How To Get Into NUST?|Got Acceptance From GIKI, LUMS, And IBA!| Guide By Mahad Imran

Hi, This is Mahad Imran. I’m a freshman at NUST majoring in Geoinformatics Engineering. I’m the Founder of Kis Uni and, I work as a fundraising officer at ZNotes. I had 5*’s, 2A’s and a B in Olevels and 2A’s and a B in Alevels. I wasn’t top of the class, but rather an above-average student. Although I am currently enrolled in NUST but I was able to secure admission in LUMS, GIKI and IBA. So in this guide I will be sharing my journey and guiding you to help you prepare for the required entry tests to get into these competitive universities.

Choosing Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

What is Geoinformatics?

As the name suggests, GIS is the usage of information sciences to address problems concerning geography and related sciences. It has a high concentration of CS courses and you can learn about Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Image processing, IoT systems and much more.

“GIS is really diverse. Its applications range from various domains including Environmental studies, IoT, Urban Planning, sustainability, water resources, irrigation, surveying, Data science, statistics, WebGIS and GIS-based web systems, Image processing, Deep learning based GIS systems, Cartography, Data visualization, Geology and much much more. GIS basically is a computer-oriented domain in which we gather, create, store and manipulate geographic data to address real-world problems where we utilize the "spatial" a.k.a real-world equivalent parts to analyze patterns in the data, how different attributes and features are interconnected and correlated. And to create efficient systems that help us address such domain-specific problems. The spatial part gives a new outlook to the data.”

-Ahmed Hanif, a recent graduate from the Institute of Geographical Information Systems (IGIS) NUST.

Although still an emerging field in Pakistan,  GIS has been very progressing at a high pace. Various governmental and private organizations are realizing the need for GIS professionals.

Which Entry Tests I Gave?


  • NET (engineering)


  • SAT I
  • Science School Test

For IBA:

  • SAT I
  • IBA’S test for BSCS
  • Interview for BS Accounting And Finance


  • Engineering Test

I didn’t give LCAT for LUMS as I had an SAT score of 1320. I also used the same SAT Score to get shortlisted for IBA’s Interview for BS AF and, I later cleared that interview. I didn’t have to prepare separately for any of the tests as most of the time the syllabus was the same but the difficulty level varied.

Preparing For Entry Tests

Being an Alevels student, it wasn’t easy to prepare for any entrance test. You’ve to go through the local board syllabus (except for SAT) and trust me, it’s a tedious task. If you aren’t comfortable doing self-learning, you might need extra help. I won’t recommend an academy but rather YouTube videos or paid online courses. You should focus more on learning tips and tricks that can help you solve long questions in the shortest time possible. If you’re A levels student, you’d have to do new chapters and learn new concepts such as from Conic Section and Trigonometry.

Conic Section is one of the most important chapters and, I’d suggest dedicating ample time to it.

Every test that I took had a majority of questions from the local board syllabus. The best resources to prepare for engineering university entrance tests are KIPS FUNG books and online courses such as Nearpeer or various youtube videos. You don’t need to pay hefty amounts of fees for coaching/tuition. You can do it on your own as there are numerous free resources available online. 

Most importantly..

  • Learn how to manage your time efficiently as this is where the students struggle the most.
  • Don’t leave whole chapters as anything can appear on the test but do leave lengthy questions such as proofs of theorems as they won’t be coming on the test.
  • For Mathematics, you should learn as many short tricks as possible. Do memorize all the formulae such as for trigonometry and conic section, etc.
  • For Physics, memorize all the formulae and learn all the relations. For instance, they may ask what would happen if you increase something in a system.

Why not IBA, LUMS and GIKI?

LUMS is way expensive if compared to NUST and is particularly famous as one of the leading Business Schools along with IBA. Although the science school is very prestigious and hard to get into, but coming from a middle-class family I didn’t fancy spending around Rs.4 million extra for a degree. The single most contributing factor to not going to IBA was the location. Karachi is nowhere near Islamabad in terms of standard of living, security, cleanliness and everything. GIKI again is considerably costly and located in a remote area. 

Why did I apply when I didn’t plan to join?

Those are the most stressful times when you start applying to universities with sleepless nights and anxiety. You don’t know if you will get admitted anywhere. It was quite understandable to not let any opportunity go. I would have gladly gone to any of these universities if there hadn’t been a choice.

I could have never foreseen that I would be blessed enough to get accepted to all of these aforementioned institutes; never knew I would be fortunate enough, Alhamdulillah.

Closing Remarks

You don’t need to be the top scorer to get into your dream university. You can get in with above-average scores if your other profile is good enough. Universities like LUMS, IBA and Habib have a holistic approach to admissions and do not just assess you on your grades. Be confident and have self-belief. If you don’t believe in yourself, you’ll never be able to achieve that dream of yours. Do not stress too much about your entrance tests as in the end, everything will work out well In Sha Allah.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me on my Linkedin or at

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