Tips and Tricks for CAT 2018

The Common Admission Test (CAT) is one of the most familiar management entrance exams. If you planning to appear for CAT exam, you will require a study plan on how to start preparing for the exam and how to end it by being on the top. Every year more than 02 lakh candidates appear for this national level entrance test. The level of competition in the CAT exam is really high and you need to keep your best foot forward in order to be included in the elite 100 percentiles club.

In this page, we have given the trick and tips which can help you prepare for the entrance test. Read the article below to know more about it.

How To Crack CAT 2018 Exam?

CAT includes 03 sections – Verbal Ability, Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning, Quantitative Ability. The exam pattern that you must follow for CAT Preparation 2018 is as follows:

Section Total Number of Questions Number of Non-MCQs Duration Marks
Quantitative Ability 34 7 60 min 102
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension 34 10 60 min 102
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning 32 08 60 min 96
Total 72 28 180 min 300

Now, to crack this national level entrance test, you must follow a simplified approach for your preparation. So firstly divide the three sections and put emphasis on each one according to your comfortability with the section.

Preparation Tips on Verbal Ability

This section not only tests the grammar and English of a candidate but also the critical thinking skills. Since the last 3 years, the VA-RC section of CAT exam is one section in which candidates have particularly faced difficulty.


Important Links

  • Click Here to know how to prepare for Reading Comprehension
  • Click Here to check the best books for RC section
  • Click Here to check the best books for VA section

Preparation Tips on Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning

There are 04 points which you should keep in mind while preparing for the CAT DILR section:

  1. Quick Calculations and approximations– You need to be quick and accurate to excel in this section. It is advised to the candidates to do the mental calculation as much as you can. However, if there are big numbers and you find difficult to do a mental calculation, then do not hesitate to use the on-screen calculator. You can use approximations up to 1% in your calculations as the options in CAT are generally varied by at least 3%. For example, you can use 3 instead of 3.453 to speed up calculations.
  2. Focus on keywords: There are a few keywords that can completely change the meaning of a statement. Hence you must pay close attention and read the question properly. Look out for some of these words: all, some, none, other than, only, unless, if and only if, and some prefixes like non-, un-, dis- etc.
  3. Diagrammatic Approach: It is always advised to organize the information in a systematic manner by using tables, symbols, and diagrams. This will minimize your work and will help you to solve a different set of questions based on one main problem. The symbols used should be such that they convey the proper meaning to you as given in the question.
  4. Don’t get stuck to a Question: It is quite possible that while scanning, you choose a question which may be looked simple but as you solve it you realize it isn’t. If you face such a situation, you should detach yourself from the question as soon as you find it very tough or time-consuming, even if you have invested time in it.
  5. Use Options – At the time of solving any question, look at the options. It will help you eliminate some of the variables which are not a part of the options and, more often than not, includes clues which will help you solve the answer in less duration.

Important Links

  • Click Here to check the best books for DI-LR section

Preparation Tips on Quantitative Ability

  • As you start preparing for the Quants section, you should side-by-side make formulas.
  • A lot of times, rather than solving the questions, it is possible to get the answer by putting the values given in the options than working out from the actual algorithm.
  • While practicing problems, identify your weak areas and keep a track if there has been some progress in the topics. If you are still making the same mistakes then evaluate what are you doing wrong. This may be a case of a conceptual gap rather than a question-to-question mistake.

Important Links: 

  • Click Here to check the best books for CAT Quantitative Aptitude section

Mock Test and Previous Year Papers

Once you have done sectional preparation, you can move ahead to solve mock test and previous year question paper. Take these mock test as the actual exam, and solve them like it. After solving the mock test identify why some questions were wrong, and try not repeat the same mistake again. It is advised that at the time of solving these mock tests and previous year paper, get a habit of leaving out questions which you are not comfortable about.

Tips and Tricks For CAT Preparation 2018

Here we have given some tips and tricks which you should follow while preparing for CAT.

Tip #1. Take mock tests in an online environment

This is really important and one should ignore it, Take the computer-based mock test so that you are familiarised with the actual test environment. Also, by taking the computer-based mock test, it helps you to prepare and save any wastage and you will be able to learn many tricks of how to solve the questions, which type of questions to opt first.

Tip #2. Analyse Mock Test

The next thing to do is to analyze the mock test. It is more important than taking the mock test itself. After every CAT mock test, you must analyze your performance and evaluate your scoring areas.

Shiv Raj secured 99.94 percentile in CAT and is an IIM Calcutta student, shares the preparation tip

Whenever you take a mock test, assess not only the wrong questions but also the right ones. Sometimes you may score very high, while on other occasions you might get a low score

Tip #3. Identify your strength and weakness

You can not improve unless you don’t know what you are doing wrong or what is your strength or weaknesses. After every mock test, evaluate your performance, identify your weak areas, focus on it and start working on that.

Tip #4. Practice Every Day

The experts suggest that you must practice a lot so that you can make an instant connect with the question during your CAT exam day. Practicing regularly will not only help you increase your question-solving speed but will also make you habitual to sit for three hours.

Chhavi Gupta, CAT 2017 100 Percentile shares,

“I rigorously practised the Mock CAT series, selected some random tests online and sample CAT. To be precise, I solved 35 practice tests and analysing them critically”

If you have any confusion, then let us know in the comment section below. 


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