Action Guide to Verbal – 60 Days to CAT


PART A : Understanding CAT Verbal Section


Verbal comprises of 20 questions in Section 2 of CAT. One needs to tackle these 20 questions in 45 mins. One should aim for 80-85% accuracy in Verbal for a 95 Percentile score

Understanding the 5 Building Blocks of Verbal will help you assess and plan your preparation for each of these 5 blocks.

5 Building Blocks of Verbal Section


Use the 5 building Blocks and No.of Questions expected to plan your preparation. Under no circumstances should you ignore high weightage areas like RC.

Also, Vocab is not the only area that is being tested. Do not use your entire Verbal Preparation time learning Word Lists. CAT is not a Vocab intensive exam – it is focused on usage of words and not than testing of obscure words that you may have memorized from standard word lists.


PART B : Evaluate Current Preparation


Be Brutally honest with this assessment. Look at your performance in the last 3 to 5 Mocks and Sectional Tests you have written.

Rate Yourself on each parameter on a scale of 1-3. ( 1 low, 2 Ok and 3 indicates high )


Sr   RC Grammar Vocab Parajumbles Paracompletion
1 Natural Aptitude
2 Practice Done
3 Accuracy % in 3 Mocks*
4 Total Score (1+2+3)
5 Weightage






6 Weighted Score (4*5)


*For Accuracy, give yourself 3 points if Accuracy above 80%. 2 points , if it is between 60%-80% & 1 for accuracy below 60%

Evaluation Each Building Block

For each particular area/building block, (refer to column 4 for the same)

Scores Below 4 indicate Below Average Preparation. Buck Up !!!

Scores of 4 & 5 Indicate Average Preparation. Work on it – average will take you nowhere.

Scores of 6 & Above Indicate Good Preparation. This is where you should aspire to be !!

Evaluating Overall Verbal Preparation

Calculation your weighted score by multiplying Total Score ( row 4) by the weigtage given. Add the score for each section.

My Overall Weighted Score is _______ ( out of 9)

Scores of 5.5 & above indicate – Good Preparation. Can take you 85+ percentile in Verbal

Scores of 4-5.5 indicate – Average Preparation. Will lead to 70-85 percentile

Scores of 3-4 indicate – Below Average Preparation. Will lead to 55-70 percentile

Scores of <3 indicate – Poor Preparation. You really need to do something dramatic to change things around.


Was this a Wake-Up call for you ?

2*2 Matrix to Evaluate Strength & Non-Strengths

Please fill the below 2*2 Matrix ( Consulting Approach helps 🙂  ). Again, use data from last 3-5 Mocks.



All 5 building Blocks needs to allocated to 1 of the 4 quadrants. Refer to performance in the last 3/5 Mocks to fill the same. Some Quadrants may have more than 1 building block. Some Quadrants may be empty

Strength Quadrant : ( High Accuracy, High Strength) : Ideally start Section2 in Mocks/Actual CAT by attempting these questions. Also, do not ignore preparation just because it is a strength !! You need to practise regularly since most of your marks come from this quadrant. Most likely candidate is Parajumbles.

Possible Strength : ( High Accuracy,Low Attempts): Low attempts can be due to low time allocated during test. Practise these areas in timed-test format. With practise, this can move to strength quadrant . Revisit the same evaluation exercise after 5 more Mocks and see if this has moved to strenth area. Possible Candidates : RC, Vocab.

Mirage Strength : (Low Accuracy, High Attempt) : You are being tempted to attempt these questions when you should be leaving a few unattempted. Treat these building blocks as weaknesses and devote extra time over the next 3 weeks. If it does not move to above 2 blocks over next 5 tests, please avoid attempting these questions in a Mock. Possible Candidates : Paracompletion, Grammar.

Weakness : ( Low Accuracy, Low Attempt Quadrant) : You are being frustrated by low accuracy and inability to attempt these questions. For the time being, avoid these questions in the Mocks and avoid the negatives you are acculumating. If you think you can improve these blocks by sheer hardwork, please double your effort. If enough time has been devoted already, please pull the plug and DO NOT waste time on these building blocks. Remember- cracking CAT requires leveraging your strength and being wise enough not to expose your weaknesses

Warning 1 : If RC is in Weakness Quadrant, you cannot afford to ‘ignore it’.

