CAT Preparation Strategy: CAT exam preparation requires a well-planned approach with time management. You should follow important aspects and must be completed at least a fortnight before the exam day.
1.Understand CAT Exam pattern and syllabus
As you are well aware CAT exam has a vast syllabus so you should know the key components and sections in CAT exam pattern and topics on which questions are being asked in CAT exam. Unless this you will not be able to know how to start preparation as well collect best study material for the current year. Your study will not materialize without a focused and sectional understanding of syllabus.
CAT Exam Pattern
CAT exam pattern is dynamic so a perceptible change can be seen in the syllabus as well in structure from time to time. Going by the tradition in changes in different type of questions in CAT, you can not aspect different in the upcoming exam. As per the revised CAT pattern, the CAT exam consists of 3 sections with a total of 100 questions. Each section has an individual time limit of 1 hour. Your plan for CAT preparation need to ensure a high score in each of the 3 sections as there is also a CAT sectional score cut off in IIMs for shortlisting.
CAT Syllabus does not have any boundaries because it is not pre-defined by IIMs nor the CAT syllabus outlined earlier. This is based on topics that appeared, added/deleted in past exams. The type of CAT questions, format and number may change in each subsequent CAT exam. There is no repetition of CAT questions in any CAT exam and difficulty level of the questions in the CAT exam would not go out of CAT exam syllabus. CAT syllabus covers all the major topics on Verbal abilities and Reading comprehension; Quantitative Aptitude; Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning.
2. Make a clear choice; preparing through Coaching or without Coaching.
You can prepare with or without coaching as per your requirements, availability of time, skills that you have and the areas you want to improve. You can go with the self-study but always be careful while selecting the right books and study material. Many toppers have set examples that one can get a good score without coaching but the approach should be clear. Solve all previous year CAT papers. A mock test every 10 days till August end and at least twice a week starting September total of 30-40 tests.
3. Prepare your CAT Exam preparation Time Table
Preparation of time table is an important factor in any competitive examination. However, finalizing a time table depends upon your skill and need to improve them could differ from person to person. But you can make a start as follows:-
- Attempt a few CAT Mock or Previous test papers to find out your weak or strong topics
- To begin with 2 to 3 hours of sectional approach as per your requirement to build your basics and bring conceptual clarity.
4. CAT Toppers; Learn from Toppers and include their strategy in your time table.
According to Toppers; mock test can help you gauge your preparation and help you to improve and focus more in the desired direction. Reading newspaper articles can improve your word power as well understanding of comprehension. Join Cat test series of some institute like TIME or IMS that improve sectional understanding and time management during the exam.
5. Start your CAT Preparation for each Section.
Sectional preparation is a smart approach that will ensure a high score in each section. Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension is the 1st section. Start your preparation with Reading comprehension because it is considered tricky. You need to prepare for comprehension by reading lots of RC passage. As RC is key components because 24% share in overall marks and 70% share in VARC Section.
- Reading Editorial, Blogs and Articles will improve reading speed and understanding of the passage.
- Monitor your time to attempt the CAT RC passage because time management plays an important role in tracking the VARC Section.
Verbal Ability is the part of VARC section but sometimes uncertain section, so focus on this section according to current trends. The difficulty level of questions of this section is Moderate to Highly difficult.
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
Data Interpretation and Logical reasoning is not only an important part of Cat Exam but also this is the most difficult part of cat preparation. This is the most time-consuming section. CAT has detached the LR & DI from their respective parent section of Quant and verbal. this section require a higher focus on logical reasoning preparation.
- DI questions are formed to check the interpretation ability of students that answer should be based on given data.
- Solve as much statics you can for the preparation of this section.
- Logical reasoning can be commanded with the practice of lots of asked questions in CAT Exam.
- Get updated CAT logical reasoning preparation material of the best coaching.
This section carries approximately 34% of the total score. According to trends, it is 3rd and last section during the past 2-3 years. This is a very tricky section but your achievement depends upon this section. Taking Mocks and sample tests is very important to crack Quantitative Aptitude section in CAT.