10 Key Points to Remember for Effective preparation: Scanning new MCQs for NEET PG 2020
It is always known that getting the new and advancing questions (MCQs) right gives candidates a big advantage over others. This is often a matter of systematic practice. Here I have a few points for you to remember:
1) Use a framework: It is good to have a ‘personal course plan’ to cover a number of important topics in a specified period of time. The objective is to look for advancing and new areas.
2) Do not learn in small pieces: Most effective method of study is to organise the materials as subjects or high yielding topics. Whenever possible try to connect related subjects and topics for better memory. E.g Anatomy of ear with ENT topic. You may use platinum access to easily search for questions from certain areas using key words.
3) Anticipate, Anticipate, Anticipate: Creative imagination is key in anticipating new MCQs for AIIMS PG. When you read a topic try and imagine how MCQs could be created out of it. This improves your focus on the topic.
4) Choose your books wisely: Examiners have a tendency to gravitate towards new edition text books. There are new and changing areas clearly defined in standard reference texts. Read the preface and the editors notes of the book. Also read the online reviews on new additions to the book. Using searchable online text books with frequent updates is advisable. This means you don’t need to wait for the next edition to get the updates. The drawback is often the cost!
5) Journals: Reading journals is not always practical for MBBS graduates, but if you have the opportunity it is good to scan through important topics. It is not the thorough reading that is needed. It is the scanning process to ‘anticipate’ likely new topics. If you would like to have e-journals it is best to choose the generic ones than narrow specialities. E.g. Student BMJ, BMJ, NEJM or Lancet.
6) Online Evidence Base: Checking Cochrane Library or Pub Med for new information on certain topics is a good habit. However, caution should be exercised whilst appraising new studies because all studies are not of the same quality! Standard Textbooks are more reliable for MBBS graduates.
7) Take Notes: It is good to take notes systematically for final revision. Remember this is targeted learning to acquire new information. And new questions carry higher weightage. So use the 10 note taking tips in the article (see here)
8) Image Questions: Image questions are often not repeated. It is good to make a list of topics to revise from E.g. ECGs, Dermatology, Radiology etc. Use Google Images to search for variations in presentations. E.g. Search Osteosarcoma and see all the images under this topic. See example here. You may also use free resources like Radiopaedia and browse through important areas in your list to cover. Do not wander on websites. Know what you are looking for.
9) Prepare for clinical scenarios: There are different ways to prepare for clinical scenarios. Some would browse USMLE model questions for analytical-style vignettes. It is best for candidates to create small boxes with salient points of signs, symptoms and distinguishing factors. It should be very brief, not more than 10 sentences. Find 3 key points for each diagnosis and highlight it red. 1 Sign + 1 Symptom + 1 Investigation = Diagnosis. These questions test your analysis and interpretation. Key points gets you a 70% chance of getting a new MCQ correct.
10) Analyse your preparation: Do not forget to analyse your preparation for new MCQs for NEET PG 2020. This is like revising your revision plan. Keep on top of the topics and keep on top of your plan.