Should you drop a year for IIT-JEE?

June 18, 2012



Are you also wrestling with the same uneasy thought of “dropping a year to prepare again”? For many students this is a terribly difficult question around joining an undergraduate program. Engineering entrance exams are extremely competitive and success, for many, does not come in the first attempt. The question becomes even more difficult because there is no right answer.

When does this question arise?
There are a few situations when you will feel like dropping a year and preparing again.


  • You could not crack the entrance and make it through the cut-off.
  • You got admission into engineering degree program but not your choice of stream.
  • Or a little earlier in the year, you found preparing of board exams challenging along with entrance preparation

Whatever be the case, you are not alone if you are in the dilemma. Let us see what are the good and bad points about dropping a year and how you can make the right decision.

Pros of dropping a year

  • For one whole year you are committed to entrance preparation without any distraction of school.
  • Focus and dedication will surely bring out a much stronger character in you.
  • You get to focus on your board exams and perform well but it happens only if you take the decision well in time.
  • Again, if this decision is taken well in advance a whole lot of stress is cut out from your three years of preparation. So taking this decision some time before your board exam is much more beneficial.
  • It might be better to invest another year of hard practice than to regret whole of your life.


Cons of dropping a year

  • You miss out on one year as compared to your friends who would have joined college.
  • It is easier said than done because one whole year of repeating the same preparation requires a lot of grit.
  • As you have dropped a year the pressure for succeeding in exam will be much higher.
  • Also in most engineering entrance exams, you get only 2 chances consecutively so your second is the only chance you get.


How do you make the decision?
Above mentioned reasons are some general thoughts, you might have different reasons. So take a paper any time you are in a confusion and draw a table with positives in one column and negatives in one column. Now start jotting down your reasons which can as simple as "Mom will keep scolding every day". Which ever column has significantly more points will be your decision maker.

One golden rule, however, is "Be ready to be completely determined, motivated and extremely focused towards entrance preparation for this duration."

Preparing Again with College
An alternative is to join a degree program and prepare side by side. It will be similar to preparing for boards and entrance exams but you just got one additional year of preparation. Your college will be a backup if you cannot succeed in the second trial as well. Two important things to do while preparing with college are, one: to be SMART about your preparation i.e. completely base your preparation around your strengths and weaknesses and two: to not mess up your college grades.

Good luck with your decision.