Given limited time, enormous syllabus and fight to score passing to good marks, how should one attempt the exam?
I am pursuing my B.Tech and I had the same question and one of my seniors told me the correct way to not only prepare, but also the correct way to write the exam.
So here it goes:
Preparation for End Semester Exams:
So there is no right way to prepare the exams. Some prepare at the end moment with a lot of stress and pass with flying colours. Rest some prepare during the sessionals. I prefer (and was advised) to prepare during the sessionals - helps to understand how long a topic is because it happens at times when you start a topic at the end moment and then get to know that the topic is damn long and it becomes confusing then.
So prepare during the exams.
Then, try to stick to the SYLLABUS - Always.
A trick to prepare the entire syllabus - just prefix “What/Why/When/What” in-front of the topics in the syllabus and if you are able to recall 5 distinct points for that one topic, that topic is ready because to be very honest, you need just 5 points, rest you can expand them.
Attempting the right way:
Always answer in Points.
One of the biggest mistakes that students do is write big-ass paragraphs just to fill the exam sheet - this is a BIG NO.
(reason being the examiner won’t prefer to put in extra time to really get into an answer with paragraphs to find what have you really written rather than getting a glimpse of your entire answer in one go via points)
If it is a 5 marker question, the examiner will look for 5 distinct points, each explained in 2-3 lines. That is it.
Example for a 2 marker question
Pretending to explain the point by re-writing the same thing using different sentences. re-writing the same thing using different sentences in order to pretend explaining the point .try framing different sentences for a value point to pretend explaining the point and also this increases the length of your answer and fills up for you if you’re short of points.
Make diagrams if possible. Don’t stress with making with Pencils and scale. (You don’t have to please anyone). Also drawing with pencil wastes a lot of time.
Attempt every question. Write something relevant!
P.S. Got these pointers from a semester topper!
180 minutes for 5 questions basically, might sound decent at first but sometimes time management can go horribly wrong during exams.
So it is important to pick and choose questions from options available not only taking in account whether you know it or not well but also if you can satisfactorily answer it and not cut short time required for other questions. Before attempting the question paper do ask yourselves the following questions?
Above questions time and time again have popped up in our mind before. But we tend to not give them much importance whereas we should. Before clearing as to how an answer should be written, we should be clear of our selection of questions.
Each question has it's value, one should never face a situation where he/she misses a question. 1st question is usually the one that fetches you the most marks. I for one like to attempt the 1st question in the last because I am at the peek of my concentration and having already answered questions from U1 - U4, I already have the concepts in back of my mind.
Now, selection of the questions depends upon you, either go for the most comfortable question in each unit or so that no time management issue comes up, go for a good combination among all 4 units. The second approach does come in handy when you're not sure about either of the questions in a unit. So surely you will be taking time in that particular question to figure it out and come up with a solution. So it's useful to have picked questions keeping in mind of that.
The way to write an answer is extremely important in GGSIPU, where more preference is given to answers that seem to have more & more information and covering more pages.
A Good Start and End + Flowchart/Diagram + Answer in Points = Good Solution.
There are two parts to attempting a GGSIPU End Term Exam, the preparation and writing the exam per say. Let me break these two down separately.
The Preparation Phase.
1) Regardless of the semester for which you are attempting the exams, the prep time completely depends on your goal for the semester. If you are in first year, I would recommend starting the preparation at least 5 days before the exams begin.
2) It is important to realize what is important from the syllabus. Do not try learn everything. Go through previous year question papers and figure out what has been asked regularly and what might be asked this time.
3) Do not give each subject the same amount of time. If you want to score well, focus on subjects that are new for you or the once that you feel will require extra effort. If you think you know something already, you know it already. Be confident.
4) Study smart. If a concept has a diagram, skip the paragraphs and learn the diagram directly. if you can draw the diagram, you will be able to explain the concept in words easily. A diagram will indicate that you know the concept well when you write the exam.
5) Try and go into the sessional exams with decent preparation. This will help when you get set to prepare for your finals.
Actually Attempting The Exam
1) Carry a wrist watch. Specially for exams like Mathematics etc.
2) From the perspective of a first year student, go into the examination hall at least 10 minutes before you exam begins. Fill in the details on the answer sheet. Doing this for the first time will take some time. Complete filling the details and chill for a bit.
3) You will have 3 hours to attempt 5 questions, one of them being for 25 marks (the first question). Divide your time as follows:
Question-1 (25 marks): 45 minutes
Questions 2, 3, 4 and 5: 20 minutes
Now this might seem difficult and it is but you are not going to follow it strictly are you? Time yourself for each question and trust me, you will spend anywhere around 10 minutes over the target you set for each question. Move onto the next question if it takes more than the assigned time and complete it in the end if you have time.
4) Following point 3 will leave you with at least half an our to 15 minutes at the end of the exam to review your answers or to complete questions that you could not complete earlier.
5) Attempt all 5 questions. Under no circumstances, leave a question.
6) Question 1 is all luck. Deal with it. If you do not know the answer to a specific question, generalize about any related topic.
7) Don't write hopelessly long answers. I used the following distribution of length of an answer according to its marks:
2.5 marks- 2-3 paragraphs
5 marks- 5 points or at least 1 page
6/6.5 marks- 6 points or at least 2/2.5 pages.
8) Always draw a diagram if possible.
9) Do not try and draw things and complicated diagrams using pencils and with high precision. You will waste a lot of time doing this. Instead, draw diagrams with your pen and at a high speed. It is fine to draw diagrams with a pen in your answer sheet.
Is the same pattern to be followed for the mid term examination? Or it is a totally different scenario ?
The sessionals have a different pattern, but the questions are pretty straight-forward - right from the syllabus topics.
You can see the file (a sessional paper) I have attached.