Few Tips as the CAT 2010 Countdown Begins
The countdown for CAT 2010 has begun which starts on 24th of October. So last minute preparations, nervousness, sleepless nights will accompany you.
Last minute tips to crack CAT come from all directions some of which are helpful some are not so helpful.
But do remember that those who slog mindlessly for this test fail to acknowledge the inherent nature of the CAT examination. And don't forget that CAT is basically a test of your managerial aptitude and managerial skill-sets like - time management; how you handle pressure and uncertainty; decision-making - and not just about solving 150 questions in 120 minutes. It is about solving 90-95 questions with 85-90% accuracy.
Based on experience CoolAvenues has compiled some of the tips which might help the candidates in getting admission calls from some of the B-schools in the country.
TIP NO. 1: Handle pressure and uncertainty well
Handling pressure and uncertainty is one of the crucial elements of CAT. The CAT examination spans 120 minutes, but if you are able to handle the pressure in the first 15 and last 10 minutes, your chances to excel increase.
- Some pointers to help you excel at this stage are: -
- Keep your strategy flexible.
- Scan the question paper for the initial 3-4 minutes to locate easy questions.
- Attempt your favourite section first.
- Remember CAT is just another name for uncertainty. If it ain't uncertain, it ain't CAT! This year, you might get a paper based on Reasoning. Or you might have an additional section on Reasoning.
(The above suggestions are based on the increasing emphasis on Reasoning in the last decade. Also, CAT patterns / formats are revamped every 5 years. The last time the pattern was changed was 4 or 5 years ago.)
TIP NO.2: Sequence and prioritize
Sequencing and prioritizing mean: -
- Deciding on the sequence in which you will attempt the various sections.
- Allocating an approximate time to each section.
- Prioritizing questions within sections.
If you decide your sequence before entering the examination hall, it would help you attempt CAT methodically. So, you don't have to shuffle between sections and lose time. Once you have scanned the paper, allocate an additional 5-10 minutes to a tough section and take out 5-10 minutes from an easy section.
Before entering into the hall, let us assume that your strategy was: -
- Scanning: 3-4 minutes
- Quantitative Ability: 40 minutes
- Data Interpretation / Data Sufficiency: 35-40 minutes
- Verbal Ability: 40 minutes
If, say, Quantitative Ability is tough and the other two sections are comparatively easy, your changed strategy may look something like: -
- Scanning: 3-4 minutes
- Quantitative Ability: 45-50 minutes
- Data Interpretation / Data Sufficiency: 30 minutes
- Verbal Ability: 30-35 minutes
You should attempt your favourite section first. We advise you not to attempt Quantitative Ability in the end. QA utilizes your core fundamentals and formulae; sometimes, they are difficult to recall under the twin pressures of time and mental fatigue. The other two sections are primarily practice-based.
- TIP NO. 3: Deal with each section individually.
Here are some specific section-related strategies: -
Attempt questions in three rounds: -
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