Nid Entrance Exam Preparations
NID entrance exam is sometimes also referred to as NID Design Aptitude Test (DAT)) is an entrance exam that a design aspirant needs to clear as a first step for getting admission into NID. Upon successfully qualifying in the NID DAT, the candidate is called for a Studio Test, followed by a personal interview.
NID does not accept CEED scores and NID DAT, CEED or any other DAT conducted by other design colleges are all distinct exams. Since they have no connection with each other, the candidate needs to fill out separate forms for each exam. Each design school in India has different philosophy towards teaching design, therefore, the entrance tests conducted by each college has a different flavour. One big difference I have observed is that CEED focuses on the technical and engineering aspects of design whereas NID DAT focuses on how the design is carried out.
Keeping this outline in mind, let’s see some tips that will help you take the first step towards to performing well in NID Entrance Exam 2018 and fulfilling your dream of studying at NID.
- NID DAT is all about balancing skills: You don’t have to really worry if your sketching is bad. NID, in my opinion, sees a balance of skills. The people who secured good DAT scores did not necessarily have awesome sketching skills, but they were able to generate ideas which were out-of-the-box. This does not mean that you don’t need sketching skills, but if your ideas are really terrific, NID might overlook minor flaws in your sketches. Just make sure that the sketches you make are up to the point and express what you have in your mind.
- Prepare for weird questions and show your creativity: Having said about the balance of skills, NID questions are nowhere predictable in their nature! The questions actually show the creativity that you will be taught in the college. There are questions that test your sketching skills to the limit. Be sure that you have enough practice of sketching weird stuff. For example, practice sketching how a city would appear to you from inside a manhole. All that matters is how creatively you apply yourself in the given situation. Similarly, weird questions can be a golden opportunity for you to showcase your creativity. Therefore, be as creative as you wish when facing such question.
- Know the design symbolism and conventions well: For NID, the questions are often left open ended with no clear insight to what could be a so-called right answer to it. This is just to test whether a candidate can present her/his design well. Make sure that you know the design conventions such as gestalt principles, meaning of colors, applications of different materials, etc, as well as design symbolism like speech bubbles, zoom in gestures, graphical symbolism, etc. This will help you understand the question and express your ideas in good depth.
- Choose your media carefully: NID DAT paper is not suitable for using ‘wet’ media such as sketch pens or water colors. Therefore, stick to dry media which includes colour pencils, pastels, etc. Media like ballpens and fineliners are preferred by some designers, but use them only if you are quite confident of what you are going to make. Also, during practice sessions, practice only on A4 papers. Sketching on large papers will get you in the habit of drawing with wide strokes which will be detrimental in sketching on smaller papers.
- Develop your own sketching style: Apparently most of the students who secured a seat in NID during the past year had their own unique sketching style. This might mean that your score will be higher if you sketch using the style you have developed on your own. It may seem daunting, but developing your style is rather simple. Perhaps all of us copy great designers at some point in time. All you have to do is break free of the mold and try some different types of shading, maybe try using pencils in place of the markers, use thick and wide strokes of pencil to give your design a dynamic look. There are many such techniques you will discover during your practice session. Make sure you develop one style and practice it till you perfect it.
- Improve your observation of things and phenomena around you: Sometimes NID DAT tests your ability to analyse things from users’ perspective and even asks questions directly related to current affairs. It helps if you are updated with the events in the design world and know which products are rated as good design examples. Reading common design blogs such as core77 will keep you updated and also show how to critique design. If you can analyse your own design, your design skills will improve.
- Plan and sketch, but be fast! One common problem faced by NID aspirants is that the paper is too lengthy. Therefore, always think thoroughly before sketching. A simple solution to the question at hand is often the best one (Occam’s Razor principle). Don’t rush into sketching the final solution. First estimate the amount of space you will need by blocking the space roughly, that is, what part of sketch will appear in what area of the answer paper. Then sketch in faint hand to get a sense of proportions and once this is done, rush into sketching. Literally sketch as fast as you can!
