Tuesday, January 19, 2010

TestBag's Test Simulator - The Final Plunge

With the test simulator, a summative assessment system, one can take the final plunge! You can prepare yourself for one or several challenges in the real world and prepare yourself for the entrance , recruitment and professional tests. The tests are available in four categories – medical, engineering, management, computer courses, and public service exams .
Practice makes man perfect and just the fact that a candidate can prepare for more than one institute or board exam gives the person a head start in self-assurance, confidence and skill. It is really a wonderful way to build awareness – since now the candidate has a wide variety of sub-categories and challenges to choose from. For instance, if you want to take the medical entrance, you can have a look at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences Test papers, the AFMC tests papers or the secondary board exams .
Again, you could go level-wise or subject wise. For instance, in the Civil Services, you could look at the preliminary exams or the subject topics.
Alternately, you could look at model tests in chemistry, physics and other subjects at the AIEEE tests.
Given the temperament of the candidate, she can either choose to start practice by solving question papers of the previous years or take mock tests based on old test papers. Yet others might move a step ahead and raise the level of complexity and challenge by solving question papers created by experts who have analysed the pattern of questioning of the previous years and formulated these tests on the basis of their observation taking different parameters into consideration, for instance the emphasis on topics, and guide the students through these tests to concentrate on aspects that need to be dealt with in detail in the syllabi .
The most interesting aspect of this section is however the independence of choice given to the candidate to simulate mock tests and the unique feature here is that these tests can be created randomly and instantaneously. This is yet another step in facilitating independent learning and self-assurance.
The benefits of this module are only too palpable. It makes for a more positive enforcement of an attitude to competitive exam. It is possible that the candidate will understand that excellence is just a wonderful combination of building up of awareness, discipline, purpose, clarity and sustained practice and aspiration. And that finally, it is upto him to exercise that will to do it, for he ceratinly has, in the test bag the perfect tool for actualisation.

TestBag.com's Self Assessor a wise facilitator

The Self Assessor, a formative assessment system is like a patient, gentle and wise facilitator at school, college, office or home. The one who will suggest, invite and gently persuade the learner to discover the rewards of self-discipline, tenacity and perseverance. Depending on what level one is, the tests are available for students of ninth grade to twelfth grade, undergraduates, post-graduates and candidates appearing for professional exams.
One could take this module as a way to keep up with the teacher in class, or stay ahead, inspired by one’s own improvement or better still, the slow initiation into love of knowledge. This is one of the most exciting possibilities that this module holds forth; one could, by moving up through the levels of tests, go deeper into the subject or go onto other related topics and widen the the scope of one’s learning. Or preferably, get hooked onto both, the deepening and widening of one’s field of learning. Finally, this would translate into the building up of one’s own capacities through practice. This practice itself can get very thorough and precise, with the candidate being able to choose from a very relevant variety of objective and subjective questions – they are among others. Five kinds of options available in multiple choice, there are multiple choice matching type, assertion type , multiple response, multiple response matching type, fill in the blanks, true and false and integer type questions; comprehensive questions based on common data.
The module actually moves very subtly towards helping the user perceive gaps in his own learning by initiating , just through a comprehensive and systematc upgradation of testing and questioning, a process of self-review. And the test history which keeps a record of the user’s performance can actually clear away doubts and improve time-management through practice.
So, the uniqueness of this module is that it makes self-assessment itself a thrilling journey – one can become inspired to delve deeper into scholarly work, or keep fine tuning one’s understanding of subject-related topics and keep improving on one’s skills, speed and reflexes at exams. Among the more studious, it could also encourage inter-disciplinary learning. The possibilty of class room performnace and the relationship with the teacher changing also remains a clear possibility. Often teachers and students get locked in personal prejudice and preferential treatment simply because their perception of the challenges of learning are often neither assessed, nor fair, nor clear,focussed and interactive.
Finally, this is more or less given that the user will be able to perceive his own capabilities and enhance his perception of the subject vis a vis his performance in the tests.
The subjects covered in the module are Maths, Biology, Chemistry, Economics, Physics, Geography, History, Political Science, English, Professional Topics and General Topics.
One can start module tests by either going into the subject and seeing the topics or use key words or terms and zero-in on the area of specific, focussed learning. The key word facility is available for most subjects except general mental ability and English.
The general mental abilty includes verbal and reasoning tests and these are further classified into tests relating to analogy, classification, coding decoding, series and relationship tests.
Good news for candidates for most of whom general topics and English is compulsory; one can start as a beginner with basic grammar questions and then go into more usage practice. The level of difficulty can be increased from the clerical cadre and NDA tests to the Banking, SAT, GRE, CAT, MAT and IAS exams.

