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CAT 2016: Preparation Tips for Quantitative Ability

Last Updated - August 16, 2016

Quantitative Analysis has been an integral part of CAT 2016 exam pattern since the inception of the exam. An analysis of the last few years shows that Quantitative Analysis, if prepared correctly, could prove to be a scoring paper. With six months to CAT 2016, it is an ideal time to begin preparation for CAT.

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Before beginning preparation, a candidate must take a mock test and assess their performance in Quantitative Ability section unprepared. It will also help you to identify your strong and weak topics. Once sorted, go through complete CAT 2016 syllabus and note down all the topics asked in Quantitative Ability section in the last five years. An overview of topics for Quantitative Ability is given below:

Main TopicsChapters
ArithmeticNumber System, HCF, LCM, Ratio & Proportion, Simplification, Percentage, Average, Age Calculation, Time & Work, Distances, etc.
AlgebraTheory of Equations, Quadratic Equation, Permutation & Combination, Sequence & Series etc.
GeometryAngles, Lines, Triangles, Circles, etc.
MensurationAreas and Volumes – Rectangles, Squares, Triangles, Circles, Cubes, Cones, Spheres, Pipes and Cistern, etc.
CalculusMaxima and Minima, Function
TrigonometryTrigonometric Ratios, Heights and Distances, etc.
CAT 2016 Paper Analysis For Qantitative AptitudeCAT 2016 Paper Analysis For Data Interpretation 

    Analysis of CAT 2015 Quantitative Ability

    In 2015, Quantitative Ability had 34 questions. Out of these 34 questions, 15 were non-MCQ and 19 were MCQ type questions. In 2015 there were no questions from Number System. Maximum questions were asked from Algebra, followed by Arithmetic. While you should pay detailed attention to these topics during preparation, do not leave out other topics and devote equal time revising each topic.

    The number of questions in Quantitative Ability section in CAT 2016 are expected to be around 34-35. Going by the previous years, this section is expected to have a mix of easy, moderate and tough questions. Below are some tips to help you perform spectacularly in the Quantitative Ability section in CAT 2016.


    Practice the Basics

    It is very important to go through the basic concepts related to each topic. Begin with attempting simple questions first and then move on to difficult questions. Practice as many questions as possible.

    Follow a Schedule for Preparation

    Prepare a schedule for your preparation and stick to it till the end. Make a one month’s study plan and at the end of one month analyze your performance and prepare plan for next month. This way you will not only have prepared strategically but would also be able to track down your improvement in Quant section.

    Also Check CAT 2016 Preparation Tips

    Practice more questions from weak topics

    While you should not ignore your strong topics, you must devote equal time to your weaker topics and practice as many questions from such topics as possible. After every month analyze your performance and work hard on topics which need more improvement.

    Practice Sectional Mock Tests

    It is very important to practice mock tests and sample paper while preparing for CAT. Sign up for a set of mock tests or buy a book with sample papers for CAT and practice the Quant section on a regular basis. Appearing for online mock tests is important as it helps develop a familiarity towards the CAT exam and eventually proves beneficial on the D-day.

    Also Check Practice Papers For CAT 2016 

    Solve papers within sectional time

    In 2015, CAT conducting authorities introduced sectional time limit of one hour. A candidate had to attempt all questions in a section within this time-frame. In all possibilities, CAT 2016 will follow the same pattern. So an appearing candidate must develop the habit of attempting requisite number of questions in one hour. During preparation solve questions from Quant section in an hour.

    Know About CAT 2016 Preparation Strategy

    Practice with Calculator

    CAT 2015 also introduced virtual calculator. Since the candidates were not prepared to attempt questions with a virtual calculator on the screen, they found it troublesome. So, you must practice attempting questions with a virtual calculator on screen. This will help you to utilize the calculator in order to increase your speed and not decrease it.

    Suggested Books for Quantitative Ability Preparation

    1. How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Arun Sharma, Publisher- Tata Mcgraw Hill.
    2. Pearson Guide to Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation for CAT by Nishit Sinha, Publisher- Pearson.
    3. Quantum CAT: Quantitative Aptitude Common Admission Test for Admission into IIMs by Sarvesh K Verma, Publisher- Arihant
    4. Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examination Tips, Techniques, and Short-cut Methods by Abhijit Guha.
    5. NCERT Mathematics books for class 8th, 9th, 10th and 10+2.


    CAT 2016 Exam Pattern

    CAT 2016 Syllabus

    CAT 2016 Exam Dates

    CAT 2016 Participating Institutes



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