1st September

"BEST Strategy for the exam hall"
In our last article, we discussed as to how temperament is the defining character of success in this exam. Now, we take up the all-important article of Strategy for the exam hall i.e. how every section of the exam needs to be attempted, in what order, what important points to be remembered for any specific section etc. 
We have divided this article into three parts. We are taking up the first part here:
Important Action Points:
A. Estimating cut-offs:
Always be mindful of the expected cut-off for a subject depending on its easyness or toughness in the exam. You should be quick to judge that Verbal Ability's paper, for example, is very easy this time and thus the cut-off is bound to rise by 5-10%.
If you don't do this judgement, then you might solve only 30 questions, for example, instead of the 35 needed for cut-off. On the other hand, if you are quick to judge about high cut-off, you will easily solve 35 questions, and be safe. A small judgement on cut-offs can be a huge factor in your selection in the exam. 
Focus on clearing cut-offs in 2 sections that are not very easy for you, and on scoring heavily in the other 2 sections which are your plus points. Even if not 2, in any case, you need to have at least 1 heavily-scoring section for yourself. Otherwise, you will clear cut-offs, but won't get selected.
B. Ordering sections: 
Start with the easiest one. Start with the subject you are comfortable with. If you are good at Logical Reasoning, then start with it. Confidence in the first few minutes in the exam hall can play a deciding role in your performance.
If you take a tougher part in the first few minutes and fail to attempt 2-3 questions, then you will start feeling the heat and this heat will reflect in the entire paper. So, always start with the your best section first. 
C. Utilizing options to the fullest:
This is one trick that should be utilized when you are short of time, especially during the last half an hour or so. Let us check this with an example:
Question: Fill in the blank with the correct word: 
Raj is learning guitar very fast; still he is an --------
A. Expert
B. Amateur
C. Dilettante
D. Dabbler
The options look confusing here. But a keen observer can observe that the article used in the question is "an", which means options C and D, even though quite tough, are rejected automatically. We are left only with A and B. In otherwise case, someone would be thinking hard to remind himself of the meaning of the tough words. While a smart fellow would have outright rejected those tough options.
Thus, we see that many times the task becomes significantly easier when we utilize options. Thus, one must make the best possible use of options, especially in Verbal Ability and Quantitative Aptitude.
In the next part of this article, we will see how specific questions should be selected and how this can be a deciding factor for your success.