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Excellence Is The Gradual Result Of Always Striving To Do Better!

To paraphrase a very relevant adage; There are no secrets to success, it’s the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure. And it goes without saying that the words haven’t lost their charm and relevance a bit. An urge to perform better is the reason we have such marvellous inventions and some amazingly successful people round the globe.
And it’s not about letting your Lamborghini make the noise anymore, success is about the way you want to want to feel about yourself, about the confidence any milestone instils in you. It’s more about the felling that there is nothing in this world you cannot conquer!
Well, all the success rant is coming from Anukriti Mishra, CAT 2017 – 98.29 percentile with 99.02 in Quantitative Ability. Common Admission Test is an annual examination held as an entrance test to some of the most prestigious colleges of India, IIMs and some private institutions like SPJIMR, MDI, etc. These institutions offer courses in the field of Management and are the most sought after institutions round the globe. CAT is being conducted in three sections i.e. Quantitative Ability, English Comprehension and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning for some of the years. CAT is known for giving surprises and you can never be sure that the pattern will remain the same. The sections might intermingle, time limit may vary or no time limits may happen you never know, nothing can be predicted unless the notification is out! The sections go as

I. Quantitative Ability – This section tests your ability to play with numbers and how well were the concepts of elementary classes understood. Basics of the syllabus and a lot of practise should be enough for you to sail through here.
II. English Comprehension – This section tests your aptitude and comfort level with English as a language. It usually consists of comprehending the long passages and a few questions on basics of the language. If you are not a consistent reader, start practising vigorously to ace this section.
III. Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation – This is one particular section no teacher or no book can prepare you for! Being fast in calculations will help, but that’s not the only requirement. Being able to understand complex situations and finding solutions is all the section asks for! Understanding the demands of the section and ensuring the strategy is right, if this is done, more than half the battle is won.
Coming to the books that can be refereed to, any coaching Institutions’ material can be taken and solved completely as they contain rehearsed and tested questions. T.I.M.E. and IMS are the most advisable ones.
For Quantitative Ability, any one from Arun Sharma or Quantum CAT can be preferred.
For English, continuous reading is advisable from daily newspapers, The Hindu and Economic Times are the most preferred ones. Some online portals like Speaking tree and Berkshire Hathaway are also good additions to the list. Regular reading and practise from the material done dedicatedly is enough to ace this section.
Now comes the trickiest section, LRDI, try solving puzzles in the daily newspapers and practise calculations, that should be enough. Only books and concepts is not even half the battle for CAT, the main weapon in your preparation has to be practise. It helps you develop your strategy, acquaints you with your comfort and discomfort level, and teaches you to manage time well. AIMCATS is one of the best test series I came across during my journey, although it’s a bit above the CAT level, but the series prepares you like nothing else! AIMCATS are provided by T.I.M.E. Another good option to go with is the IMS test series, it does have some good collection of questions. Apart from these two, there is CL, HundaKaFunda, OliveBoard, etc. Test series can be taken according to you budget and suitability. The only required asset here is the discipline and the will-power to follow as instructed. Coming to the main point, strategy, no one can teach or give you a ready-made strategy to follow. Each individual has a different mind and what works for one, might not work for another. It has to be developed with practise and consistent learning. Some tips might definitely come handy while developing one, read here:

I. Continuously give mock tests from the test series and assess your strategy based on your performance.
II. Don’t be afraid to try new things, mock tests are only for your practise, the result doesn’t matter. Only if you are carefree in mock tests and develop the right strategy, the D-day will be just another mock test for you!
III. Find out what’s working best and divide the time accordingly.
IV. Don’t get the habit of sticking to one question. It’s not an exam where you need to attempt all questions for best results, just 60 percent questions with 90 percent accuracy will do your work.

Last, but not the least, try to surpass your anxiety during the preparation phase, because the calmer the mind, better the outcome for CAT. After all, all the questions are aptitude based and can be tackled even without a lot of preparation, provided you have a calm mind and sharp problem solving skills! Ideal time to begin preparation can vary, but, so t mostly it is around June. And irrespective of the fact that course is covered or not, one test per week should happen maximum by August. Please note, without adequate amount of practise, your whole preparation can go to waste, so don’t forget the tests and sectionals. Remember, this is the last pillar of your education and to ensure that this is the strongest one, consistency and the will-power to keep striving to do better is the key.
All the best, go bell the CAT!

– Anukriti Mishra
  CAT 2017 – 98.29 Percentile

May 19, 2020