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CAT Exam Preparation 2023: Section-wise Tips & Tricks
Are you gearing up for the CAT (Common Admission Test) 2023? Do you aspire to secure a spot in one of the most prestigious management institutes in India like IIM A, IIM B, and IIM C? CAT is your ticket to pursuing an MBA in India's top B-schools. To help you with your challenging journey, this blog on successful CAT preparation, including tips and strategies for different sections will help you ace this highly competitive exam.
Exam Pattern of CAT 2023
Before diving into CAT preparation tips, it's crucial to understand the exam pattern. The CAT exam consists of three sections:
- Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)
- Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR)
- Quantitative Aptitude (QA)
*Remember: Each section is time-bound, and CAT 2023 will have 66 questions. Each question carries three marks. There will be 24 questions from the CAT VACR section, 20 questions from the CAT DILR section, and 22 questions from the CAT Quant section.
How to Prepare for CAT VARC Section 2023?
For successful CAT preparation, you need to buy the best CAT preparation books for the VARC section and solve it regularly. You must also dedicate hours of your daily life to reading, understanding RC, and writing. Here are some tips to get you better in the CAT VARC section.
- Read Widely: Develop a habit of reading newspapers, magazines, and novels. This will improve your reading comprehension and vocabulary.
- Build a Strong Vocabulary: The more you read, the more new words you find. Don’t just learn them, try to use them in sentences in your daily life. This will help you to remember the meaning of the new words and to use them in the correct context.
- Practice Reading Comprehension: Solve CAT-level RC passages regularly and enhance your reading speed and understanding of the entire passage. When reading a passage, pay attention to the keywords and phrases. These are the most important concepts in the passage, and they will help you answer the questions correctly.
- Brush Up on Grammar: Focus on grammar rules and sentence correction to improve your VARC score.
*Remember: Solve as many grammar exercises and unseen comprehension as possible. During the exam try to attempt the grammar section first as these are less time-consuming. Fact-based short RC passages are easier to understand than opinion-based long RC passages. Consider giving CAT mock test to get a better understanding of the section.
Note: Watch our video on how to take successful CAT Preparation for the VARC section and master the VARC section like a pro!
How to Prepare for CAT DILR Section 2023?
Buying the best cat preparation books for the DILR section and solving it again and again is essential to give yourself a boost in this section as this is one of the most elaborate sections of the CAT exam paper. Here are some tips to get you started.
- Know Different Types of DILR sets: There is a variety of DILR set types that can appear in the CAT exam, such as tables, charts, graphs, Data sufficiency, and puzzles. It is important to get familiar with all of these types of sets so that you can quickly identify the type of set that you are dealing with and choose the appropriate approach to solving it.
- Master Analytical Skills: Enhance your analytical skills by solving puzzles, Sudoku, and logical reasoning questions regularly. The DILR section is not just about solving problems; it is also about your ability to understand the data and draw logical conclusions.
- Practice Time Management and Self-Reflection: Work on your time management skills, as DILR can be time-consuming. There are many DILR practice questions available online and in books. Make sure to practice a variety of set types and difficulty levels. After you have practiced a set, take some time to analyze your mistakes. This will help you to identify your weaknesses and areas where you need to improve and spend more time.
*Remember: Scan the DILR section quickly. Start with the easy sets. Don’t panic and spend too much time solving a single problem. Use a pencil and paper for rough work. Many DILR sets involve identifying patterns in the data. Once you have identified the pattern, you can use it to solve the questions more quickly. Give CAT mock tests to know the varieties of questions that can be formed from this section.
Note: Watch our video on How to take successful CAT Preparation for the DIRL section to get a better understanding of the section.
How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT?
The only way to ensure success in the Quantitative Aptitude section is by buying the best CAT preparation books for the QA section and solving a variety of problems daily. This will not only increase your speed but also increase your confidence. Here are a few more tips.
- Master the Basics: Ensure a strong foundation in mathematical concepts before attempting CAT-level questions. CAT generally has higher-level quant questions so you must have a good understanding of Mathematics to score well in this section.
- Practice Regularly: Solve a variety of QA problems from different sources, including CAT preparation books.
- Learn Shortcuts: Familiarize yourself with shortcut techniques for faster calculations. Use elimination and estimation techniques to get to the correct answers without solving it completely.
*Remember: Start with the easy questions or from your strong areas. Keep an eye on the clock. Focus on accuracy rather than speed. Seat for CAT mock tests to learn the varieties of questions and check where you stand.
Note: Watch our video on How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT to get a better understanding.
The best CAT preparation books for the VARC section are ‘How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT’ by Arun Sharma & Meenakshi Upadhyay, ‘Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT’ by Nishit K Sinha.
The best CAT preparation books for the DIRL section are ‘How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT’ - by Arun Sharma and Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT’ by Nishit K Sinha.
The best CAT preparation books for the QA section are ‘How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT’ - by Arun Sharma, and ‘Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT’ – by Nishit K. Sinha.
To prepare for quantitative aptitude, start by mastering the basics of mathematics. Then, practice regularly with CAT-level questions, learn shortcut techniques, and focus on time management.