PrepLadder congratulates Dr. Akash on securing overall Rank 51 in PGI May 2018. We wish him all the best for his career and future ahead.
In this exclusive interview with PrepLadder, he shares the plan that worked best for him to help you achieve your dream PG seat.
India's most competitive test series for Medical PG exams
Hello, please tell us something about yourself.
Hi, I am Dr. Akash Kumar Ghosh, did my MBBS from JIPMER, Puducherry. My PGI rank is 41(general) and 51 overall.
What do you think is the correct approach to study for PG entrance exams? Only MCQ's or Theory+MCQ's?
Theory+ mcqs to start with but the last 1 month should be focused just on previous year mcqs and the highly repeated topics.
When should the preparation ideally be started?
Preparation should ideally be started in 3rd year. Central institutes mainly focus on core basics, so it's important to concentrate on MBBS studies which will really help a lot to ace these exams. It's better not to focus and waste time on controversial topics. The trick is making your basics strong.
Please list the books you studied for each subject.
Anatomy-BD Chaurasia, Keith l Moore, Rajesh kaushal
Physiology - brs physiology, guyton
Biochemistry - Harper, Rebecca James
Pathology - Robbins, Devesh Mishra
Pharm- Gobind Rai Garg, K D Tripathi
Microbiology -Apurba Sastry, Ananthanarayanan
Forensic- V V Pillay
ENT- Dhingra, Buddhiraja
Ophthalmology- Khurana, Vineet sehgal's OME
PSM- Park, Vivek Jain
Medicine- Davidson, Harrison (for few topics)
Surgery- SRB, Bailey and Love
OBG- Lakshmi Seshadri, Sheila Balakrishnan, Shaw, Punit Bhojani
Have you attempted any PG exam previously? If yes, what were your ranks then and what did you do different this time that lead to your success?
Yes, in December 2017, my AIIMS rank was around 3000, PGI- 1167, JIPMER institute 120. This time I had planned a schedule beforehand and kept time for revision, because not revising is equivalent to not reading. I kept giving regular tests and focused mainly on my weaknesses.
How big is the role of practice and revision while preparing for PG entrance and how much time should be dedicated for it?
Revision is the most important aspect of preparation. It's not about how much one reads, rather how much one retains. Revising the frequently asked topics at least twice is essential for any PG entrance. Solving mcqs daily is also very important. Tests should be practiced in an environment mimicking the real exam. Frequent practice makes time management easier and answers more correctly instinctive, eventually leading to less negatives. PrepLadder uses the exact same software which was really helpful for AIIMS and JIPMER.
Did PrepLadder play a part in your success? If yes, how?
Yes, last year during my internship, I didn't have any time to join any coaching. I kept on giving regular grand tests and subject wise tests on PrepLadder which helped me stay in touch with the subjects. This year I gave the AIIMS, JIPMER and PGI mock tests, which really showed me where I stood. I got 800 rank in AIIMS mock, 270 in JIPMER mock and 164 in PGI mock, so I knew my weak areas and worked on those.
Did you use a time table/study plan to keep your preparation on track?
Yes, I kept weekly targets and tried my best to achieve them. If I could not, I did not waste time and moved onto the next subject and tried to finish that fast so I could come back to whatever was left on the first subject.
Were you a topper or a mediocre student during MBBS?
I was a very average student.
List the most difficult and easiest subjects for you.
Biochemistry was the toughest and ophthalmology was the easiest.
One mistake that you believe everyone must avoid while preparing for PG entrance exams.
Don't try to read everything and don't use too many resources. Stick to a few resources and complete them thoroughly. It's more about smart study, concentrate only on high yield topics.
How many options did you attempt in PGI exam? Share some details about your exam taking strategy.
I attempted around 520 options. PGI negative marking is very high. So it's better to avoid any blind guess. The questions are basic and it’s better to mark what you know for sure and a very few educated guesses. Time crunch is a big factor for PGI, so try doing 80 questions in first hour, 90 in second and 80 in third. Don't get stuck on any question. Stick to what you know and don't guess would be the main strategy.
Some last tips for our readers preparing for PG?
Study smart and work hard. There'll be lows but once you fight through those you'll surely succeed.
We thank Dr. Ghosh for sharing his success story.
Best Wishes for pG Entrance Exams
With Love, Team PrepLadder