How to plan your CAT preparation?

1. Find out your areas of improvement:
You need to introspect and find out where do you stand and what all resources you need to crack CAT. CAT could be broadly classified into following 4 areas:
1. Quantitative Aptitude
2. Logical Reasoning
3. Verbal Analysis and
4. Data Interpretation
Each of these area's have various topics from where questions are asked in CAT.
To start with you must find out which all areas you are conferrable with and which one are those where you need to improve on.You will have to start putting effort depending on the number. of areas of improvement. More the number of areas of improvement more preparation time is needed.


2. Need of Classroom Coaching, is it really needed?
Whether to join a coaching or not solely depends on a person's current level of expertise in verbal, maths and logical reasoning. To explain it better take example of Loans. To buy a car costing 1 Lac rupees how much loan one has to take totally depends on how much money he/she is currently owning. If a person is owning 1 lac then he doesn't need to take any loan :). Though one should definitely join Mock Tests. Continuing on the car example, Mock Tests are like learning driving before you buy a car ;).

Furthermore it totally depends on the discretion of candidate. If he feels he requires coaching in certain areas which he cannot improve by self preparation, he should join a coaching. But always remember one thing to crack the questions that comes in exams like CAT requires a good foundation which comes along with your schooling till 12th standard.
 

How to find out whether you need coaching for exams like CAT or not?
One simple way to find out this for those people who are going to attempt CAT for the first time in 2008 is by attempting free online mock CAT or attempting past year CAT papers. Attempt any of the two test papers of CAT from recent years. Do brush up your fundamentals before attempting any of these papers. When you attempt the past papers try to solve as many question as possible without putting any time constraints. If you are able to attempt around 25% of question correctly in each section then you don’t need to join any coaching.
You only need to work on time management & smart selection of questions. But if you score is less than 20% in all these sections then joining coaching would surely help you.

Click here to Take free Online Mock CAT
 
Click here to download Past Papers of CAT & other MBA exams 



3. Mock CATs, How helpfull are they?
Along with your expertise ,  the other most important thing to succeed in exams like CAT is to
a. Manage your time properly and
b. Smart selection of questions.
One can easily master these two things with abundant practice. Mock CATs are the best way to practice as it simulates a scenario which is similar to the real exam.
Mock CAT provides the exact CAT like platform which enables candidates to master the time management and cope of up with the pressure.


"The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one. "

49 comments:

  1. hi..i am going to appear for CAT2010..now i am in second year of engineering..if i am spending 1 hour daily strictly for cat preparation then at this stage is it sufficient??..i am an average student..my email id is mohite.amey@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. if one thinks i should join coaching classes then which do you suggest he\she should join ?
    (ALTHOUGH THAT IS A PERSONAL CHOICE I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHAT YOU SUGGEST)
    BY THE WAY I AM PLANNING TO GIVE THE EXAM IN 2010

    ReplyDelete
  3. if one thinks i should join coaching classes then which do you suggest he\she should join ?
    (ALTHOUGH THAT IS A PERSONAL CHOICE I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHAT YOU SUGGEST)
    BY THE WAY I AM PLANNING TO GIVE THE EXAM IN 2010

    ReplyDelete
  4. hiii ts swati,,i have completed my BTECH 3rd year. I wish to go for CAT2010.IS it the right time to start? Shall i go for some coaching??please guide me.id- swatimvb@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. hi, i m currently doing my B.Tech in 3rd year... Can u suggest me any good institute for coaching or should i go for correspondence course... and also suggest me name for that... which books should i buy? Please help me out my e-mail id is : naveenbajaj1988@gmail.com
    waiting for ur good and helpful suggesion.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks For Share Your Vies with Us. I like Your Views. I am Appearing In CAT 2009. I have some Sample Papers If Any one Needs That Then HE/SHE Can Get It...

    ReplyDelete
  7. hi,im afiya 2nd year btech...help me out completely so as to crack d exam well.pls pls pls
    email id refiya0609@rediffmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi Afiya,

    Good to know that you are so keen for MBA, if you keep your focus intact you would surely be able to crack most of the exams.

