How to Prepare for the Board Exams and NEET Simultaneously
Here’s wishing all the readers a happy republic day! I feel that no matter what we do in life, our nation should be benefited from our actions in some way. And, of course, medical professionals contribute to nation-building in a big way.
Schedule of Board exams and the NEET exam
This year, the CBSE Board exams are scheduled to start on March 05th and will end on April 12th. NEET 2018 will occur in the first week of May. This means that after the Board exams are over, you will not have much time to prepare for NEET. Hence, you must use the available time carefully because preparing without a set plan in mind may cause your performance to dip in either the Board exams or in the NEET exam. If you don’t do that well in the Board exams (and I know that everyone wants to score well in the Boards), it may not have that much of an impact on your future. However, if you perform poorly in NEET, you may have to lose a year if you want to sit the exam again.
I don’t intend to frighten or demotivate you. However, you must remember that you’re going to write the NEET as well while preparing for your Board exams. Your focus should not be solely on getting 90 percent-plus marks in the Board exams, because medical colleges won’t consider these marks.
Tips on how to prepare for the Board exams which will help you prepare for the NEET as well:
- In the Board exams, the pattern of the question paper is subjective. Whereas, in the NEET exam, the pattern of the question paper is objective. Thus, in the Board exams, it is important to neatly present HOW you have solved the question. If your presentation is bad, you may lose marks even if you have answered correctly. You must practice writing your answers within the allotted time, so that you can effortlessly complete the Board exam.
- In the Board exams, often students are expected to remember long definitions and derivations in Physics. It is recommended that you refer to the NCERT texts to learn the definitions for Chemistry, Biology, and Physics. However, you can also refer to S.L. Arora’s Class 12 Physics to get simple definitions. This book is highly recommended for derivations, which are presented in a simple, clear, and easily understandable manner. You should practice writing the derivations without referring to any books.
- It is good to practice answering subjective questions using pen and paper because they need to be answered in a particular manner, with the correct steps. In order to score well in the Board exams, you only need to solve previous years’ question papers. I solved question papers for the last eight years from Arihant, and I found that nearly 80 percent of the questions asked in the Boards are derived from these question papers. Sometimes, the numerical values are changed.
- If you need to improve your understanding of certain concepts, you should refer to your coaching class notes. You should read the NCERT texts for Chemistry and Biology thoroughly because questions are often asked from random lines of the text.
- If your Board exam dates for certain subjects are set far apart, you can use the time to prepare for NEET by solving MCQs from books, studying pending Class XI topics, and revising coaching notes. It is important to use these pockets of time wisely because there is hardly any time left to prepare for NEET once the Board exams are over.
- If your coaching institute holds practice objective exams, do take them once a week before your Board exams begin. This will help you stay familiar with the question pattern of NEET.
- Don’t worry about your performance on the Board exams. Write your Board exams and switch to preparing for NEET without thinking about how you wrote the exams.
- Medical colleges do not consider the marks scored in Board exams. Also, CBSE examiners are known to mark answer papers leniently most of the time. So, even if you feel you have made mistakes in the Board exams, do not worry as the impact may not be huge.