April 14, 2024

Writing in Theory paper: Medical student exam guide

  • February 4, 2016
  • 3 min read
Writing in Theory paper: Medical student exam guide

As a medical student, you may have concern that you may not be able to best present your answers in the theory paper. What is the exact style of writing? What can be done for better marks? What does the teacher really expect? How to create an impression on the examiner? Here are few tips to guide you for better results.


Knowledge is one thing, but expression is as important as it. If you know many things but cannot let others know that you have knowledge is worse.

In Exam, these are few rules you should follow :

1. Margins – Draw borders, leave appropriate size margin on the left end of paper specially. Draw a separating underline between two answers or leave few lines.

2.Fresh Paper- While solving Short answer or long questions, if feasible, start your answer on fresh page. Paper should be ample for you, don’t worry.

3. Serially if possible- Try to solve questions, serially as far as possible, but make sure you don’t do the worst performing answer at the first. You first impression may be important, though it may not be true in all cases. In such cases, if possible, break the order if possible, so that you do the question you know first.

4.Points over Paragraphs- Examiner hates paragraphs, write answer in points when you know the answers. If you don’t know answer well, better use paragraphs :D. Also Underline the important subheadings.

5. Readibility- Avoid cursive handwriting, make sure your handwriting does not fuss the reader. Make it clean and clear.

6. Avoid Round abouts- Avoid unnecessary lengthening of answers like. ” Trachoma is one of the most common causes of blindness, it is one of the disease of the eyes caused by infection and is very common”

7. Pictorial expression- Use Diagrams where possible, Specially in anatomy, physiology, pathology sections.

8. Use Flow charts when possible , specially in pathogenesis, physiology sequences, protocols of treatment etc

9. Quote references when you are writing special recommendations. eg As per NICE, GINA, AAP etc.

10. Attempt all –Do not leave questions if you have even a bit of idea. Writing something even a definition or example can give a space for examiner, specially when he may want to pass you. Leaving blank is a no option but Zero. But make sure you don’t make blunders.


Last but not the least,

Use a good pen, which will not ruin your speed and effort.


If you have any feedback, please do comment.

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  • Please tell about exams in which diagrams can’t be made like biochemistry pharmacology community Medicine etc..whts the right way to attempt these ??

  • My friend wrote a wrong detail answer very properly instead of the right one( Acute coronary infarct instead of acute cerebral infarct)in her final year MBBS exam in Tamilnadu .. Can she get minimun of marks for that?

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