Strategy to crack CAT Exam – Neha Rathore’s experience
Follow this most recommended strategy to crack CAT 2020 exam. All of these have to be backed up with the aspirant ‘s deep determination and trust that whatever happens, he / she will certainly achieve the dream of cracking CAT in the first attempt.
How did Neha manage to score 98.97%ile in CAT?
Let’s look at what Neha has to say about her strategy towards cracking CAT:
Neha’s Success Mantra:
“Believe in yourself and the world will believe in you.” This quote is something that kept me motivated through the whole CAT Exam phase from a dreamer to an achiever. This is something that everyone should follow in order to achieve their dreams. The key is to stay focused and dedicated with no excuses involve.
From which Colleges did you get an Interview Call after CAT Exam?
Scoring 98.97 percentile in CAT Exam opened doors of a lot of colleges. But the colleges that made a huge difference and made me cross-check twice to confirm that I was qualified for the interview round were IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Shillong, IIM Kozhikode, IIM Lucknow, IIM Indore, and IIM Rohtak.
Did you appear for any other Entrance Exam?
Other than CAT Exam I appeared for NMAT and my score was 228.
What Study Material did you refer to your entrance exam?
One of the major problems that every CAT Aspirant goes through is collecting study material from everywhere and end up panicking because there is too much going on and very less time. So one of the major tips is to follow one consolidated study material. For me, CATKing books and Mocks helped a lot. 20% of the CAT Paper is related to the Past CAT Papers and CATKing Books have all the questions from the Past CAT Exam. Due to this a candidate also gets an idea of what to expect in the exam and the level of difficulty in the exam.
How many Mocks did you give?
Mocks play a major role in this journey. Every CAT Aspirants should take the Mocks religiously. One should presume that any Mock is your CAT Test. This will help alleviate the tension and help create precision which will be of great benefit in the actual CAT Exam. I gave 50 CATking Mocks to improve my accuracy and build my strategies to avoid glitches in the actual CAT Exams. The CATKing Mocks gave detailed video and graph analysis to improve my score and build better strategies to Crack CAT.
Any Important topics that you think the aspirants should focus on?
Quants – Numbers, Permutation, and Combination, Geometry
Verbal – Reading Comprehensions and Critical Reasoning
DI and LR – Arrangements and 1 DI set every day
What is the idle time to study for CAT per day?
1 hour on an average per day for the first 6 months.
2-3 hours on an average per day for the next 4 months.
5 hours on an average per day for the last 1 and a half months.
What tips would you give to the future CAT Aspirants that you followed during your preparation for CAT?
One of the major rules that every aspirant should follow is to Believe in themselves and their ability. The moment you start doubting and thinking about all the negative scenarios you tend to take a major step towards failure. So positivity and to believe in oneself is the key to success. Every individual has different weaknesses and strengths and they should build their strategies accordingly. I followed the following rules that I would suggest every CAT Aspirant should follow –
- Analyze Mocks – Now everyone will tell you to give Mocks but if you give 60 mocks and don’t analyze the mocks it’s of no use. It’s better to give 30 Analyzed mocks. The difference would be huge and you could easily build your own strategies and realize your strengths and weaknesses.
- Time Management- If a candidate gets stuck on one question they should leave it and move further. If the candidate invests all their time on one question they may lose out on easy questions at the end. Candidates have to get rid of the urge to solve every question.
- Skimming- The moment you start the exam skim through the section. At times there are easy questions hidden at the end or in the middle of the section. Candidates should not lose out on those hidden easy questions because that would play a major role to make or break your section in the CAT Exam.
- Focus – “Success is a journey, not a destination” Candidates should make sure to be the better version of themselves. For example, if a person is scoring 8/10 they should not think about the 8 marks that they scored but about the 2 marks that they lost. This is very important and would help you to shoot up your score.
- This is not a tip just for CAT but in life that I remind myself every day that if you want to achieve something strive for it like there is someone constantly trying to take that away from you this would help you to give your A game in whatever you do.
Other Tips on How to crack CAT:
Now that you all have gotten a fair idea about how to deal with CAT from Neha’s own real experience, we also want to elaborate on some of the key points she has mentioned and how you can personally prepare a robust strategy for CAT 2020:
Coaching or Self Preparation –
The foremost thing that you need to choose is whether to go for coaching or to take self-preparation. Cracking the CAT exam in the first attempt without proper guidance or regularity is not an easy errand. Many have cracked the exam even without coaching, but under the mentorship of a helpful expert (may be Alumni of Top B Schools) you at least need to prepare to support you at various moments of the CAT journey which eventually turns out to be the make or break for an person to come the big day. Suppose, if you plan to get coaching to choose the best institute in your city which suits your requirements. Before choosing the institute, not only check the past records but also the time which its faculty gives to the students to help them resolve their doubts.
Knowing the Syllabus –
Go through the CAT syllabus thoroughly and start preparation from basics as once you clear with the basic part you can understand the rest of the part clearly.
Check your Concepts –
To check your knowledge on the conceptual part, start attempting the mock tests of past years or a couple of past CAT papers. In the first attempt, you may not score well, but don’t lose your strength and confidence. Keep the focus on weaker sections and practice well. Every year the CAT exam style and pattern may vary, even though attempting the previous question papers to know the difficulty level of this exam is advisable.
Know the Expected Trends –
To know the important sections, the applicant must analyze and know the previously asked question papers. After knowing, candidates can prepare accordingly. Focus on Important topics expected in the CAT examination of the year. Some of the most common ones across the years remain Reading Comprehension, Sentence Correction, Selection and Arrangements, Geometry and Numbers.
Time Management –
It is one of the basic factors for any success in any competitive exam and it doesn’t change even for CAT. It is all about Management of time for preparation and problem-solving. Prepare a strategy to attempt to complete each section comprehensively and assign more time on a high scoring section to ensure you have not only met sectional cutoff but have also maximized your overall score.
Focus on Accuracy –
To crack CAT in the first attempt, the candidate should focus on accuracy as there will be negative marking for the wrong answer. While locking the answer correctly read the question twice or thrice. At times, students do make the mistake of marking an incorrect answer despite having solved it correctly.
Prepare Selectively as per the time in hand –
To Crack CAT in the first attempt, the candidate should work hard to lessen the problems raising before the exam because if the candidates feel burdensome to cover all the topics on time they will be more tensed and sometimes their mind starts forgetting due to tension. We all know that the CAT exam is all about mental state, the depleted mind can’t help to answer the logical questions. For better results, the candidate should work hard by making at least 15 mins time interval for every 2 hours study to absorb the topic which they have learned.
Welcome Shortcuts –
Focus on general and shortcut formulas for quicker answering and to save money. Try to solve the problems on time, for success the optimization of time is imperative.
Mock Tests Analysis and Improvement –
After the complete preparation, take daily the mock tests for practice and time management. This helps to crack the CAT exam in the first attempt. If you are looking for a good source of mocks for actual CAT exam experience, check out our mock series curated for CAT 2020 By IIM Alumni!
Overall, we hope you found this article helpful. By following these simple advice and guidelines, you can very easily crack CAT and make your way toward the IIMs of your dreams. So what are you waiting for? Start your prep now!