How I stopped making silly mistakes in JEE test series
Shweta KatheriaMar 9, 2020 . 2 min read
Introduction to silly mistakes
Has it ever happened that you couldn’t solve some questions OR incorrectly solve some questions during the tests? And attempting the same questions at home without any outside help, you can solve them? Losing 4 marks in JEE mains makes a difference in thousands of ranks! Just remember:
Every single mark makes a difference
So how should you approach this kind of problem? Don’t worry! This is the story of most of the students during almost every exam in their life! What is more frustrating is that making silly mistakes during the paper. realizing them while discussing the paper with your friends.
Before we begin to give you a remedy for this and improve your rank in JEE Main or NEET, let us dig deeper into the problem statement.
Reasons for silly mistakes
- Finding out the right option when asked to choose the wrong option. Ignoring incorrect, NO, and do-NOT words! It happens especially when you mark such questions for reviewing later. On coming back to these marked questions, you sometimes forget those negating words
- Not necessarily all silly mistakes contain wrong calculations! Significant students make silly mistakes in Multiple choice answers!
- Due to rough writing on plain papers, equations changes during the steps!
- Ignoring obvious sidenotes e.g. “take pi value 22/7” or “take g (gravity) as 10″ and the calculation gets messy! Also, Options are always close enough. So ignoring these notes may bring you to other incorrect options.
- Inorganic (IOC) and Organic chemistry (OC) questions have the highest rate of making silly mistakes. Since you are in a hurry to solve them, you’re likely to skip minor details.
- Drawing the wrong figure and coming to the wrong answer.
And of course, calculation mistakes. But we have a cure for every kind of silly mistakes. Exam hall my sometimes leave you with a stressed mindset or elated heartbeats. But follow these simple steps. You are assured to get better in days. Here are some solutions:
1. Read the question twice.
In the first read, you can ignore the numerical values in the questions, just graze through the question quickly to understand what exactly is asked in the question. Make sure to do this as quickly as you can.
Now re-read the question with all the values at your normal speed. You may even think re-reading would waste time. No? Nope. It’s exactly the opposite. There are many questions in the paper that you’ll likely be never even able to solve! Knowing this would help you save time because you will not waste time in solving these unsolvable questions. And that is a smart decision. To save time in difficult questions and spend this spare time on questions from your confident chapters.
Practice re-reading during your weekly papers and save as much time as possible in the final exam! Reading a question twice reduces the chances of making silly mistakes by half. More on this topic, read here.
2. Standardization of Units
Most of the physics formulae you know are based on SI-units. The numerical values in JEE questions are sometimes in non-SI-units. Common examples are g (gram) instead of kg and calories instead of Joules.
Ignoring these units leads you to wrong options! Thousands of students are making this same mistake every year. To never fall prey to such silly mistakes, you should make a habit of converting these units into standardized units (With some exceptions, like Km/hr speed unit). Here’s a table of basic physical quantities and their SI units.
|Base Quantity||SI Unit|
|Electric current||Ampere (A)|
|Amount of substance||Mole (mol)|
|Luminous Intensity||Candela (cd)|
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3. Write neatly on supplement papers.
You will get a 32-page long supplement sheet to do your calculations in JEE main and advanced exams.
It makes perfect sense to make silly mistakes in dirty rough-work. Loads of things are going through your mind during the exam time. Adding such dirty work only increases complexity. Good handwriting is not necessary, but writing neatly is a good habit. The more organized your thoughts are, the better you perform during the exam.
One last point, Neatly writing your calculations not only reduces your chance of making silly mistakes. It gives you the chance to quickly go back and re-check where you went wrong in your calculations.
Other miscellaneous hacks
- Do the calculations in variable form as long as possible before substituting the numerical values. You can always verify the last formula with dimensional analysis if none of the answers are matching.
- Read the Instructions. JEE changes pattern every year. Sometimes questions have -2 negative marks instead of -1. Check how NTA gives you AIR based on your percentile from here.
- Every year JEE makes some mistakes in the final paper. But you only get the free marks if you’ve attempted those questions. So let’s say there’s a question in ‘Single choice correct’ where more than one option can be correct, then at least attempt one.
- Never forget to add Integrating constant while solving Integration problems in Physics or Maths.
- Most of the silly mistakes happen while attempting IOC and OC. Just be careful and read twice in these questions when in confusion.
- During matrix multiplication and vector addition, students commonly make mistakes in + and – signs.
To summarize, you have to change your habits from today, to see the effects in the JEE Mains and Advanced. All of these hacks require practice along with patience.
UPDATE: I’ve summarised a list of strategies you can use to increase upto 50 marks and give a massive boost to your JEE Main preparations. Here are those JEE Main tips
Editor’s note: If there’s a good looking girl in your exam hall, you’re more likely to get distracted. You may laugh all you want but this can happen to anyone! So you’re advised to keep control over your testosterones. ? This is 100% going to help you reduce silly mistakes in exams (and in life too!)
We hope that you ROCK your JEE
How can I stop making silly mistakes?
The best way to avoid silly mistakes is by reading the question properly. Read it TWICE, and go through it sincerely.
Give full time to a question. Attempt it with a calm and peaceful mindset.
Write neatly. Perform even rough work neatly, so that there is no error in choosing the right answer.
Is it possible to avoid silly mistakes completely?
Of course! Following advice from this post sincerely will help you overcome these problems, and it will be very beneficial for you in the long run.
Can practice prevent silly mistakes?
Yes, to some extent. Practicing with an exam mindset, and focussing on avoiding silly mistakes even in rough work is a sureshot method to avoid silly mistakes in the actual exam.
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