CAT preparation tips for beginners:
This blog gives some CAT preparation tips for beginners to kick start their preparation. CAT 2019 will be on November/December. Before starting your preparation, take a free CAT mock test to know your strengths and weaknesses.
Based on your score, decide whether to prepare on your own or opt for coaching. Aspirants can check out online preparation for CAT as exam is online and also online coaching would give you time to prepare.
Try checking out previous year papers of CAT to know about the level of questions that appear in the exam.
First take at least one mock CAT. After taking the mock and recognizing what needs to be learnt, beginners can start their preparation. In this post on CAT preparation tips for beginners, let us look at how to start the preparation in each of the sections.
Reading Comprehension and Verbal Ability:
Reading comprehension accounts for 75% of the verbal section. Hence, aspirants must prepare well to ace this topic. Reading comprehension alone accounts for 24% of the entire paper.
Reading is the only way to improve the scores in this section. Start with novels or genres you are comfortable with. Slowly, try reading articles on varied topics such as philosophy, economics, sports, etc. Passages in CAT will be from diverse topics. Hence, it is essential to be comfortable with various styles of passages.
While reading a passage, try to understand the thought flow of the author. Don’t interpret the passage with your personal opinions. Try to be as objective as possible while interpreting the passage.
Avoid skimming and other speed reading techniques. There will hardly be any questions that involve the lines used in the passage directly. Also, avoid looking at the questions first. Read the passage and then look at the questions.
Do not hesitate to go back to the passage to answer the question. As most of the questions are inference based, it will be a necessity to go back to the passage. Once you complete the initial reading, you will have some idea about where the answer for a particular question lies in the passage.
Do not mark answers you are unsure of. Para jumbles, sentence completion and sentence elimination also depend heavily on the comprehending ability of the candidate.
Practice para jumbles without options. After rearranging the sentences, read it once and check for logical consistency.
Data Interpretation and Logical reasoning:
The difficulty level of DI-LR section has sky rocketed in the past 2 years. Just solving 4 sets correctly can put the candidates north of 99th percentile.
This section is usually the most ignored one by the aspirants. Most people rely solely on their inherent abilities to solve this section. With the sudden increase in the difficulty, it has now become imperative to devote ample amount of time for this section during preparation especially for beginners.
Try solving Sudokus, crosswords, Kakuros and other logical puzzles in your free time. Developing the thought process is essential to ace this section. Apart from solving puzzles, practice at least a DI set and LR set every day.
Once you get a decent grasp on the topics, try solving sets in a timed environment. Accuracy is of utmost importance. Make sure that you have good accuracy even if your attempts are low.
Start with the basics. Even if you are comfortable solving problems, chances are there that you might have forgotten certain implications and properties. Hence, starting from the fundamentals is one of the most important CAT preparation tips for beginners.
Begin with number systems as it lays the foundation for many other topics. Broadly, we can classify quantitative aptitude into 4 topics.
1. Number systems and progressions.
2. Unitary methods and Algebra.
3. Geometry and Mensuration.
4. Modern Maths.
Each of these sections is important, and problems often involve the application of 2 or 3 interrelated concepts. Hence, be thorough with the basics.
Even if you arrive at a solution, check whether it is the optimum method. Look out for various approaches to solve the same problem. Do not be too rigid to learn new ways of solving.
Street smartness can get you rewarded in this section. Try option substitution, option elimination techniques for harder questions.
Taking mock tests is one of the most important aspects of CAT preparation. Mocks help you identify where you are going wrong. This will, in turn, help you work on the gaps so that you can fill them.
Start by giving a mock a week. By the end of August, start giving 2 mocks a week. In November, give 3-4 mocks a week. Analyze every mock and work on your shortcomings before the next mock.
Do not wait until the completion of the syllabus to give a mock. Start giving mocks simultaneously while you are preparing. Try to complete the topics 40-50 days before the exam so that you can fine tune your test taking strategies in the final few days.
Experiment various strategies in mock. Finalise the one that suits you the best. Do not mimic someone else’s approach.
On the exam day, fix your targets depending on the difficulty level of the exam. Remember, it is the relative performance that matters.
While practising, try to maintain the balance among the three sections. Make sure that your areas of weakness do not hinder your chances of getting a call.
We hope that this blog on CAT preparation tips for beginners would have cleared the air a bit. To know how to draft a time table, whatsapp “CAT Course” to 7661025559.