Approximately four lakh students are expected to appear for the IIT-JEE 2010, scheduled for April 11, 2010. My advice to students is to avoid selective study in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics. This is because with the number of questions being more in objective type papers and with intermingling of their underlying concepts, all topics are likely
to be covered.
The syllabus is almost completely based on Class XI and XII (View the exhaustive syllabus with all chapters and their topics by logging on to www.iitjee.org). The JEE syllabus of Class XI and XII contributes about 45 per cent and 55 per cent of IIT-JEE question papers respectively. When you are preparing all the chapters of Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics, stress may be given, in particular, on the following topics.
Mathematics: Quadratic equations and expressions, complex numbers, probability, vectors, matrices in algebra; circle, parabola, hyperbola in coordinate geometry; functions, limits, continuity and differentiability, application of derivatives, definite integral in calculus.
Physics: Mechanics, fluids, heat and thermodynamics, waves and sound, capacitors and electrostatics, magnetics,
electromagnetic induction, optics and modern physics.
Chemistry: Qualitative analysis, coordination chemistry and chemical bonding in inorganic chemistry, electrochemistry, chemical equilibrium in physical chemistry and organic chemistry complete as a topic.
Planning is the key
The way to prepare and deal with the study pressure is proper planning and its implementation.
- Divide the time available on the three subjects.
- Further detail out the chapter-wise, topic-wise time schedule.
- Make summary notes/ points to remember of all the concepts topic/ chapter-wise and flag the questions with twist, intermingling of concepts requiring analytical skills.
This will help in quick revision, a couple of days before or even on the eve of the examination.
The right approach
Students, who are simultaneously preparing for Class XII board exams and IIT-JEE, should start concentrating on Class XII and the corresponding IIT-JEE chapters around 21 days before board examination. However, the flame should be kept burning even for Class XI chapters by way of revision till the start of the board examinations. After the board examinations, focused and concentrated revision of both Class XI and XII subjects will have to be undertaken.
The right approach for those appearing for the first time or second (last) time is to stick to one source and not to refer to multitude of books/ study material available in the market. For example it is sufficient to go through study-packages,
IIT-JEE archives, review-packages, work-books, Grand Masters Package/ Equivalent, AITS/AIITS series etc,
supplied by FIITJEE if the student is enrolled in any of its programmes. To reap benefits, the students, throughout preparation period, should remain focused with a positive attitude to study with utmost concentration.
It is quality of time spent and not the quantity alone. A short break of 5 to 10 minutes every one to one-and-a-half hours of serious study is advisable. Total relaxation during the break should charge the batteries for another intensive spell of serious study.
Pattern of papers
There will be two three-hour [P (Physics), C (Chemistry) and M (Mathematics) combined] papers to test the aptitude,
comprehension and analytical ability of students. The expected pattern in 2010 is a suitable mix of various types from
2006 to 2009.
Importance of practice sessions
To keep focused for better results, students should strictly follow a well-planned time schedule. During practice sessions speed in working out the questions should be developed. This is a natural byproduct if the student has attempted questions from basic principles in the initial stages. However, it is never too late to practice it. This strategy of solving questions from fundamentals will induce in the student a parallel thinking process so very necessary to increase and master analytical skills with conceptual understanding.
The proof of the pudding, however, is in the eating. Progress made must be checked by solving quizzes/ mock test papers on a regular basis. The student should aim at 100 per cent hit rate ie all attempted questions are correct. This will ensure a competitive edge over others who will be left behind due to negative marking. Speed and accuracy will also allow finishing the paper ahead of time, leaving some time for revision.
Keep mind and body fit
Asanas, pranayama and meditation (in that order) every day in the morning and/or evening will help to develop inner calm and power of concentration needed for success. This will ultimately be of immense help on the test day. A minimum of at least 5 to 6 hours of sleep daily is necessary to keep the mind and body fit.
Facing the exam
The strategy in the examination hall will be to keep cool, to have faith and to harness the examination temperament built during planned preparation. It is advisable to reach the examination centre at least 20 minutes early. A few deep breaths will ward off nervousness. Instructions given in the question papers should be read and followed very carefully. The student should not spend more than 45 minutes on any of the subjects in the first attempt. He should fix priorities after a concentrated quick reading of the paper and start with answering the question he knows best and move progressively to ones in ascending order of difficulty.
Questions with no negative marks must be attempted. The 45-minute cycle should be repeated for the other two subjects. Thereafter the student should come back to the three sections for attempting left out questions, conceptually with well-reasoned logic and for overall revision during the last 45 minutes. Even if some segment/ section appears to be tough, one should keep cool since it is the relative performance which will count.
The IIT-JEE exam tests one's understanding in application of concepts and analytical skills vis-a-vis mechanical/ blind application of formulae/ theory. Temporary set-backs or poor performance during practice in some quiz or mock test paper should not discourage and one should march onwards with greater will and determination.
The success in the IIT-JEE examination is directly proportionate to the number of problems solved independently and preferably by more than one method. To raise the bar and to develop muscles, the weight is to be lifted by the student himself.
R L Trikha is the HoD, Distance Education & Faculty of Mathematics at FIITJEE.
Caption: Students outside IIT Roorkee; Photograph: Rediff Archives