CAT 2020: How to use Coronavirus Lockdown to prepare for MBA Entrance Exams?

While we’re all in the confines of our homes due to COVID-19 lockdown, let’s take this as an opportunity to prepare full swing for the CAT 2020 rather than letting this time act as an obstacle.

CAT 2020: How to Prepare During Lockdown
CAT 2020: How to Prepare During Lockdown

While we’re all in the confines of our homes let’s take this as an opportunity to prepare full swing for the CAT 2020 rather than letting this time act as an obstacle. The bigger question is, how to go about the preparation, and rightly so. Well, we’re happy to share some tricks of the trade to make your preparations top notch.

Let’s quickly understand the three sections. Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR) and Quantitative Aptitude (QA). They’ve 34, 32 and 34 questions respectively with the time limit of 60 minutes each. Now the most important part – how to do go ahead with the preparation?

VARC is the first section in the exam. It’s worth mentioning that RC takes a big chunk of marks allotted in the section. Your reading and comprehension skills are put to test in. The level of difficulty of the passages is manageable barring a few plus minus. However, the trick part is the questions and more so the answer options. But we’ve got you covered. Start with developing a reading habit and reading from a wide variety of areas like Psychology, Metaphysics, Sociology, Philosophy, History, Literature etc. daily. While reading, try comprehending the article from the author’s perspective and summarise the passage. It will develop vocabulary.  Get the basics in grammar right. These will enable you to score well. Eventually move on to critically examining various commonly asked inferential questions. Also keep going through para formation questions in the process. This being a variant of RC will assist in developing the thought process better, and is handy in answering the questions with better accuracy.

The second section in the series is DILR. It is one of the critical sections and requires a lot of practice to master it. For starters, go through the basic speed math techniques and the concepts of reciprocals and percentages before starting this section.

Know about the various types of sets asked. Learn the know-hows to crack the sets related to Games and Tournaments, Venn Diagrams, Cubes and Maximisation and Minimisation. Practise about 4-5 sets each, from various chapters to clear the basics.

Eventually, start taking the LRDI online sectional tests to improve your time management skills and reasoning skills. Scan through the past CAT papers from 2001-2008 and 2017, 18 and 19 to acquaint yourself with the types of sets being asked. Select sets based on different patterns to increase the familiarity with the sets in CAT. Work on improving the representation of the data of a particular set. This is very critical in solving a set faster.

The QA section though the last one to tackle is quite dreaded by the CAT aspirants primarily because its content is vast and the list of formulae is endless! Let us first try to get a perspective on what exactly QA is all about and how is it relevant for an exam like the CAT.The quant syllabus of CAT can be divided into five broad categories:

  • Arithmetic
  • Number systems
  • Geometry and menstruations
  • Algebra
  • Permutation and Combination

Do not pick any test area at random. Build a ‘measurable plan’. Take up topics one at a time and focus on the timely completion of the syllabus. Understand the fundamentals well! After the topics get completed, start taking as many sectional tests as possible to improve your speed.

Well folks, that’s all from the preparation perspective. Make the most of your time with your preparations and remember that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. On your marks. Get, stretch and bell the CAT! Good luck!

This might interest you: MBA at IIMs: Preparation for Placements

About the Expert

Mr. Kaushik Laskar is a Computer Science Graduate from IIT Kharagpur and has a PGDM from IIM – Ahmedabad. He has 23 years of proven corporate experience in Marketing, Sales, and Strategy spanning. His zest for teaching made him join T.I.M.E. in 2016. Before heading T.I.M.E. Mumbai, he had taken up academic and managerial roles with T.I.M.E. Delhi and T.I.M.E. Kolkata..

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