Preparation Tips for JEE Main and JEE Advanced

Preparation Tips for JEE Main and JEE Advanced

By Rahul Raj (IIT Kharagpur, Top Writer on Quora)

I am Rahul Raj, second year undergraduate in Electrical Engineering at IIT Kharagpur. I have appeared in JEE twice and cleared it with handsome ranks on both the occasions. I was in CBSE board and scored 96.2% in my 12th board exam. My ranks were (all General category ranks) – JEE main 2015 – 3021, JEE Advacned 2015 – 6766, JEE Main 2016 – 620, JEE Advanced 2016 – 1479. I like to help students and I write on Quora in my free time. I have been consistently writing about IIT JEE preparation on Quora and that’s what I like to do in free time. So, let’s get started…

First and foremost, I would like to put this point clearly that it’s not necessary that whatever worked for me completely will work perfectly for you as well. You need to adjust that according to you for the optimum results. The most essential thing for cracking JEE is perseverance, sincerity and honesty. Though it may sound too philosophical but believe me, I am telling you from the experience I have gathered. I have seen so called prodigies failing because they took things granted, I have seen talented students crying after exams because they didn’t work hard, I have seen mediocre students who used to ask very silly doubts getting way better than me. Why? Because they had worked their ass off for those two years. So, no matter what and in which position you are currently in, it’s still possible to turn the tide in your favour.

I said about sincerity and honesty. Why? Because now that you all are grown-ups, your parents will not force you or your teacher will not punish you if you don’t study. You should have that inner fire in your belly that you want to succeed. There was a student in my neighbourhood. He too was admitted in the same coaching institute as mine. He seldom used to go the class and used to watch movies on his phone all day (that 10 rupees per movie from internet café). There was another one who was talented but used to talk for 4-5 hours a day to his girlfriend. Love is not bad. But getting addicted to it at this crucial stage of your career is certainly bad. There was one more who used to sit in internet café all day and watch TV serials (that too of Ekta Kapoor’s), another used to play video games like FIFA and all, another used to hang out around girls’ hostel and so called ‘admire’ the beauty of the girls, another used to sleep for 12 hours a day by missing classes, another used to spend his dad’s hard earned money in expensive shopping for her girlfriend, another was not doing the home work given by the teachers because he thought that teacher is a Hitler, another was more worried about his hair style and look than PCM problems and there are so many other examples of such students who were doing totally bullshit in the name of JEE preparation. Why am I telling you all these things? So that when there comes such a stage in your preparation then you get an indication that things are going wrong. And from what I have observed, serious JEE aspirants are only 20-25 thousand students. Rest are too much distracted in their preparation.

So, let me tell you what a sincere and honest student be like! He attends each and every class, no matter what. He takes notes in the class, listens to each and every word of his teacher, discusses things which he didn’t understand with his teachers or friends, tries to solve all the assignments given to him, never shows lethargic approach, gets concerned when he gets less marks in tests, feels free to ask any doubt, doesn’t indulge much in entertainment and believes in himself. So, just be like a first class kid who does whatever is assigned to him in school, who asks if he doesn’t understand, who never cheats himself and his parents and who puts sincere effort from his heart.

I will now tell you about my daily routine. I was a student who never missed a class deliberately and tried to give excuses. Be I school or coaching, I always maintained notes and tried to do all the assignments. At times, I used to get ridiculed by peers as ‘Gandhi ji’ but I never minded.

