Last year at this time, everything was so different. I was a 12th grader , a Clat aspirant hoping to get into a good NLU and was just as lost , confused and uncertain about my future as you guys are. Nobody but Clat-takers can understand what I was feeling and the trouble of dealing with basic English, which we believe we excel in; middle school mathematics, which is enough to get sweat on our brows; analytical and critical reasoning, which can mess with your head like nothing else; legal knowledge ,which looks interesting but the typical terms take away your breath; and the last and the most important one, that is GK which includes evolution of humans to wars fought by Mughals , from speciality of Kabul to population of China, from Jayalalitha’s political life to Rutherford’s atomic theories, from Rabindranath Tagore’s “Geetanjali” to Sachin’s highest scores. It is so vast that you can never read enough and be sure about the subject.
People always told me that CLAT is much easier than any other competitive exams like IIT, PMT but it was as difficult for me like any other exam. I spent days talking to the toppers and figuring how to read and brace myself for the exam. And even though I didn’t take a drop year, life was just as depressing for me as it was the only chance I had to get into my dream college. At times, I thought it’s time to give up as upcoming pre boards and decreasing Clat mock rank did nothing but downhearted me more and increased my blood pressure.
I understand how you’d wake up at night haunted by a GK question you couldn’t answer in your mock test or the time and work question that you couldn’t attempt and you slipped 10 ranks behind your batch mates because of that. With the approaching time, everybody starts panicking, but this is just natural.
So here are some general tips covering all the subjects, shared because I went through all this too.
- Starting with the most important aspect of CLAT and that is “Time Management”. It is certainly not easy for anybody to complete 200 questions in 120 minutes. When I started taking mocks, I found it nearly impossible. But try to work on your time because that can give you a lead over others very easily. Keep a stopwatch while giving mocks and allocate time to each section. Take out some time to skim through the paper before the starting of the exam and do the section which you think is lengthier than others and will consume a lot of time. Even while taking regular tests, try and keep time and don’t get distracted in between.
- Take as many mocks as you can, even if you are not very confident about your preparation right now and think that you haven’t finished your syllabus and don’t have time, still take out 2 hours every week for the mock and then analyse it regularly, section-wise. It will help you know your flaws and you can work on them later. Increase your section-wise target with each mock and you’ll see the result yourself.
- As the exam is online, so take atleast ten mocks online because that would help you get comfortable with the system and you wouldn’t panic on “the day”.
- Talking about individual sections, I would start with GK as I have always started with it, if you are done with it-you have finished 50 out of 200 questions. So take regular notes from the Hindu newspaper. Do not skip even one GK Today quiz and if you want to be a little ahead of others, go through COMPETITION IN FOCUS and keep memorising it. Mug current GK of months JAN, FEB, MARCH, APRIL and till the date before your exam (I got a question from 6th May in my 8th May exam, so be a little bit careful there!).
- In case of static GK, analyzing previous year papers is the best option because you cannot expect an individual to mug everything up. Try solving static GK quizzes on GK Today and Jagran Josh, they provide a lot of additional questions.
- Next comes our favourite section, Legal Knowledge. We all take pleasure in reading the problems and applying principles to them for the answer. But it becomes an issue when CLAT decides to mess with you and give you a lot of theory questions like legal terms and maxims. LEXIS NEXIS would be the best book for that and revising it regularly in the set of 20 will prove to be a miracle and the terms won’t fade away from your memory soon.
- The easiest section that we suppose is Reasoning and English. And MK Pandey for reasoning and Norman Lewis-word power made easy, have made our lives much easier.
- Last comes the MATH section. One subject which has haunted me till the day of Clat because it always consumed a lot of time and I ended up not being able to finish my mocks because of only this subject. But practising this subject everyday and focussing on the difficult sections and understanding the basics even if it doesn’t come in exam, makes it easy and it becomes quick to solve. Also, keep cool while doing it because panicking worsens the situation and you end up not being able to solve questions which you normally can.
- And the most important thing is to avoid “negative marking” in the CLAT examination because it is where you end up losing a lot of marks. It is good to attempt a lot of question as it gives you a lead over others but it certainly doesn’t mean marking questions without having any clue about them. Always try to attempt questions you are sure about and then increase your attempts in the second go.
Other than this, keep your foucs on CLAT but give other exams like AILET, LSAT, SET not because you don’t know if you’ll be able to make it to a good NLU but because it help you deal with the exam pressure.
I would sum up by saying that it’s only 4 more months to go for the big day and I hope this article will help you feel better knowing that we all have been there.
Good luck guys!
We’d like to thank Aastha Sharma (Batch 2021, WBNUJS) for taking out time from her busy schedule and sharing her experiences with all of us.
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