hi friends, i realise that many people must be in the same position as i was one year back......... i know that at the start of prep, there are a thousand questions and even more doubts and uncertainities ,......... there is an urge to make it in the very next jan......to use the time available most effectively so that we dont repent later about how we used the time for preparation.
I think the min i can for people like me is to speak out, to say something about what i learnt from 1 yr or prep.
but one thing,........... LUCK DEFINITELY MATTERS. now matter how hard u study, in the end it all comes down to the D-day and how u perform on that day.also how much u can keep ur cool on that day and steer thru the questions well makes a lot of difference . so right from the first day, AIM FOR THE BEST BUT BE PREPARED FOR THE WORST. in anycase, a good preparation definitely is ALL u can do , so forget about the rest for now.
in most exams with mcq type of questions, two type of people are likely to fare well. one.....those with a great memory.............two..........those with a good logic and reasoning . and the ones with both can prove to be lethal. i think these two abilities are inborn, cant really improve on them but one can definitely try to get the 100% of the raw materials one has. also these abilities tend to compensate for each other to some extent. i.e. a guy with a great logic, reasoning and analytical skills can get more mcqs correct with less preparation, and someone with great memory can setup a huge database with which he can crack most of the questions. these two types of people are always going to dominate the initial ranks (upto 300 maybe). so i think there is no method by which u can ensure a rank up there. these places are already filled up!!!. so u will eventually be there if u were meant to be there. WORK FOR it BUT DONT STRIVE FOR IT OR BE CRAZY FOR IT. and DONT COMPARE THE AMT OF HARD WORK WITH THE OUTCOME. JUST TRY TO GET THE BEST OUT OF YOURSELF.
realise what type are u. and u will know how much work u need to do.
all thru out the preps, i think the focus should be on GETTING THE MCQS RIGHT that is what matters in the end . hell with the facts and figures, get enough practice of SOLVING mcqs so that u get an idea what is it that they want to know by asking the question. i think this is a subconscious proccess which develops only by doing max mcqs.
so whenever ever u come across any mcq, dont just look out for the ans in case u have no idea about the topic. try to think something, try to fit in some logic, try to rule out the options, etc ........ and believe me u will be able to get many mcqs right in the end JUST LIKE THAT.!!!
i would always suggest retrospetive reading for most subjects. exception : Pathology (robbins- read the imp chapter whole, they will be help in many other subject mcqs. in fact , i say robbins is the best book to begin prep. it will create a good database that will help all the way)
Psychiatry ( ahuja- small and well written book. worth going thru whole)
for rest subjects best to go retro acc to me ,......... bcos,- there is such a huge amount of theory involved. every chapter, ever page, ever line can be framed as an mcq. no end to that. if u try to read and remember every thing that has been written, u would never end ur preps. so realise one thing U ARE NEVER GONNA BE A MASTER OF EVERY SUBJECT OR TOPIC. U ARE NEVER GONNA BE ABLE TO SOLVE 'ALL' THE MCQS. u are always gonna come across alien mcqs no matter how much u know. so give up the greed of knowing any subject absolutely thoroughly........ thats never gonna happen.
instead ur motto should be to finish a subject swiftly, but covering most of the imp and freq asked topic. and about the rest topics......... u would come across many of them as u do more mcqs. and in no case should u miss a whole subject by the end of the year- that would be a hangable crime.
summarising - the first milestone should be to cover all subjects in the first reading by covering most of the imp topics,..............by JUL-AUG 06.
study one subject at a time, ........ get any mcq book (ashish amit is a good one). take a chapter, FIRST GO THROUGH THE MCQS............TRY TO SOLVE THEM...........THEN SEE THE ANS...... then read the respective topic from the book.
that would make the preparation lively and interesting. keep ur focus on playing the game.......... i.e. solving the mcqs ( hell with facts and figures). believe me u will become hungry and addicted for mcqs in some time.
when u are finished with one subject , u will have a confidence greater than alexander-the great ........ BUT IT WONT LAST !!!!
ur clarity about the subject will fade with time. (esp. applies to people like me who have memory < 256 MB !!!!!). so the imp thing is revision..... WILL HAVE TO READ EACH SUBJECT MORE THAN ONCE AT ALL COST.
