Akash Deep Singh (AILET AIR 1) explains the enigma of Post-Mock Analysis
I am quite sure all of you would have heard this innumerable times from an uncountable number of people (exaggeration is not always a bad idea :P) that giving mocks is the best way to practice for CLAT. LawKey itself has been telling you the same thing. If I haven’t made it clear already, I am also a part of the same bandwagon and believe that mocks are the best practice you can get. Most of you have taken this advice seriously and are giving one mock a day. A mock a day is easy to manage and it leaves you with enough time to keep on working on your weaker subjects. But, please bear in mind you can cut down to 4-5 mocks a week, if it gets exhausting for you. Your mind needs to be fresh before you attempt any mock, otherwise it’s of no use. If you are still in class 12th and worried about not being able to practice mocks. STOP. Boards are the most important thing in your life right now and you have to pay complete attention to them. You can get back to CLAT when boards end, people at NLS and other NLUs have managed to crack CLAT while studying in 12th, you can do it too! You have been preparing for CLAT and as earlier articles on the page have already said believe in that preparation. This is true for any CLAT 2016 aspirant.
But as you have already noticed, this article isn’t (solely!) about keeping you guys motivated or exhorting you to do more mocks. It is about what to do after you have given a mock. Trust me, and more importantly my experience, when I say that analysis is more important than increasing the number of mocks you have attempted. A person who has practiced only 3-4 mocks a week but has analysed them to gauge his strength and weaknesses and has used the time available to him to work on them, has a much better chance of getting in than someone who gave 3 mocks a day but didn’t stop to analyse them.
It is after you have finished your mock when the real work starts. Mock analysis proceeds at two levels. The immediate one happens just after you have given the mock, which you should ideally do on the same day or the next day. The second approach is to be done with a homogenized set of mocks, by which I am referring to test series released by one single institute, and then analyze it in entirety. I will come back to the second approach later.
The immediate analysis entails looking at every question that you were not able to attempt or those questions you got wrong. Plan how you are going to address each one of them over the next few days. Analyse how much time you took per question. Is there a particular section that you are giving too much time to? Work on setting a time limit for each section and try to adhere to this time limit. Pay particular attention to the time taken by you on incorrect questions. Did you genuinely believe you could solve that question or were you stubborn enough to not move on? These are some of the things that you have to keep in mind while analysing your mocks.
The second approach, and I urge you to follow this at all costs, is to be done with a homogenized set of mocks. Coaching institutes who release these mocks provide you with an answer key unlike myriad other mocks that you will practice. This is an additional reason why the second approach to analyse your mocks must be followed. Also as it is online, you can observe the time taken by you in different questions. Most of the mocks in a test series are of the same level. The difficulty level sometimes goes up or down but that’s also to prepare you better. It’s CLAT, anything can happen. Take 3-4 of your past mocks and go through each of them section wise. You will notice that you are getting a certain type of question wrong again and again. Today’s the day when you will practice them till you get them right. Then move on to the questions which you were able to answer correctly. How much time did you take in them? Learn the tips and tricks to reduce this time. You are going through the paper to recognize the patterns present in your mocks and believe me, they are there. A particular type of question that you are always getting wrong, questions which you spend a lot of time on but do get it right, eventually.
Also you will have tried out different strategies in these mocks and this is an opportunity to check which one suits you. Use the most beneficial one in the next mock. It might not be the perfect one for you but you have time till March end to discover your perfect strategy. After that you have more or less decided on your approach and now you are working on fine-tuning it.
In the end I would like to reiterate, practicing a mock is doing half the job. Until you analyse your mocks, you are getting no benefit out of practicing so many mocks.
All the best.
–Akash Deep Singh