The average routine was like this: waking up just 40 minutes before the school (around 7.20am) and going to school (8am), coming from the school at 2 pm and taking rest after the lunch. Then going to the coaching institute at 3 pm and returning back from there at 8 pm. However, coaching classes were scheduled for only 3 days in a week. On days when there were no coaching classes, I used to utilize my afternoon time for studies. After taking rest till 3 pm, I used to study from 3 to 6 pm. Then, I used to take a break for half an hour and again studying from 6.30 pm to 8 pm. After 8 pm, I used to have dinner and some rest. Again, there was one more round of study from 9.30 pm to 12 am. In my drop year, apart from the coaching timing from 2 pm to 7 pm, I put 6-7 hour more in my room. Mock tests are very important part of preparation. Give as many mock tests as you can. Increase the frequency of mock tests around December and keep it increasing as April approaches. I followed that pattern. In the last months, I used to give 2-3 full mock tests per week. Maintaining a concise notes for all three subjects helps a lot in quick revision.
Apart from studies, I used to read newspapers and listen songs. Whenever you feel like exhausted or depressed, just listen to those 3-4 encouraging songs. Also, I am a cricket enthusiast and I did watch some parts of India’s world cup matches.

The biggest challenge during my preparation was my Mathematics. Initially, it was my weakest subject and I was completely clueless about what to do. Then my teacher suggested me practice a lot of questions on a daily basis. I was initially lazy when it came to filling lot of pages for practicing problems. But Maths is something which requires a lot of practice and lot of pages filled by practicing questions. I changed my perception and started putting more efforts for Maths. That helped me in improving my marks.
Another challenge was to choose the right set of books. I realized that solving few books completely is much more useful than partially solving many books. I learnt this lesson earlier and that saved me from a lot of pain.

The flowchart that fecilitates better way of learning is theory followed by solved examples which are again followed by exercises and new original questions. And at last, mock tests. Understand theory first and its derivation as well. Then see solved examples on the application of that theory and then do some exercise questions.

To begin with, NCERT is a must for all three subjects. And if time permits, solve NCERT exemplar as well

Mathematics: Start with NCERT. That will also help you for your board exams. Then go for either Ceangage books (they are part-wise like Algebra, Calculus, Coordinate Geometry, Trignometry) or ML Khanna. After you complete all these, TMH’s math book is good for practicing problems. If you are getting study package from your coaching then believe in that and solve that as well.

Physics: I started with NCRET and HC Verma. I felt the need of a book with more explanation and solved examples. Ceangage’s physics and Anurag Mishra’s physic book fit perfectly to the needs. They have detailed explanation, solved examples and wide range of questions as exercises. Also, try to get some revision package in last stages.

Organic: Go for Ceangage’s book. When I felt that I need more problems for practice, I used MS Chouhan’s book. Brilliant tutorial’s and Resonance’s package are good for it.

Physical: Go for Ceangage again. For more numericals, I solved RC Mukherjee.Resonance package is good for it.

Inorganic: Read NCERT thoroughly. And I read only the JEE syllabus portion from OP Tandon. Brilliant tutorial’s and Resonance’s package are good for it.

With these subject funda, I would like to remind you guys once again about the basics. The single and most important advice for students is to be honest and sincere in your efforts. These two years are very important for your life. Don’t waste this opportunity that you have got without giving it an honest try. Don’t get distracted by the short term pleasures. That’s the thing where I have seen most of the students faltering. They indulge themselves too much into internet, movies, gaming, hangouts, laziness and all that they give very less attention towards their primary goal. A bit of entertainment is necessary but don’t cross the limits. Attend all the classes, make all the notes, solve all the assignments, ask all the doubts, revise all the notes and give all the mock tests- all these things are what makes you sincere in your efforts. Just

I always have this passion for helping out my younger brothers for JEE. It’s kind of paying back. When I was preparing for JEE, there were some seniors who always helped me out with the kind of books I should use, how to tackle a question paper, how to deal with inorganic chemistry, what do in the last few months and much more such things. What I believe is that their guidance helped me a lot and made the things a bit easier for me. So, if a student finds my advice helpful and feels that it helped him a lot then that would give me an immense sense of pleasure. The joy that I get after helping students is what keeps me motivated for helping out students. And that’s why I wanted to get a platform to reach out to such students.

Mentorship always plays a big role in achieving any goal. When you start your journey, you don’t have much experience and knowledge about the path to be followed. And having knowledge of the best possible or optimum path comes very handy.


All the best!