    As you have sufficient time left for the exam, you should plan your preparation in best possbile way. The fist thing which you should do is analyze yourself so as to find your strength & weaknesses. How to find your strength & weaknesses
    1.Simply pick up a past years CAT exam paper:
    Past Year Papers
    Download Past Year Papers for MBA Exams
    2. Attempt as many questions as you can without putting the time limit in one go (say you sit for 4 hours read all the questions & attempt which ever you are confident of.....don't make any blind guess for any of the questions.....feel free to make calculated guess in verbal section :) ).
    3. Write down your overall score, along with sectional score
    4. Repeat step 1-3 for 2 more Past Year CAT Papers

    With your consolidated scores for two to three attempts of Mock CAT tests, you would be able find which section is your strength and which one is your weakness.
    Please Remember: Initially when you write any mock tests with same time limit as actual CAT, your scores would be quite low as you are yet to master the time
    management. So don't panic, slowly with time & with your preparation in progress your score will rise progressively.

    Once you have finished analyzing yourself, you need to start working on wekanesses & mastering your strengths. Please refer below link to find out which books/study materials you should refer:
    List of books & study materials for MBA Preparation
    List of Novels and Books for MBA Students
    Important books & study materials for MBA Preparation

    Recommendation for you
    Would recommend you to focus on spoken english as well, please form a group within your friend circle and have mock Extempore/ GDs/ Interviews/ Debates. This will not only help you in your MBA preparation but also for job interviews & will surely help in your overall personality/career development.
    I hope you should be able to organise such a session for half an hour everyday within your college campus or hostel.

    Following Pages could be helpful to you in decision making:
    Tips to do well in MBA
    Initial Analysis before MBA Preparation for beginers
    How to start MBA Preparation
    Tips & Strategy while writing MBA exams
    Tips for Online CAT


    Following are free materials for MBA Preparation
    Quantitative Aptitude Study Materials for MBA + Free Download
    Verbal Aptitude & English Study Materials for MBA + Free Download
    Data Interpretation & Logic Reasoning Study Materials for MBA + Free Download


    Keep Writing!!!

    All the best!

    Cheers!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. HI,
    i am about to finish time's study material (quant),pls tell me how to proceed further,
    because when i went through previous year papers i did not find the level of time's material matching with it???
    -anu

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi Anu,

    Which of the two did you find it to be tougher?
    I believe you might have found CAT to be tougher right? The motto of your preparation should be "to keep improving yourself by constant learning".
    Don't panic at all if you are finding the past CAT papers difficult as its just 20 days of your preparation.
    Let me know which of the following sections are you finding it difficult :
    -QA
    -VA
    -DI
    -LR

    While attempting the past papers for initial analysis make sure:
    -You are not disturbed while you are attempting mock test, put your mobile away or switch it off and focus just on the questions. (Better would be to attempt it in a place where no one disturbs you.)
    -Don't put any time limit. Give around 2 hours to each section.

    Also would be better if you could analyze which topics in each section you are finding difficult. Say for QA following page common topics from which questions are asked in CAT:

    Common topics in Quantitative Ability for CAT

    One request:
    Please do share this site with all your college friends, online MBA groups, etc.

    Cheers!

    => Share with your Facebook friends

    ReplyDelete
  11. I did not manage a good score in cat this time..only a 77 percentile..can you please guide me on the way ahead..I am in my final year bcom(h). mba is what I want 2 do..should i go for work ex or drop a year??? plz help!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Dear Anonymous,

    Don't be disheartened. If you are planning to join for MBA this year itself then below are some of the colleges from where you could expect a call:
    Welingkar Institute of Management Development & Research
    Birla Institute of Management Technology - Noida
    Indian Institute of Materials Management - Pune
    Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management – Kolkatta
    Indian Institute of Forest Management - Bhopal
    Amrita School of Business – Coimbatore
    Alliance Business School – Bangalore
    Christ college Bangalore
    Refer following link for last date of application:
    => List of B Schools whose forms are still available for admission for MBA 2012-2014

    You could also try to investigate more about cutoff for following Govt. colleges:
    Bharatidasan Inst. of Mgmt.
    Moti Lal Nehru National Inst.
    University Business School Chandigarh
    National Inst. of Technology Trichy
    DMS, Anna University Chennai
    IISWBM Calcutta
    DMS, ISM University Dhanbad
    Inst. of Public Enterprise Hyderabad
    DBM, Osmania University Hyderabad

    None of the colleges mentioned above are among top 25 B Schools of India, if you are very keen to get through only top colleges then it is advisable that you prepare well and attempt CAT 2012.
    Getting work exp. in this one year would be an added advantage. Its recommended that you should try to prepare for CAT while continuing with your Job.

