The Supreme Court’s order to hold the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) from this academic year itself has attracted mixed reactions from medical aspirants across the country. While a section of the aspirants are seeing NEET Phase 2 as a second chance to improve their marks, others, especially, those who come from state boards are uncertain whether they are ready to compete on a national level exam, which follows a different curriculum.
In fact, majority of the state-level students are facing a challenge on the direction of their preparation strategy and are unsure of how they would cope with a changed curriculum. Further, with the SC allowing NEET Phase 1 candidates to reappear for the Phase 2 exam, many of the students are facing a dilemma on whether to stick to NEET 1 or appear for the second phase and give up their candidature for the first one.
To bring clarity on all the major questions that students might be facing at this point, In an exclusive interview, Sh. Brajesh Maheswari, Director, ALLEN Career Institute clarifies doubts regarding the change in syllabus. The Director also offers some effective preparation tips for both state-level and reappearing candidates.
Read below the interview excerpts:
Q: How does implementation of NEET benefit candidates? Please share your insights.
Brajesh Maheswri: Implementation of NEET exam from this academic session is a great move by the Supreme Court. Providing a common platform for various medical exams will surely help candidates to focus on a national curriculum, unlike AIPMT, where candidates had to appear for number of exams with different programmes of study. Now, as all the colleges are under one umbrella, the chances of getting admission in MBBS for deserving candidates are extremely high.
Moreover, NEET Phase II examination has emerged as the ‘golden opportunity’ for all aspirants, especially for those who had appeared in phase 1 examination.
Q: Should aspirants, who have already appeared in AIPMT/NEET Phase 1 and are expecting a good scores, apply for NEET Phase 2?
Brajesh Maheswari: This is a tricky situation for candidates, as those applying for NEET Phase II will have to drop their candidature for Phase 1 examination. I would suggest candidates that if you are confident enough to improve drastically in two months, then only you should take a chance to appear in phase 2 examination, scheduled to be conducted on July 24, 2016.
Further, candidates who are in a ‘safe zone’, which means, they are expecting above 520 marks, are advisable not to appear in the second phase and instead should focus on AIIMS examination, to be held on May 29, 2016.
Q: How a re-appearing candidate of NEET Phase1 should strategize their exam preparation?
Brajesh Maheswari: As all the medical aspirants across the country will be competing with each other for a hand full of seats, the competition has become fierce. The main emphasis should be on a quick revision of the syllabus. Whatever books or notes, the student has been reading, same should be continued. There is no need to buy new books. Take as many as mock tests to check your preparation level and areas where you are lacking. It is also important to solve sample papers and last year’s question paper to test time management and problem solving skills.
I would also like to add that a common national level examination is not only a battle of knowledge but it is also recognized as a battle of nerves; only confident candidates can score high in this examination.
Q: How challenging would it be to appear in NEET, for the candidates who are from State Boards? What should be the preparation strategy for candidates who were only focussed on state-level exams earlier?
Brajesh Maheswari: No doubt, it will be a tough fight for those candidates who are from State Boards and were earlier focusing on state level PMTs only. For such candidates, the preparation has to be systematic and tailor made because henceforth, they have to follow the NCERT curriculum, a little different to what they were reading in the past 2 years.
I would like to recommend the following preparation strategy for state board students:
- Focus on question based study
- Brush up all the important formulas and derivations
- Carefully observe all the figures in Biology textbook and make an image of the same in your mind
- To understand the basic concept of the question, read the important derivation carefully
- Do not waste time in writing the theoretical statement on paper again and again. Rather one must learn to understand the logic behind it
- Practice and solve as much questions as you can. Try to understand the logic behind the questions you have attempted wrong
- Proper time management and developing a strong problem solving strategy with accuracy is required to score more in NEET exam
Q: The state board syllabus is quite different from NCERT or that prescribed by CBSE. To what extent is NEET justified for those who have appeared their 10+2 exam through state boards?
Brajesh Maheswari: This eleventh hour decision of the Supreme Court of implementing NEET from this academic session has disappointed many candidates who were earlier preparing for state level PMTs. But on the brighter side, there is just a minor difference in NCERT and state PMT syllabus. Hence, candidates must not worry as more than 90% of NCERT and state boards’ syllabus is same.
Q: Any messages which you would like to share with NEET 2016 aspirants who are appearing for the first time.
Brajesh Maheswari: Practicing more and more questions improves speed with accuracy for the exam. Practice previous year medical entrance exam questions to practice as these questions provide the exact idea of the exam pattern. While attempting the paper, aspirant should attempt Physics in the last after Chemistry and Biology. Also, NEET exam has a negative marking of -1 mark for each incorrect response; candidates are advised not to attempt those questions in which they are not confident enough.