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Which are the toughest exams in India and how to crack them?

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“To succeed, or to fail, is a choice!”

The increase in the population in India has also led to a proportional rise in the number of educated individuals in the nation. However, the number of jobs, unfortunately, have not received a similar boost. As a result, unemployment in India has become a major problem for the educated youth.

As a method of selection of employees, the Government of India, and various other private bodies, have designed a number of examinations. Quite a few of these are some of the toughest to crack in the nation.

A few of those exams are:

The UPSC or Civil Services Examination (CSE):

It is a nationwide competitive examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). This examination is designed for recruitment to various civil services. They include the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), Indian Police Service (IPS) and Indian Revenue Service (IRS). It is conducted in two phases. The first phase consists of a preliminary examination with two objective-type papers: on general studies and an aptitude test. The main examination consists of nine papers of conventional essay type questions, followed by a personality test, i.e., an interview. The candidate appearing for the examination must have at least one degree from a deemed university, or an equivalent educational qualification. The age of the candidate must be between 21 to 32 years and each candidate is eligible to sit for the examination up to a maximum of 6 times (except SC, ST and OBC candidates). The civil service is one of the most coveted jobs in India. And the candidates appear from all corners of the nation. It has an achievement rate of a mere 0.1%-0.3%, with more than 9,00,000 candidates appearing each time.

Tips to success:

  • Picking up recommended books and right study material is of utmost importance.
  • Know the ‘entire’ syllabus well. Understand your strengths and weak areas.
  • Current Affairs play leading role in the Civil Service main exam. Whatever you read, try to make note of it, it helps to revise. Use 1 good source instead of referring to several sources in bits and pieces.
  • Focus on acquiring skills for presenting the answers in the subjective papers. Don’t repeat the paragraphs. If graphs, pie-charts, flow charts are required draw them to make examiner know what you have written. Always follow word-limit.
  • Take several mock examinations. Understand where you are going wrong and repractise those areas. Taking mocks will also help in improving speed.

Chartered Accountancy:

The Indian Chartered Accountancy examination is considered to be one of the toughest accounting examinations in the world. Consisting of a 3-level examination pattern and a mandatory 3 year internship, it is known to build students not only theoretically, but also practically. The success rate of this exam varies from 3-16%, which is declared depending upon the demand of CAs in India.

Tips to success:

  • Give more stress on understanding learning rather than rote learning
  • Find out your weak subjects and strong subjects make strong to stronger to cover your aggregate and convert weak into strong.
  • Don’t forget amendments – for amendments, read the ICAI books or updated notes from your teacher.
  • Focus on ICAI Study Material, Practice Manuals and RTPs.
  • Do smart-studying rather than trying to learn each and every page of the book. See what is important, analyze it and do prepare for it well.

National Eligibility Test (NET):

It is conducted by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and is the national level entrance examination for postgraduate candidates. NET is conducted for determining the eligibility for the Award of Junior Research Fellowships (JRF) and eligibility for lectureship in various Indian universities and colleges. It is conducted in 78 subjects at 74 selected university centres around the country. Candidates who qualify for the award of Junior Research Fellowship are eligible to pursue research in the subject of their post-graduation or in a related subject. The award of JRF will depend on the performance of the candidate in NET. The qualified candidates will also be eligible for lectureship. However, the candidates qualifying exclusively for lectureship will not be considered for award of JRF.

Tips to success:

  • Make a complete note of the syllabus.
  • Read from the correct books – choose your books wisely.
  • Make a habit of preparing short-notes – it is the best way of practicing your syllabus in a short time and revise everything.
  • To test your knowledge for what you’ve learned and understood, start teaching someone else. This will help you in memorizing things for long duration.

All India Institute of Medical Sciences Joint Entrance Examination (AIIMS-JEE): 

It is conducted by the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), in order to select the candidates who would be eligible to enter the AIIMS as a student. Candidates have to appear for the single paper exam which consists of 200 objective-type questions, which include both multiple-choice questions and reason-assertion type questions. Out of the 200 questions asked in the AIIMS exam, 60 questions are asked from Physics, 60 questions are asked from Chemistry, 60 questions are asked from Biology (Botany & Zoology), and 20 questions are asked from General Knowledge. To be eligible for admission in AIIMS, candidates need to score at least 50% marks in the exam (cutoff marks for SC, ST and OBC candidates are different).

Tips to success:

  • The most important step of all is the first step – begin your preparation right away. Prepare early, prepare well.
  • Do not waste time on unimportant things, devote more time to studying instead.
  • Getting into a good coaching class specialized for preparing students for the AIIMS entrance examination is The lessons learnt should be segregated subject-wise and should always be revised after the class.
  • Be exam specific during preparation – understand the exam pattern and what is expected of you.
  • Seek good advice – The best person to seek advice is the one who has cracked the AIIMS entrance exam and whom you consider to be on the same level as yourself.

Joint Entrance Examination (JEE):

It is an all India common engineering entrance examination which is conducted for admission in various engineering colleges all over the country. Conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) the JEE consists of two parts, JEE Main and JEE Advanced. JEE-Advanced is for admission to Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), while the JEE-Main exam is for admission to National Institutes of Technology (NITs), Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIITs), Centrally Funded Technical Institutes (CFTIs). Only the students selected in JEE Mains are eligible for appearing in JEE Advanced. JEE Main exam has two papers, Paper-1 and Paper-2. Candidates may opt for either or both of them. Both papers contain multiple choice questions. Paper 1 is for admission to B.E./B.Tech courses and is conducted both online and offline. Paper-2 is for admission in B.Arch and B.Planning courses and is conducted offline only.  It has a success rate of around 1 in 45.

Tips to success:

  • Start preparing for JEE right after your Class 10 exams.
  • Develop a natural interest in Physics, Chemistry and Maths – think in terms of actual scenarios and not just solving problems.
  • Build a good timetable and follow it religiously. Systematic study is more important than studying concepts randomly.
  • Solve at least 40-80 numerical problems daily – spread across all the subjects, and set time limits for questions.
  • Prioritize by topics – and start with the difficult areas first.

By smart planning, continuing efforts, and a never-give-up attitude, everyone has the opportunity to crack these exams and build their dream careers!

Happy studying!

Disclaimer: The above article is curated based on limited and publicly available open source information. The views and opinions expressed therein and all data and information so provided is solely for informational purposes, to be used at the sole discretion of the reader. If you disagree with any article or any part thereof, please contact us and we will resolve the issue at the earliest. KyaBae makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, currentness, suitability, or validity of any information and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use.

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