Tips For Logical Reasoning – CAT 2016

Since one section is devoted to both logical reasoning and data interpretation, those of you who are weak at data interpretation, have to rely highly on your logical reasoning skills. But it can be a hit and miss situation for most people and it is considered as the toughest part for many of the CAT aspirants. The best thing about Logical Reasoning Questions is that at times they come in groups or clusters, that is, information would be provided in a paragraph form followed by 3-4 questions pertaining to it. This is the best part as if you follow through with the information, all 3-4 answers are in your pocket. Topics covered under logical reasoning include, family tree, coding, arrangement, conditional ‘if and then’ statements, etc.

There are a few ways by which you can develop your logical reasoning skills. Some of them are:

  1. Practice: Yes, I know it is quite obvious and it is something everyone says. But it is the only way to get better at approaching problems under this section. Practice 10 sets of LR daily under different topics. Given that CAT 2016 is on 4th of December, and there are around 120 days for the same, by the time you appear for CAT, you would have solved around 1200 varied sets for LR. You would have covered almost all types of questions and would have figured out an approach to tackle even the trickiest of the problems. Practice is the key.
  2. Solve the questions according to the categories: Identify the different categories under the section and solve all different questions under each category. First, solve the questions on your own, then look for an alternate or quicker way to approach the problem. This will help in not only improving your accuracy but also the time spent on each problem will be minimized.
  3. Take sectional tests periodically: Take weekly sectional tests for this section and assess where you stand week after week. Identify the nature of questions that you couldn’t attempt, found difficult or the ones you wrongly answered. Also, identify the ones which you got correct but spent a lot of time. Remember that CAT is not only about accuracy but also about speed. Once you have identified your weak areas, go back to practicing problems of that area. Lastly, give another weekly test.
  4. Solve puzzles, crosswords and sudokus: Solving puzzles of any kind naturally sharpens your mind, improves concentration (you’re going to need a lot of that while taking the CAT), enhances cognitive ability and problem solving skills and more. All of which you would need to get better at before you give any entrance exam. Also, it may help to increase your speed.
  5. Make Diagrams and Tables: For questions with arrangement and caselets, always make a diagram or a table. By visually representing the question, it becomes easier as well as faster. When you make a table, you just add in the information which is already provided in a visual format and categorize the scattered information. Then all you have to do is look at the table or the arrangement and answer the question.
  6. Do not assume anything: It is important to remember that you don’t have to assume anything or take into consideration anything that applies to real world logic. If a question on syllogisms says, ‘All crows are white’ and ‘All birds are crows’, don’t question it or assume anything. Follow the question and answer accordingly. Read the questions thoroughly and carefully and pay attention to the options given also before attempting the questions. Pay attention to words like, ‘some’, ‘most’, ‘all’, ‘every’, etc.
  7. Practice previous year’s paper: There are many online sites and there are some books available in the market which have questions from previous years CAT papers. Try to solve these within an appropriate time limit. Basically, take it as a test. Analyse your scores, find a better approach and try to solve it again. This will ensure that you know what type of LR questions are asked in the CAT and how to approach them efficiently.

This section is quite crucial for everyone and it is important to devote time to it as much as you give to Quantitative Ability and Verbal Ability. So study smart and All the Best!