Monday, November 30, 2009

How to prepare for IIT JEE 2010

IIT JOINT ENTRANCE EXAMINATION (IIT JEE)
For achieving success in any exam there are some fundamental rules common to all exams and there are some exam specific  preparations

Fundamentals for Preparation

Construction of knowledge in your mind is the key because only you have to reproduce this knowledge in exam. Teaching (Instructions) from school / coaching class / digital media are methods of giving knowledge to you but far more important is how much have you gained (construction of knowledge in your mind) and for that only your efforts will matter.  Memorising is short lived. Learning is lasting as you have put in efforts to understand each topic. In objective exams there is no shortcut to learning

After school / college teaching if you go to coaching classes, you have moved from teaching mode again to teaching mode but what is required is to move to learning mode because you have already received instructions (teaching) once and now it is important to construct (learning) them in your mind because only this mind has to reproduce knowledge in exam. If you have enough time, coaching will help by further reinforcing instructions (teaching) but if time is a constraint, you have carefully to plan time management – may be take help in weak subjects. But even after coaching, learning is a must. Teaching should complement learning which is final goal in your education  endeavour.

Remember learning can be effectively undertaken when you understand what is known to you, what remains to be known and initiate steps to bridge the gap. Third party only will be able to tell you what is not known to you. Here self assessor is effective tool. Once you have identified gap in topic or key concept (questions done incorrectly in self assessor), first try to resolve it yourself by referring to any standard book. Thereafter take help of your colleagues or teacher. Kindly do not leave these gaps unattended/ unresolved. Fill them same day as next day you tend to forget and there are other topics to be completed in your schedule. Master this topic well before moving. Rome is built brick by brick.


1. Understand your goal – IITJEE – Please go through tentative dates of the  exam and syllabus and define your weekly schedule to cover each topic. You have to master subject each topic wise step by step and the practice for final exam around two months before exam date. Please also understand exam pattern, go through exam analysis to understand the way exam was in last year and remember cut offs as they will help to bench mark your performance Go through the syllabus thoroughly. Most of your syllabus will be similar to that of 11th and 12th class of CBSE. Knowing your goal fuels achievement. Quantify your goals. Goals which cannot be measured are never achieved. For example your goal can have a short term objective - I shall complete laws of motion in next two days and shall be able to answer 80% objective questions on concepts and problems of laws of motion correctly and there after assess yourself to measure whether you have achieved your short term objective

2. Build timelines – Ideal start time will be 11th class. Build your study schedule week wise  alongside the schedule of your school curriculum as your MHTCET and school syllabus are same.

3. Daily steps

• Concentrate during classes whether in school /college or coaching institutes.
• Take your notes, jot important points to remember
• Review the knowledge you have gained subject wise /topic wise/ subtopic wise or keyword wise by assessing yourself through self tests daily/weekly depending upon the depth of your course curriculum in Self Assessor. Remember to build enough challenge in your tests as this not only assesses your learning properly but also adds lot to your knowledge from its own knowledge pool during assessment.
• Analyse your self test results carefully. You would have committed some silly mistakes. Try to avoid them next time. There would be many areas at your level which were unknown to you but are required to be understood for the exam you are preparing for. Try to understand/clear your doubts preferably same day on these areas by referring back to your books, discussing with your colleagues or from your teacher next day. Do not leave this to unattended because on next day other topics are waiting to be mastered
• On completing the subject you can simulate mock tests/old papers and more tests from test patterns of IITJEE in Test Simulator. As these tests simulate exam like environment, you will have first hand experience of your knowledge depth, speed and accuracy. In addition you will be able to benchmark your performance with previous year results and shall have good information on your level of preparedness
• The test taken by you are kept as a history for a limited time. You can access the same, analyse the results and discuss the same with your teachers/guides/ mentors to improve further

