- JEE Advanced 2018 topper Interview: Abhinav Kumar (AIR 12) - “There is no alternative to hard work”
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June 10 brought very good news to the Gupta household when Abhinav Gupta found that he had bagged an All India rank of 12 in JEE Advanced 2018. A student of CBSE board, Abhinav first knew about his engineering aspirantions when he was in class six. Then on, it has been such a driving force such his performance in JEE Advanced proves his dedication towards his goal. Crediting his parents for his success and his Physics teacher, Abhinav feels that in times of low morale, it is important not to lose focus and give up. His success mantras are – regular studies, self-confidence as well as the strong belief that there is no alternative to hard work. Read the article below to know about JEE Advanced topper 2018 Abhinav Kumar’s preparation strategies, study patterns and habits, books that he referred to and more.
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Careers360: Congratulations for your outstanding performance in JEE Advanced 2018! What was your reaction upon knowing your rank?
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Abhinav Kumar: I was happy because I cleared JEE Advanced 2018, but I was definitely expecting better rank. So I have mixed reactions.
Careers360:Tell us something about yourself. Which board have you studied under? Which school have you studied in?
Abhinav Kumar: I have done all my studies and schooling from Kota. I have done my class 10th and 12th from Aklank School which is affiliated to CBSE board.
Careers360: What is your score in JEE Advanced 2018? What is your all India rank and category rank?
Abhinav Kumar: My score in JEE Advanced is 309. I secured an All India rank of 12. My OBC category rank is 4.
Careers360: Why do you want to study engineering? When did you decided to study engineering? Which branch would you be interested in? Any reason?
Abhinav Kumar: I wanted to be an engineer since I was in class six. Engineering has always fascinated me. I started preparing for JEE 2018 from class 10. I am interested in studying computer science.
Careers360: JEE Advanced went online this year. What is your opinion about it? Did it change your preparation strategy for the exam?
Abhinav Kumar: Initially I was scared as it was completely new for me but when I started taking mock tests and practice tests, the fear and anxiety regarding the online mode of exam vanished. Now, I know there is not much of a difference between both the modes as I did not face any difficulty in transition.
Careers360: When did you start your JEE Advanced preparation? Tell us something about your preparation strategy and daily routine for JEE Advanced?
Abhinav Kumar: I started my JEE preparation from class 10. However in all respects, my preparation in intensity started only in class 11. I prepared a daily schedule such that my study time at home and the coaching centre was well balanced. My coaching centre timings were 7 AM to 1 pm. I tried to ensure that I studied at least 6 hours every day after coaching to strengthen my preparation.
Careers360: How was the preparation for JEE Advancedd different from JEE Main?
Abhinav Kumar: The question paper of JEE Main 2018 was very straight forward and easier than that of JEE Advanced 2018. Mathematics was really difficult as multiple concepts were used within a single question which made it really difficult to analyse and solve.
Careers360: Since there was just a month after the JEE Main, elaborate on your preparation strategy?
Abhinav Kumar: My mantra for the lasts days of JEE Advanced 2018 preparation was to ‘revise and relax.’ I revised whatever I read in two years for JEE Main and then relaxed so that I don’t succumb to the pressure. I went through all the short notes I prepared for JEE Main and that actually helped a lot in boosting my confidence.
Careers360: Did you take coaching for JEE and if yes from where? What are the benefits of coaching according to you?’
Abhinav Kumar: I had enrolled in Allen for coaching in Mumbai before I came to Kota where I again enrolled in Allen for JEE preparation. You get good company and competition there which is beneficial. Also you become familiar with the exam pattern and syllabus. The guidelines and motivation of experienced teachers always help. They help you find your weakness and work on them.
Careers360: Mock tests and sample papers – How extensively did you practice with the help of these? Do you think practicing from the previous year papers help and how?
Abhinav Kumar: Mock tests help to eliminate your fear. Since this year one JEE Advanced was a computer based test, mock tests helped tremendously in removing my fears and anxiety. I practiced a lot with the help sample papers, mock tests and previous year question papers. The good part about previous year question papers are that you can see which type of questions were asked in the earlier years, weightage of topics and best of all what you can expect in the actual exam.
Careers360: Are there any special books that you feel have helped with your JEE Advanced preparation?
Abhinav Kumar: Yes for Physics, I referred to HC Verma and Resnick Halliday. For Mathematics Tata Macgraw Hill is the book to read. For Chemistry I would say JD Lee and for organic Chemistry it is JD March. These books actually helped me a lot in removing all the doubts and clearing my concepts.
Careers360: Did you face any problem during the JEE Advanced examination? Which subject was the easiest and which was the toughest in JEE Advanced? What do you think is a tough thing to manage during the JEE Advanced exam?
Abhinav Kumar: Once the syllabus is done, then the most difficult thing to do is to maintain your self-confidence. When you get less marks in tests and sometimes you are unable to understand the things, then morale takes a dive and you start questioning yourself. It is the reason why I think you should always believe in yourself. If you don’t think you can who else will? No subject is too easy or too difficult; we just need to give equal time to all the subjects to have a clear understanding of what we read.
Careers360: What is the main difference between both the two papers in JEE Advanced?
Abhinav Kumar: Both the papers were difficult, though I found Paper 2 Mathematics and Physics to be more difficult than paper 1. But Chemistry was more or so the same. So yes, to a certain extent paper 2 was more difficult than paper 1.
Careers360: Did you face any technical glitches during the exam? What is your opinion on the way the exam was conducted?
Abhinav Kumar: No, I didn’t face any technical glitches. It was better than pen and paper mode as you get no chance of correction in pen and paper mode but in online mode you have this option so it was really helpful.
Careers360: What do you think are the key factors behind your stupendous success in JEE Advancedd?
Abhinav Kumar: I credit my parents and my Physics teacher for my success. Their support, motivation was immense and helped a lot. Apart from that, I think regular studies can be one factor that I think is behind my success.
Careers360: How did you de-stress yourself during the preparation? What are your hobbies? How often could you pursue them?
Abhinav Kumar: I love reading novels and motivational stories. These are my hobbies. I also love to sleep. So I would de-stress by reading or sleeping.
Careers360: Who is your ideal or biggest inspiration in life and why?
Abhinav Kumar: My parents are my inspiration. They have been through a lot of adversities and struggles but never let that affect me. When I see them, I feel inspired and move on with my goals.
Careers360: You know, you are an inspiration to thousands of students across the country. Do you have any message for future aspirants on tackling the JEE Advanced exam?
Abhinav Kumar: Study regularly and always have self-confidence. Success is a matter of pride as long as we don’t let it get to our heads. Most important - there is no alternative to hard work.