(this is going to be a bit lengthy but given my situation, it had to be..so please don't lose patience) I'm in my 2nd year of engineering in electronics and I've faced this situation every semester. Before i continue, i must tell that concepts and understanding of the subject is not given much importance in the colleges here in India, it may not be the case elsewhere but atleast here it is. I don't know what the situation is in other countries but most of the students here prepare just to clear the exams with decent marks and don't make an effort to understand the subject.Still the students here complete the course and get placed in companies and so they really don't care about what they study as long as they can get marks in that subject. The thing is that our system is such that everybody here considers a person scoring 90-95% marks to be more intelligent than a person scoring say 80% and that's how it goes here right from class I to engineering/higher studies. Students here fear to read books written by foreign authors( our usual prescribed books ) as they find it not suitable to prepare for the exams ( here its more of theory than practical ) and they resort to local author books which gives lot of questions based on previous exams to help the student get an idea of the possible questions for their exams and this way they find easier methods to score without real understanding of core concepts. I've been doing well here, as most of the times i have followed a mixed approach of both but i feel that's not the way engineering is to be done.Now, I don't have similar plans and i want to go for higher studies in my field so i don't feel that would be the right thing for me to do from now on atleast ( i know i'm late now but still.. ) So my problem is I don't know how to survive here ? Is it right to study from local author books than go for prescribed author ? Do marks really matter that much ? how do i become a better engineer ? please let me know if you've been in a similar situation and how you've tackled it or if you've any suggestion from whatever you've read above, please let me know. Thanks, Zaman.