Warning 2 : If more than 1 building block is in weakness quadrant, you may not have required number of attempts in section 2. Hence try moving atleast one area to possible strength. Do not have more than 1 buidling block in the ‘Ignore List’


Part C : The Actual Study Plan


For Each Building Block, I have created 2 versions of the plan. Use ‘ Plan A’ if it is in Strength Quadrant OR It is a weakness you cannot improve on.

Use ‘Plan B’ for possible strengths & Mirage strengths. With extra practice, it will lead to higher accuracy and hence higher scores.

Re-evaluate position after 20 days to alter study plan accordingly.


Building Block

Plan A

Plan B


Reading Comprehension

Take 3 RCs at a time. Solve as a sectional test for 25 mins. Do it twice a week Take 3 RCs at a time. Solve as a sectional test for 25 mins. Do it thrice a week Solve RCs based on history, philospohy and Science. Use Previous CAT RCs. Typical Questions are – primary purpose, tone of passage & inference of the passage


25 Questions in 35 minutes. Solve once a week. 25 questions in 35 minutes. Solve twice a week Once you know basic concepts, focus on question solving. Grammar Theory is vast and studing entire theory is not the best utilization of time. CAT focuses on Usage and not obscure rules of grammar.



25 Questions in 40 minutes. Solve once a week. 25 questions in 40 minutes. Solve twice a week Easiest topic to master. I really think, you need to master this and ensure 2-3 right answers in every mock.


Para Completion

25 Questions in 50 minutes. Solve once a week. 25 questions in 50 minutes. Solve twice a week Readers have a natural advantage here.



Phrasal Verb List –20 mins everyday.Fill-in-the-Blanks : 25 questions in 25 mins- twice a week Phrasal Verb List –20 mins everyday.Fill-in-the-Blanks : 25 questions in 25 mins- thrice a week Word Lists you should know : High Frequency List ( 1000 words), Confusable Words ( 500 words). Revise 1 week before CAT.


Verbal Sectional Tests

( all topics of Verbal)

2  Sectional tests per week. Give yourself 45 mins 2  Sectional tests per week. Give yourself 45 mins This will help refine your test-taking strategy.

Verbal Sectional Tests

( all topics of Verbal)

2  Sectional tests per week. Give yourself 45 mins2  Sectional tests per week. Give yourself 45 minsThis will help refine your test-taking strategy.

It is best to write 20-30 Full Length Tests before Actual CAT. Write 1 or 2 tests a week now ( Aug) and gradually increase frequency to 3-4 a week. No point writing 2 tests a day !!

Have specific Verbal Questions ? Ask Hemang all your verbal queries here :

About Hemang

Hemang Panchmatia (MBA from NMIMS, Batch of 2005) is Co-founder and Head of Verbal Dept at CREDence Academy (Mumbai’s only personalized coaching institute) He has trained 2500+ students in the last 4 years. With 5000 hrs of Verbal teaching experience, he is well-known among students for simplifying Verbal and making it ‘solvable’.  He is credited with bringing structure to Verbal Preparation and students vouch that Hemang Sir’s ’90 minute Verbal-a-day’ approach really works .When not in class, he loves reading and watching Bollywood movies. Hemang also has 4 years of Corporate Experience in Financial Services Space.

CREDence Academy provides personalized, high quality coaching for MBA Entrance Exams. Based in Mumbai, it has trained 1500 students in the 3 years.  1 in 4 CREDence students make it to the Top 30 B-Schools – thanks to the rigorous teaching methodology. CREDence faculty members are known to go that ‘extra mile’ – be it GD Preparation or doubt solving.

To gear up your prep levels, check this out InsideIIM Test Prep Live

Have specific Verbal Questions ? Ask Hemang all your verbal queries here

For all kind of Verbal Test Prep click here : Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

For all Ask the Expert Videos with the best trainers in India click here : Ask the Expert


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