    One request:
    We urgently require your support to keep this free blog running, please do support us by sharing this site with all your friends, online MBA groups,


    Keep Writing!!!

    All the best!

    Cheers!!!


    => Add us to your Facebook friend list

    => Like us on Facebook & Join for CAT related updates

    => Join Facebook Group for CAT 2013 Aspirants

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hey, I have completed my graduation and am about to join a software company in july. I want to target CAT 2014. I have a good academic record in my B Tech and that too from a prestigious institute. But am having only 81% in high school and intermediate(because of UP board)
    Just wanted to check if i perform well in CAT 2014, then still will my chances of getting call from an IIM be hampered because of my highschool and intermediate marks, or if possible can u please explain the evaluation criteria for IIMs with respect to weightage given by them to CAT exam, Grad Percentage, Intermediate percentage, High School Percentage..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Manish,

      You have a very good chance of getting admissions in IIMs if you do well in CAT, furthermore your 2-3 years of work ex. would surely help you further..
      At below links you can find out the criteria for IIMs, I am sure you will feel more confident after going through them.
      =>IIMs Selection Criteria-Shortlisting Process of all IIMs

      As you are in initial phase of preparation I would recommend you to go throgh below post:
      => CAT Preparation Guidelines


      Humble request:
      We desperately require your support to keep this free blog running, please do support us by sharing this site with all your friends, online MBA groups,


      Keep Writing!!!

      All the best!

      Cheers!!!

      => Add us to your Facebook friend list

      => Like us on Facebook & Join for CAT related updates

      => Join Facebook Group for CAT 2013 Aspirants

      Delete
  14. hi,
    Let me first applaud the owner of this blog for working hard to solve the queries of the people related to the B-school exams...:)...sir i'm a engineering student and i had completed my 2nd year...i read your reply to one of the query suggesting them to analyse their areas of STRENGHT n WEAKNESS by solving last year papers(CAT).....
    1. Does this suggestion can be applied to any of the exams(XAT,SNAP,JMET,etc) ?
    2. How can i build my vocab ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Anonymous(Akshay),
      Below are answers to your questions:
      1. The topics from which questions are asked in all these exams are mostly the same and you would need to put little extra effort for different exams (10-20% extra effort). This means if you prepare for CAT it would surely help you in other exams as well.
      2. Below are some of the ways to improve your communication skills:
      ‎a. Reading a good newspaper, preferably ,The Economic Times regularly. (Read it looudly)
      b. Referring to a good dictionary ,preferably, The Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary regularly.
      c. Watching good news channels likes BBC, Al Zazeera, NDTV, DD News, CNBC etc regularly
      d. Reading good news magazines like The Economist , Newsweek , Businessweek etc regulary
      e. Reading good books regularly

      Furthermore, the other thing which you may try is make your preparation a bit more intresting.
      Just take example of reading The Hindu:
      -you can try to read a big article exactly for 10 mins (with the help of stopwatch)
      -Remember or mark the line till which you have read in those 10 mins
      -Close the newspaper & write down all you have understood in those 10 mins
      -Re-read the complete article and see whether your summary matches with the actual content of the article
      -Keep a count of number of words you have read in 10 mins
      -Maintain a daily record book and try to improve it gradually

      When you will observe that your reading abilities are improving, it will boost your confidence and your communication skills.


      One request:
      We desperately require your support to keep this free blog running, please do support us by sharing this site with all your friends, online MBA groups,


      Keep Writing!!!

      All the best!

      Cheers!!!


