How to Improve Your Problem-Solving Skills for JEE?

by Aparajita Das, July 25, 2020

The key to succeeding in the JEE examination is a fast-paced and accurate problem-solving ability. Well, there is no rocket science that needs to be mastered for this, and all you need to do is practice problem-solving rigorously on a daily basis. You have to develop your own strategies that will be effective for solving the problems of Mathematics, Physics, and Chemistry in JEE, accurately. There may be multiple approaches to solving a particular problem, but for JEE preparation you have to choose the most time-saving approach. Below-given tips will help you to cultivate the best problem-solving skills for JEE.

1. Look for the Data Given When you Read a Problem

The key to improving problem-solving skills for JEE is to analyze a problem when you read it and make a note of all the data given in the problem. Initially, you may need to re-read a problem twice or thrice to understand what all data is given and how to use it. With practice, you will be able to make a note of the given data mentally as soon as you read a problem. For example, when you will read a Physics problem, you will be automatically looking for the numerical data given in it and try to register it as parts of the formulas you know.

2. Practice Mental Math Skills

Practicing mental Math skills is one of the most helpful ways to enhance your problem-solving skills for JEE. There are various tricks in mental math that will help you arrive at a numerical answer with fewer steps. There are tricks for three-digit multiplications, subtraction without a carry, and so on, which will help you calculate faster in the JEE exam. It will cost you a lot of time in the exam if you follow the traditional long methods for calculating.

3. Make Mind Maps to Solve Problems

When you read a question try to develop mind maps with the data and values given in it before solving it. Mind maps will help you think of various problem- solving techniques by visualizing them, thereby cutting down the time of trial and error method. This way you can make a good habit of solving most problems mentally, as you will know how to zero down on the correct problem-solving technique when you read it. For beginners, you can draw flowcharts of various problem-solving techniques and analyze which one will take the shortest time.

4. Think About the Problems From Simple Perspectives

It is of utmost importance that you do not judge a problem by its length or by the terms used in it before you begin to solve the problem. Often, when a question is being asked from your problem areas, you tend to jump into the conclusion that it is a difficult problem. If you do not work on this mindset, it is very likely that you will skip the easy problems as well. So, when you read a problem think of it from a simple perspective, without getting intimidated by the topic it is from. 

5. Have All the Theorems and Formulas at Your Fingertips

To enhance your problem-solving skills for JEE, the foremost thing that you need to work on is learning the formulas and theorems from Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics. You must spend the least amount of time to remember any formula or theorem during the examination. Note down all the formulas on a separate sheet of paper and paste it on your study table, so that you can revise it every day. You may highlight the formulas that you find difficult to remember and practice it regularly. When you spend the least amount of time to rummage up the right formula to solve a problem, you can dedicate a greater amount of time to calculate the answer. This way your accuracy will also be enhanced.

6. Prefer Quality to Quantity When you Practice

Often JEE aspirants set a daily goal of solving a particular number of sums, to improve their problem-solving speed. For example, you can set a goal to solve 50 sums every day, when you begin with the syllabus and increase the total number of sums every week. But the one thing that you need to remember here, is to pay attention to the difficulty level of the sums that you solve. Solving 100 easy sums in a day may be the same thing as solving 50 difficult sums in a day. Practice solving sums of standard difficulty levels, so that you can be well versed with the required problem-solving techniques before the exam.

7. Use Stopwatch 

Recording the time taken to solve a problem on a stopwatch, during practice, will be of great help for JEE aspirants. For example, it will take less time for you to solve a sum on day 10 of practice, as compared to that of day 1. When you begin with your revisions, record the time you take to solve 10 sums on a stopwatch, and try to solve the same number of sums in a shorter time the next day. It will help you to achieve your best problem-solving speed and attempt the maximum number of questions in the JEE examination.

8. Make a Habit of Reading Graphs and Charts

Most students take a longer time to solve the problems that require graph-reading or chart reading. Some students tend to forget the parameters represented on the graph and keep checking it over and over again for noting down the graph readings. Another mistake that students commonly make when solving graph-reading problems is with the scale of the graphs. They forget to convert the graph readings according to the scale of the graphs. Hence, practicing sums of graph-reading and chart-readings is very important for improving the problem-solving skills of JEE aspirants. 

9. Try to Backtrace with Answers

You need not solve all the problems with detailed steps in the JEE examination, instead, for some sums try to backtrace with the given answers. For example, if you know the correct formula for a particular sum, you can substitute the given answer choices in it to see which one satisfies the formula along with the other given values. This method of backtracking is very time-saving as you do not need to calculate all the steps to find the correct answer.

10. Practice Logical Thinking by Solving Puzzles and Games

Your problem-solving skills are automatically enhanced when you keep practicing logic puzzles or games such as Sudoku. You will be able to think of various alternative problem-solving techniques when you practice playing games like chess and math puzzles. Therefore, you will be less likely to run out of alternative problem-solving techniques during the JEE exam.

You can take various crash courses and tutorials on popular study portals such as Vedantu, to learn tricks to pace up your problem-solving skills. Group study sessions are also helpful when it comes to enhancing your problem-solving skills, as your fellow aspirants may come up with new time-saving strategies for JEE.

How to Improve Your Problem-Solving Skills for JEE?