The key in competitive exam is:

It is important how much you know about a subject but what is more important is how much you know more than others. That is what differentiates a winner from a loser

Exam Specific Preparation

Time

Best time to start is at begining of 11th class itself. Complete syllabus two months before exam date. Build a weekly time schedule. Try to cover most of topics by synchronising them with your class curriculum. This will save most of time as well ensure good results in board exams besides IIT.

Methodology
Its very simple
Concentrate in class in the topics of all three subjects. Jot important points

Study yourself from any good book preferably same topics of the subjects for about 2 hour 15 minutes (45 minutes each subject at home)  to move from teaching to learning mode. For any additional chapter/topic which is in IIT and not in your class curriculum, an additional hour may be required but it will only be few cases and not daily. Then practice problems on same areas for about 1  and half hour (averagely half hour each topic of the subject)
Thereafter take a ten to fifteen minutes self test in self assessor on each topic of the subject studied by you to assess level of understanding achieved in the topic studied. These tests draw questions from a large and specific knowledge pool based on your selection criteria.  Kindly ensure that there is sufficient challenge in your self test. Your number of questions be more than 10 for the topic, (in keyconcept based on keyword they can be even less than 10), level of questions should be at least L2 and time should be bare enough to solve questions. If there are some specific concepts in topic studied by use, take tests on them also by inputting suitable keyword in self assessor.

Analyse results. For questions done incorrectly refer to books to understand where you have gone. try to complete this exercise alone. Alternatively take help of your mentor. The mentors can be your school teacher or teacher in coaching class. To economise time prefer coaching if necessary only in subjects where you are weak.
Thereafter retake test with new set of questions. Once confident, move to next topic. This is active learning as you have yourself put in efforts to understand topics. You will start enjoying your studies and these concepts will be long lasting in you mind






For more information and practice test visit www.testbag.com 

Books

There are many good books in market but stick to few books only.
Keep NCERT books as your base book alongwith one more textbook each subjectwise for theory and one book for problems. rest all should only be used as reference books only to clear specific doubts

Below mentioned is a exhaustive list of important books for IITJEE


Name of Book
Writer / Publisher
To be used as



PHYSICS


NCERT Physics for 11th and 12th
NCERT
Text book
Concepts of Physics Vol I and II
HC Verma
Text Book and Problems exercise
Problems in General Physics
I.E. Irodov
Problems exercise book
Advanced Level Physics
Nelkon and Parker
Reference book
Aptitude Test Problems in Physics
S.S Krotov
Reference book
Collection of questions and Problems in Physics
L.A. Sena
Reference book
Dynamics of a Particle & of Rigid Bodies
S.L. Loney
Reference book
Elements of Dynamics Part I & II
S.L Loney
Reference book
Fundamentals of Physics
Halliday, Resnick & Walker
Reference book
Physics Problems w/solutions
Chen, Min
Reference book
Physics Vols I & II
Tipler
Reference book
Problem in Physics
V.Zubov & V.Shalnov
Reference book
Problems in Physics
A.A Pinsky
Reference book
The Feynman Lectures on Physics Vol. 1 and 2
R.P. Feynman
Reference book
University Physics
Sears and Zemansky
Reference book



