Introducing Darwin for NEET & AIIMS. Prepare for Free. Forever.

Arjun K.
Arjun K.
Oct 3, 2018 · 7 min read

Are you taking the NEET? Will you make it?

What if I told you that your potential for clearing NEET is almost 100%? All you need is the right strategy and the right preparation. I know what you are thinking, “yeah, right! easier said than done.”

But here’s the catch. A large portion of your competition (the 13,00,000+ people who take the NEET every year) will use the wrong strategy and prepare using the wrong methods. Just doing it right gives you an edge.

To give you that edge, we are introducing an app based on fundamental research that is guaranteed to help you reach your potential. We call it Darwin, and it will help you evolve your learning.

At its core, Darwin will have tens of thousands of old NEET and AIIMS MCQs available for practice. It is almost 2020, and it is about time you ditched those books. All this content is available for free for everyone. And it will be free forever.

Darwin will get you all the old NEET and AIIMS MCQs into a single app. And it will be free forever.

Who we are

At this stage, you might be wondering why you should trust us. Darwin is brought to you by MCQdb. We are a team of engineers from IITs with a bold social vision:

Our Goal:

To help every hardworking student be successful

In other words, our goal is about your success, and we will get you there as long as you are ready to work hard.

Our flagship product, Pre-PG, is the most used and most loved app for preparing for NEET PG. If you want to check out what you might get on Darwin in the future, you should take a look at the features we offer on Pre-PG. If you doubt what we stand for, just read what our customers say about us on the Play Store page.

MCQdb’s flagship product — Pre-PG Prep

Preparing for NEET on Darwin

How does Darwin fit in with your NEET preparation regimen? Darwin is designed to help you with deliberate practice.

Learning — 10% of effort:

At early stages of your preparation, you have at least some understanding of the basics of relevant concepts of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. If you lack an understanding of fundamentals, you should start by reading through the basic material. Usually, reading the standard textbooks of 11th and 12th standard PCB (Physics, Chemistry, Biology) is enough for understanding the basics. Each of us learns differently, and you should know how you learn best. Choose your medium of learning — reading books, notes, watching video lessons, attending classes — that works best for you. But if you take a practice test on a topic in Darwin at this stage, you will be surprised how many questions you get wrong. You are likely to get easier questions right, but might not be able to solve the hard and tricky MCQs.

Practice — 90% of effort:

Why can’t you solve many of the difficult questions in spite of knowing all the theory? You might have grasped the basics of the concepts, but you still need to apply the concepts. Developing the capability requires applying the knowledge and forming mental models that help you choose the right answer. This skill includes making educated guesses by eliminating wrong options and applying the fundamentals of several interrelated topics to judge the right answer.

Darwin’s Kernel

We mentioned earlier that we will provide you with tens of thousands of questions from previous tests for free. Of course, just having access to questions is not enough. An app that only delivers MCQs only adds minimal additional value over books. We have embraced the concept of deliberate practice by Dr. Anders Ericsson based on decades of research.

Deliberate practice has these three essential elements:

  1. Practice hard, and push yourself out of your comfort zone when you practice
  2. Monitor and get insights on your practice — how well did you do and how can you improve, and how are you tracking against your goals
  3. Make changes to improve your performance

It’s that simple. Really. What Darwin give you:

  • Tens of thousands of questions to practice
  • The insights that will inform what changes you need to make

You do the hard part:

  • Practice hard
  • Make changes to push yourself harder

How does Darwin help you with this virtuous loop?

The most effective way is is through a deliberate practice of MCQs. Practicing MCQs is where your knowledge — facts and concepts — gets applied. Your brain stores these facts and concepts as individual pieces and applying them to solving MCQs provides context and meaning to the diverse pieces of information. For example, your

You will waste your efforts if you don’t get insights from your practice and monitor your progress. Bookmark MCQs to keep a tab of ones that most others got right but you got wrong, or one that you got right just by luck. The core of insights in Darwin will come up when we introduce PrepDNA in a few months.

You need to revise regularly to train your brain out of the mistakes you make. The most effective revision is regular and spaced over an extended period. We have designed the Darwin revision features to help you make changes and improve. Ideally, you should revise every day (Daily Revision), regularly practice the bookmarks of the subject you are studying (Bookmark Revision), and dedicate some time every two weeks for weaker concepts (Deep Revision). While you practice, our adaptive question delivery will show you questions that you had made mistakes in the past.

What you will get in this early version of Darwin

Let’s start with what you can expect from Darwin over time. We built Darwin based on research on how to learn best for highly competitive tests like NEET and AIIMS entrance. This exhibit highlights the three fundamental elements for good preparation.

1.Discover and focus on your weakest areas: This is based on Dr. John Flavell’s classic paper, “Cognitive development”.¹ The two types of knowledge relevant to a NEET student are:

  • Self knowledge is how well do you understand your own strengths and weaknesses. This kind of knowledge can easily be unreliable since you might think you are good or weak in a topic, but you don’t have a good sense of how others perform on the topic. Darwin will give you an accurate representation of your weak areas relative to your competition.
  • Strategic knowledge is your ability to learn new methods to learn how to solve questions and apply these methods to solve entirely new questions. Darwin recognizes concepts you are weak at and makes you focus on MCQs related to these topics.

Darwin will enable you to understand your weak areas and develop methods to conquer these weaknesses.

2.Continuously challenge yourself with the right MCQs: The theory of deliberate practice by Dr. Anders Ericsson², is the heart of Darwin’s architecture. As mentioned earlier, to learn better, you need to:

  • practice a large number of relevant high-quality MCQs
  • get continuous feedback loop on mistakes you make
  • make changes to learn from your mistakes

This kind of learning involves very high effort in which you have to reflect on your performance and get feedback on your performance. Having clear goals and continuously tracking them will help you achieve these goals.

3.Regularly revise your mistakes to improve retention: The basic research we relied on here was Ebbinghaus forgetting curve³ that highlights how humans forget information if they don’t attempt to retain it. The best way to combat it is through spaced repetition, and Darwin enables it through regular revision.

Our analysis of improvement in proficiency with regular revision

What’s Coming Up?

You can start practicing now.

Footnotes:

  1. ^ Flavell, John H. (1985). Cognitive development.
  2. ^ Ericsson, Anders (2016). Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise
  3. ^ You probably won’t remember this, but the “forgetting curve” theory explains why learning is hard

Darwin4NEET

Darwin for NEET and AIIMS preparation