Thursday, 3 March 2011

The LaSt MiLe. . .!!!

  • Do not pay too much emphasis on new topic. It is quite difficult to master a new topic in limited time. It is better to practice the areas that you are already familiar with. Remember that in quality exams it is the depth that matters and not just the shallow width.
  • Take care of your health. The exam is just once a year as you know. The most important thing in this respect in this season is drinking water. A negligence on this account could be very costly.
  • Expose yourself to new situations. Try to do new types of problems. Do not spend time in doing similar type of problems if you are comfortable with that particular type.
  • Human memory functions on the principle of repetition. It is not good enough to review two days before the exam. Have a periodic review plan in place right now. The formulae should be in your finger tips.
  • If you have habit of writing every step while doing a problem, try avoiding this habit for an objective exam where it is not valued. Writing every step takes time and may not be in your interest in this type of exam.
  • Brush up with some quick calculations (like taking pi square as 10 approximately) and use them often. When options are not too close, approximate calculations can be very useful.
  • Some unconventional methods are especially useful in objective questions like elimination of options, boundary conditions, variable substitution, dimensional analysis etc. It may be good idea of getting used to them.
  • Have an open mind about the type of paper. Do not think that last year's pattern will be repeated. Read the instructions given in the paper carefully. Remember that everyone is in the same boat as far as this aspect goes. All you can do is to expose yourself to different situations.
  • It does not make sense to leave the answer(s) blank to the question(s)  without negative marking (if any).
  • You have been allotted certain amount of time for the test. There is no reason for you to submit the paper with significant time left. You need to fight till the very end.
  • Put yourself under time bound test conditions to get accustomed. But, too much of blind test taking may not help especially at the expense of solid conceptual foundation. Only deep understanding & the ability to face new situations can get you through JEE.
  • Put aside fear of failure (if any) or negative thoughts (if any) by telling yourself that your job is to do to the best of your abilities, rest is beyond your control.
  • Class 12th students writing exam this year thinking that there is little gap between the dates of board exam getting over and the JEE, leaving very less time for 11th portion revision and hence are reluctant to write JEE this year should nevertheless write JEE without thinking about, "What will others say?" If your assessment of your potential is incorrect then you may end up spending one attempt. As you know the current attempts for JEE are limited to two.

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Temporal Balance. . .

Keep your cool during the paper. If you feel you are getting flustered, close your eyes for some time to regain your composure and concentration.
Keep yourself in a cheerful and positive mood.
If you feel tension rising during the paper, take deep breaths to release tension.
Do not get demotivated or overexcited on seeing the question paper. Keep your balance. Demotivation will make even easy questions appear tough and overconfidence will make you commit silly mistakes.
Do not get depressed by tough questions. Instead remind yourself that these questions are tough for every aspirant.
Do not get emotionally attached to any question. It is not necessary that you will be able to solve a question from topics you have prepared well.
Do not worry about the minimum cut-off marks for JEE. No one knows about the cut-off for sure, but no one has ever been rejected on the basis of any subject-wise minimum cut-off.
Do not argue with anyone about anything before the test.
Have faith in God and in yourself. Whatever happens to you will be for the best.

Keep depressing thoughts away
First of all, realize that you are not the only one facing anxiety. Each IIT-JEE aspirant is facing the same dilemma.
Also realize that if you have studied even 60% of JEE syllabus properly, you need not harbour negative thoughts.Whenever you feel tensed, start a countdown from 50 to 1. It will help you release tension.
Light stretching exercise also helps reduce pent-up tension.
If you are feeling tensed, do not suffer alone. The company of friends and light chit-chat will help you divert your mind from negative thoughts.

Starting IIT-JEE preparation

The best time to start preparation is at the beginning of 11th class. Students are fresh after the break after boards and a lot more can be learnt. Students who start late often end up leaving some key topics of 11th class JEE syllabus. Also, if you start your preparation in 12th class then the amount of hard work is increased manifold due to additional pressure of 12th boards, so chances of getting a high rank in JEE are decreased. There is a big transition from the mugging up study of 10th class to more understanding based study of 11th class. So you shouldn't get bogged down by seeing the level of complexity in JEE exam. The first two or three months should be spent in revising your basic concepts (topics like algebra, mecanics) which had been taught in 9th class. Concepts in topics like algebra, mechanics and stoichiometry should be studied in great detail as they also form the basis for other topics and are very scoring. There should be no doubt in your mind about these concepts...

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

IIT-JEE Simplified.....

IITJEE is an exam that is totally based on problem solving. Whether it is physics or chemistry or mathematics, hardly any theoretical questions are asked. Mostly it is numerical based questions. Because of this nature of IITJEE, students preparing for IITJEE exam should spend most of their time in solving more and more problems.
There are many students who are spending lot of time on problem solving but even though they are not able to score in exam. This is because they don’t remember ideas/tricks of many questions in exam which they should have solved. This happens because while doing problem solving, they learn things but they do nothing to retain them in their memory i.e. they solve problems but don’t revise them. To repeat, they need to retain. To retain, they should learn/memorize the ideas/tricks of the questions, To learn/memorize, they need to put efforts and time as well as they should follow the correct approach.
To retain and repeat, I recommend a “Four Phases Approach (FPA) to you for doing problem solving. This is little difficult to follow as it requires  you to be little systematic in your studies which most students found difficult to be. But once “Four Phases Approach” followed properly, it will definitely help you in many dimensions like improving your speed, accuracy, problem solving ability and confidence in the topic.
Here are 4 phases of the approach.

