With just three months to go for CAT 2019, a lot of aspirants might have decided to give it a try. If you are one of those people who is starting out from scratch with your CAT Prep, then this post is for you. Read on.
I too had started preparing for CAT 2018 in the month of September and even then, managed to get a decent 98.43 percentile. I believe that CAT is an exam whose success depends on 3 factors:
- Fast Thinking
Since you will be starting your preparation at a time when many other aspirants will already be attempting mock exams, you need to have a systematic plan to touch upon each of these factors. Do not fret, since you still have ample of time to catch up with them and even to race ahead.
CAT consists of three sections that test three different acumen that are expected out of an MBA student: Quantitative Ability, Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation, and Verbal Ability. If you haven’t picked up books for these three sections in CAT, now is the right time to do so.
There are multiple books available in the market and there are also videos and other content over the internet. The first thing that you need to do is to identify your strengths and weaknesses among the sections. For this, attempt any previous CAT question papers and find out which sections seem doable and which ones don’t. For instance, I felt that I was good at VA-RC and hence spent less time studying for the same. But, on the other hand, I was poor in QA and had to devote a few hours daily practising it.
Here is a 90-day preparation strategy by the CEO of MBA products at Career Launcher - Arks Srinivas.
Each section needs a different preparation strategy:
1. Quantitive Ability:
Loved by engineers and hated by the non-engineers, this subject can only be dealt with regular practice. It would be suggested to prepare a formulae book so that you can revise them whenever you find the time. Start with Level 1 questions and slowly move your way up to Level 2 and if you find the time then Level 3 as well. A simple google search will give you several must-solve Quant numericals. Make sure you learn a few shortcuts since this will save time in the exam.
2. Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation:
Personally, I feel this section can only be tackled by attempting multiple previous CAT question papers. Solve every kind of problem that you encounter in these questions. Also, pay attention to the time you take to solve these questions. Usually, most DI sets are solvable but do not spend inordinate amounts of time on one set. Learn to select the right kind of questions that are easy as well as can be done quickly.
3. Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension
For RCs, needless to say, practising various kinds of paragraphs is key. Websites like Aeon have good essays which can be referred to for enhancing the speed of reading and comprehension. Also, most books have ample solved RCs which can be used for practice. The other important questions in this section are para-summary, jumbled paragraphs, sentence completion and odd-man-out sentences. Pick up previous question papers to solve these questions.
Once you have covered all the sections and feel comfortable solving them by yourself, the next step is to start giving mocks. There are a number of free mocks available on the internet or you can enrol for an online mock course after reading the reviews about them. Make sure that by the end of October, you should have solved at least 5 mocks and analyzed them. Each mock helps you create a new polished strategy for acing the exam.
Here are all your mock test queries answered by a four-time CAT 100 percentiler and the CEO of 2iim!
All the best!