When did you start preparing? Amisha: I started preparing for the MBA entrance exams 1 year prior to them. Earlier, I was just regular with the classes and syllabus. But during the last 2 months, I started giving more time to my preparation by taking mocks frequently. Akshay: I started preparing for the exam 6 months prior to it.
Did coaching play an important role in your preparation?
Amisha: Coaching helped me a lot in my preparation. The study material and the online content for reading were of great help. Apart from that, the guidance provided by the faculty boosted my morale and helped me get through every time. Akshay: Coaching is a must for any exam’s preparation. During the preparation phase, there were times when I was de-motivated. Poor scores in mocks sometimes discourage you. But my mentors helped me retaliate. Secondly, the study material provided by my coaching was balanced. Also, the mock tests and the material available online on their site was a great source for reading. At the end of the day, reading online is all that is required because the exam is online. So, the articles available on their website helped me a lot in improving my reading speed.
How did you handle your college studies and NMAT preparation? Amisha: Handling the two is not difficult at all. The preparation demands regularity. Akshay: It’s all about prioritizing. By giving time to both and by prioritizing both equally I was able to manage both.
What is your take on NMAT’s pattern? Amisha: NMAT is quite different from other entrance exams. In this you can choose the order of sections beforehand. Apart from that, there is no negative marking. So, I used to take mocks keeping these things in mind. That helped me boost my score. Akshay: NMAT is a computer based exam and by taking some mocks online you get quite comfortable with the format. NMAT can be taken 3 times in a year. So, keeping that in mind I scheduled my exam earlier. It is a speed driven exam. So, my focus was more on maintaining speed.
How did online material help you prepare? Amisha: NMAT is a computer based exam and is speed driven. So, in order to score well reading speed should be good. Online material helped with my reading speed. Other than that, videos and articles are a great resource. Akshay: Mocks and other sectional tests available online, videos and articles are a good source for preparation.
When did you start taking mock tests? Amisha: I started with tests 2 months before the exam and I took around 10 mocks based on the NMAT pattern. Akshay: I started with tests a month before the NMAT exam.
How did you analyze those tests? Amisha: Analyzing mocks was important. It gave me a reality check of my preparation. I got to know about my strengths and weaknesses and I worked on them accordingly. Akshay: By analyzing the mocks, I was able to prepare an exam strategy. I devoted 2-3 hours for analysis of every mock. Not only did it help me understand my question attempting strategy, but it also helped me improve my score.
What was your preparation strategy? Amisha: My strategy was simple- to cover all the areas and not leave any topic or concept. I followed a simple time-table and stuck to it. I think more than anything, it was the regularity which helped me score well. Akshay: First I worked on my basics and then I practiced a lot. I used to solve a lot of questions on daily basis.
How was your experience on the exam day? Amisha: It was a good experience. I took the exam just once. Taking mocks helped me a lot in managing the stress level and remain calm during the exam. Akshay: The exam was on the easier side and I was able to implement my strategy. I tried not to leave any question unmarked as there was no negative marking.
According to you, what are the most important topics for NMAT prep? Amisha: According to me, logical reasoning section is a crucial section. It covers some areas which are not asked in CAT and other exams for e.g. statement assumption, conclusion, and inference type. Akshay: All topics are important. Since NMAT has a big exam window, you cannot predict which topic might come in the exam. So, leaving any topic or section is not advisable.
How many hours did you study on daily basis? Amisha: I tried devoting 3-4 hours a day to my preparation. Akshay: I gave 2-3 hours a day to my preparation. That included time for online reading, solving quant questions and working on my weak topics.
Your advice to future NMAT takers? Amisha: Take at least 5 mocks to get accustomed to the pattern of the exam. Also, NMAT covers some topics which are not asked in other exams like CAT. Work on those topics accordingly. Akshay: I would suggest working on your basics. NMAT is not a tough exam to crack. So by working on your basics and working on your speed you can easily score high.
How did you de-stress yourself? Amisha: Watching movies and TV series helped me manage my stress level. Akshay: Managing stress is really important. I did that by going out for walks, by exercising and by hanging out with friends.
What did you do to overcome your weaknesses? Amisha: NMAT’s LOD is not that high. So, I worked on my basics well. I gave extra time to areas I was not comfortable in. Akshay: Doubt sessions at my coaching helped me a lot. Also, the material available online- videos and articles are of great help. I used to watch videos again and again till my concepts were clear.
How did you balance all the 3 sections? Amisha: By giving equal time to all the three sections and side by side working on my weaknesses. Akshay: The LOD of the exam is not that high. So, balancing the sections meant I covered all the basic concepts of all the three sections. For that I devoted equal time to all the three sections.