How to prepare for CAT in 100 Days:
CAT 2019 exam is so near. With a little over 100 days remaining, it is time for aspirants to pull up their socks. Start by taking a free mock CAT to know how close you are to your target percentile. In this blog, we will discuss how to chart out a strategy to prepare for CAT in 100 days.
Though the level of DILR has gone up significantly, solving previous year papers of CAT will help aspirants to get the hang of this exam. It will help them know what the exam demands and what it does not. As aspirants will be racing against time to prepare for CAT in 3 months, online preparation for CAT can come in handy.
The structure of the exam remains the same. The exam comprises of three sections – (Reading Comprehension and Verbal Ability, Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning, Quantitative Aptitude), each having a time limit of an hour.
In this blog on how to prepare for CAT in 100 days, we will try to provide a framework on which aspirants can develop their own plans to crack CAT 2019.
Strategy to prepare for CAT in 100 days:
One of the most important questions that nags aspirants is that can someone prepare for CAT in 100 days. The answer to this question is definitely affirmative. Let us have a look at how to prepare for the various sections of CAT.
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension:
In the past 2 years, the conveners of CAT have been laying much emphasis on reading comprehension. It accounts for about 75% of the entire section and 24% of the whole paper. Obviously, aspirants cannot afford to set this topic aside and concentrate on others.
The only way by which someone can prepare for reading comprehension is by reading. Read anything you can get your hands on. Do not restrict yourself to specific genres. Get yourself comfortable with various styles of passages.
Set aside an hour a day for reading. Read novels, articles, reviews, etc. Try to understand the thought flow of the author. Put yourself in his shoes while answering the questions. Never let your knowledge about the things discussed influence your answers. Restrict yourself to what that is given in the passage.
Para jumbles, sentence elimination, and summary questions also depend heavily on the person’s ability to grasp the thought flow. Hence, reading pays off in multiple ways in this section.
Practice para jumbles without options. Since questions are of TITA type, allow some margin for error while attempting these questions. Make sure that you have an accuracy greater than 80% while attempting this section.
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning:
CAT conveners have been beefing up the level of difficulty of this section in the past 2 years. This section proves to be a nightmare for many aspirants. But, with the repeating of sets of similar difficulty in CAT 2016, this seems to be the new normal.
Again, allocate an hour a day and solve at least 5 sets each day. Don’t have specific preferences such as going with LR or DI. Attempt the sets that seem to be the least time-consuming.
CAT has been moving towards logic-driven DIs from calculation-intensive ones. With the introduction of on-screen calculator, it is evident that IIMs do not want calculation wizards. They are looking for someone who can crack the underlying logic. Hence, try practising different types of puzzles, sudokus and Kakuros to ensure that you develop the thought process.
Learn how to represent data visually. It will help you understand the logic better and significantly reduce the time expended on solving the set.
This is one of the sections that aspirants ignore entirely depending heavily on their inherent abilities. With each passing year, the sets are becoming tougher and tougher. Hence, do due diligence and leave as little room as possible for luck to operate on.
Be thorough with your basics. Do not leave out major topics such as Geometry or Number systems. Do a lot of questions so that the basics get registered well in mind. Devote at least an hour daily to this section so that you can prepare for CAT in 100 days.
Try to find the optimum methods to reach the solution. Even if your answer is correct, check whether it is the best method to obtain the solution. Complete the basics within the next 60 days. Ensure that you have enough time to improve your methods.
Taking mock tests is an integral part of preparation. Test-taking skills are as important as your knowledge in subjects, if not more. Giving mocks will help you know where you stand with respect to the competition. It helps you find your areas of weaknesses and work on them.
Start by giving a mock test every weekend. By September, start giving 2 mocks per weekend and by October end, start giving 3 to 4 mocks every week.
Make sure that the syllabus gets completed within the first 50 or 60 days. Set aside the last 40 days exclusively for taking mocks and improving your weak areas.
Ensure that you do not lose your stamina till the end of the test. Get yourself acclimatised to the test environment and duration. Taking ample amount of mock tests will help you fight fatigue in the actual exam. Also, mocks will prepare you for various levels of difficulty and this, in turn, will teach you how to alter your test-taking strategy depending on the difficulty level of the paper.
Try to maintain balanced sectional scores. Allocate time accordingly during preparation. Do not miss out on calls due to a low sectional score. Score as high as possible in your area of strength. Score a decent enough percentile to clear the sectional cut off in your area of weakness.
As a general tip, never trade accuracy for speed. Never mark an answer you are unsure of. Accuracy will sail you through even if your attempts are low (Comparatively).