Alumni Speak

How to ace NEET in the first attempt? 6 golden tips by an expert

Dr. Sumer Nanda, an alumnus of Apeejay School, Mahavir Marg, Jalandhar, gives preparation tips to effectively prepare, structure, and plan for the medical entrance exam

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Dr. Sumer completed his MBBS from Shri Guru Ram Das Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Amritsar. He runs his own clinic in Jalandhar and is preparing for MD in Internal medicine. He gives practical tips to help students study stress-free for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET). This year’s NEET will be held on September 12 across the country following Covid-19 protocols.

1. Follow a healthy daily routine

A routine brings structure and discipline in life. If you do something at exactly the same time every day, it will soon become a habit, saving you precious time as it reduces the need to make decisions each day. Don’t be an all-nighter. Continuous studying through the night will burn you out sooner rather than later. Right eating and some form of exercise is also important. Even a seemingly minor health issue like heartburn can dampen your study plans.

2. Be consistent in your studies

Being consistent holds the key to success. Students who study sporadically typically do not perform as well as students who have a fixed study schedule. If you are studying consistently for 3 hours a day over a period of time, rather than slogging it out when the exams are approaching, you will get the desired result. In the medical field, the study never stops. It’s not as if you can relax after finishing your MBBS. Most medical students pursue courses after MBBS in a specialised sector. Right now, I am preparing for my MD and give three hours to study every day. Remember, I am running my clinic as well. So, being consistent is an important habit to inculcate.

3. Use the spaced repetition technique

In spaced repetition, lessons are retaken at increasing intervals until knowledge is fully embedded in long-term memory. It improves your brain’s ability to recall what you study. Students must also study actively, not passively. Active learning requires students to think, discuss and analyse information. It increases your retention power.  

4. Practice Mock Tests

Solving mock tests for NEET allows candidates to work on their weak areas, develop the exam temperament and master time management. In NEET, you need to finish 180 questions in 180 minutes. So practice test papers regularly to maintain time management. Among the three subjects, Biology is the most scoring one which carries 360 marks out of 720. Don’t lose focus on it at the expense of Chemistry and Physics. Limit your resources and don’t study from all the reference books. Study NCERT books thoroughly.  

5. Stay away from social media

I haven’t been on social media since class 11. I only use WhatsApp and Snapchat. It’s difficult to shun social media completely, but the least you can do is keep your smartphone away from you while studying. Continuous notifications from smartphones cause distractions. Have a designated time for phone usage.

6. Get a good night’s sleep before the exam

A day before the exam, revise important and high-yield topics. Don’t try to study every topic and study for a couple of hours at most. Another basic thing which most students don’t pay attention to is getting a good night’s sleep before the exam. Sleep helps the mind absorb and retain the information you reviewed while studying.

Dheeraj Sharma is Asst. Editor (Newsroom). He covers events, webinars, conducts interviews and brings you exciting news snippets. He has over 10 years' of experience in prominent media organizations. He takes pleasure in the small things in life and believes a healthy work-life balance is key to happiness. You can reach him at [email protected]

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