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CAT 2017 Preparation Tips by Rohit Ranjan

Last Updated - August 24, 2017

“Have a proper time table and a set routine to go ahead with your preparations. Learn as much as you can and practice intensively.” says Rohit Ranjan, CAT 2012 aspirant.

With less than 100 days left for the exam, CAT 2017aspirants must be under immense pressure to prepare well and gulp in every drop of information they can, from the ocean of topics to prepare. Collegedunia surveyed previous year CAT aspirants and got some useful preparation tips for CAT 2017 aspirants. Rohit's response can be instrumental for the students seeking admission other than IIMs. He suggests channelizing efforts in right direction and he believes a proper schedule and practice can help score decently in the most sought after management exam. 

CAT Preparation Tips

Q 1. Review the Coaching Institutes and what was their role in your story?

Ans. I had started my preparations along with my graduation but I joined a 3 months’ crash course at IMS, post my graduation. During this course at IMS (Jamshedpur), we were given worksheets on each topic. Our teachers taught us tips and tricks to solve the questions in a fast and efficient manner. I solved the questions and made sure all my doubts were cleared in the class itself. I solved the remaining questions that day itself.

On the next day of class, I started solving the study material provided to us and finished all of it as soon as possible. There were some tricks which appeared difficult at first, and the traditional methods appeared easier to me, but I made sure I solved the questions using the tricks rather than the traditional method, ultimately it helped me a lot. Learning tricks is really important and may take a little time to absorb at first, but continuous practice helps you develop a faster approach to solve the questions. However, I recommend not to entirely depend on these coaching centers and practice questions on your own.

Know More Top Coaching Institutes for CAT 2017

Q 2. How did you manage CAT preparation schedule along with studies/working hours?

Ans. Preparation for CAT cannot be done in few days or weeks, it requires months of dedication, hours of practice and hard work as well. A few days preparation may help you obtain a good score, however, it will not enhance your aptitude. Practice as much as you can. Although I followed no specific schedule for studying and preparations, I recommend you to have a proper time table and a set routine to go ahead with your preparations. Learn as much as you can and practice. The important part is to attempt mock tests with your group and go for online resources as well.

Q 3. Where did you take admission?

Ans. I took admission at SP Jain, Mumbai.

Know More CAT 2017 Participating Institute

Q 4. What is Your Five Point Rule to Excel CAT 2017?

Ans. I will cut the long story short and tell you frankly what can be done now. Prepare a schedule according to time availability, work on your weaknesses.

  1. Work on improving your vocabulary and read newspapers regularly.
  2. If you are addicted to Facebook, go to Facebook for group. Search for them. They helped me.
  3. Give mocks and review them seriously. If the test takes 170 minutes, the review must at least take 100 minutes. Refine your test strategy. 
  4. Be in touch and practice. Don't just read theories and stories; prefer practicing questions every day.
  5. Leave last 2 weeks for chilling out. A calm mind bears great results.

Q 5. What mock papers did you take?

Ans. I took T.I.M.E Booklets and BULLSEYE; it is free, through with a free account you only have access to half the tests. Once you do well in their tests, they open the remaining tests also for free to you. The difficulty level was identical to that of CAT.

Check Your Preparation with CAT 2017 Practice Papers

Q 6. What were your weak areas? How did you prepare for it? Did you make any special efforts?

Ans. I had difficulty in coping with Data Interpretation section, in the beginning,  my mock test CAT scores were very poor specifically in Data Interpretation. So, I took a module on DI, sat in the library the entire day and finished all 10 exercises at once. Each day I would solve the maximum number of questions with an improving speed over the time. Few weeks later, I could confidently attempt Data Interpretation Section and solve the question easily and quickly.

Q 7. Which websites did you follow to practice free sample papers or to get updates on Quantitative Aptitude section? Discuss your strategy for the section.

Ans. I particularly did not go for any website but I kept coming back to testfunda.com and tcyonline.com. I have a strong background in Quantitative Aptitude. The strategy was simple, I tried to eliminate options and get answers first. if it's a 'type' question, apply the method and crack the code, if it requires special effort, attempt other questions first and solve it later.

Q 8. Discuss your strategy for Logical Reasoning section?

Ans. You need a lot of practice to attempt Logical Reasoning section. I attempted questions from 10 years. I was advised to note the pattern of questions asked over the years, as per my observations I made a pattern for myself and practiced intensively for this section.

Q 9. How did you prepare for Verbal Ability section?

Ans. We all believe that this section is easy to attempt, however, contrary to this belief, I found myself less prepared. I realized that I could have devoted more time for better preparation. I would suggest everybody appearing for CAT 2017 to refer to good books, strengthen vocabulary and go through previous year questions as well. Read, practice and write, the only key to excel.

See: How to Prepare for CAT 2017

Q 10. List the Name of Books You Followed for Verbal Ability, Vocabulary and Grammar. What was your strategy to get through this section?

Ans. Read, practice and write, the only strategy that would let you succeed in this section. Improving vocabulary is also the key to success.The more you read, the better you'll get at comprehensions and other questions on VA. Practice comprehensions from sample papers, previous year papers, study material from coaching classes, etc. I think reading novels at this stage might not be particularly helpful. Newspapers may be a good way to revise the vocabulary - a lot of words from the words list appear in the newspapers. And newspapers help you keep updated with current affairs.

Q 11. What must be the strategy for someone who is starting just two months before the exam?

Ans. You need to somehow manage and compromise on anything now other than CAT scores. if you are in your graduation, you might have to compromise on graduation scores for CAT  scores. Obviously, the key point here is that put your time to studying and not just dawdling around. 

You must certainly join a good crash coaching institute to learn tips and tricks to solve the given questions in lesser time. Apart from this, make a schedule with proper time to study and recreation as well. 

Q 12. What will be your last minute tips for students preparing for CAT 2017?

Ans. Don’t waste time and energy on questions that you are unable to solve; learn to channelize your efforts in the right direction. Investing excessive effort in the wrong direction is equal to putting no effort at all.Give ample of mock tests. Identify and rectify your weak areas.Once you've prepared well, just relax and be confident.

Q 13. How was the interview session after you cleared CAT? Share some of the questions

Ans. After the essay writing, where I was supposed to write in not more than 300 words about the reasons leading to farmers suicide, I was selected for personal interview. It lasted for around 20 minutes. Some of the questions were: what do your friends think about you?,  Why mba?,  Why B.com, Finance hons?,  Where do you see yourself 10 years down the lane? , What will you choose to work for -a big brand with lower salary or a small brand with higher package?  What brands are you wearing right now? Basically prepare about yourself,how have you landed to this interview and do a detailed study about yourself.

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