In a nutshell, if you have great concepts, decent but fast sketching skills and your own individualistic sketching style, you will score well in NID DAT.
Nid Entrance Exam Preparations
Just as any other entrance examination demands, you need to undergo meticulous NID preparation. It has a rigorous entry process involving design aptitude test followed by studio test and interview. Clearing the first hurdle is what makes aspirants explore various alternatives in coaching.
Unlike most other design entrance tests, the problem gets compounded as there is no specified syllabus or concepts for this exam. Therefore, BRDS has identified specific skill sets considered key for NID preparation. The BRDS courses are dedicated to building these skill sets in design aspirants. Availing one brings you closer to the target.
It is 3-hour marathon written exam that tests your observation and utilization of shapes and colour, lateral thinking, the idea of size and proportion, innovative ways to view daily occurrences, imaginative power and its expression on paper. Perhaps it sounds easy but OPUS believes this is not all. So it offers aspirants a personalized mentor series for NID preparation as it moulds you into a worthy candidate at the right stage. NID preparation should have focus on how the design is carried out. By adopting a holistic approach, OPUS trains candidates in every aspect of the test.
You have no reason to worry if your sketching is poor. NID looks for a balance of skills. Those who secured good DAT scores did not necessarily have excellent sketching acumen. But they generated out-of-the-box ideas. For NID preparation you do not need to invest all your energy in the mastery of sketches. If your sketches express what you have in mind, it is enough.
Show Your Creativity
Be prepared to face unpredictable questions that show amazing creativity. There are questions to test your sketching skills. Be sure you have sufficient practice of sketching weird stuff. The given situation should carry creative application. Throughout your NID preparation, make sure you remain highly creative in your ideation and execution.
Know Design Symbolism And Conventions
Questions you face in NID are often left open-ended. This is to test whether a candidate can present the design properly. Make sure you know the design conventions such as gestalt principles, the meaning of colors, applications of different materials. Design symbolism like speech bubbles, zoom in gestures, graphical symbolism should be your forte. This helps you understand the question and express your ideas in depth.
Choose Your Media Carefully
For NID preparation, you should not use ‘wet’ media such as sketch pens or water colors. Stick to dry media like colour pencils, pastels. Use ball pens and fine liners only if you are confident of what you are going to make. During practice sessions, use A4 papers. Sketching on large papers develops the habit of drawing with wide strokes.
Develop Own Sketching Style
Most of the candidates who qualified in NID in the last year had their own unique sketching style. Developing your style is simple. Get rid of the habit of copying great designers and try different types of shading using pencils in place of the markers, use wide strokes of a pencil to make your design look dynamic. Discover many techniques during your practice session. Make sure you develop one style and practice it till you achieve perfection.
Improve Your Observation
NID also tests your ability to analyse things from the user’s perspective. It asks questions directly related to current affairs. Stay updated with the events in the design universe. Know the products considered as brilliant design examples. Reading common design blogs will teach you how to critique the design. During NID preparation, learn to analyse your own design as it will improve your skills.
Plan And Sketch Fast
NID aspirants find the paper lengthy. Think thoroughly before sketching during NID preparation. A simple solution to the question is the best. First, estimate the amount of space you need. Save time in drawing and erasing and then drawing again. If you have great ideas, decent but fast sketching skills, and an individualistic style, you are likely to score well.
Speed Is Key
During NID preparation, you should learn to develop speed. There is no merit if you cannot manage to complete the paper or express your ideas within the stipulated time. Even if you are excellent in terms of talent but cannot manage it well within the given hours, you stand to lose the chance of making the cut. OPUS grooms you to pay attention to this crucial aspect.
Practice Previous Year Papers
Go through all previous papers of NID. Solve at least 10 past papers within the time limit. Find out a comfortable sequence of answering the paper. If you face a mental block, breathe deeply, relax and then answer the question during the NID preparation.
BRDS is the right destination in case you have a keen interest in NID. Opt for BRDS guidance during the NID preparation phase and realise your big dream.
All the best!