Can one crack JEE (Advanced) by starting serious study in 12th

So you just saw your 11th class test and got depressed and went to Facebook & WhatsApp to release your tension and hey they are all discussing the class tests there too and 90%+ marks in almost all the subjects. You even saw your close friend getting 99% mathematics. Now this kills. 99%… did the examiner make some mistake? The social media looks like full of anti-social elements securing high marks and bringing social disharmony. Remember the movie “3 Idiots”. If your friend fails, you feel sad. If he tops the class, you feel sadder. Human nature…

But let’s get serious. Despite all your temporary defeatist thoughts, you cherish a desire to get back to study and be serious this time. There is just one year left and you have to take Board, JEE Main, Advanced, NEET, BITSAT, and may be SAT if you want to study abroad.

So here is the question most of the students, who spent more time in youthful venture than on the table studying for their career, ask. Did they already miss the bus or can they still jump in the race to crack some of the toughest entrance tests in India. Let me answer this with my experience.

The answer will largely depend on two factors:

  1. Your comfort with the 11th syllabus
  2. Your willingness to focus in class 12th

First, a little about the syllabus In JEE Advanced, almost 60% of the questions come from class 12th. Hence the proportion of 12th is higher. However, questions from chapters of 11th such as permutations and combinations, complex numbers, theory of equations or quadratic equation, probability, and coordinate geometry almost always appear in the test. These are favorite topics of question paper makers from 11th syllabus. Hence ignoring 11th is not an option at all if you want to succeed in JEE Advanced.

Now let’s answer your question:

Your comfort level with 11th syllabus

As mentioned above, look at the complete syllabus of 11th. Select the topics which you haven’t done well. Topics mentioned above are pretty vast in scope. If you have left all difficult topics then you have to work extremely hard and long hours to understand them. Moreover, there is no one to help you as your school will teach you class 12th. You may ask your coaches to revise these topics. But remember that you have to put lot of efforts. This becomes even more important since you have to also study class 12th syllabus.

Your willingness to focus

Since a full year is wasted, you have to ensure that you will spend twice the amount of time than your friends. The syllabus of 12th itself is very comprehensive. Calculus takes major part of 12th syllabus. Topics such as application of derivatives, indefinite and definite integration, differential equation and its applications are huge chapters. Moreover, 3D and Vectors are other areas where students face problems. 3D requires visualizing the shapes and curves in 3 dimensions which is difficult to draw on paper.

How much hours of study is required

Double of what you would do otherwise. Realistically, studying on your own at least 4-6 hours a day should be good enough. Add to this your school and coaching hours which is about 8-10 hrs. This is a ballpark estimate. You have to decide for yourself depending upon your level of knowledge and size of your ambition.

Finally, remember that this one year of effort can make your life much easier. You will have lot more time to do what you want to do now apart from study. IIT campuses are fun places with little bit of before-exam study hours unless of course you want to change the world with your engineering skills.

~ Pankaj Priyadarshi


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