NEET 2019: With the increase in the competition, applicants will have to work a lot harder to reach their goal. Here are some tips that can help students to leverage their chance of cracking the medical, dental entrance exam.
— Anurag Tiwari
NEET 2019: Over 15 lakh students will be appearing for the National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) 2019 – an entrance exam for admission to undergraduate medical and dental courses. The number of students has gone up from 13 lakh last year to 15 lakh this year. The reason could be making NEET mandatory for Indian students aspiring to pursue medicine abroad as well. But with the increase in the competition, applicants will have to work a lot harder to reach their goal.
Here are some tips that can help students to leverage their chance of cracking NEET and making it to one of the premier medical colleges in the country.
Read each question carefully
Often due to anxiety and in pressure to complete the paper in time, students tend to rush through the questions, overlooking essential information. They should instead carefully go through the question paper. A thorough and meticulous reading of the questions can help them register the key information, thereby enabling them to focus on what is asked and ignore extraneous information and proceed directly to determining the correct answer. Special focus should be given on the words NOT, INCORRECT, CORRECT etc. while answering the question with best-suited option.
Coordinate with the clock
Competitive exams are all about time management. Even after knowing correct answers to all the questions, there is a chance that a student might not be able to solve them in the assigned time. It is, thus, imperative for students to keep an eye over their watch so that they do not spend more time than planned on any question.
Do not get stuck, move on
Every second is crucial during the exam and students need to utilise it properly. They should be careful while attempting the question paper. If they feel stuck at any time, the correct exam strategy would be to move on to the next question rather than wasting time on solving the same question again and again.
Be cautious while marking the OMR sheet
Often students linger on the marking of the answers on the OMR sheet and do it in the end. Consequently, they are left with no time and end up marking the options incorrectly. Students are advised to bubble the OMR as they solve the question and find out the correct answer. Marking the bubbles with the correct answer at the end can be dangerous as the time may get over before they are able to bubble all the circles with the correct answer.
It may also lead to confusion and result in incorrect bubbling which may spoil the efforts they have put in over the months preparing for the exams. Additionally, students should also note that partially filled or marking multiple bubbles for the same question should be avoided at all costs. In order to rectify the common mistakes, students are suggested to make it a point to mark their answers on the OMR sheet every time they attempt a mock test. Taking at least one full-length mock test day before the exam can be a good idea.
Confused among the options, try elimination method
In case of doubt, students should try shifting their focus from locating the correct answer to eliminating the wrong options first. The process of striking off the options which appear totally wrong can bring them closer to the correct option. They may not only hit upon the right answer but also save their precious time.
Intimidated by lengthy or difficult questions?
Going past lengthy or difficult looking questions is a common trend among students. Often students perceive that these questions would be daunting and take up much of their time. However, they fail to realise that they might actually be very easy to solve. Procrastinating the questions and leaving them to be solved at the end can make the candidate grasping for the time at the end, thereby losing on major marks. Students should try to logically and analytically approach the questions, before simply going past them.
Confidence is good. But overconfidence is a bane
If you believe you can, you will. Confidence is a great thing. It helps ward off anxiety and fear and instills immense positivity. With confidence, students can definitely take up challenges with more certainty and a positive mental attitude. Overconfidence, on the other hand, can be a menacing threat. It may restrict the thinking abilities of students. They may incline to take things for granted, overlook studying the question, feel no need to check their answers or see any point in revising.
Hours before exam
Students should sleep well the night before the exam. Good sleep not only stimulates the memory but also tends to increase the attention span. Since NEET UG 2019 is going to be conducted in the afternoon, students are advised to eat light before the exam. They should also avoid reading at least two hours before the exam to help refresh the mind.
Students need to keep themselves well hydrated to beat the heat. At this crucial time before the exam, it is but natural for students to feel stressed and anxious. Listening to some light music can have a soothing effect on the minds of students and help them to stay calm. Additionally, students should adopt a positive attitude. A positive attitude not only keeps negativity at bay but also helps to cope with exam stress.
— The author is the national academic director at Aakash Education Services.
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