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How to Prepare Logical Reasoning (LR) & Data Interpretation (DI) for CAT Exam 2016

Last Updated - August 13, 2016

Many students fear the Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation (LR & DI) section of the CAT Exam. This is because they feel that this section requires the most amount of effort. But the truth is that all this section requires is practice.

With the CAT Notification 2016 out, the aspirants of the CAT Exam 2016 are preparing to gear up for the D-Day. The CAT exam date is December 4, 2016. Looks like not much time is actually left to study!

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What is beneficial in solving the questions from DI is that even if a candidate deciphers one diagram, they can easily answer 4-5 questions correctly. This increases the overall score of the candidate by a decent fraction.

Let’s look at some of the ways one can prepare better for this section.

Read the Question

Half the problem is solved if one reads the question carefully and writes down all the information provided. Invest time in reading the question. One must be extra careful when noting down values so that there is no scope of silly mistakes. Take your time in reading and understanding the problem, this will help you in solving the questions with greater precision.

CAT 2016 SyllabusCAT Exam Paper Analysis

Cover All Topics

The LR section consists of the topics such as Seating Arrangement, Venn Diagrams, Data Arrangement, Puzzles, Clocks and Calendars, etc.The DI section esentially includes interpreting diagrams such as Bar & Line Graphs, Pie Charts, Tables, Data Sufficiency, etc.

While preparing for the LR and DI section, keep in mind to study all the topics. As this section essentially requires quick basic calculations along with reasoning acumen, one should try and cover all the topics in the CAT syllabus. Keep in mind to give equal emphasis to all the topics so as to be able to attain maximum marks.

ALSO READ CAT 2016 Paper Analysis For Quantitative Aptitude

Use Shortcuts

It is almost imperative for examinees to solve the questions as fast as possible. Most candidates understand this but tend to forget that accuracy matters more as a wrong answer is straight up a deduction of 1 mark. To be able to maintain both speed and accuracy, one must know all the shortcuts on their tips!

Some things to learn for easier calculation are:

  • Squares & Cubes
  • Square Roots
  • Fraction to Percentage Conversions
  • Fraction to Decimal Conversions, etc.

Try and do all these calculations mentally to save as much time as possible. This will again only come to you if you repeatedly use these tricks when you are studying.

READ MORE ABOUT CAT 2016 Multiple Choice Questions

Maintain a Notebook

It is extremely vital that while you are preparing for the exam, you maintain a notebook with all the tricks and shortcuts you use for solving questions. Make sure you update this notebook every time you learn a new trick. Just keeping a tab is not sufficient. You also need to keep in mind to revise these important points from time to time so that they are literally engraved in your brain.

Options and Approximations

The CAT Exam is objective and not subjective. Students may try options or do approximate calculations where it works. Eliminating the irrelevant options while solving a question makes the task a lot easier. In the end, one has to click the right answer! If the options given are close to one another, one may want to use exact calculations and avoid approximations. This will save you the time of redoing your calculations all over again!

To get a clearer picture, here is a detailed CAT Exam paper analysis of this section for CAT Exam.

Read Data Intensive Articles

Studying according to the syllabus is vital, but one may even resort to reading articles which are highly data intensive. Such articles can easily be found in business related newspapers and magazines. Try to analyse this data when you come across it and interpret the same. This will essentially give you the hang of thinking logically every time you come across a certain statistical information.


Practice is everything

The secret to doing well in this section is practicing a lot of questions. Solving mock tests not only helps you cover the syllabus but also helps in sticking to the time constraint. It is extremely important for candidates to ensure that they stick to the time limit in each section i.e. 60 minutes. The DI section is often way too time consuming therefore one must practice with the clock ticking at their heads!

ALSO CHECK OUT CAT Exam Practice Papers

Move On

While solving the questions from LR, the most common problem faced by students is that they do not get the logic behind the questions. Straining your brain at such a time may prove to be a waste of time. Therefore, one must know when to move forward to next question. There is absolutely no point in sitting on one question and wracking your brain. One can easily utilise this time in answering the questions they may actually be able to solve.

Last but not the least, you need to stay calm! Work hard but smart to get a good percentile in your CAT Exam 2016!


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