NIMHANS’19 Rank 1, 2, 3 go to Marrow Pro students. Read their interviews here.
Yet again, we are proud to be home to the top 3 rank holders of a central institute exam -NIMHANS 2019.
Read their exclusive interviews with Marrow on tips to ace this notoriously difficult exam:
Dr Manisha Mohanty
Rank 1 (DM Neuromedicine)
Rank 2 (MD Psychiatry)
Marrow Pro user from Feb 10 2018
Dr Sahil Mathur
Rank 2 (Mch Neurosurgery)
Rank 2 (DM Neuromedicine)
Marrow Pro user from April 12 2018
Dr Sandeep G C
Rank 3 (Mch Neurosurgery)
Marrow Pro user from March 28 2018
Dr Vivek Potluri
Rank 3 (DM Neuromedicine)
Rank 4 (MD Psychiatry)
Marrow Pro user from Feb 7 2019
Interview with Dr. Manisha Mohanty:
Congrats, Dr Manisha on Rank 1 in NIMHANS (Neuromedicine)! Please tell us a bit about yourself.
Thanks a lot. Really grateful to marrow for helping me throughout my preparation.
I am Dr Manisha Mohanty. I did my MBBS from AIIMS Bhubaneswar. I always wanted to study Neurology in NIMHANS and thanks to all the people who supported me in the endeavour, I got Rank 1 in Neuromedicine and Rank 2 in Psychiatry.
I also had rank 16 in Marrow NIMHANS Mock.
When did you start preparing with Marrow?
I joined Marrow as a Pro user in Feb 2018. My favoUrite thing about the app is that the explanations are very comprehensive.
Did your NEET & NIMHANS preparation go hand in hand?
I was not preparing for NEET. During internship I was focussing for PGI. After PGI the next 4 months I was fully dedicated for NIMHANS.
During internship I studied for about 4-5 hours a day. After finishing my internship in Dec, I used to study at least 9-10 hours everyday and gradually increased the time towards the end.
How did you go about solving Marrow QBank?
The question bank was very helpful. I would recommend once you complete one module go through it once again just after completing and do it again within 2-3 days. Be consistent and try to revise the bookmarked questions 2-3 times before the exam.
Have you use guide books? What is your take on that?
With guidebooks, you can get caught up in the lengthy text which will considerably slow you down. Don’t try to do everything. Speed is very important for PG preparation. That’s why make your basics strong in MBBS itself. I used some MCQ books for Pharma and medicine only because I had done them in MBBS and was quite comfortable with them. I tried other subject wise MCQ books in the beginning but left as they weren’t that helpful.
Did you have a note-taking technique or strategy as such?
I had made extensive notes from the question bank. But I would rather recommend to make short notes only of relevant points which you can revise fast.
How did you go about your revision?.
Revision is very important for any exam. What I did was make notes of the things that I got wrong and some imp facts that are repeatedly and tried to revise them 2-3 times before the exam.
Did Marrow Mocks help you? If yes, how?
The question selection for grand tests were really good. They cover most of the imp topic.1 week before NEET I had just revised the grand test and I could solve many questions because of that. Take the test series seriously and note down the points where you go wrong.
How did you approach image based questions?
Don’t panic. See them 2-3 times. Don’t stress too much. Try to understand the key features. You will realise theY are quite easy.
What is your take on controversial questions?
Don’t waste too much time on those. Ask someone who can clarify it or leave them. As long as your basics are strong no need to worry about one particular question.
How would you recommend others to use Marrow?
Make a schedule as per the test series preferably. Be consistent. Take short & concise notes. Revision is a must. Go through the discussion in the test thoroughly. And if any module is too tough for you, leave it and don’t stress too much on it. Speed is the key.
Remember what not to study is as important as what to study. You have limited time. Try to use it optimally
How many questions did you attempt in NIMHANS?
I had attempted 99 out of 100 and got 21 wrong.
When do you recommend your juniors to start preparing?
I would recommend to go through the textbooks thoroughly starting from first year itself. That forms the foundation for your PG preparation. Read Robins and Harrison in MBBS. You can try solving MCQs in MBBS if you can manage but not mandatory. Once you have the understanding start with MCQs from the beginning of internship itself.
