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Are you between Classes 9 and 11 and wanting to take up Law? Read on.

Over the last few months, I have been faced with this trend of youngsters preparing for CLAT. Increasingly, young students of around Class 10 or less appear to be serious about preparing for CLAT and making a career in law. I will first share my thoughts on this trend and then give you some practical advice if you fall into this bracket and are reading this.

I believe Law is an exciting and smart career option, where the ticket to the top is a much less gruesome journey as compared to Engineering or Medicine. It is the reason I got attracted to it, because I knew the path of Engineering was just not a feasible option at all. Law matched my ambition and could give me the prestige of studying with the best minds at a top law school. Law has taken India by storm suddenly with the new Law Schools, marketing about high paying jobs and of course, the relative cakewalk that is CLAT. 

So it is both promising and a sign of worry that youngsters are showing serious interest in this, as they claim. My fear is that this doesn't turn out to be the IITJEE horror show in a few years. Coaching centers are already making a killing and if this trend continues in the footsteps of JEE mania, they will be billionaires very soon. Apart from the brilliant ones that actually make it through great colleges in JEE, the whole scenario is very depressing, and I really don't want to see that happening in Law. Moreover, I feel students of classes 9 and 10 are just too young to have any serious inkling of what to do with their lives. I don't know if times have changed a lot since I was that age, but it's just because there is not a lot of knowledge about the world, let alone your career and what kind of a lifestyle you want to lead. A lot of my friends including myself, firmed up their minds in the last year of school or took a drop after just giving CLAT for the heck of it. 

But in case you are super sure you want to do this, you are in a good position, and here is my advice for you. The goal to doing well in CLAT can crudely be divided into a few steps-

1. Know all the types of questions well enough to face any kind of challenge thrown to you in the exam hall.

2. Keeping a calm head working at its full potential during an extremely tense 2 hours.

3. Keeping a well-oiled routine of practice - there are no fixed hours, you can study for 2 hours or 20 - but it's like how Ronaldo or Messi just keep practicing and going tirelessly. This is vague now, and its merit will be evident a few months from D-Day. 

I do generally advise to join a good coaching center if you can afford it. My coaching center gave me excellent guides, materials and mocks, and good friends with whom I had a constant healthy competition. There is no need to stack up books and materials unnecessarily because what all people do is reframe questions from past year papers. Please save your money. There is plenty of good material on the web on sites like ours and more -  for free. Please source all past year papers including pre-CLAT era papers ASAP.

I will not tell you much about mocks but do take a few just to get your juices going. Proper advice for mocks is generally irrelevant to those who don't have at least 6 months of solid prep (not including crash course peeps who prepare for a month before the exam). 

The most important thing is not to be misled and be sold a pipe dream by those wanting to take your money. Trust me this is a very critical part of your career. Life is very tough for me in a Tier I NLU, and it's exponentially tougher in lower colleges. You have time to sit and think and research. Consult your teachers, parents, door ke rishtedar or whatever. Make a concerted decision and put your best foot forward.

All the best! 

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