Phase 1 – Learning Phase

In this phase, you should
(a) Attempt the problem. Don’t jump to the solution immediately. Try at least 5-20 minutes. 5 minutes, if you don’t understand question properly and 20 minutes if you are getting ideas or almost solve it. So average time spent on each question should be around 10-15 minutes. If you have solutions, refer them otherwise mark them and refer solutions later.
(b) Mark levels. After you have gone through the solutions, you need to decide the level of the question and mark it with each question. There can be 4 levels.
Easy : Problem is easy if you are able to solve (without even looking at the solution) it in less than 5 minutes.
Average : Problem is average if you are able to solve it by just glancing the solution. You look at the solution for less than 1 minute and get the idea. Or you could do it yourself by trying hard and spend more time to solve it.
Difficult : Problem is difficult if you are not able to do it yourself (after spending lot of time) and to understand the solution you have to spend more time on each step and finding little hard to understand the steps. But finally able to understand solution very well.
Very-Difficult : Mark a problem a very-difficult if either you are not able to understand the question or question is clear but finding almost impossible to understand the solution or you find either question is wrong or solution is wrong. Don’t waste time on such questions. May be you can tackle them later when you get time. But at this stage they are useless and pull your confidence down.
Once leveling is done, this phase is over. This is a Learning phase as you are learning ideas/tricks to solve question which you cannot do yourself.


Phase 2 : Retaining Phase

In this phase you have to appear for a test. The questions of the test would be the average and difficult questions you marked in phase – 1. Just count how many questions you marked average or difficult. If supposed they are x, then time for the test should be 60x/25 minutes. If time is more than 210 minutes, then you can divide questions in two parts equally and take 2 tests.
You have to take test very seriously. It should be like the tests you appear at the center. Taking these tests will improve your following abilities.
Speed : As you know ideas of most of the questions, try to be little fast in solving these questions, specially the one you know who to solve. This will improve your speed to write fast.

Accuracy/perfection :
Try to be accurate as much as possible. No room for calculate mistakes. If you realize that you are doing mistakes in more than 5% of the questions, focus on it and before you sit for the test, give a strong suggestion “NO MISTAKES !!”. If you make it a target that you have to be perfect, after few tests you will start seeing the results.

Concentration :
There is a difference of concentration when you normally study or when you appear for a test. While doing a test, you level of concentration is much higher. So these tests will help you in improving your concentration on a regular basis. So when you are doing these tests, make an environment that should resemble the environment you face at test center (I know it is possible up to a limit, but try to do as much as you can). Don’t answer phone, don’t respond to door bell, don’t get up for water, don’t give your ears to what others are talking in house, no music and no day-dreaming (living in your thoughts) :) .
Sitting habit : In today’s world everybody is so restless. You know why? Lots of happenings around us. So it is very difficult to be just on one thing for a long time like sitting on a table and chair and study for hours. If you practice FPA, it will help you in improving your potential to sit and study for long hours.

Phase 3 : Strengthening Phase

After finishing phase 2 where you appeared for a test based on the selected questions, you need to review your performance. If you could not solve more than 85%-90% of the questions, you need to repeat what you did in Phase 2 to strengthen your preparation. This is phase 3, where you take the test again. Do it after a  gap of 4-5 days. You can even change some ratings before you take the test like you can re-mark some average questions as easy or difficult questions as average or average as difficult. This phase will further improve your preparation and grip on the topic.
You can even skip this phase if either topic is not important or you are short of time.


Phase 4 : Finishing Phase

Finishing Phase is very important phase as it does the last act. This is the fourth and last phase where you revise all questions orally. This phase should come after 4-8 days of the strengthening phase.
Suppose there are 50 marked questions (average and difficult) that you want to revise them. Keep 30 second for each question. So for 50 questions, you can take 25 minutes. Go through each question and try to recall the trick/steps/concepts you applied to solve that question. If you are not able to recall in 15 seconds, mark the question and go to next question. You don’t need to use pen in this phase. Just recalling tricks/concepts from your mind orally. Repeat this for all the questions. After all the questions are finished, refer solutions to see the marked questions and try to learn their ideas.
You should be able to recall ideas of 90% of the problems. If it is less, you need to repeat this phase after few days.
This phase is very important as it helps you in building your confidence in the topic. While doing this phase, your attitude matters a lot. After successfully recalling ideas needed to solve the question from your mind, feel like you are a master/expert of the topic. Feel it after every question done successfully. Do it with interest and full concentration, the way you watch movie or match. You can do this phase anytime anywhere like while traveling in car or bus or during your evening walk or in your school etc.

Final Note:
It is not easy to follow FPA. You need to be regular and systematic to follow it. Even result will start coming after you would have followed it for at least 1 month. You also need a time table to plan these phases. Without schedule, it is impossible to remember phases of various topics and subjects.

IIT's- an intro...

 The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) represents one of the most coveted and sought after engineering colleges for undergraduate studies in engineering and technology. The 20 IIT’s,offer some of the most popular under graduate courses in Engineering and Technology.

All the IIT’s are known for providing quality education in Science, Technology and Research. Backed with well-equipped modern laboratories, state-of-the-art computer network, well stocked technical library and highly intellectual teaching staff, the students lead a pleasant, high paced competitive life conducive to bring the best in students.Admissions to the various courses in these institutions is done through an ALL INDIA COMPETETIVE EXAMI NATION, referred to as JOINT ENTRANCE EXAMINATION (JEE) by the IIT’s. This examination is considered to be one of the toughest examinations in India, ensuring that the students selected in IIT’s represent the best brains in the country.