Is IIT Only for the Geniuses?


At askIITians, many students join our JEE preparation programs in Class 11, some in Class 12. And not all of them are topper-material. Some just managed to score 75% in their Class 12 board exams - making the bare minimum required to get admission into the IITs. Still, many of them do crack IITs every year because of their hard work, sheet dedication, right guidance, and some smart planning.

Here are some of the best exam preparation and test-taking strategies you can use to enter IITs even if you are not a genius:


P. L. A. N.


This is a very effective reading strategy in which you:

  • Predict: What do you think the text will be about? Read the heading and the subheadings, and try to guess what the text will discuss, what kind of information it will provide, etc.
  • Locate: Skim the text to find out where the information you are looking for is hidden. It is also a good way to relate what you are about to learn with what you already know.
  • Add: After you have located the information, check what new information you have learned from the text. This will help you to connect the new information with your existing knowledge base. You can also try to add your own understanding to it by relating it to your life experiences, making connections, etc.
  • Note: Now that you have added the new information to your existing knowledge base, it is important to revise and consolidate it by making notes. This will help you to learn and remember the information better. Handwritten notes are the best revision tool as they help to engage your multiple senses while revising. If you are preparing for JEE exams, prepare formula sheets and one-page mind maps or revision notes for quick revision on the last day.


C. R. O. W. N. 


One of the best strategies to reflect on the lesson you complete, you should

  • Communicate what you learned: Studying in groups or teaching someone is the best way to check how well you have understood a concept. If you can explain it to someone else, only then can you say that you have learned it well.
  • React in One sentence: You should be able to summarise what you learned in one sentence. This will help you determine whether you have understood the concept or not.
  • Where to apply this: Ponder over the situations in which you can use the concept or information you learned. This will help to check whether you have understood the concept well enough to apply it in real-life situations. Many JEE Advanced questions are application-based. If you know how to apply the concept, it will be easier for you to solve such questions.
  • Note how well you did: At the end of each lesson, note what you found difficult in the lesson and what you learned easily. This will help you to assess which topics you need more practice on and in which you are already proficient. If you are struggling with a topic, you can subscribe to a quick askIITians lesson on it for just INR 99!


D. I. C. T. A. T. E.


To solve a question, you first:

  • Define the problem: What is the question asking you? What information are you given? What do you need to find out?
  • Ideate:  Identify what you already know. What information or formulas do you already have that could help you solve the problem? Are there multiple ways to approach the problem?
  • Choose a solution: When you are solving JEE questions, you have to focus both on your speed and accuracy. You don't have to necessarily solve the entire question. If some steps give you an idea what is the right answer, you can mark it and move on.
  • Try the solution: Substitute the values given in the question in your chosen formula to see if it gives you the required answer.
  • Analyze whether the solution worked or not: If the answer you get after substitution matches with the choices given, then you have solved the question correctly. You also need to reflect on if the method you chose to solve a JEE question was the most efficient one or not. Can you solve it faster? How?
  • Try another solution if required: If you do not get the right answer the first time, try another method. On the actual day of the exam though, you should not devote more than 2 minutes to a question. If you can't solve the question, mark it, and move on. You can come back to it later if you have time.
  • Enjoy the process: Learning should be an enjoyable experience. If you start enjoying the process of learning, half your battle is won! IIT is not only for geniuses. It is for those who have the interest, passion, and determination to work hard and achieve their goals.


C. U. B. E. S.


A good strategy to solve Math problems, you should first:

  • Circle key numbers: When you are solving a Math problem, it is important to identify the key numbers in the question. These are the numbers on which the entire question is based. For example, in a question about Coordinate Geometry, the key numbers would be the coordinates of the points given in the question.
  • Underline the questions: Underline the keywords in the question. This will help you identify what the question is asking you to do.
  • Box math action words: Words like 'distance', 'perimeter', 'area', etc. are math action words. They indicate what kind of calculation you need to do to solve the problem. They serve as clues to help you identify the right formula to use. The units are also important math action words. They give you crucial hints about what the answer should be.
  • Evaluate the steps: Once you have identified the key numbers, underlined the question, and box the math action words, you need to evaluate what steps you need to take to solve the problem. For example, if the question is about finding the distance between two points, you will first need to calculate the coordinates of the points and then use the distance formula.
  • Solve and verify: Once you have identified the steps, you can solve the problem. Once you get an answer, check if it is reasonable. For example, if you are calculating the perimeter of a rectangle and you get an answer in negative numbers, then you know that something is wrong. This is called verification. It is an important step in solving Math problems because it helps you identify any errors in your calculation.


Join askIITians online coaching program for JEE Main and JEE Advanced to get personalized help from our expert faculties. We also provide study material, mock tests, and practice questions to help you prepare for the exams.

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