This post is in continuation with the previous post (How to prepare for CAT’21). In the last post, I answered a few of the frequently asked questions by the CAT aspirants. To answer specific queries, I shared a link to post specific queries. So, in this post, I will be covering a few of the queries I received through the form.
Q1: A timetable/routine to follow for CAT and other MBA entrance exams
According to me, preparing in a structured way plays an important role. Though, how to plan the coming months varies from person to person, but there are few things that needs to be kept in mind which are as follows:
- Divide the preparation into two parts:
Part 1 (Concepts): Dedicate first few days/months to understand the concepts covering all three sections. Don't directly jump onto the mocks. But try to do away with this part as soon as possible so that you have more time for practicing.
Part 2 (Practice): Once you have built your foundation, devote maximum effort and time to the practice part. And keep on revising/refining your concepts.
- Fear of being stuck:
Consider a case where you are giving mocks, analysing them, improving your weak areas but still scoring low. Now what? Don’t get stuck. Don’t waste days/months being in that situation. Ask for help from your peers, teachers etc. They might see where you are lacking which you were unable to.
- Take breaks:
Don’t overdo anything. Take time to relax. The number of hours studied has never been a good measure to judge how much you have prepared or how well you will score on the final day.
- Seek advice but don't be blind:
Seeking advice is good and helps a lot but don’t blindly follow everything. I always believe and follow a filtering process. Filter everything whatever you feel is best for you and ignore the other things you heard. Filter my advice too. Don’t follow everything which I write in these articles. See what fits best to you and work accordingly
Q2. Is it a good idea to do an internship in my gap year?
Consider yourself sitting in front of the interview panel and they ask you what you did in your gap year. And you don’t have anything to say as the only thing you did was prepare for CAT. Do you think this would create a negative impact? In my personal opinion, I don’t think so. Because your percentile serves as proof that you didn't waste your gap year but invested your time in a good manner. But yes having something to show like an internship in the gap year is always a good idea. And people who have a gap of more than one year, doing an internship is a great idea. But in my opinion, doing a job and preparing side by side is the best option if you have a gap of more than one year or it’s not your first attempt.
Q3: How to build my profile?
Most of you might be in the final year of your undergrad or doing a job. So, the chances of improving your profile at this point are a bit less. The most you can do is to bring an internship / NGO experience, some good undergrad project, or courses relevant to MBA.
Q4: How to compensate for a low 10th, 12th or graduation score?
Obviously, the first task in hand is to score as high as you can to minimize the effect of your previous sins. Secondly, there are few b-schools that don’t consider your graduation score like FMS Delhi. Try to prepare a list of good b-schools where the low score will create a less negative impact. It’s harsh but true that your low school or college scores will affect your chances of selection (more during the shortlist for interview and less during final selection), but a great percentile can turn things in the right direction for you.
As there were a lot of queries, I clubbed many into the above four questions and a few I would be covered in separate posts (Advice on how to prepare for individual sections and How to analyse mocks).
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