National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) is a national level scholarship program conducted for the students of standard 10 to identify, encourage and promote academic talent. Every year, about 1000 scholarships are rewarded to students who qualify the exam. Today, NTSE is considered as the most prestigious scholarship exam held at the secondary school level.
Holding a badge of ‘NTSE Scholar’ is a matter of honour whose benefits are reaped throughout your academic and professional life.
Before we talk about what you must do and avoid during your NTSE preparation, let us first get a quick recap of the NTSE exam pattern:
- NTSE is conducted in two levels: stage 1 (state level) and stage 2 (national level).
- Students who qualify stage 1 can appear for the national level NTSE.
- NTSE paper consists of 2 sections: Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and Mental Ability Test (MAT).
- SAT tests your academic knowledge and understanding as it consists of questions from science, math, social science and language.
- MAT judge your ability to think, power of reasoning, ability to judge, evaluate, visualise in space, etc.
With around 10 lakh aspirants across India, NTSE offers a tough competition to its aspirants. Hence, students must plan their NTSE preparation well and follow their schedule diligently.
Dos of NTSE Preparation
- Make NCERT your bible: Standard 9 and 10 NCERT is very important to get your fundamentals right. Begin your NTSE prep by reading NCERT for math, science and social studies through and through, for both the classes. Most of the questions in SAT are directly asked from NCERT. So, if you prepare it well, your SAT section is sorted.
- Give time to MAT: Focusing on their academic or SAT preparation, students are often unable to find time for MAT. But it is equally important for you to score well in this section. Start your preparation by solving questions on pattern perception, series, coding-decoding etc. With practice you will be able to attain speed and accuracy in these questions.
- Solve previous year papers: The best way to gain insight into the real NTSE exam is to solve its previous year question papers. You will get an idea of the type and difficulty level of questions that are asked in the exam.
- Focus on the HOTS questions: While learning concepts and practising questions, try and aim for those that qualify as HOTS (higher order thinking skills) questions. This will strengthen your fundamentals and help you score better.
- Take mock tests: With so stiff competition in NTSE, completing the paper on time is very important. To be able to solve more questions, you need timed online practice tests. Additionally, online tests give you best analysis of your preparation level, strengths and weaknesses. Take more and more mock tests for best NTSE score.
Don’ts of NTSE Preparation
- Don’t avoid your least favourite subject: Students often have the tendency to start their preparation with their favourite subjects. This sometimes leads to a complete ignorance of the weak and least favourite subject. But every subject holds equal importance, including the language section.
- Don’t load yourself: Avoid referring to 10 different sources for NTSE preparation. This way you won’t be able to balance between your 10th boards and NTSE, resulting in low scores in both these exams.
- Don’t overexert yourself: Find time to relax. Maintain a proper sleep cycle few days before NTSE. Eat light and healthy. Don’t exert beyond your limits.
All the best for your upcoming NTSE.