Get Ready for the Admission Fight of Public University
Getting enrolled into a renowned university can be the most difficult yet rewarding experience of your life. Yes, Board Examinations or O-levels/A-levels are definitely important - but university admission tests are more important than anything else as there are lots of stakes involved, most important of which is your undergraduate academic life and consequently, career opportunities.
Getting into public universities can be more frightening than anything else, as you have thousands of qualified candidates from the whole country as your competitors. This is contest on a national level, so you have to be at your absolute best. In this cover story, ideas about different public universities, their admission test patterns and mark distributions are discussed. If you're well-prepared and know what you're dealing with, there's absolutely no reason you can't ace these admission exams.
Getting into the major engineering universities of the country may appear to be the toughest public university admission battle to the aspiring candidates. Yes, to some extent it is. Major public engineering universities, i.e. BUET, KUET, CUET, RUET etc. have a very selective approach when it comes to admitting a certain number of students into various disciplines of engineering each year. Due to the exponential increase in students getting GPA 5 in their HSC examination, there is a primary sorting process based on the score of 20 or 25 including Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, English and in some cases even Bengali (doesn't make much sense for an aspiring engineering student, though).
After initial assortment, a certain number of eligible candidates (different for each university depending on the number of available seats) are shortlisted for an elaborate written test. Written test basically comprises of theoretical and MCQ questions on Math, Physics, Chemistry and in some cases, English. In some universities, like BUET for example, last year there were 60 theoretical questions (10 each from Math, Physics and Chemistry), carrying 10 marks each, cumulating in total 600 marks that had to be answered over a span of three hours. Theoretical questions imply mathematical problems or application-type problems from various theories learnt throughout the HSC/A-level curriculum. The trick to do well in engineering admission tests is to have a very clear idea about the whole curriculum, as questions are set from all parts of the textbooks. There are no short-cuts or suggestions like board exams.
In mathematics, problems have to be solved from different textbooks and all the parts (Calculus, Mechanics, Binomial Theorem etc.) have to be given equal emphasis. For Physics, one needs to have very thorough grasp of all the formulas and know when or how to apply them. Understanding physical interpretations of formulas and practical applications of different mechanisms are of utmost importance. Chemistry deals with equations. The more you understand the chemical processes and the more you practice writing equations, the easier it'll be for you to do well in the competitive exams. Never rely too much on coaching centres or guide-books. The textbook is the Most Valuable thing that you've got in your hands. Understanding everything and being able to solve problems aren't all. It's more about efficiency. The more efficient you are, the faster you are able to interpret problems and solve them, the better your chances. Everyone battling for engineering university admission are competitive and capable - no doubt about that. But it's the individual efficiency that makes the successful candidates stand out.
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Dhaka University, Chittagong University, Rajshahi University, Khulna University, Jahangirnagar University etc. are some of the most renowned public institutions of the country. Getting into one of these universities will provide excellent academic experience. Following are the exam structure and marks distribution of admission tests for some of the faculties of Dhaka University. Details of each faculty and list of departments can be found here: (www.du.ac.bd/academics.php). Faculty of Science, Faculty of Engineering and Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Faculty of Biological Sciences marks distribution: Candidates have to answer questions on four subjects out of the following six: Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Biology, English and Bengali.
Answering Biology questions is mandatory for Faculty of Biological Sciences. Thirty questions have to be answered from each of the four subjects, totaling up to 120 MCQs to be filled in an OMR sheet within an hour. Faculty of Social Sciences (13 Departments Including International Relations, Economics, Public Administration, Political Science, Anthropology etc.).
Questions have to answered from four broader subjects: Bengali, English, General Knowledge (Bangladesh) and General Knowledge (International). Twenty-five questions have to be answered from each of the four subjects (1.2 marks per answer) – carrying a total of 120 marks. For every wrong answer, 0.3 marks are penalized. Minimum 8 marks have to be obtained in each of the subjects to pass. Duration of the exam is one hour.
Preparation should be started just after the completion of HSC/A-level exams. Emphasis should be given on textbooks. Help of coaching centers can be useful to practice efficiently and to give mock/model tests. Mocks help to get used to the real exam scenario and increase confidence. Solving questions of previous years is essential.
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