family and work?

She still managed her time with her family and work. As she mentioned earlier, she created a schedule, and she dedicated two hours every day to review, except on Saturdays, which were her days off.

Did you have any strategies in studying for the exam that helped you understand your notes better?

Yes, she wrote down words or concepts that the lecturer emphasized on a piece of paper and placed it on her room’s wall. She memorized these words and concepts every day.

What difficulties did you face in preparing for the exam? How did you better remember complex terms and lessons? Did you improve your memory in any way?

She had difficulty memorizing details about Rizal’s life. To help with this, she wrote down events on a piece of paper and placed it on her room’s wall to reinforce her memory.

How stressed were you in preparing for the exam? How did you manage your stress?

To manage stress, she gave up watching movies and using social media. When she felt stressed, she played music from City Harvest Christian songs, which helped relieve her stress.

Have you procrastinated on your review? How did you manage procrastination? How did you motivate yourself?

While she was in the Philippines, she asked her younger sister to attend her online review on her behalf to prevent procrastination. Her motivation came from looking at her mother and praying that she would pass the board exam. This determination kept her going, even when she was tired.

How important is preparing for the SPLE (or other exams)? Can you say that you are well prepared? How so?

It is essential to prepare thoroughly for exams to acquire knowledge. She can say that she was well-prepared because she dedicated time to answer the pre-tests and post-tests, and she was able to answer 75% of the questions correctly.

How did you act during the exam? What were your thoughts during the exam?

During the exam, she was calm and at peace because she had entrusted everything to the Lord. Even though she had to visit the restroom frequently due to the cold room, she prayed for guidance and success with every question she answered.

Where did you gain the strength that helped you pass the exam?

She gained strength from her mother and, most importantly, from the Lord Almighty. She trusted in His guidance, and she had been praying for a long time for success.

Did you search for and use guides and tips in your preparation? How effective were they?

She used the CBRC method and Melvin Buracho’s tips during her review. They were highly effective, especially when she encountered difficult questions and needed to eliminate incorrect answer choices.

How did passing the exam benefit you in terms of your work, your life, your family, and yourself?

In my work, I gained more respect from my colleagues. In my life, passing the exam made me more humble. For my family, it meant I could provide more support, especially as I began teaching in public schools. Personally, passing the exam not only provided job stability but also the privilege of becoming a LET passer, which no one can take away from me. It also earned me more respect and humility.


Here’s the full list of passers:



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