How to Prepare for Competitive Exams?

Written By: / Career Guidance and Education / Sunday, 31 July 2022 17:23

With the rise in education standard and growing modernization along with human needs, the competition is also increasing in every sphere of the life. Competition can be defined as a contest between the human beings for a purpose like job, admission, food or recognition and arises whenever more than one party is trying to claim the goal which cannot be shared or divided among two people or a group of people. Hence competition is an act of selecting the best person out of the different entrants competing for the same goal and is based upon the theory of ‘survival of the fittest’. Human beings generally compete for food, job, fame, wealth and prestige. Some scholars point out that students can be put off by the competitions, but may still perform well later in life. Despite the upsets, competition helps more than it hurts and brings out the best. Everyone has mixed feelings about the competition.
Competition in Studies
It is not at all surprising that the education and competition are intimately related. Education and competition are two universal ingredients of all human cultures. Competition is a major factor in education today. On a global scale, national education systems are intending to bring out the best in the coming generation and encourage competition among students from every field. Humans have always considered education and competition important issues, both in the past as well as in the present. There have been fluctuations in emphasis and there have been many changes throughout the centuries. Even students are no less and always tend to compare their grades with the fellow students. Children spontaneously seek competition with their peers. They seem to have an innate desire to compare themselves with others in every way which is a clear indication of the sense of competition among them and is also leading to a rise in pressure to perform.
Among those encouraging the competitions, there is no general agreement as to what constitutes the best way of putting competitions to good use in education. Some find that education in school is best served by a break in style, which can be accomplished through a competition that is only briefly different to the curriculum. The idea here is that the beneficial effect of a competition derives precisely from the fact that there is a slight change from the regular curriculum. While many others argue that competitions are an effective way of encouraging students to perform better and providing them with feedback. Competitions should be based on the actual material being taught in an educational institution and the competition results should be used to evaluate students like an exam.
How to Prepare for Competitive Exam?
Preparation for the competitive exam is very different from the preparation for a regular subjective or a theory paper. Most of the competitive exams these days are based on the multiple choice question pattern in which there is also negative marking for every wrong attempt, so candidates need to be aware of these facts, well before the examination. School and College exams are normally prepared for every student to pass and to score good marks, but competitive exams are different and are aimed at selecting the best out of them all. Whether appearing for engineering entrance exam, medical entrance exam, MBA entrance exam or CA, CS exam or Bank or PSU recruitment exam,  preparation needs to be planned properly and well in time, and one needs to move forward according to a planned study plan with a timetable. Fortunately or unfortunately, competitive exams have become a strict norm for selection to various professional courses in almost every country and hence competitive exams are a reality for the lakhs of students who appear in them every year and everyone wants success but unfortunately, it’s only the best that get through. The success in competitive exams is not tough, the only thing to focus is “intelligent hard work” rather than simple “hard work” which a labourer also does to break stones.
For success in such exams, the candidate must be quite sure of his level of motivation. Without a high level of motivation, no one can go through the rigorous preparation process for these tough exams. Hence candidates must be absolutely determined to give their best efforts.
To every candidate preparing for competition there are few steps that they need to go through to clear with flying colours:
Goal Setting: One really need to set a goal and focus all his energy towards the achievement of that goal. While goal setting one need to consider his ability, availability, and resources. A clear set of goal in advance help in saving time which is most important for a student. A good strategy would always take you nearer to your goal.
Selection of Right Study Material: A very common confusion that waste the precious time of students is how to balance the school studies with competitive exam study. A student should try to find a way that school studies can be incorporated within one’s competitive exams preparation strategy. One strategy is to look at each chapter as a chapter to be learned, a material to be mastered; rather than studying it twice as school & competitive exam-related study material. Ultimately, if you gain clarity about the concepts of any topic and practice a sufficient number of questions / numerical; one can face any examination whether of school or competition. Periodical tests in school can be considered as an opportunity to master the material that one has collected rather than restricting to the limited knowledge & practice needed for doing well in the periodical test itself. It may be not possible to complete all the practice material for one test but try to clear the concepts. Rest of the practice material can be utilized for revision and self-evaluation at free time. As the examinations approach closer, the previous year’s papers is an important key to do well in the examinations for both school and competition.