Thank you for your time Dr. Manisha! All the very best for your career in Neurology. 🙂
Interview with Dr Sahil Mathur:
Congratulations, Dr Sahil on the awesome ranks in NIMHANS & NEET PG!
Thank you! Marrow has been quite helpful during my prep. I got Rank 66 in the NEET-PG exam and as my focus was on the NIMHANS exam, I emailed Marrow support and they were kind enough to extend my subscription. I practised a lot of questions especially Neurology and Medicine. Questions were all inclusive and everything from Harrison was covered line by line. Lot of repeat questions were asked directly and I am glad that from the very beginning I have been practising with Marrow.
Tell us a bit about yourself:
My hometown is Rampur, U.P and I completed my M.B.B.S from K.G.M.C, Lucknow. I started preparing with Marrow in May 2018. In my 2nd year I came across my senior who got Rank 4 in Neurology, NIMHANS, that’s when I heard about this institute for the first time, as i had an interest in Neurology from the very beginning I started focusing on it. I was not confident because they have limited seats, I knew that this would be a very tough task, specially after NEET, but I was quite motivated by my seniors.
And now you are a motivation to others 🙂
Students with a focus find their way. I knew that Marrow will be indispensable because previous year questions and new pattern questions which are asked are included, because Marrow always frames questions from standard textbooks and I have been reading textbooks from the very beginning of my MBBS.
Can you explain in brief about your daily preparation plan and revision?
I studied 6-8 hours a day during internship and gradually increased my time.
Practising questions is a 24 hour thing, whenever you are free you should solve them and revise your notes. Scheduling your studies is very beneficial.
I put extra time for my 1st revision so that the subsequent revisions became easier, 2 days for major subjects and 1 day for short subjects. 1st revision should be as elaborate as possible so that the next revision you know what you are dealing with and you get to know your weak areas.
How did you use Marrow videos for your preparation?
I did not take any regular coaching, though I did attend some live lectures of individual faculties who visited Lucknow. Short subjects I prepared on my own, but the videos that I watched on short subjects included everything I recommend pre interns to watch them. Make a flowchart of the topics in your mind and the next time watch the video in a faster speed so that you have a visual memory. Every subject has a premium faculty and you can trust them.
Loved Dr Deepu Sebin’s motivational videos and i’m very fond of Dr Rohan Khandelwal’s video lectures.
You have to be an early bird to start watching the videos and preparing for the exam. I recommend to start studying for PG exams in beginning of 3rd year. Be thorough with the 1st year and 2nd year subjects because we tend to forget it and that’s where we tend to lag. Visual memory is the key, that is why I think people should start early with the videos.
What was your strategy of using Marrow QBank?
Neurology module was sufficient for NIMHANS because everything from Harrison is included. In Neurosurgery 28 out of 30 question were on basic Neuroanatomy and that is why you need to go back to your basics. Anatomy modules are enough if you solve questions right from the beginning. When I practiced some questions from Marrow for the first time, I thought the references are from standard books so I can trust this and some of the explanations felt like reading the book, so Marrow saved a lot of time for me personally. I started solving questions from Marrow during my internship and I completed almost all the modules.
I found the modules all inclusive and no topic is missed out so I knew that if i start a subject it will be 100% complete after I complete the module. Also, having a sequence like completing 1st year subjects first in my opinion is the best, like I started with Anatomy topic wise completed the modules then moved on to the tests. In the modules that i got less than 80% I went back to my notes see where i lagged and revised. If you are solving a subject you must solve it 100%. You must be honest with your preparation. Bookmark helps a lot, but I started bookmarking from my 2nd revision, only specific questions which I knew I will forget. This helped me revise faster. Read the explanation so that you do not miss out the logic of the question. I also, added the extra points to my notes regularly.
How often did your take Marrow tests?
I gave my 1st Marrow GT in August and I got a Rank of 25, this was very good and boosted me further. Before, I gave this test I was sceptical because I did not know how Marrow tests worked, but once I started I knew that this is good for me. Be regular with the Test series. Custom module was a boon at the end, I just give myself a test on my weak topics and I know I am done with that topic.