hence imp to be rapid in doing any subject........ dont waste too much time on any subject........... if something taking a frustratingly long time, JUST LEAVE IT.
so that was about doing the subjects, but there is one thing equally important which i would like to really stress upon.............and that is GROUP STUDY.
make a group of 4-6 good friends who are sincere enough and who carry along with each other well. devote some hours (preferablly 2.5-3 and at the end of the day) for group discussion. select a good place without any disturbance (and without any means of entertainment nearby!!). take a book like Salgunan whre mcqs are in a haphazard manner (i.e. not topic wise )............go thru the pages.... try to tell each other what u know..........share information and imp point u have.......... and look back into the book where needed... ......... one person at a time can read aloud imp points from the topic u come across. etc etc.... devise your methods.
that will really help u cover more topics and theory in shorter time.....give u an alternate way of dumping database into ur head........ and at the same time make the preparations a really enjoying experience.
third equally imp thing is TEST PRACTICE.
after most of the people in ur group have finished the course once (would be around aug-sept), suscribe to mock test papers which coaching classes provide(we hd got the vidyasagar mtp's)..... and once a week sit togather to write a paper..... that will really help u a great deal to give u the knack of SOLVING MCQS IN REAL TIME , show ur progress,.....ur weak subjects .........ur guessing ability.etc. u will know how many difficult question u should be attempting.
believe me the performance in these papers is very indicative of your real position. so in the end u will be able to know what to roughly expect in AI.
really tired of typing by now !..... but would like to add a few things.......
MUDIT AND ASHISH- very useful books, try to cover as much as possible.
PHYSIO(GANONG)- really pithy book. can ask from anywhere..... proof- AI06 paper !!! try to covr as much as possible.
BIOCHEM(harper)- really imp subj....can reallly make or break ur day. but very time consuming . can be done effectively by group study.
PHARMAC- (KDT)dont miss anticancer, antiarryhtmics and newer drugs from harri.
PATHO (robbns)- great book.....worth reading most of the chapters. group study very useful.
MICRO - another difficult subject..... can never be a champ...... stick to ananthnarayan... cover it as much as possible retro....and dont aim to be a champ!!!
most controversial subj. my warning - never try to read tht book pro. u will never steer to the other end of that sea....and if u do , wont know where u have landed!!!! meaning to say tht even if u manage to read it ..will never remember all.... not cost effective.
best thing acc to me - solve as many mcqs as possible and just have a look in harri about each of those topics.......DONT CRAM ALL .... ONLY READ 'THAT' TOPIC.build database gradually
secondly, HARRISON TABLES ARE POWER PUNCHES.. DONT MISS ANYONE U COME ACROSS.............THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF HIDDEN MCQS IN THERE!!!!
Surgery- difficult subject to cover. reading L&B is fruitless. instead solve as many mcqs as possible. IF HAVE TIME ... do schwartz pretest (recommended).
PSM -scoring sujbect. group study v.imp to prevent sleep.
SKIN - harrison best acc to me. few pages will cover most+ mudit ashish ......enough.
Anaesthesia - kdt for drugs, coaching class pamplhlet +mudit khanna........enough(NO LEE).
RADIO- mudit ashish enough
RADIO THERAPY- DONT MISS THIS ONE. there are questions scattered all place in recent exms. me did not read. if u can come across some basic book...read it now only.......will definitely give u an edge.
so thats it about preparations but remember, in the end it all comes to the Dday and Dday is all that matters.so be focused ,fresh, and at ease on that day. dont torture your mind much for 1wk before that day. do justice to each and evry question, and PLEASE AVOID SILLY MISTAKES.......BCOS THAT WILL REALLY PRICK UR SOUL LATER.
SUMMARY(keywords)- HASTE, FOCUS ON MCQS, REVISION, TEST PRACTICE, GROUP DISCUSSION, DDAY.
i tried to speak about most of the things i could think of. if some one needs me to clarify or elaborate on something..........pls do tell.
Note: Shaky got 511 rank in AIPGE 2006 and shared his experience at http://www.rxpgonline.com/postp196834.html#196834