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Preparation for engineering entrance exams

Published On: 08 May 2013 | Last Updated On: 10 May 2013

With a growth in the Indian economy especially in the field of information technology, and an increased emphasis on technological developments, the need for engineers is being felt more than ever before. It is no wonder that the trend of opting for an engineering degree among school students, is growing. However, with a greater number of students choosing to become engineers the competition too has increased. Colleges, faced with thousands of applicants have become choosy. Entrance exams are making their entrance requirements stricter and more difficult to crack. A thorough knowledge of academics is no longer sufficient to ensure a successful career in engineering. Studying for competitive exams is very different from normal studies and preparation for them has to start as early as during the 11 standard.

The common perception that only exceptionally smart students do well on entrance tests is untrue. Hard work, practice and dedication will assure you a high score on any competitive exam. A sound knowledge of school subjects is also necessary for doing well in these exams. Following a strict regimen and creating a time table with ample time for revision will help you crack the toughest of exams. The following are some methods by which you can ensure you are prepared for any engineering entrance test. 

Guide to crack engineering entrance exams:

1 ) Time Management:

  • Divide your whole syllabus, keeping in mind the time you have until your examination
  • Study daily for a minimum of 5 hours
  • Make a timetable and create a regimen with a different subject for each day
  • Keep a notebook where you note down what you have completed every week
  • Cover fundamentals and important concepts first, but don’t leave anything out
  • Set yourself small, attainable daily goals rather than trying to cover a chapter everyday
  • Set deadlines for every topic and stick to it as strictly as possible

2) Creating a proper plan:

  • To successfully prepare for an entrance exam one has to follow a previously designed plan, because correct planning helps in focusing and motivates in accomplishing the set target.
  • A to-do list to be prepared with set goals. Required time is to be set up for the pre-planned goals and a realistic time window is to be allocated. Check whether the planned work has been achieved within time or not. If the set target is not achieved within the set time then look for reasons why this is happening, and also how to improve.
  • Your plan must include the following:
    • Planning for long term:
      • Long term planning requires that you have a big picture. Long term planning will entail setting a date for finishing your studies, starting your revision and implementing strategies to improve your weak areas.
    • Planning for short term:
      • Emphasis on specific areas of the syllabus, proper revision, concentration on concepts and maximizing practice by solving  previous years’ question papers are included in short term planning.

3) Guide on preparation:

The best way of preparing for engineering entrance exams is by going through previous year’s question papers. Question papers of previous years will not only give you relevant material to practice from, but will also acquaint you with the pattern of the question paper. Other processes which will help you prepare well are:

  • Covering NCERT textbooks of 10th, 11th and 12th standards
  • Making notes of important formula and concepts and revising each of them at the end of the day
  • Regularly solving questions and paying particular importance to tough questions
  • Solving question papers of the past 10 years

4) Keeping your mind sharp:

Questions in entrance exams are usually tricky and are seldom straightforward. The ability to concentrate will ensure you read and understand questions correctly and will make sure you answer them quickly. Activities such as solving puzzles, Sudoku and crosswords as well as playing chess well improve your concentration and help you remain sharp during examinations.

5) Important subjects and important topics:

  • Physics:  Circuits with Capacitors, Conduction and Convection of Heat, Thermodynamics, Waves in Elastic Media, Electrostatics (full), Electromagnetic Induction, Modern Physics (full), Rotational Motion, Elasticity, Hydrostatics and Bernoulli’s Principle, Lorentz’ Forces, Interference Beats and Doppler’s Effect, Collisions and Gravitation. 
  • Chemistry: H2O2, Volumetric Analysis, Chemical Equilibrium and Kinetics, Coordination Compounds, Oxyacids of P,S, C & N, Properties of Ozone Thiosulphates,  Atomic Structure, Electrochemical Cells, Solutions, Redox Reactions, Bonding, Ionic Equilibria, Organic Chemistry (full) with special stress on reaction mechanism of reactions named in the syllabus, Hess’s Law. 
  • Mathematics: Quadratic Equations and Expressions, Solution of Trigonometric Equations, Progressions, Solution of Triangles, Vector Analysis, Calculus (full), Complex Numbers, Straight Lines, either Circles or Conic section.

Methods for cracking competitive exams vary considerably from those of regular exams, but still depend on hard work, sincerity and dedication. Formulating a timetable with ample hours of practice and regimen will go a long way in ensuring you score well in entrance tests. Preparing systematically from various sources and solving previous year’s question papers, while giving special importance to key topics from each subject will give you an edge over other candidates.

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