“Aim for at least 70% correct in any Marrow test/Qbank”, says Dr. Umang Arora Rank 1 AIIMS PG & Marrow Pro student
Hi Dr. Umang, Big congratulations on Rank 1! Tell us a little about yourself:
Hey there! I’m from Delhi – born and brought up. I am currently an Intern at AIIMS, New Delhi where I have done my MBBS from. I only took the AIIMS Nov PG exam and was lucky to come first (AIR 1). I have joined medicine at my institute in the first round of counselling and I will see what sub-speciality interests me during my residency and go from there! The biggest credit to my success goes to God, my parents and teaching at AIIMS, in no particular order.
When did you start preparing for the exam?
I started studying from 2nd Proff but I started preparing solely for entrances only during my internship. I have always worked on improving my knowledge base and focusing on posting/ college classes.
What is your take on Marrow Qbank?
For nearly 6-8 subjects, I used marrow as my main Qbank and for the others, I studied from standard textbooks and notes. I did not use any guides. I would recommend my juniors to use Marrow QBank on every subject after studying whatever material you do. Aim for at least 70% correct in any test/Qbank.
Did you make notes while solving the QBank?
I did make notes for one particular area of one subject but not for others. I feel it was difficult to manage making extra notes and instead I would solve the Qs I had incorrect/bookmarked.
Which feature of Marrow did you find the most useful?
I feel that the regular subject tests/ mini tests/ GTs that are put up every 2-3 days are helpful and I tried to attempt most of them. I would suggest tracking your ranks and focussing more on the ranks of GTs/ combined tests ( I was often in top 10) than individual subject tests.(I was often in top 50)
When do you recommend your juniors to start preparing with Marrow?
I would suggest Q banks only after final proff. I would highly recommend it in January of your internship regardless of if you might have a difficult internship and need to prepare for another year. It is quite convenient to solve Qs while on the move/ in breaks.
What was your Rank in the Marrow AIIMS Mock?
I was rank 2 in the mock exam, behind my friend who was rank 2 in the real exam. So overall, I would recommend the mock exam as it gave us a lot of updates.
Who is your favourite teacher in Marrow?
I think Dr. Rohan Khandelwal is a fantastic teacher and his notes are very high yield for AIIMS.
How many Grand Tests did you give?
I have probably given 3-4 GTs diligently including AIIMS mock.
How often do you recommend giving a GT?
I would suggest following the pace of Marrow, and one GT every 3-4 weeks is sufficient. A mistake I wish others wouldnt do is to postpone seeing the solutions- that time never comes. Either you see your mistakes that day or never.
What was your strategy in the last few days?
I closed myself off socially, was in constant touch with two of my closest seniors in order to maintain composure and sanity. I agree with them in that the last few days are for your own satisfaction and you shouldnt stress even if you arent able to study as much as you wish you would, you have already studied most of what you will be able to finally answer in the exam already!
A few pointers/tips about the AIIMS exam:
Focus on the topics that are frequently repeated in AIIMS such as head and neck anatomy, you’ll realise with solving papers that some part of the subject has a much higher yield than rest. It’s a good idea to solve the last 3 years papers(6 papers) early on in your preparation and keep the papers on priority for the last week before the exam! A strategy I found useful is to study Forensic just before the day of the exam- it usually has straightforward Qs and is easy to forget! Also- keep up with updates- they’ll often test the topic in which there is an update even if not the update itself, ex. New staging systems for breast/cervical cancer etc.
How many questions did you attempt?
I attempted 197 Qs. I’ve been told that somewhere around 190-193 is a good range to mark, however it is always better to overmark than undermark. This time I felt the paper was easier than in the past and I think between 194-197 would’ve been reasonable if you’re aiming for top ranks.