TGTS : FIRST YEAR – CHEMISTRY CYCLE

Hello everyone! So this might not be the first post you are reading about the college or about the town. There are tons of stuff out there which has helped your batch to know and be prepared for your 4 years here, more than ever! If by now you have managed to know everything about Manipal – Good! If you haven’t – Great! Because I think it’s best to discover about the town, the people, the culture, etc. all by yourself.

This post deals with a but more important aspect : the studies.

You must have gone around asking how tough the courses are, is it easy to score a good GPA, how much time we need to study, etcetera. Well, put those questions to rest, for you will find all answers in this one single post.

Since I am going into my final year (at the time of writing this post), I remember very little of my struggles during the first year. But the fact that I had struggled, I haven’t forgotten.

So with the help of one of my juniors (all EXPERT TIPs taken from him), who not only survived, but nailed and cracked his first year, I bring you all that needs to be done to make sure that you would be smiling on the day you would be first opening the mighty websis to check your results.

If you aren’t aware of the course patterns and exams, I would suggest you read this article by MIT Post. Only when you know about that, you can go ahead and read this.

But before we move on, just to let you know: there are no fixed rules, formulas or shortcuts that would work for all. Each one of you might have their own experience. We only tend to share ours so that in case you feel lost, you can try our methods and gain some momentum. So without further ado, let’s get started!

Oh, in case you stumbled upon the wrong post, this one deals with the Chemistry cycle. You can read the Physics cycle here.


 BASIC ELECTRICAL TECHNOLOGY [BET]

I would of course start with the course based on my branch (EEE). The entire course, or in fact I would say the entire Electrical stream, is based on two laws : Kirchoff’s Current Law (KCL) and Kirchoff’s Voltage Law (KVL). You probably might have learnt them in Physics somewhere.

All concepts are based on these two laws. There isn’t much to the concepts but it is the application of KCL and KVL that makes it difficult. The reason why it is important for ECE and EEE students to have their basics strong is for the same reason.

If you are reading this before your college has started, I would suggest you go through those laws and solve a problem or two. If you are finding the problems in assignents difficult to solve, then start from the basics.

Many might find it tough. The only respite to it is : Practice.

 EXPERT TIP

The Nagasarkar T K and Sukhija book is ideal for numericals. For the theory part, you can rely on the study material given.

 PROBLEM SOLVING USING COMPUTERS [PSUC]

I literally struggled for a minute or two to recall the actual name of the course. Because after the first day, you will always call it as PSUC. I guess the department should have chosen a name according to what the course actually does: Basics of C++.

Needless to say, if you are one of those who have learnt coding when people like me made their first successful Google search, then you have absolutely nothing to worry about. If not, then in the course of a few days you will realize whether coding is your thing or not.

I despise coding, so expecting me to help you survive is like asking swimming tips from a bird.

 EXPERT TIP

The PSUC Lab is a great outlet to practice codes related to the concepts you study in theory. For exams, make sure you at least know how to solve all problems in the lab manual. The basics, the syntax, the logic : always focus on them.

You can also practice problems from Hacker Rank and Code Chef if you want something more challenging. CodeBlock is a good platform to program, For beginners, the recommended references by E. Balaguruswamy is good too. Many also found the book by Sumita Arora useful, so you can try that too.


 CHEMISTRY

Well, this one needs no introduction. You already know what to expect

lab1.JPG

and what not to

breaking_bad_blue_meth-crop-promovar-mediumlarge

This course too is accompanied by its lab. With regards to the course, it is just an extension of your 12th study. So prepare exactly like you did for the boards. Only difference being, you will have an awful lot of slides to learn from.

 EXPERT TIP

The reference book by Jain and Jain might be handy.


 ENGINEERING MATHEMATICS – I and II

Okay so let me get this straight first of all : MATHS IN ENGINEERING SUCKS. I have mentioned it here while talking about the shortcomings of the college. I used to love maths till my 12th. After then, engineering happened.

There is nothing wrong with the syllabus. It is just how the courses are structured and how the department is unable to give faculties good enough to handle them in a better way.

This might be the first time you are reading anything negative about the college! But that’s the purpose of writing this for you. A clear cut, honest opinion is given so that you will be prepared for such a thing and have expectations accordingly.

All this doesn’t mean people don’t get to score. Of course, they do. If you’ve been really good at Maths, then it won’t be much of a problem. But if you are average at it like me, you need to do a lot of work for yourself.