Competition Planning: Besides studying for the exam, one needs to keep an eye on other things also. Before the exam preparation you should first study and analysis of the examination essential requiring aspects like:
Last date for the application form.
Minimum qualification required.
The number of seats available in course of your interest.
Percentage of marks required.
Cut off ranks for the previous year.
Maximum and minimum age limit.
Join the Right Coaching Institute: Guidance for a competitive exam is very important. It is not mandatory to join a coaching institute or joining a coaching institute does not guarantee success. There are many students walking into coaching centres but not all of them achieve what they came for. Since these coaching centres are into teaching from quite a long time, one can take advantage of their experience in the relevant field and can help you out in providing the right study material along with clarity of doubts and a proper counselling. For this, a student needs to choose the right institute.
Time Management: Time management is the key to success. Everyone has only 24hours in a day, its only one who makes proper use of these 24 hours with right planning actually achieve their goals. Making a timetable is the thing that has helped most of the students. The student should distribute equal time to each section and once you have covered all the topics more time should be given to the section or part in which you feel you are weak at.
Mock Tests a Key to Success: Being prepared well for an exam is an advantage but already been through the same format is an added advantage. The mock test is aimed at providing the student with an idea about the exam and where their preparation stands are also analyzed in a mock test. It is not a difficult task to solve all questions of any exam. But what is difficult is to solve all of them in limited time duration. For that student should take sample papers and try to solve them in a given time period which will enhance their performance in the examination real scenario.
Clarity of Every Topic: Basic thing in a competitive exam is to complete in a given time frame and the candidate needs to complete their exam in slightly restricted and less time. In order to solve these question in relatively less time, one needs to have clarity of fundamentals and basics related to mathematics for faster calculation.
Sufficient Study Hours: Talking about the number of hours a student needs to study is a very difficult or rather an impossible question to answer. A student trying to studying for 5 hours with his mind towards something else other than study won’t benefit anything out of that. The number of hours that you need to put in varies from student to student and course to course. But it is a fact that regular studies to give out best results, also along with study one need to take out time for sports, entertainment, and other recreational activities for an overall development.
Examination Day: Weeks before the exam revise all the topics from the past two years that you are preparing for. Maintain your cool before and during the exam and attempt the questions calmly. Double check your hall ticket and stationary you need to carry and remember if you did your best during the last 1.5 - 2 years, you need not fear for anything. It is only your effort that would determine your result and leave the rest to your destiny or luck. So go ahead, give your best and leave the rest!
Competition is rising in every functional field these days. Growing opportunities along with growing population are not sufficient to fulfil the desires of every individual, hence giving rise to the competitive world. Competition has much to offer in education, there is a need for certain criteria in the selection of the candidates for various courses where admissions are limited and student applying are more. Competitions are a good measure of how well a discipline is accepted and integrated into the curriculum but still, there is a need to develop more practical parameters to improve the credibility of these competitive examinations. Education scholars are also confused and do not agree on whether competitive desires should be encouraged or constrained. One of the theory claims that, since competition is today part of every culture and our education should transmit culture, it is necessary to incorporate competition into education to help children get used to it in later life and there need to be some criteria for the selection of the suitable candidate, hence competition is necessary for education also and one needs to overcome this to be successful.

About the Author

Vijay Garg

Vijay Garg

Vijay Garg is a regular contributor of Imphal Times, mostly related with Education. Vijay is a resident of Street Kour Chand MHR Malout-152107 Distt Sri Muktsar sahib Punjab. Vijay Garg, Ex.PES-1 is a retired Principal from Government Girls Sen Sec school Mandi Harji Ram Malout -152106 Punjab. He is also the author of Quantitative Aptitude, NTSE , NMMS, Mathematics of XII, ICSE numerical physics and chemistry many more books.

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