IIT JEE preparation needs to be done with a lot of focus and care right from the start. If you don’t pay attention from the beginning, it can become difficult to maintain your focus in the later phase of preparation as backlogs pile up.
The trends have changed a lot. Initially, most aspirants used to start their preparation in class 11th. And a lot of them didn’t even prepare during school, but cleared the JEE with solid preparation during a drop year.
But now, quite a few students start preparing from as early as class 8th. Every student has different capabilities and circumstances, so not everyone can start at the same time. The optimal time for starting JEE preparation is different for each student and there is nothing wrong with that. But knowing the correct time for YOU to start IIT JEE preparation is really important, and you should think about all of the factors before you decide.
Here we will discuss what factors to consider while deciding when to start JEE preparation, and how to go about your preparation in general.
Factors to Consider When Deciding the Optimal Time to Start IIT JEE Preparation
There are a lot of factors to consider when you think about starting JEE preparation. One size does not fit all. Your friends might start it in class 8th while you might start in class 11th — yet you might still get a better result. Here are a few factors that you should keep in mind when you start your IIT JEE preparation.
- You must consider the strictness of your school and how they treat students if their attendance drops. You might have to skip school a couple of days per week if your JEE coaching gets hectic at some point in time. So, this factor will help you decide if you need to change schools, or make some arrangements to take leave from school.
- You must carefully analyze your relative performance in school, as well as the kind of teaching in your school. If you are just average and/or the teaching in your school is not great, it would be better to join a local board exam level coaching at least till class 10th to perform well in the board exams. Your basics would not be clear if you start JEE preparation in class 9th, and then are not able to strike a balance. So, going slowly and strengthening your basics step by step would work best. Keep in mind that if you start JEE preparation too early and become demotivated, you may quit JEE preparation really easily. Therefore, make sure that your school-level basics are well-developed before you venture into the JEE journey.
- You must talk to your family and consider your financial situation. JEE coaching costs a lot and not everyone can afford it for 4 years or so. You can prepare with or without local tuition till class 10th, and then give scholarship tests to get your fees reduced even further while joining JEE coaching in class 11th. Today, many coaching institutes offer significant fee waivers to deserving students. If you are one of those, you should definitely target such scholarships.
- If you are not sure of your level of interest in IIT JEE preparation and engineering in general, you can join JEE coaching in class 9th to explore a bit. This will give you a glimpse of how JEE preparation will be, and you can decide if you want to continue in class 11th or not. This way you can make a much more informed choice without giving in to any pressure from friends or family.
- If you are sure that your aim is the JEE and are willing to put in full effort from the start, then you can start in class 9th. You could start the actual JEE syllabus of class 11th in class 10th — and be ahead of a good number of candidates. However, there is no guarantee that you would definitely succeed or do wonders even after starting in class 9th. It all depends on your hard work and effort and most importantly how motivated you stay throughout the journey.
- If you want to focus more on board exams and school exams till class 10th, you could study in a board exam level coaching and prepare thoroughly. Remember, it’s very important to develop a strong foundation so that you can perform well in class 11th without any problems.
The Advantages of Joining Early
- You can get good scholarships for continuing JEE preparation in class 11th and 12th. Almost everyone who prepares from a premier institute in class 9th and 10th for JEE ends up getting a 100% fee waiver for class 11th and 12th. Thus, a small investment in class 9th can help you save a lot in class 11th and 12th.
- You get used to the lifestyle early. Balancing JEE coaching and school is a skill that you can get better at over time. Since you are already used to it, there won’t be any adjustments to make once you hit class 11th. You already know how it works, so you are already ahead of many others.
- If you started preparations in class 9th, then you will definitely be ahead in the syllabus. Your class 11th course starts in January of class 10th in most cases. This can be a big advantage for you since you will get more time for revision and practice.
The above points will help you weigh all your options and then you can make an informed choice. Just make sure to analyse your own condition before you go ahead and decide when you wish to start JEE preparation. Also tell yourself that no matter when you start, you will give your best and do all you can to achieve your goals. All the best!