      => Add us to your Facebook friend list

      => Like us on Facebook & Join for CAT related updates

      => Join Facebook Group for CAT 2013 Aspirants

      Delete
  15. do reply me on kochharakshay91@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi,
    i am trying to assimilate your advises and looking forward to keep doing it, actually i'm in 3rd year CHE(just started) so the schedule is to hectic looking forward for a schedule...
    1. How much time i must give to these preparations everyday, which must includes reading newspapers and solving questions ???
    2. how can i improve my general awareness buy actually reading newspapers...what i mean is...on which sections i must focus so that i altogether read as well as increase my awarness????

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Akshay,

      -You should devote around 2-2.5 hours per day. During weekends try to spend more time. Once in a week do engage yourself in activities such as Group discussions, mock interviews.
      -Read more about economics, business and governance. Keep yourself upto date about current happenings such as Greece crisis, jan lokpal, olympics.

      For more tips would strongly recommend you to go through below page:
      Recommended Guidelines for Beginners

      Keep your focus intact and keep yourself motivated.

      Keep Writing!!!

      All the best!

      Cheers!!!


      => Add us to your Facebook friend list

      => Like us on Facebook & Join for CAT related updates

      => Join Facebook Group for CAT 2013 Aspirants

      Delete
  17. hiiiii first of all a hearty congratulation for this amazing site. you all are doing great work. i m 2nd year b.com (hon) student .and my immediate aim is CAT 2013 i have one year left for my my exam . and i have started my prepration. but i need your precious advice to get my aim. what all things should i do ?? how many hours should i study. (becoz i have my graduation exams too).. i am doing R.S AGARWWaL for quant, norman lewis for vocab, apart from this wat all books should i refer.. and one more thing my second year final sem exam is in march-april 2013. so should i join some coaching after dat , will that be fruitful for CAT 2013 ??

    ReplyDelete
  18. Dear Sir,
    I ve recently given cat 2012 few dayz back , m working as a software engineer for over 1 year ,i used nishit sinha's - "data interpretation and logical reasoning for CAT" was able to get through LR section properly but made mess in DI and Quant. Pls guide as i wanna crack IIM and being in software field i cant prepare properly being on Job, at the same time i dont wanna join coaching as my fundamentals as strong, after quitting job wat should be my strategy to crack IIM without joinin coaching(may join 4 MOCK Test)-- STRATEGY AND PLAN OF ACTION PLEASE.. SIR.

    -- abhigyaan sharma

    ReplyDelete
  19. Sir i would like to know from you that if a student of general category scored 87.4% in class10 and 81.8% in class 12 and in graduation he scored 62% in honours subject but in overall subjects he scored 55% and 99.6 percentile in cat will he get calls from top IIMs

    ReplyDelete
  20. sir i want to huw i prepration da cat and nd whatt book refer to the cat prepration

    ReplyDelete
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  24. Hi, I've found this blog immensely helpful. Sir' I have scored 82.3% and 80.4% in my high school board examinations (Assam Board) and now I am in 4th semester pursuing B.Sc. Mathematics. My CGPA till date is 7.5. What should be my percentile target in CAT? Do I still have a chance to get into a top 10 B-School?

    ReplyDelete
  25. Hi, I've found this blog immensely helpful. Sir' I have scored 82.3% and 80.4% in my high school board examinations (Assam Board) and now I am in 4th semester pursuing B.Sc. Mathematics. My CGPA till date is 7.5. What should be my percentile target in CAT? Do I still have a chance to get into a top 10 B-School?

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hi, I've found this blog immensely helpful. Sir' I have scored 82.3% and 80.4% in my high school board examinations (Assam Board) and now I am in 4th semester pursuing B.Sc. Mathematics. My CGPA till date is 7.5. What should be my percentile target in CAT? Do I still have a chance to get into a top 10 B-School?

    ReplyDelete
  27. hi,I've just completed my second year in B-TECH and want to start preparing for exams like CAT. But m very confused about the preparations that what would the right way to start. I've been recommended two books right now by my seniors, they are, Quantum CAT and Arun Sharma. Apart from these, I don't know any good books, so plz help me and guide me so that i can start my preparation in right direction. Plz email me at:-
    pulkitmalhotra21@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. Hii, i m doing btech 3rd year plz tell me how to start my mba preparation
    pl z tell how to improve my basics
    at pgddun@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
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