We see the story unfold every year after NEET PG. Profit-seeking coaching institutes and apps start marketing campaigns claiming most of the test was from their content. They then ask you to spend tens of thousands to give you non-personalized canned question banks. And many of you are so convinced by their claims that you can’t resist spending the money. We decided to dig deeper for your sake and put one prominent app, Marrow, to test by comparing it with Pre-PG on NEET PG 2019 coverage. What we found was what we expected, but we were still surprised. And we took away some lessons for you and us from this effort. Read on.
Why did we compare against Marrow, you may ask? The answer is simple — it is easiest to do so since they declared the repeats on their app on their Facebook page. It would be remiss of us if we do not appreciate their initiative to publish these screenshots. That said, they have set it up to communicate as if these questions were directly repeated from Marrow content. Few would look through all the material, but thanks to the screenshots, we could check Marrow’s claim.
To be clear, Pre-PG does not compete with coaching institutes. We do encourage doctors to work with good coaching institutes for NEET preparation. There is a lot of value in personalized attention and peer-group collaboration that you get from top-notch institutes like MedPG Thrissur.
We categorized each question into four buckets.
If the MCQ question and options give you enough info to correctly choose the right option in NEET PG, we categorize the MCQ as a Strong Match. Note that you do not need to read the explanation in this case. You may need to read the other options and have basic medical knowledge since NBE may ask you a question based on options that are not correct.
Answer in Explanation / Notes and Video Reference are self-explanatory. Not Present includes questions that were not present anywhere in the app.
Stating the obvious, Strong Match > Answer in Explanation or Notes > Video Reference > Not Present. Your most valuable resource during NEET PG preparation is TIME. I bet you can solve and review 30 questions by the time you watch a 30-minute video.
Pre-PG vs. Marrow
Let’s get to the result of our analysis comparing Pre-PG and Marrow. Note that we only had access to around 290 questions based on a widely circulated PDF with NEET PG 2019 questions.
What does this mean?
Pre-PG had more than 2 times the number of Strong Matches than Marrow.
Just by thoughtfully solving these Strong Match questions, you could have got over 190 questions right in NEET PG! What would you get if you did the same in Marrow? Just about 80. This surprised us.
IN OTHER WORDS, BE CAREFUL ABOUT MARROW’S MARKETING CLAIMS. They claim 240+ DIRECT REPEATS on their website. In reality, the number of direct repeats is LESS THAN 100. As for the repeats from other sources, consider this. How likely are you to remember an obscure fact in a video, particularly when there are over 700 hours of videos you can watch on Marrow?
Want to check out our findings yourself? You can go through the entire list of question keys, with source tests, years, and Pre-PG question IDs in the Google spreadsheet below. And yes, it also has a direct comparison of Pre-PG vs. Marrow.
NEET PG 2019 Questions — Pre-PG vs. Marrow Analysis
Comprehensive analysis of all NEET PG 2019 questions available
Insights from Analytics
There are a few more insights that are worth sharing.
First, Pre-PG had over 270 questions or ~90% coverage, way better than Marrow’s ~240 questions or ~80%. The % of questions in Pre-PG were over 80% across every subject. If you read our last year’s post, these numbers are consistent with what we observed in NEET PG 2018.
Second, over 30% of the questions were from tests on or before 2010. Granted, these were usually in topics that do not change much over time. 30% is less than what we observed last year, but this year’s chart is based on the most recent year of the question. Many of these recent questions were repeats from pre-2010 tests too.
Third, at least half of the questions were from tests other than NEET PG. This included tests such as PGI, NIMHANS, and old regional tests such as MH CET, KL-PG, and UP-PG. In fact, there were more repeats from these old regional tests than from old AIIMS tests.
Things to Remember
Several of these insights are consistent with our NEET PG 2018 analysis blog.
- Studying questions from previous year’s tests is sufficient to get you a great rank. You can theoretically solve more than 90% questions if you do this well.
- You should try to thoughtfully practice as many MCQs as you can. These “Strong Matches” form almost 200 questions. It is much harder to get through all explanations, canned notes, and impossible to get through hundreds of hours of video.
- When you solve MCQs, read and evaluate all other options since the question in the test may be based on options other than the answer. Don’t just memorize answers. Instead, train your brain to find patterns. There is more on how to do it in this blog about Deliberate Practice.
- Read the explanations for questions where you are not clear on the concepts, even if you get the question right. Almost 25% of the answers are in Pre-PG explanations, and this will give you an advantage over the competition.
- Practice questions from all tests, including old PGI and Regional questions. These tests have several conceptual questions that tend to repeat in the new NEET PG pattern.
- Studying recent questions is an effective strategy. Almost 70% of the questions were based on the most recent 5 years.
- Studying old questions will help you differentiate. Almost 30% of the questions were based on tests between 1990 and 2010.
Pre-PG is a social venture focused on ensuring every hardworking doctor is successful. We do not focus on our question bank, and it is based completely on old tests. Instead, we choose to focus on INSIGHTS that will help you be more EFFECTIVE in your preparation.
Pre-PG has all the MCQs you need for practice available for FREE. FOREVER. Don’t pay for apps that will trick you into grabbing your money.
Underlying Analysis Findings [on a separate post]
This post has details of our analysis of Pre-PG questions and the Marrow’s publicly published screenshots. We spent significant time analyzing all the content to equip you, the users, with information that will help you prepare more effectively for tests like NEET PG.
I strongly encourage you to go through this analysis since it will give you an idea of how the test developers modify existing questions to develop new ones.