Before talking about any plannings, strategies and shortcuts, let’s face some real facts. See, not everybody can grab that seat in one of the IIMs, not everybody can be a 100 percentiler, not everybody can crack CAT in one or two attempts. The fact is every single person has his/her own calibre and IQ, we agree we are all participants of a race where everybody wants to be a winner but what we fail to admit and accept is not everybody can be a winner. Somebody has to win and other has to lose, but it certainly does not means that the person who did not win this time will never win the race. Google out there is full of quotes on “Failure and Success” and if not google then one can easily come across such quotes on your Facebook & Twitter feeds. So, we are not going to copy-paste any of that inspirational quote for you to cheer you up or to make you feel better. At times it’s really okay to feel agitated, angry and frustrated about your result being not good and as per your expectations. This anger gives you that much necessary boost to stand again and fight against every odd just to make your dream come true.
Planning to reattempt CAT?
Many of you must be feeling shattered, lost and demotivated because you didn’t crack the CAT with that high percentile, oh maybe you did got that percentile but still failed to get any call from IIMs or the top notch B-Schools, you left your job invested so many months for CAT preparation but didn’t got the expected result or are you one of those who spent thousands of bucks in taking coaching classes from the famous academies but still couldn’t make it. So, whichever category you fall in, the truth of the moment is you feel like a failure and have lost all that will power to try once again. Can anything be done to regain that confidence? Can anything be done to get that motivation and the power to do wonders? Well, the answer lies within your heart. If pursuing MBA from IIM, XLRI, SPJIMR or for that matter any B-School is your dream then your heart will give you that courage to take that chance again. Maybe your mind may play the games and you may find yourself haunted by thousand of “if’s and but’s” and in a mess. Let both, your heart and mind win. Befriend your mind and plan your study well this time if you chose to re-attempt CAT, make that right strategy for CAT 2017 Preparation. Keep in mind, there is always the next time and you can appear for CAT countless times.
Enough of the lectures let’s talk business now. The question is, what exactly is a right strategy to prepare for CAT and How to plan your study for CAT 2017? Well, let’s begin exploring the answer to these questions.
How to plan your study for CAT 2017?
With planning, preparation, and the right strategy, you can not only crack the CAT exam but can get that 90+ percentile too. You don’t have to quit your job, invest months or a year, buy costly study material etc to prepare for the test but what you really need is “Focus and a right study plan”.
So, you have approx. 6 months to bell the CAT. Let us see the things that you can do easily and get that 99 percentile.
Go through the CAT Exam Pattern and arrange for the books for its preparation. The study material of your coaching institute will also do the same work. For Quant, you can go for either Arun Sharma or Nishith Sinha or Quantum CAT by Sarvesh Verma. For LRDI, you can go for Arun Sharma or Nishith Sinha. Lastly, for Verbal Ability, you can look for Arun Sharma & Meenakshi Upadhyay.
1. From now till July 2017 – Correct your basics for every section
Majorly focus on clearing your basic concepts. Stop jumping from one topic to another, unless you have the clarity with the fundamentals of that topic. Devote at least two hours daily for your preparation of CAT 2017. Throw your calculator away and try to cultivate the habit of mental calculations. You can even practice NCERT School Maths books of Class 6 to 10 to get your basics right. Do not be besotted by shortcuts. Learning from first principles has value. Learn square, cubes and multiplication tables and percentages/fractions.
Make a flexible timetable for yourself. Study something that your heart wants you to study and don’t be rigid. If you had fixed a slot to do quants, but if you don’t feel like doing it, then don’t force yourself into it. Give equal importance to all sections and study what you feel like studying.
Study Plan for CAT 2017 – Quantitative Aptitude Section
The topics that you must prepare for this section are the number system, algebra, geometry, permutation and combination, probability and arithmetic. Previous years trends show that questions from arithmetic are asked particularly in less amount but given the unpredictable nature of Common Admission Test, you should emphasise equally on each and every topic.
After you have learned the concepts thoroughly, start solving questions and make sure you are not jumping to the solutions very quickly take your time for thinking. Approaching this way, solve different level of questions spread over variety and difficulty.
Study Plan for CAT 2017 – Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning Section
For DI, learn basic mathematics tricks to add, square and subtract the numbers learn tables up to 20 and try doing calculation mentally as possible without using paper or a calculator. Though, usage of the online calculator is allowed now but trust us using it will only waste your precious time. So try not to use it and instead get used to doing calculations verbally. For logical reasoning questions see the previous year papers and solve each type of question that ever came and practice as many questions as possible.
To do good in this section read articles from a wide variety of boring topics related to politics,book reviews,philosophy and art etc. The more you will read the more confidence you will built to attempt this section. For this section your wide exposure to English reading will give you an edge over others. Verbal ability checks your ability to critically analyze an argument in English language, comprehend what is being said in a passage and your knowledge about the correct usage of grammar.
2. From August to October 2017 – Take & Analyze Mock Tests
Start taking mock tests now as these will help you to access your standing. Don’t get disheartened by mock results in the initial phase but analyze each mock test that you take. Start taking one proctered mock every week plus one previous year mock, analyze it very thoroughly. Work on weak areas and further polish your strengths. Mock test will help learn time management and you will know your pluses and minuses which will improve your speed and accuracy gradually. These CAT mock tests will give you a real feel of the paper as well as help you to strategize the way you will attempt the paper.
3. From October till the date of CAT 2017 – Don’t haste instead stay calm
Last month of preparation it will be, you must be thinking to cover up anything to everything. You just don’t want take any risk and a stone unturned. But try relaxing and staying calm, if you have been following this study plan diligently then there is no need to worry or feel scared. It’s very normal to get those strange feelings of not knowing a particular topic or forgetting that very simple formula. You may even just wake up midnight with that blank head and look of not knowing anything. All this is stress nothing else so try that this stress should not take you over. Keep practicing questions, mocks and analyzing them, reading anything either over the internet or newspaper. Go out with friends for an hour walk, do watch TV for sometime, listen to your favorite playlist. See CAT is just another exam, don’t make it a question of life and death. Keep reminding this to yourself daily till the date of exam.
4. From May till the date of CAT 2017
Read a newspaper daily and try reading it online. You can read anything, a fiction or non-fiction novel, biography, articles etc. Read what interests you but make it a habit to read online. Also, try increasing your typing speed as CAT will have descriptive questions, wherein you’ll be required to type the answers. It will help you improve your speed of typing and reading things over a computer.
#The last thought
No matter how much you would have prepared for the test, how many months you would have invested in CAT 2017 preparation. If you won’t make use of those 180 minutes well and effectively, all of your efforts will go waste. Keeping your cool and attempting the CAT intelligently will only let you make that dream of yours come true.
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