CAT 2019: Tips & Tricks to solve Para-Jumble Questions

Having trouble handling the Para-Jumble Questions in CAT exam? Check out these simple tricks and shortcuts to solve Para-Jumbles in Verbal Ability section.

Created On: Sep 18, 2019 16:23 IST
Modified On: Sep 19, 2019 16:23 IST
CAT 2018: Tips & Tricks to solve Para-Jumble Questions
CAT 2018: Tips & Tricks to solve Para-Jumble Questions

Para jumbles are one of the most common questions found in the Verbal Ability section of the CAT exam. Despite being a high scoring section of CAT Verbal Ability, Para jumbles still remain a tricky set of questions to answer for CAT aspirants. This is because of the very nature of these types of questions. In a Para jumble, we are given a paragraph (which is generally an extract of an article) with jumbled sentences. We have to rearrange the sentences in the right order so that the paragraph makes sense.

While they do seem tricky, Parajumbles is one of the few areas in VA section that even non-frequent readers can master and boost their score in the Verbal Ability section. So, let’s check out a few simple tricks and shortcuts to solve Para-Jumbles in Verbal Ability section.

1. Identify the Purpose of the Passage

The first step while trying to attempt a Para jumble question is to identify the purpose of the paragraph or the extract. In most cases, the purpose of the paragraph would be to:

  • Explain: The passage would be aimed at explaining something or some concept. In such cases, the passage would begin with presentation of an idea and move on to specific or narrower aspects in the following sentences.
  • Aware: Such passages would aim to make you aware of a situation or facts. The passage would first provide you with a context or background information before moving to the key issue or the topic to be discussed.
  • Anxiety / Concern: In such passages, the author tries to appeal to the sentiments of the reader by raising a particular concern in the first line. The following statements are used to discuss the different factors or features of the issue and the reasons for them.
  • Solution Oriented: Such Para jumbles have paragraphs that talk about issues or concerns in the introductory line. The following lines list down the probable solutions for the issues.
  • Surprise / Amaze: Such Para jumble paragraphs are aimed at causing wonder or amazement among the readers. The opening statement of such a Para jumble would be a statement with a surprizing idea or fact followed by a discussion on the features of the idea or issue.

Identifying the purpose of the passage will help you decode the message that it is trying to convey and thereby help you order the sentences provided in the para jumble question in the right order.

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2. Look for the Keywords / Indicators

Every passage will have certain keywords that are generally used in a particular part of passage. For instance:

  • Introductory Keywords: Such Keywords are intended at starting the discussion or describing the central theme of the passage.
    • Example: Nowadays, A, An, Beginning
  • Concluding Keywords: These indicators conclude an argument or sum up a discussion and therefore are generally seen in the concluding statements.
    • Example: Thus, Therefore, Finally, Eventually, Clearly
  • Comparative Keywords: Words that are used to denote comparison between two or more factors are generally used in central part of the passage.
    • Example: Likewise, Similarly.
  • Contrast Keywords: These keywords are included in a statement to contradict a fact that under discussion. Contrast Keywords are used in middle part of a paragraph.
    • Example: But, Yet, Although,, On the one hand, Nevertheless
  • Connector Keywords: Connector Keywords are used to provide additional information or supporting arguments to the point being discussed. They are again used in sentences that fall in the centre of a paragraph.
    • Example: Additionally, In addition to this, Apart from this
  • Sequence Keywords: The sequence keywords denote fact or factors which describe events in a particular order. These play a crucial role in establishing the order of events.
    • Example: Firstly, Event Time, Dates, Days, etc.
  • Cause & Effect Keywords: Such keywords help candidates identify the middle sentence in which generally the preceding sentence is cause while the following describes the effect due to it.
    • Examples: As, Since, Due to

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3. Form Mandatory Pairs

Mandatory Pairs refers to the set of any two sentences provided as part of the Para jumble that obviously comes one after the other.Forming mandatory pairs helps you eliminate a lot of other probable permutations and combinations.

While making mandatory pairs from given Para jumble, you should always take help of the given options or answer choices. Even if one of the choices has the pair, it increases your chances of a correct answer. If more than one answer choice has the mandatory pair, then you will have to use other tricks or shortcuts mentioned in the article to solve the Para jumble. 

4. Use Time Sequencing

Many a times, the Para jumble questions consist of statement or keywords that have keyword or indicators that suggest the sequence of events or the thought process of the passage. For instance, para jumble sentences which mention date or time or have the words initially, then, later” etc, suggest the sequence and will help you decode the para jumble.

5. Take help of Nouns,  Pronouns, and Antecedents

Similar to the time sequencing technique; another simple way to establish the order the sentences in a parajumble is through usage of Nouns and Pronouns. Generally, nouns are used when the characters or objects are introduced first a passage. The following sentences of the passage would generally use the pronoun or antecedent to refer to them.

For Example:

  • Sentence 1: India is my country and all Indians are my brothers and sisters.
  • Sentence 2: I love my country and I am proud of its rich and varied heritage.

In this case, India was used in the first statement, while in the second statement an antecedent or pronoun i.e. it’s was used. In this way, nouns, pronouns and antecedents can help you solve Para Jumbles.

These are just a few shortcuts or tricks to solve para jumble questions in the CAT exam. You can find many such tricks for other topics or type of questions asked in MBA entrance exams by visiting


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