Keep it simple
As you are required to solve 150 questions in 180 minutes, the difficulty of questions is kept low & they are framed so as to be solved quickly. Speed and accuracy both hold important. I suggest you to be at ease, relax, keep confident and work at your natural speed. A conscious effort to increase speed may lead to a poor accuracy. Also, DON’T KEEP YOUR EYES FIXED ON THE WATCH, it will only create panic.
About the questions
Books Suggested: NCERTs
As far as individual subjects are concerned – in PCM, the questions are mostly straight forward and directly formula based. All you have to take into consideration is you should never start attempting a question blindly, go for it only if you are sure that you can do that particular question (the same rule that holds validity for your JEE too). For English there is no short cut. At most, you can cover it up by scoring in other sections. In chemistry, either you’ll directly know the answer, or the question seems to have been dropped from an alien world (especially with inorganic). This might happen if questions are framed from old Chemistry NCERT as the BITSAT question bank hasn’t changed much with the change in CBSE syllabi (at least not in 2008). I believe you should not panic seeing such questions because if they are out-of-syllabi for you, it’s the same for others as well, so it’s not just you who can’t answer such questions.
Still if you want to know if such questions have been removed or not, try the following:
- Checking up syllabus of Chemistry on BITS website & matching it with the two NCERTs (2006-07 & 2007-08).
- Consulting friends who have already appeared for their BITSAT.
Oh yes, do remember to go through Stereochemistry from old NCERT.
Preparing for the exam
Don’t take a date too early or too late. If you take it too early, you tend to get panicky that you are short of time for revision, and if it goes far too late, you acquire a feeling of frustration. Now this is what I’ve observed generally, you should choose according to your potentials and habits.
Try to make most of the decisions at home. Decide exactly in which order you will attempt the four sections. If you have practiced a full practice test you will be in a better position to decide the order (my order was Physics–>Mathematics—>English–>LR–>Chemistry; and I chose this order because I was most confident in physics, out of the 4, so decide that way).
When you solve the paper don’t make wild guesses. Answer only those questions about which you are sure. And the questions which leave you in little doubt, mark them for review and move ahead. Don’t linger over such questions.
Let me come to Bonus Questions now. Should one opt for them? You can’t decide this beforehand. There are some conditions which you should analyze while you are giving the exam. After your first ‘non-wild-guesses’ session of attempting is over, quickly answer all those questions which you have marked for review and you think can be answered. After that, count the number of questions still left unmarked. Now you have to analyze three things together:
- Negative marking you may get on incorrectly answering the unattempted questions.
- The marks you think you will definitely get out of those twelve questions in the given time.
Go for bonus questions only if you have less unanswered questions. My suggestion for time is [18 + (no. of Questions unmarked/3)] minutes.
- “Paper is going to be very easy” – don’t carry this mindset. Though true it leads to a poor performance.
- Do not loose your temper an don’t panic when you fall behind time.
- Do practice one or more full length papers.
- Prefer morning time for exam.
At the end, believe me, luck plays a very crucial role and it may affect your score by 10%. Rest, keep it cool, and have FAITH IN YOURSELF.
Best of Luck.
About the author: Himanshu Gupta cleared his BITSAT exam with a top score of 439. His IIT JEE rank is 159.
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