MATHS


NCERT Maths for 11th and 12th
NCERT
Text book
Maths XI & XII
R. S. Agarwal
Text book
Plane Trigonometry Part I
S.L. Loney
Text book
Co-ordinate Geometry
S.L. Loney
Text book
Algebra
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book
Algebra Made Easy
K.P. Basu
Reference book
Calculus
J. Edward
Reference book
Complete Course IIT Mathematics
Tata McGraw Hill
Reference book
Co-ordinate Geometry
Dr. Gorakh Prasad
Reference book
Differential Calculus
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book
Elementary Math’s
DoroFeev, Patapov
Reference book
Higher Algebra
Hall & Knight
Reference book
Higher Algebra
Bernard & Child
Reference book
IIT Mathematics plus
A Dasgupta
Reference book
Integral Calculus
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book
Intro. to Probability & its Applications
W. Feller
Reference book
Maths
Krechmar
Reference book
Problem Book in Mathematical Analysis
G.N. Berman
Reference book
Problems in Calculus of One Variable
I.A. Maron
Reference book
Problems in Mathematics
V Govorov, P.Dybov, N.Miroshin, S.Smirnova.
Reference book
Vectors
Shanti Narayan
Reference book
Vectors & 3-D Geometry
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book



CHEMISTRY


NCERT Chemistry for 11th and 12th
NCERT
Text book
Physical Chemistry
P. Bahadur
Text book
Organic Chemistry
Solomons
Text book
Inorganic Chemistry
O.P. Tandon
Text book
Numerical Chemistry
R.C. Mukhrjee
Problems exercise book
Chemistry Principles & Applications
Sienko & Plane
Reference book
Concise Inorganic Chemistry
J.D. Lee
Reference book
General Chemistry
Ebbing
Reference book
IIT Chemistry
O.P. Agarwal
Reference book
IIT Chemistry
Tata McGraw Hill
Reference book
Inorganic Chemistry
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
Morrison and Boyd
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
Francis Carey
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
Arihant Prakashan
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
O.P. Tandon
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
Paula Bruice Yurkanis
Reference book
Organic Chemistry
Bahal & Bahal
Reference book
Organic Chemistry-Vol I
I. L. Finar
Reference book
Physical Chemistry
O.P. Tandon
Reference book
Physical Chemistry
P.W. Atkins
Reference book
University Chemistry
Bruce H. Mahan
Reference book

Sunday, November 29, 2009

How to Prepare for CAT exams

Fundamentals for Preparation

Construction of knowledge in your mind is the key because only you have to reproduce this knowledge in exam. Teaching (Instructions) from school / coaching class / digital media are methods of giving knowledge to you but far more important is how much have you gained (construction of knowledge in your mind) and for that only your efforts will matter.  Memorising is short lived. Learning is lasting as you have put in efforts to understand each topic. In objective exams there is no shortcut to learning

CAT mainly tests your concepts with speed and accuracy

In most competitive exams, your knowledge is important but how much you know more than others is more important. As CAT has a limited curriculum, do not leave anything

This year CAT is computer based. You may be required to practice on computers beforehand. However the nature of preparation is same

You can divide your CAT study in two phases

Phase 1 is setting your fundamentals right. Master each topic chapter wise. Self assessor would be of great help

Divide you curriculum into short objectives. Each objective should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound. The overall period of all short term objectives should not extend beyond 10th October

1. Start QA, DI &DS and VA simultaneously
2. Master topics step by step

Phase II -  Start practicing to improve your speed and accuracy. Test simulator will come handy

Methodology

Study yourself from any good book
90 minutes maths
30 minutes Reasoning and Logic
45 minutes Data Sufficiency and Data interpretation
30 minutes English Proficiency and Usage
45 minutes Reading Comprehension

Thereafter take ten to fifteen minutes self test in TestBag Self Assessor on each topic of the subject studied by you to assess level of understanding achieved in the topic studied. These tests draw questions from a large and specific knowledge pool based on your selection criteria.  Kindly ensure that there is sufficient challenge in your self test. Your number of questions be more than 10 for the topic, level of questions should be at least L2 (except in Elementary maths where it should be L1) and time should be bare enough to solve questions.

Analyse results. For questions done incorrectly refer to books to understand where you have gone. try to complete this exercise alone. Alternatively take help of your mentor. The mentors can be your school teacher or teacher in coaching class. To economise time prefer  coaching if necessary only in subjects where you are weak.

