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| Center for University and Business Examinations

CUET *Common University Entrance Test (UG)

Balancing boards and CUET prep

Rahul Sharma
Rahul Sharma
IIM Ahmedabad Alumnus. 100%iler in CAT 2016,2020 and 2021. Appeared twice for IAS interview.

CUET is the common entrance exam for central and some other universities for undergraduate programs. With leading universities like DU (Delhi University) accepting CUET exam marks for admission to all UG programs, it would seem that 12th boards marks have lost relevance and so a natural question that arises is what do you study for?

But this question is a based on a very wrong assumption. Class 12th marks cannot become irrelevant.

Why Class 12th marks are important

As a student goes through college into the professional sphere, class 12th marks find an important place on the CV. They are an indicator of the level of academic excellence that a student strives for. Moreover, some companies have a minimum application cut-off based on 12th marks. But where these marks become critically important are admissions to Masters programs. IIMs and Universities abroad have very good weightage for class 12th marks and any student wanting to make it to IIMs and/or other top colleges is expected to have done well in Class 12th. And so, we look at the question at hand.

Is preparation for CUET different from boards?

CUET exam has been designed to give importance to language, domain subjects and aptitude. While the core for language and domain subjects will remain the same, differences will happen in their application and relative importance of topics.

Board exams being subjective will tend to focus on information-based questions while CUET domain subjects are likely to be more application based. In terms of language also, reading and grammar will remain similar while writing will be absent in CUET. So CUET will focus more on basics of language.

Two areas where CUET will differ dramatically is the General Test paper for which students should ensure regular practice. And second point of difference is test taking strategy. Here also students will be best served by writing as many mocks as possible.

All in all, this can help students develop holistic understanding of the subjects and develop aptitude at the school level.

How to manage boards and CUET together

For domain subjects, follow the same pattern for covering topics, as in school. After every topic, revise important concepts and write tests in CUET format for each topic. Once the board exams are done, a crisp revision and increased mock practice should suffice for the CUET exam.

For the English language section, students should increase their reading and work on building vocabulary. This is an on-going process and should be done in free time at leisure. These are skills which will be helpful lifelong.

For General Test, revising concepts from maths and making notes for GK will be helpful. This activity can happen during weekends when the load from school is a little less. A disciplined approach with regular practice can ensure students ace both the exams without being stressed out.

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