8 Tips on How to Reduce Negative Marking in NEET-UG Exam

by Asmita Kundu, July 25, 2020

If you are aspiring to become a doctor in future, NEET is the ultimate doorway to secure a seat in the most prestigious medical college in the country. Every year lakhs of NEET aspirants aim to crack the medical entrance exam to fulfil their dream. Every year the competition gets tougher as the large pool of candidates seeking the coveted opportunity to grab a seat in one of the best medical colleges in the country. To secure a seat, a candidate needs to score good marks out of 720 and secure a good rank. The competition is getting stiffer every year with the number of students increasing.

The NEET exam pattern remains the same including the marking scheme. Negative marking will remain the same as one mark will be deducted for every wrong answer. And, four marks will be awarded for every right answer. It is mandatory for all the aspirants to be aware of the negative marking pattern as they can work on it during the exam preparation as in how to reduce the negative marking. Knowing about negative marking and practising to avoid it is a crucial gimmick to secure a better rank in the NEET-UG exam.

How to Calculate Negative Marking?

There will be a total of 180 questions in the NEET examination and the question paper will be of maximum 720 marks. One correct answer fetches 4 marks and one mark will be deducted for each incorrect answer. In the case of unanswered questions, no marks will be deducted. Every aspirant must be well aware of the marking scheme before appearing in the exam.

You can calculate the marks by counting the number of correct answers and multiplying that by 4 marks. You can also make a guess of the number of incorrect answers (which you are doubtful about) and multiply by 1 mark. Then the difference between the aforementioned points will help you to understand the marks.

NEET aspirants must follow the tips given below to eliminate the negative marking from your NEET answer sheet.

1. Read the Question Paper Carefully:

We at Vedantu, teach all our students the importance of reading the entire question paper carefully at the beginning of the exam. This is a must-do thing as students may find similar questions from the previous years’ questions papers. However, there could be subtle changes in the papers, which students might skip if they do not go through the question paper thoroughly. Hence students should read all the questions once thoroughly before starting attempting the NEET paper. 

2. Never be Overconfident:

Being confident is good but being overconfident is harmful. So it is advisable to all the candidates to understand the thin line between confidence and overconfidence. Make sure you don’t get overwhelmed and become careless while starting attempting questions. A few students get over-excited after going through the question paper which may lead to silly mistakes and thus resulting in negative marking. So, try not to be overwhelmed while attempting the NEET exam if you are hoping for a better outcome.

3. Skip the Doubtful / Complex Question:

Don’t attempt any question if you are doubtful about the concept because it will not only eat up your time but also lower your confidence level. If you are stuck on a question, either you skip it or try it at the end of solving all the questions. Otherwise, this will lead to negative marking. Do not ever try the answer just as a fluke because there are more chances that the answer will be incorrect than correct. It is always a wise decision to leave the doubtful question instead of trying your luck. 

4. Never Choose Two Answers:

Always follow NEET guidelines. While attempting the NEET exam, it is necessary to follow the guidelines to avoid any kind of negative marking such as do not ever choose two answers for one question in the OMR sheet. If you do that intentionally or unintentionally, the entire question will be disqualified and lead to negative marking. Always make sure that there is no overlapping. And fill the OMR sheet neatly. 

5. Avoid Oral Calculation:

Always remember NEET does not test your IQ level. Instead, it will check your in-depth knowledge of all the concepts and their applications. So, do not attempt to solve any questions by calculating orally. Always use pen and paper to do calculations. That’s how you will be sure about the correctness of the answers. 

6. Avoid Wasting Time:

One of the best ways to avoid negative marking is to avoid wasting your time. Do not start solving the paper by answering the toughest questions from them. This will waste a lot of time of yours and make a slow-start. This way you may not be able to complete your NEET-UG paper. Hence it is advised to all the NEET candidates that they should not waste their time. 

7. Do Not Answer the Question at the Last Minute:

Exams like NEET are one of the most important entrance exams of a student’s life as it opens the door into the medical world. Hence every aspirant must be very careful while writing the paper in this exam. Noone must try their luck by answering the unanswered questions at the last minute just by guessing. Do not gamble on the marks. This will lead to a more negative outcome than positive. Hence you will lose the chance of getting a good rank and automatically a seat in a prestigious college. If you are not confident about some of the questions, let them remain unattempted. Do not take a chance upon them even while revising the solved paper at the last minute.

8. Don’t Panic:

Upon handing over a question paper to students in the exam hall, many would stress out on the questions which they do not know or doubtful about. But this will leave a negative impression on those young minds immediately and they can lose focus which will lead to a bad result. Hence the first and foremost job is to read the paper thoroughly and try to start with the questions which you are well versed with. It is important to beat the stress and anxiety so that you can remain calm during the exam hours and solve all the questions correctly.


These are a few basic tips that all the NEET candidates must follow while preparing for the exam and during the exam. Try to stay positive and confident. Do not make the mistake by thinking that you can grab a good rank by guessing answers. These kinds of silly mistakes will only increase your chances of negative marking and become an obstacle to your success. While NEET is definitely a tough entrance exam, it is not that difficult to secure a good rank if you prepare well as per all the guidelines and syllabus and leave no room for silly errors. Always strengthen your fundamentals and be prepared to secure one of the top ranks.

8 Tips on How to Reduce Negative Marking in NEET-UG Exam