Strategies to prepare for the CAT Exam 2022 - CBSE INFO

Saturday 6 August 2022

Strategies to prepare for the CAT Exam 2022


How to prepare for the Common Admission Test (CAT)? This is a question that has as many variables as the ‘what is the meaning of life?’ question that philosophers have struggled with for eons. Let’s look at the variables involved in CAT Preparation and see whether a simple answer can be found.

The starting point

This matters. The student’s background definitely gives him/her an advantage, but not an unassailable one. If, at the beginning of preparation, you are a regular reader of novels and newspapers, you have an advantage. If you are comfortable with the basic concepts of Maths and don’t suffer from numerophobia , you are at an advantage. If you do not have any of these advantages, you’ll take more time. But you will get there.

Time available

Though there can be no thumb rule for this, six-eight months should be enough for a person who has the advantages mentioned earlier. If not, the preparation time can be anywhere between 12-15 months. CAT preparation does not demand that the student puts in long hours of study over a long stretch of time. However, it does demand some time every day and consistency in that.

Preparation plan

Now, let’s crunch some numbers. Remember what is being suggested is the minimum a candidate is expected to do if he/she wants to crack the CAT.

The 45x4 rule: Three hours a day is the bare minimum a candidate should put in. However, in today’s times of data overload and short attention spans, that’s asking for too much. Hence it is suggested that a student devotes four slots of 45 minutes each on a daily basis. These slots need not be in succession. A student is free to stretch these slots over 24 hours depending upon his/her habits and other commitments.

This stands for Everything Every day. A student should ensure that the subject should be different in each slot. There’s no point in studying Maths continuously for 15 days and ignoring other subjects. Such a strategy is counterproductive. The four slots in a day should ideally cover all sections of CAT preparation.

Slot 1: Reading

Slot 2: Solving questions of Maths/Learning or revising concepts

Slot 3: Solving two sets of Data Interpretation and two sets of Logical Reasoning  

Slot 4: Grammar/Vocabulary

This will ensure that the student’s competence develops simultaneously across all sections.

Testing: Remember that an improved competence does not automatically lead to an improved score. The improved competence has to be properly strategised in the test so that it leads to an improved score. This calls for practice. The candidate has to keep testing rigorously to track his/her progress. Usually, students wait till they complete their entire syllabus. Instead, test yourself on what you have prepared. With time, you will be able to solve more because you have covered more ground in your preparation.

Analyse tests: After taking the tests, a candidate should analyse the test thoroughly to identify the weak areas. Also, analyse the questions that have been answered correctly and try to see whether there’s a shorter way to arrive at the answers. Success is CAT is due to a judicious mix of speed and accuracy.

The CAT Personality

All these suggestions will not work unless the student is resilient and patient. These are the two most important qualities of a CAT person. Don’t fret too much over your profile or your lack of work experience or your low scores in Class 10 and 12 boards or graduation. That’s in the past. The only thing you can influence now is your score.

Stop thinking and get cracking.

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