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CAT Preparation Tips by Abhishek Verma

Last Updated - November 11, 2016

Abhishek Verma appeared for CAT in 2009. He scored 98.5. He chose IIM Indore for his further studies. He says, give quality time for practice and revise on the regularly basis and besides studies, interpersonal skills and creative mind helps you to get succeed. Practice as much as you can, says Abhishek.

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Ques. The institutes that offered you admissions?

Ans. IIM Indore, MDI Gurgaon

Know More CAT 2016 Participating Institutes

Ques. Apart from CAT which exams do you appear?        


Ques. Mode of Preparation

Ans. Self-Study.

Ques. Review the Coaching Institutes and what was their role in your story?     

Ans. I liked Career Launcher because their study material is not biased towards Quant or English (in my opinion, IMS focus on English and TIME on Quant). The GD practice was also good and I was lucky to have a diversified group for my discussions. Their time based practice test books were very helpful and their website for online preparation was also very user-friendly.

Ques. How did you manage CAT preparation schedule along graduation studies/working hours?       

Ans. As I cracked CAT while working in Infosys, I only got time to study during weekends. But I followed my weekend schedule very religiously. I appeared for mock-CATs every Saturday and would review the entire paper on Sunday, especially those questions which I were unable to solve during my test. I had few free online subscriptions few word-of-the-day, quant-of-the-day and puzzle-of-the-day which helped me to be in touch with the preparation throughout the week.

Ques. Name of the Institute Where You took the Admission    

Ans. IIM Indore

Ques. What Mock Paper You Took?      

Ans. Career Launcher, IMS and TIME. I used to take all the mock tests one-by-one and never repeat a particular test series in 3 weeks. This helps as every test paper has a distinguished feature in preparing questions. Some will have tougher Quant section and other will have tougher Verbal section. Also, you'll complete with different section of students every-time from this coaching classes and your score will vary in a more realistic manner.

Check Your Preparation with CAT 2016 Practice Papers

Ques. What is Your Five Point Rule to Excel CAT 2015?   

Ans. 1. One mock-CAT per week is must.
2. The mock-CAT should be reviews in the next 48 hours after appearing for the same.
3. As there is little time to study during the week (especially if one is working), subscribe word-of-the-day, quant-of-the-day and puzzle-of-the-day to be in touch with your studies. And this is much easier nowadays with a smartphone in your hand.
4. Never take mock-CATs from a single coaching center. Follow a cycle to take tests from Career Launcher, IMS, TIME, etc.
5. Don't buy/use thick books as it is tough to finish those. Additionally, you get a psychological advantage once you finish a book with fewer pages. (This really works!)

Ques. Rate the role of your coaching Institute (Classroom or Online Both) in cracking CAT?    

Ans. 8

Ques. Name the Coaching Institute (Online or Classroom)        

Ans. Career Launcher

Know More Top Coaching Institutes for CAT 2016

Ques. What were your strong and weak areas? How did you prepare and what special efforts did you put for improving your weak areas?     

Ans. My strong area was DI & Quant and my week area was Verbal. Although I was able to solve logical part of the Verbal sections such as FIJ (facts, inferences and judgements) and para-jumbled questions, my accuracy was low in reading comprehensions and direct word-meaning type questions. For word-meaning, I had few online subscriptions for word-of-the-day. For RCs, I began reading editorials from TOI and HT. Personally, I found The Hindu too heavy for me. At times, I also read articles from Economic Times to get a hang on the economy related jargons.

Ques. What are the websites you followed regularly to practice free sample papers or to get updates?


Ques. Quantitative Aptitude: Discuss Your Strategy for the Section  

Ans. As I was good in this section, I tend to spend a little more time in this section (40% Q, 30% DI and 30% VA). However, I appeared in 2009 which had only 2 sections (QA and DI were clubbed) and time was fixed I guess. Anyway, my strategy is to read a section at least 3 times. First is always a glance not more than 3-4 mins. In this glance, even if I can solve 2-3 questions, that is a good conversion rate. The second time, I'll solve all the mid-level questions which are not time consuming. If I find any question which can be solved but will take more than 3 mins, I'll mark that for my 3rd reading. In my 3rd reading, I'll solve the remaining bookmarked questions. And no matter what, I'll leave the sections and skip ahead once the stipulated time is up. Remember, there are sectional cut-offs.

