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Vastav K cracked CAT in 2011 with a percentile score of 97.2 and secured admission in IIM Lucknow. He has done engineering in his graduation. During his interview with us, he says, “Refer good books and it can help you in clearing fundamentals.” He shares with us his experience of how he prepared for CAT and cleared it. The following questionnaire can help you for preparing for CAT.
Ques. The institutes that offered you admissions?
Ans. I couldn't clear IIMA, IIMB. I chose IIM-L because of the long illustrious history associated with the institute and the fact that it is one of the highest ranked B-schools in India. Apart, I was offered admission in the following institutes, all the remaining IIM's, ISB, Xavier’s, FMS, and JBIM etc.
Ans. I appeared in CAT, SNAP, IBSAT, XAT (for XLRI)
Ans. Tutoring (For Particular Subjects) was my main mode of CAT preparation. I got the best CAT preparation tips from them.
Ans. I didn't have much of coaching. But in my view, coaching classes are meant to save time and find a better approach and help to get better CAT Result. I followed TIME Institute material, borrowed from my friend. IMS also provided me material, which was quite good. At IMS we used to get handouts in each class session. Apart from that, we also used to get subject materials. The materials were a brief of class work and handouts.
Ans. I am a B.E 2010 pass-out, I wrote CAT in 2010, but got just 82%ile, as my preparation was not up to the mark. Yet I tried reading in the late hours, but not with focus. I started preparing for CAT after my final exams. I prepared for the whole year, my preparation is concerned to online material gathering and self-study.
Ques. What is your five point rule to excel CAT 2017? Also, tell which mock papers did you take?
Ans. For CAT 2017, I have a simple five point rule:
List out the topics- Channelize them
1. Solve short/ easy questions first.
2. Never stick to one question for too long.
3. Practice more mock tests.
4. Time management is a crucial factor.
5. Take adequate rest and relax your brain.
I took IMS Test series, Career Launcher series, Hunda Ka Funda Online Test series and TIME test papers from my friend and practiced at home.
Ans. I didn't join any coaching but I underwent a crash course for VA and LR at IMS, Indore.
Ans. My strongest areas were Quant and Verbal sections; I had to work hard on DI and RC passages. I practiced speed mathematics and solved 10 DI exercises at a stretch to get the hang of it. For RC, I practiced Critical Reasoning questions and read up on fallacies to eliminate options.
Ans. Solving CAT Sample Papers helps a lot. I practiced following sample papers:
1. Hunda ka funda- for material and tests
2. Career Anna - for news articles
5. Mindworkzz.com, and some more
Ans. Quantitative Ability Section is a combination of majorly simple concepts merger with advanced mathematics. List out the topics and also sub topics. Start with easy questions from any of the section. In the beginning, don't focus on time management...after the first hour of practice, average your each question time in each day, try and reduce 20% of the time for next question practice hour. Do this until you reach the appropriate threshold time point.
Ans.For simple and basic questions- TMH's How to prepare for the data interpretation and logical reasoning for the CAT 3rd Edition by Arun Sharma
For advanced approach- The Pearson Guide to Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning for the CAT (With CD) by Nishit K. Sinha Publisher: Pearson
For practice- short book on DI by RS Agarwal
Ans. My strategy was to scan the question carefully and then interpret the data but don't just start doing calculations. Understand analyzing the data and the start calculations. Get familiarize with all types of DI questions with much of practice.
Ans. 1. How To Prepare for quantitative aptitude for the CAT by Arun Sharma is simple and easy to understand
2. Quantitative Aptitude for competitive examinations by Abhijit Guha
3. This is a good book for building concepts of quantitative aptitude
4. For advanced level The Pearson Guide for DI and QA book by Nishit K. Sinha
5. Shakuntala Devi's puzzle book is also a relaxation game book
Ans. My LR strategy was-
1. Read both the factual passage and the sentence completion instruction carefully.
2. Be sure to read all the response choices carefully before choosing one.
3. In questions that ask you to select a valid conclusion, always choose the one conclusion that must definitely follow from the information you are given.
4. Pay special attention to words like “all,” “some,” or “none” when you read the factual information each question gives you.
When you encounter a question that is difficult for you, try drawing diagrams or other schematic notes on the “scratch” paper provided to support and confirm your thought processes.
Ans. 1. The Pearson Guide to Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinha
2. Trishna's Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning for the CAT and Other MBA Examinations by TIME
3. A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning Revised Edition by R. S. Aggarwal
Ans. For Verbal Aptitude, focus on critical reasoning. If you are good in stuff like Para-completion, Para-jumbles, Fact Inference Judgement. Following are some of the strategy points of Verbal Aptitude-
1. Prepare to do well in VA
2. Improve your ability to read and understand language
3. Improve your ability to solve specific question types
As far as preparation for these is concerned, I would highly recommend the use of previous year papers for both LR and RC. You need to understand the level of questions that get asked.
Ans. 1. Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis
2. Wren and Martin English Grammar
3. A Communicative Grammar of English by Geoffrey Lee
4. Reading any popular newspaper. I preferred Economic Times.
Ans. Because vocabulary knowledge is critical to reading comprehension, it is important to develop a large “word bank” and effective vocabulary learning strategies.
Word Power Made Easy (or any other Vocab building tool) is helpful in CAT but Vocab is not an important parameter. You barely get a couple of direct question on it but it makes your life easier in RC and other areas.
Ans. 1. Schedule your CAT date
2. Take as many mocks as possible
3. Analyze each paper-identify weak areas
4. Work more on stronger areas
|Coaching Classes||NCERT Text Books||Online Study Material||Coaching Printed Study Material||Mock & Sample Test Papers||Study Groups||Subject Wise Classes||Self-Study|
|High||Low||Very High||High||Very High||Low||High||Very High|
Ans. Don’t waste time and energy on questions that you are unable to solve; learn to channelize your efforts in the right direction.
Ans. There were 3 persons in the interview panel. There were some casual questions, in the beginning, some of the questions that I remember are:
Ans. 1. Student's Companion by Wilfred D. Best Verbal Ability by Arun Sharma
2. English Proficiency manual
3. Business English and Communication by Clark
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