By: Harshavardhan Sunder (AILET – Rank 2 & CLAT – Rank 9)
Law was not something I was decided on from the very beginning. During my tenth, I was unsure of whether I should take a technical line or something else altogether. It was only just before my tenth boards that I realised that my abilities may be better suited for something like law. I feel that comfort with English and reasonably good logical skills are essential prerequisites of a lawyer.
The very first thing that I noticed in law was the sheer paucity of seats, with there being just about 60 of them available in every college, which made me wonder whether it was really possible to get in. I did not really do much in the first year, but I solved some mocks and got some valuable perspective. I made new friends who helped me a great deal. As time passed, I became more clear about what I needed to do. I realized that it is 95% self study, no amount of classroom coaching can ever substitute the hours you voluntarily put in. Interviews of the CLAT 2012 toppers showed the dedication of the students and they gave me the incentive to try and match up to their preparations. I soon came across CLATGyan and some of the articles really provided me with great insight, as these were people I could relate to, who have gone through the entire process for themselves, collectively making them more potent than any teacher as such. The GK compendiums were very helpful and the mock tests were very well set.
The months just passed by in a jiffy, my miserable college grades started catching up with me as the boards approached. Law entrance had to take a bit of the back seat before the boards, but I still kept in touch with it. After the boards though, the real challenge started and I had to burn the midnight oil to make up for lost time.
And just one and a half months later was the AILET. I found it to be really difficult and was not at all expecting to do well. Although the result was good in the end, I had to write the CLAT with a kind of a ‘do or die’ feeling. Unlike the AILET, it was quite a standard paper and, despite not being sure if I would do well, I knew that it was not going to be too bad. And thankfully it wasn’t.
I made quite a few mistakes in my preparation, but learnt a few things as well. There are a few things which might prove to be important for your preparation.
Solve as many mock tests as you can. Get hold of them from coaching classes, CLATGyan, textbooks or any other source. And solve them irrespective of whether you are ‘well prepared’ or not; it doesn’t make a difference. And they must be done under exam conditions and properly timed. The entire purpose of the exercise is defeated if you try to go easy on yourself or cheat. It will not only help you get organized and quick in solving the paper, but will also make you ready for any kind of paper you may encounter. It will also help you do well in all the exams you attempt. CLATGyan mock tests deserve mention in this case, as they provide all kinds of tests, some of which will really stretch your brain to all kinds of shapes.
Also, please maintain notes for GK, stash in all the important things you encounter during the course of your preparation. However arduous this task may seem, it is essential as it provides an excellent source of last minute preparation and I guess I owe quite a few marks to this habit of mine.
Another very important thing I would like to mention is that you must spend at least a year preparing for law entrance. The competition has increased to such an extent that 2 months is not sufficient for a good preparation. A year is enough time for a comprehensive preparation, to ensure that nothing keeps you from entering law school.
And please remember that this is a competitive examination. You must study and learn up as much as you can with the time you have. You can never really feel satisfied as such with your level of preparation, it has to go on till the very end. Good luck!