How to attempt paper

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How to attempt paper?It is a big question for students in Asia.There are few steps for attempting a paper.First you have to analyze and pass through the whole question paper.

Lets us first look at the title. How to attempt paper is a title which perhaps written and posted in a hurry (no offence). Perhaps a calmer title would be how to effectively manage attempting a question paper. The other point "it is a big question for students in Asia" also assumes the importance asian studnets place on education and it seems to suggest that somehow Asian students are less well adept in handling exam hall pressure. This certainly isn't the case. Students all over the world perhaps are similar when it comes to handling that final moment before the exam paper is handed out: sweaty palms, twitching fingers, sipping water/drink/energy drink even when not thirsty, checking pen/pencil box, ensuring got the right roll number, registration ticket etc. If there ever was a technique to handle a question paper it is preparation, preparation, preparation. No two studnets are similar but a well prepapred student is very likely to manage his question paper well in the exam hall.

Whislt preparing for the exams it is important to anticipate questions well in advance and do mock answers so that one knows how much to write in the actual exam paper. For any question don't write everything you know just because you want to prove a point. Examiner wants to know if you know what you are asked to know. Secondly maximize(this can be done if you don't assume that the examiner knows all the stuff anyway so he will understand if you miss a formula ! never!!) your words for the questions for which there are more marks allocated. Fancy work(underlining, highlighting, colouring etc.) can wait for those last spare moments. Give answers like it were a verbal exam between your examiner and you. That means your answers should seem like you are making a reasoned argument or a case. Deploying your sharp memory as a tool to write word by word from a book is less likely to impress the examiner. Examiners perhaps more likely to award you for making attempts to reason out. However dont waffle if you are not certain. It is better to jot down that "theory" without an argument then trying to impress with a non-sensesical pseudo-intellect argument. Point is don't over do it . Do it to the extent where it seems intelligent and not boastful. The answers of the questions should reflect the degree of the knowledge you have of the subject. That's why the exams are designed for. Most students thinks exams are to pass(that they are) but at the same time they are also there to challenge yourself and test your memory, understanding of a subject, ability to argue and reason, ability to put a theory in practice and most importantly your ability to handle this "not so life threatning" stress. An exam is not designed to make you feel less inferior to your fellow students. Some though may like to gloat but you should keep your nerve. Enjoy education, test yourself, read that question paper calmly, answer the question in order if possible. It is always a good idea to write in the beginning of the answer sheet how you have answered the questions (it is best to leave a few lines blank to write this information at the end of the exam )If you attempt all long questions first then short ones followed by multiple choice then write so. An examiner will only appreciate your attempt to help him save his time. This will also make you come across as a confident fearless students.

The key to a question paper is prepare well in advance, anticipate a difficult paper, have a disciplined scheduled for a few months before the exam, sleep well all this while, entertain but most importantly don't catch up bad habits (drinking, smoking, etc.) to handle stress.

Rohit Tiwari MRes, MBA, BSc