Thereafter retake test with new set of questions. Once confident, move to next topic. This is active learning as you have yourself put in efforts to understand topics. You will start enjoying your studies and these concepts will be long lasting in you mind

Remember - Move step by step to ensure that you cover all topics and avoid confusion


Start arithmetic with number system - understand concepts from any good book. Initially take a 10 minute tests with 10 questions on number system in TestBag at question level L1 with question type Any. (Number system questions in CAT can be straight objective multiple choice or common data type where more than one questions are linked to a common data or comprehension)  Analyse what is not known to you and what mistakes are you doing. Go back to books, peers in group study or take help of teacher. Take tests again and till you achieve requisite confidence

Repeat this for other areas in arithmetic - ratio proportions, simplification, averages, logarithms, ages, boats and streams, time and work, time and distance, calendars clocks . Thereafter work on Mensuration , followed by geometry. And now cover the most important - Algebra (mainly Theory of Equations,Inequalities, Logarithms and Permutations andCombination). At the end work on Probability

Start English with Vocabulary, then move to English Proficiency  ( working on sentence improvement, rearrangement of words in sentence, sentence in paragraphs, paragraph formation, paragraph completion etc) and then move to English Usage (common errors, spotting errors, in appropriate usage)

Start Reading Somprehension with history paragraphs, move to science and technology paragraphs, sociology and philosophy

Start data interpretation with less complex tables, bar charts, pie diagrams, line graphs and then move to complex graphs, charts, mixed diagrams

Start Reasoning with data arrangements, data comparison, move to analytical reasoning and case lets

Remember - Move from simple topics to complex and excel step by step.

Once you are confident on all topics, move to TestBag Test Simulator for final leap. There are mock tests, old papers and test patterns on CAT.

Each test is build on previous patterns or by subject matter experts and clearly indicating topics included, number of questions, level of questions and type of questions. Each test simulates exam like environment with time and marking pattern of CAT

Mock tests and old papers have fixed question. But test patterns every time generate new online tests where computer based on specific  parameters randomly generates questions from CAT knowledge pool. This pool keeps getting enriched regularly

Again the new set of questions replaces old questions in mock tests after regular time intervals

Test Simulator will help you to build Speed and Accuracy and indicate
  • your shortcomings so that you can  initiate steps for improvement
  • your mistakes so that you can avoid them
  • topics you have not covered or covered inadequately

www.testbag.com is very comprehensive for CAT preparation and is available at a reasonable cost.

Books : Study from any good book. Preferably use only one/two books as your base/test books . Other books be only used for reference. This saves lot of time. Few books are mentioned below

TOPIC
NAME OF BOOK
WRITER/PUBLISHER
TO BE USED FOR
Maths
NCERT Maths from 8th to 10th
NCERT
Brush your fundamentals
Maths
Quantitative Aptitude for CAT
Nishit Sinha/Pearson
Text Book
Maths
Quantitative Aptitude for MBA Entrance Examinations
Abhijit Guha
Reference Book
Maths
Quantitative Aptitude for MBA Entrance Examinations
R.S. Aggarwal
Reference Book
Maths
How to prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT
Arun Sharma/TATA McGRAW HILL
Reference Book
Maths
Puzzles and some other number books
Shakuntla Devi
Reference Book
Maths
Higher Algebra
Hall and Knight
Reference Book
Maths and DI
Crack The Cat Quantitative Aptitude & Data Interpretation
Vivek Gupta and Sandeep Amar

Data Interpretation
Any good book in Statistics

Brush your fundamentals
Data Interpretation
How To Prepare For The Data Interpretation And Logical Reasoning For The CAT 3rd Edition
Arun Sharma/TATA McGRAW HILL
Text Book
Data Interpretation
Course in Mental Ability and Quantitative Aptitude
Edgar Thorpe
Reference Book
Data Interpretation
Fundamental of Reasoning  A Logic Book
Robert M. Johnson
Reference Book
English
High School English Grammar and Composition
Wren and Martin
Text Book
English
Word Power Made Easy
Norman Lewis
Reference Book
English
Business English and Communication
Clark Grade C
Reference Book
English
All about Words
Rosenblum and Nurenberg
Reference Book
English
How to Prepare for the Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT
Arun Sharma & Meenakshi
Reference Book