For starters, everyone agrees that Grewal is the reference to be bought. And you sure should, as you will find it useful even in your second year. But it doesn’t mean you should just stick to that book and solve all its problems. A smart move would be to solve problems that you think is around the same difficulty as your class problems.

If you want more, then instead of heading for the more difficult problems (which might confuse you) look into other class notes and try practicing them. The problems you are going to face in the exams are never new. You will find it in some book or other.

This applies to all Maths courses that you will be doing in future. I realized this pretty late, so it didn’t help me in saving my GPA. It may help you.


 BIOLOGY FOR ENGINEERS [BFE]

My thoughts about the course? Just add a Why to that name.

BFE

I literally left a good college during my 12th admission because they couldn’t offer me a substitite for Biology. Little did I know that I will meet this subject again!

Our faculty Rupa Ma’am though had the most unique way of teaching – by asking each and every one in the class some question. She wanted most of the concepts to come from us. Initially I thought this is a completely useless exercise and it would have worked if she would just teach things straightaway. But over time I realized the concepts stayed longer with me this way.

Anyways, this is a case of pure dislike for the subject so I am not fit to say much.

 EXPERT TIP

I don’t know whether the Biology I studied is the same as yours, because on the complete contrary, I found the subject to be the easiest.


ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES

How good you will do in this course is directly dependent of how much you really care about the environment.

Just kidding.

It actually depends on how loyal you are to the Venugopal Rao book. You need to have all the points, if not the exact words, in your answers. There is no other way.

It is sad though. EVS has always made us feel like a burden rather than something very important to understand. It’s not the college, but the entire system at fault for shoving this subject at us in such a way.

Sigh. Anyways, there’s no better way to get through this. Or is there one?

 EXPERT TIP

If you are good at writing more with less, just glance at the important points from the book.


ENGINEERING GRAPHICS [EG] – I and II

Let’s just say I’m glad I never had to study anything even remotely related to EG after this lab!

It could have been interesting. But for (bit) slow learners like me, the 3 hours fly like a rocket and I hardly get to complete the given work on time. This lab needs a LOT of your attention and imagination. My lab being in the afternoon also didn’t work, as it meant struggling to be awake.

Major bummer is the faculty’s obsession over getting the smallest thing as they want to. The arrow markings, the space utilized, etc. needs to be the way they say, apart from drawing everything the right way, of course.

People with good drawing skills and bit of an OCD will have a blast though. Later into the lab, you will be using AutoCAD which can be bit easier.

Just remember to buy ample of graph sheets (they are long and pink) and keep some in your bag so that you never forget during the lab. Those are (deliberately kept) expensive (around 10 bucks for a 4-page sheet last I checked) so don’t waste them unnecessarily.

 EXPERT TIP

I, on the contrary, found this to be one of the easiest stuff I’ve studied. There is the Poty book which may help. But all that is there here is practice and some imagining.

About that EG sheet, there’s a shop near FC that sells it at 8 bucks. So you can save a few if you buy from there.


CHEMISTRY LAB

Again a déjà vu just like the case in Physics Lab. But this one, I would say, is relatively easier.

You need to perform the experiments with extreme caution. You cannot afford time to make mistakes.

It can be tiring as well, given you have to stand for almost the entire time. The lab too, is tucked in a corner of AB1 and can be difficult to navigate through.

Final exam is a different ballgame. Tons of reactions, chemical substances and procedures to stuff in your mind. I wrote the reactions and formulae in one single sheet for each experiment. Once you write, it would stay long in your memory. You can try that too. Start your preparations way early. It cannot be done overnight.

An easy way to remember will be to enter the building from the entry opposite to AB5.


This semester might be a little tough. It was for me because –

1. It was my first semester. So I was confused on how to go about.

2. Some subjects itself didn’t interest me much, making it even difficult to score.

This itself goes on to show how important it is to stay interested in your subjects in order to score well.

It is your first year so probably you will be very much serious about your academics. Maintain that seriousness for all the semesters. But always remember : you are here in Manipal to do more things and not just study! So actively participate in events, be part of clubs and fests.

Hope you found it helpful. If you did, leave a like on the facebook page and read more of my stuff. This all is handled by just one person and made it with lots of passion and sweat.

Any kind of feedback and suggestions are more than welcome!

Hope you have a wonderful semester and a rocking four years ahead!

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