Apologies folks, it isn’t a ‘progressive test‘ but it’s the ‘IIT-JEE 08 Part Test’. The results for the first one came out today, and my jaw dropped out of shock on seeing my score that even an anaconda would feel ashamed of itself. Apparently, I ended up doing pretty well (I’ve a theory for this – keep reading) when I hadn’t studied stuff at all; as I’d been busy preparing for the quizzes and other events in those weeks, including the ATF 2007 Exquizzit.
I’ve noticed this stuff in exams / quizzes that when I study and go for them, I end up doing badly – on how badly I fall flat on my face is directly proportional to the effort I put in preparing. Even for quizzes, whichever one I go into thinking “I’ll lose / not even qualify” I end up doing well in that; and for the ones that I prepare and think “Podium finish!”, I end up at the sixth position with 15 points. Same in exams. When I study and go, that is what happens:
- Easy questions: “How can it be that an IIT-JEE part test has a question this easy? There MUST be some catch!”. Then screw it up by taking some absurd and convoluted path, until I get a complex enough equation that seems worthy of the IIT-JEE.
- Difficult questions: “Ha! I’ve done 42 questions of this sort at home. This one’s EASY!”. And guess what – those are the VERY questions which actually have a catch which you’re supposed to look out for. Do the obvious (and simple stuff), and you’ve lost precious points.
I’m pretty sure that’s the case with at least some other people too. However, when I DON’T study and go, this is what happens:
- Easy / difficult questions: “Holy 42, I really SHOULD have studied at home, you know. Ah well, since there’s nothing else to do for three hours, lemme just stick to the basics and apply conservation of energy in this / [insert your own reason according to question here].”
And THAT, working from the basics, is helps. When you’ve STUDIED a lot, your mind is always trying to correct out the correct FORMULA to do a question. When you don’t know ANYTHING, you end up trying to work with the basics.
Coming back to the test, the ARC Mumbai folks have occupied all the top slots this time, leaving the ARC New Delhi people far behind. I get this bad feeling though that the next part test ain’t gonna be this lucky for me…