The origin of negative marking in competitive exams first started with exams like UPSC and CAT. Negative marking means that certain marks are cut for answering a question wrongly. It was later introduced in banking exams and CLAT Exam to penalize the students who are randomly guessing answers because they are not prepared. Only the students with ample knowledge get selected in the end.

In this blog post, we will sought the common query of many candidates on how should we avoid loss of marks because of negative marking in CLAT Exam.

Tips on how to reduce Negative Marking in CLAT Exam:

We all know one major tip to reduce negative marking.

“Mark an answer only if you are confident about it”


But completely avoiding guessing in the exam is not possible. Here are some valid suggestions to help you guess and still not lose marks in the exam.

1. Do not do the guesswork mindlessly

If you do not know how to solve many questions, the only option you have at hand is to make some intelligent guesses. You must have a fair idea about majority of topics in all the subjects, so much so, that you know the possible answer to the question among given set of options, to make such type of guesses.

Do the guesswork only when you are confused between two answer choices available. Zero down to 2 options for guesswork, when you are attempting unsure questions. There are 50% chances that you will get it right. Leave the question un attempted if you are confused between more than two options, as your chances of getting it right are now reduced to 33% or even lower.

Also Read: Success tips shared by CLAT Topper- Exclusive Interview

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2. Mark all the answers you are sure about in the beginning

Initially solve the questions you are sure about and then move to solving the questions you are not very sure about. While you scan the questions, marks those using the ‘Review’ button so that you can come back to them later.

There is no such specific way to avoid negative marks completely. Leaving the question unanswered for later attempt is the only way to minimize precious time spent on attempting question that could result in negative marking. Be cautious of skipping too many unfamiliar questions, as this will bring down your overall attempt of the total questions attempted in the examination.


3. Know when it’s time to stop guessing

If an aspirant has an idea about the expected marks that will be enough to get to his target college, the aspirant must stop guessing. Keep attempting; if you have time at hand to attempt, but it’s time to stop if you are just guessing to increase your overall attempt. Your attempt shouldn’t be so high that it leads to loss of marks because of negative marking.

Also Read: How to attempt 200 questions in 2 hours


4. Do the analysis of Mocks and Previous Years Papers

Practice of previous year’s papers and mock tests will help to understand the examiner’s criteria of setting the question paper. Mock tests prepare you for the upcoming exam in a manner that they acquaint you with the actual exam difficulty level. Candidates get to know the important things like where they are losing marks or wasting time only by attempting mocks. The aspirant can reduce loss of marks due to negative marking if they keep their weaknesses in mind and improve for better.

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5. Be careful regarding Units in Elementary Mathematics

Aspirants copy the figures incorrectly on their rough sheet and mark answers incorrectly while solving graphs and complex questions. Always cross - check what you copy from the screen to the sheet. This is one of the biggest drawbacks of the online tests that can resolved by taking ample CLAT online mock tests.


6. Go for reverse Engineering

If you are unaware on how to solve a particular question, then straightaway go to the options available. Instead of mindless guessing or trying to form equations, just check which option satisfies all the conditions given in the question. Usually, there is only one such option. This trick is very useful in saving time in Maths questions.

Also Read: Best books for CLAT preparation recommended by toppers



7. Correct your frequently made mistakes

Avoid the topic in the exam that you hardly answer correctly. It is not necessary to attempt questions that you never got correct whilst practicing in the comfort of your home, just because your attempt is going low. Do not let the examination anxiety make you all the more unreasonable.


Giving due weight to minimizing the scope of negative marking is important. To successfully avoid the negative marking, follow the above mentioned points. It is highly recommended to take calculated risks wherever there is a possibility. Don’t go for reckless guesswork as this might harm you more than doing any good.

Also Read: Success Secrets shared by CLAT Toppers

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