All GT’s I gave when they were LIVE, they are a must, and at the end of my preparation I made it a point to give at least 2 previous year subject test and 2 current year subject test, so you get 50X4 ie 200 questions. So if you solve 200 repeat questions in a test format you know that you are confident in that subject and you will get a good score.
What other feature of Marrow did you find helpful?
Daily MCQ was another thing that I found solving useful, the last week leading up to the NEET was only focused on updates and 2-3 questions from PSM were direct repeats. The Pharmacology questions especially were also direct, the questions in MCQ of the day were not very difficult, they were not rare drugs, they were questions on type of receptors and the side effects and that’s exactly what was asked in the NEET this year. If you read the MCQ of the day first thing in the morning then you know you will not miss it in the exam.
What is the difference between NIMHANS and NEET PG?
Very similar. NEET had a lot of basic one liners which were easy and that was exactly the pattern followed in the NIMHANS exam in the 70 marks allotted for the common paper. It was that easy that in the first 10 minutes I had reached the 70th question. You just have to read the stem of the question and secure the answer. This year the focus was more on OBG, PSM while some short subjects were left out.
NIMHANS is a high scoring exam, you need 80 and above out of 100 to get into it.
I started preparing for NIMHANS 2 weeks after the NEET exam. There is no specific preparation for NIMHANS, you have to be preparing for the NEET exam well if you want to crack NIMHANS. People get confused that it is a Neuro exam and read solely for that but that is not true. Once you are thorough with the basics you can read about some rare diseases especially in Neuromedicine. Focus on the NEET preparation and you will do well in NIMHANS.
What do you think about AIIMS New Pattern?
This year AIIMS announced a new pattern, although the majority of questions are single answer, people get anxious, but I think if your concepts are strong you do not have to worry. Last year also, GIF’s were introduced in the AIIMS exam and Marrow incorporated it almost immediately.
How many question did you attempt?
In NIMHANS I attempted all the questions, because that is what I missed in the NEET-PG where i attempted 280 out of 300 questions, because I got nervous. I did not want to repeat this mistake so i got aggressive in the NIMHANS. If you want to be in the top rank then you must attempt all the questions, that is what I learnt.
Interview with Dr Sandeep GC:
Hi Dr. Sandeep. Congrats on your great rank! Please tell us about yourself.
I’m Sandeep G C from Bangalore Medical College, I have secured Rank 3 Neurosurgery in NIMHANS 2019-20
First of all I would like to thank entire Marrow team for providing us a valid, highly reliable QBank source, I am Marrow Plan B pro user for entire span of 1 year preparation.
Can you take us through your preparation journey in brief?
I actually started my NEET preparation with Marrow after last year NIMHANS.
Marrow is unique for its authenticity which is difficult to achieve. Reliability is what makes it better than any online platforms. Every faculty has delivered us the best content required for PG preparation.
What was your favourite feature of Marrow?
My favourite thing about Marrow is the Custom Module option. This was extremely useful for me in the last few months.
How does NEET PG preparation help with NIMHANS?
NIMHANS pattern is 70Q common paper including all 19 subjects exactly same as NEET, 30Q from Neuro & Psych. So this is mainly based on NEET preparation. Marrow helped me a lot in NEET preparation which got carried forward for NIMHANS. I used to study around 8-9 hrs a day. I would like to suggest my juniors to start preparing as soon as possible. I used to solve QBank after finishing my subject notes, so it helped me in recalling every topic.
How did you go about your revision?
Revision is the key. Everyone should give enough time for revision, minimum 2 rounds of revision is must before NEET. For Image based questions, Marrow is more than enough. Controversial Qs not to bE worried much as they will not be repeated. Marrow grand tests and mocks were very useful as they provide us national level platforms and let us know where we stand.
Last 1 week I used to revise highly volatile subjects. I had attempted all 100 Qs in NIMHANS. For all central institutes definitely topics get repeated but for NIMHANS as such there isn’t many repeats. Just stick to basics of all 19 subjects.
Thank you Dr Sandeep! All the best. 🙂