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How to make the best use of next 100 days for CAT Preparation?

Aug 21, 2015 17:10 IST

    100 days, for people who grew up in the 90s, was a thriller about which they talked about endlessly in school (or was it just me?). The idea that someone can be clairvoyant and predict incidents in future was fascinating.  In this post, I will try to do the same. Just kidding! I will try to suggest a few things that you can do and that you should do in the last 100 days so that you don’t mess up the CAT exam on 29th of November.

    Start giving mock tests

    As a part of our online course for CAT 2015, we offer 10 full length mock tests. When I talk to my students, I always recommend that they should start writing those mocks once they are confident of at least 50% of the syllabus. If you have reached that stage, probably it is time you wrote the first mock. Do not be worried about the percentile that you score at this stage of your prep. Do not be worried about the number of questions you attempt at this stage. Do not be worried about clearing the cutoff in all three sections at this stage. The only thing that you should be worried about for CAT at this stage is the accuracy. We will discuss more on this later in the post. As far as the number of mocks is concerned, it completely depends on your level of preparation. If you got more than 95 %ile in your previous CAT attempt, probably you should write 25+ mocks. On the other hand, if this is your first attempt and you have just started preparing – you should write 1 mock test in August, 3 in September, and once a week after that. As far as which mock test series to join, I am biased in favour of the mock tests that we provide as a part of our online CAT course. Having said that, I like the IMS SIMCATs and CL mocks as well.

    Focus on Accuracy

    Irrespective of your level of preparation, till October end – you should purely focus on accuracy. As a matter of fact, I would like to say that even till 29th of November you should purely focus on accuracy but that might lead to a situation where you neglect some other easy areas for improvement. Your accuracy should be close to 100% in Quantitative Aptitude section, Logical Reasoning questions, and Data Interpretation questions. It should be in the 80-90% in Reading Comprehension and around closer to 90 in Verbal. While these are ideal figures, you should be really worried if your overall accuracy is less than 75%. That is the first thing you should be trying to fix. To fix that a very simple idea is that you implement the focus on accuracy in your daily preparation. If you are solving questions from a book, always mark the answers and measure your accuracy. Every time you have marked a question incorrectly – make a note of it. For example, at the end of the day – you can make a note that I marked 10 questions wrong today. This small little manipulation will help you keep a tight check on your mistakes.

    Do not neglect LR / DI / RC

    One of the most common mistakes during CAT preparation, that I have seen students make over and over again, is that they neglect LR / DI / RC. You can avoid doing that. While there are 100 days left for the CAT exam, I would suggest that you sit down with a calendar right now and mark 30 days on it – 10 days dedicated to LR, 10 days dedicated to DI, and 10 days dedicated to RC. I am not saying that you should not study LR / DI / RC on the other 70 days. All I am saying is that if you give 10 days purely dedicated to LR, it will no longer be neglected. If you are someone who is a disciplined student and gives adequate time (50%) to LR / DI / RC already, then probably you don’t need to follow this. But most of the students are not. CAT aspirants spend days, sometimes even weeks, trying to finish the 26 chapters from a Quant book to finish the syllabus. In the process, they end up neglecting other important areas. The 10-10-10 rule of time allocation will help you excel in CAT 2015 as it will mean that you are adequately prepared for the often neglected areas.

    I hope this post will help you form a plan for the last 100 days. Do provide feedback about the same via the comment section. If you liked it, do not forget to share it on Facebook / Twitter. Also, I teach an online course for CAT 2015 on my website Handa Ka Funda – do check it out.

    Ravi Handa, an alumnus of IIT Kharagpur, has been teaching for CAT and various other competitive exams for around a decade. He started online courses on his website Handa Ka Funda in 2013 and 10000+ students have subscribed for them since then.

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