How many questions did you attempt in this may PGI 2012 ?
I attempted about 245 questions. There will always be 1-2 null questions and 2-3 impossible questions in PGI. It is very important to recognize those and leave them lest we lose marks unnecessarily.
What was your study Plan?
My main focus was revision. Revision, revision, revision. For previous exams i had tried to cover everything 2-3 times, and it didn’t help at all. Then i changed my strategy to revising topics constantly and things started to turn around.
How many hours did u study ?
I could never manage to study more than 10 hours in a day. On average i used to clock about 8 hours. I used to spend about 5 hours of it revising the same week’s or the previous day’s topics or some such. I never tried to study something new for more than 3-4 hours in a day.
Your tips for success ?
First of all, it is necessary to choose an exam that suits you the best and prepare for it. Then its about reading the right books and focussing in class. And then its all about revision and performance.
During your preparation, did you ever doubt your ability to succeed in it?
Very much. I used to feel either saturated or hopeless very frequently It is very difficult to find anyone who did not, at at least one point during their preparation. Some days i used to try and keep studying anyway and the rest of the times i used to just take a break for a couple of hours.
How much time do you think one requires for serious preparation for this examination ?
6-8 months of hardcore preparation is more than sufficient.
When did you seriously start preparing for this exam?
I started to prepare for PG exams seriously from last june, and for may 2012, I started in february.
Did you face the problem of volatile memory? If so, how did you deal with it?
Most definitely. More often than anyone else i think. I changed my strategy to work around it by revising everything around twenty times before moving on to the next subject or topic.
What was your daily timetable during the preparation? Were you able to stick to the timetable strictly?
I could never stick to it strictly. You will always have days when it simply isn’t possible to adhere to it and you have to make your peace with that. i always used to plan less for a day, so i could end up studying freely without any pressure of having to keep up with it. I studied for 2 hours before breakfast, 3 hours in the afternoon to evening, 1 hour before dinner and 2 hours after dinner. When necessary, I added an extra 2 hours either in the afternoon or after dinner on a few days.
What is your advice to the future aspirants?
Make sure you’re sudying the right books, remember to aim high and revise constantly. What we have to do is pretty simple. Its just that its not easy, and takes a bit of time. That’s all.
Which books did you read for the theory part?
Studying harrison, robbins and the sabiston notes from ADr classes were extremely useful, it saved me a lot of time. Otherwise, the books and guides i have mentioned later.
What was your strategy for the exam day?
To be honest, i revised as much as i could from my pocket book, which i’d filled with lists and points from different subjects for last minute revision.
What was ur style of answering question. Whether you started from question no 1 and ended with last question or started from middle of the question paper.
I always started from 1, but after completing around 100 questions, i used to do 240-250 and then come back to my order. That way if the easier questions are loaded at then end, i wouldn’t miss out.
Did u underwent the phase of depression. How did u overcome it?
Most certainly. Everyone goes through it. One must remember to keep his or her focus on the long term goal and remember that there’s a simple way to get through- to study from the right books. You do that and you’re within range. That’s all it takes.
Tips for your Juniors
What was your strategy for MAY PGI 2012 ?
To revise as much as i could from the guides and a few text books. I studied the answers to the past 3-4 years’ papers only. The rest was subject wise preparation.
HOW many choices did u attempt ?
I never believe in counting them during the exam. I answer only whatever i think is right and it always comes upto around 450-520.
What are the do’s and don’ts in exam
Performance is of paramount importance. So mocks are an absolute must. Try and finish the paper within 2 hours and forty five minutes. Double check for ‘except’ and ‘false’ clauses in the question. Restrict guesses about unknown options as much as possible, as saving on negatives is more valuable than scoring on the positives. Don’t be afraid to leave questions which, very obviously, can only have single respose answers like ‘most specific investigation’ etc. Direct your preparation to PGI-centric topics as this is one exam that gives you full value for your knowledge in these topics.
YOUR recommended books for PG PREPARATION
Both volumes of Across. Mudit khanna for medicine, alongside harrison wherever possible(i have not looked into ashish gupta at all, so i don’t know about it). Ashish Gupta for surgery. Both books of sakshi arora. Arvind Arora for pediatrics. Standard texts for ENT and pathology.Vivek jain and some parts of Park directly for SPM. Rachna Chaurasia plus class notes for Microbiology. Sparsh Gupta with Class notes for Pharmacology. For immunology, ADr class notes, Harrison tables and past questions from Manoj Chaudhury.
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