Ques. List the Name of Books You Followed for DI           

Ans. Career Launcher study materials and Arihant books. No NCERT books (as I found them to easy for CAT, they might help for SNAP, etc.)

What should be the Exam Strategy for CAT 2016

Ques. Data Interpretation: Discuss Your Strategy for the Section      

Ans. This was my favorite section and I always kept 30% time which was enough for me to solve most of the questions. (40% Q, 30% DI and 30% VA). My strategy was similar to that mentioned above in Quant. And no matter what, I'll leave the sections and skip ahead once the stipulated time is up. Remember, there are sectional cut-offs.

Ques. List the Name of Books You Followed for Quant    

Ans. Career Launcher study materials and Arihant books. No NCERT books (as I found them to easy for CAT, they might help for SNAP, etc.)

Ques. Logical Reasoning: Discuss Your Strategy for the Section

Ans. I think this was no separate section was clubbed either with Quant or with DI (named LRDI)

Ques. List the Name of Books You Followed for Logical Reasoning   

Ans. Career Launcher study materials and Arihant books. No NCERT books (as I found them to easy for CAT, they might help for SNAP, etc.) Additionally, I solved puzzles from Shakuntala Devi and George J Summers.

CAT 2016 Exam PatternCAT 2016 SyllabusCAT 2016 Paper AnalysisCAT 2016 Paper Analysis for QACAT 2016 Paper Analysis for DICAT 2016 MCQ Questions

Ques. Verbal Ability: Discuss Your Strategy for the Section      

Ans. As this was my weakest section, I always looked to clear the cut-off. I gave 30% time as there was no point staring at some words. Either you know or you don't. I always solved RC completely as I knew my accuracy was low and there is no point in selective answering.

Ques. List the Name of Books You Followed for Vocabulary and Grammar         

Ans. No book. Mobile dictionary is more than enough if you use it while reading newspaper.

Ques. Vocabulary and Grammar: Discuss Your Strategy for the Section     

Ans. I never took any special consideration to grammar as I am good with it. For Vocabulary, I used word-of-the day. Additionally, I installed dictionary on my mobile and used it while reading newspapers and which reviewing RCs in the mock-CATs. Mobile dictionary is always the best. Also, even today I play Scrabble and Vocabulary games on my android devices.

Ques. What should be the strategy for someone who is starting just two months before the exam?

Ans. Focus on the basics in Quant & DI and Work on speed rather than accuracy as in my opinion, accuracy can't be developed in a span of 2 months. For Vocab, read as many editorials as possible to build speed and don't be lazy with using dictionaries while reading newspaper. And take mock-CATs but not more than 2 per week. Give time to review the test and review every question.

Ques. How Would You Rate the Following Preparation Strategy in terms of their efficiency in your story?

Coaching ClassesNCERT Text BooksOnline Study MaterialCoaching Printed Study MaterialMock & Sample Test PapersStudy GroupsSubject Wise ClassesSelf-Study
LowVery LowHighVery HighVery HighVery LowVery LowVery High

Ques. What will be Your Prescription for Students in the Last Phase of their Preparation for CAT 2016?  

Ans. Review Mock CATs. Refer dictionaries. Read online forums like PagalGuy, etc to be in touch and be motivated. Don't study too much one week before the D-Day. Watch movies and matches in the last week to lower the nervousness and keep calm. Tension never helps.

Ques. How was the interview? Share some of the questions.   

Ans. Interview was for 20 mins and was very cool. As I had 2 years of experience with Infosys as a developer, they asked few questions about my clients and the project but as they must have faced many software professionals, this part was only for 2-3 mins. More than half the time, we discussed cricket as I had mentioned that as my hobby. They asked many technical questions and throw many jargons to take my wicket but I played all their deliveries with ease. We discussed around 4-5 mins about Anil Kumble (the interviewer seemed a huge fan of Kumble) and they sought my opinions on whether he was an accomplished cricketer or was an undervalued player. Overall, it was one of the easiest interview I've ever faced and I nailed that.

CAT 2016 ResultsCAT 2016 CounsellingCAT 2016 Score CalculationCAT 2016 Cutoff

Ques. List the Name of Books You Followed for Verbal Ability 

Ans. Career Launcher and TIME study materials.



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