Strategy to prepare for CAT 2018; Advice from CAT 2017 100 percentiler

EDUCATION / Careers:

CAT (Common Admission Test) is a competitive management entrance exam conducted for students who are seeking admissions to Postgraduate Business Administration programs in different affiliated IIMs and other B-Schools. The registration process for the exam has started from 8 August and will end on 19 September 2018. The test will be conducted on November 25, 2018.  This multiple choice objective test is one of the popular management entrance exams in India for students planning to pursue their career in management.

Having an above average level of difficulty, the exam is considered to be one of the most strenuous exam out of all entrance exams conducted in India.  Although the exam pattern remains the same, the random distribution of easy, medium, and tough questions create difficulties for students. 

The thing that makes the CAT exam different from other tests is its Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning Section, that plays a major role in it. To crack CAT 2018 entrance exam, you have to develop a strategy that helps you score 100 percentile.

But, first of all, let’s take a look at the CAT 2018 exam pattern.

CAT 2018 Exam Pattern

Talking about CAT pattern, it includes three sections, namely, Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning, and Quantitative Ability. However, CAT does not have a predefined syllabus, there are several questions expected from the topics given below.

Here is the quick overview of the exam pattern.

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension: 

It covers the list of topics like paragraph forming, critical reasoning, grammar,  vocabulary,  synonyms, antonyms, Analogies, odd man out, reading comprehension etc. Make sure you try and solve all sort of questions that you can expect in the section of Verbal Ability and then analyze how preparation can be taken up for the next few months.

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning

Topics covered under this section include graphical representations tables, charts, and any diagrammatical Representation, including Pie Charts, Bar Charts, Cases, X-Y Charts involving Line Series etc.It is quite important for CAT aspirants to take a cognizance of the logical views from professional teachers that in the upcoming exam, DI questions will be totally based on analytics. Since analytics is ruling in the business environment, hence, CAT aspirants should emphasize more on analytical skills.

Quantitative Ability

Coming to this section, it includes topics like Trigonometry, Geometry, Divisibility, Base System, Probability, Number System- GCD, LCM, The Remainder Theorem, Speed, Time and Distance, etc.

Strategies & Advice from CAT 2017 100 Percentiler

Here is the list of tips that will make a difference.

Give time to basic concepts

With respect to the analysis of past years, the number of questions is based on the core concepts of the topics. Hence, it is important for you to start your preparation by revising the basics of Data Interpretation, Logical Reasoning and English. Your basics need to be strong if you want to solve complex & advanced problems in these sections. Make sure you practice basic and advanced level formulas for Quant and grammar and exercise more often.

Move on to Advanced

Once you’ve revised all fundamentals in place, it’s time to move on to the more advanced concepts. Make sure you analyze solutions by taking CAT mock tests online and take a reference to previous years’ solved exam papers. This will help you learn to solve problems faster. After clearing your advanced concepts and understood the solving process and then start practicing problems. Solve as many different kinds of problems as possible.

Give More Stress on Grammar

This section basically includes more vocabulary questions based on idioms, antonyms, synonyms, phrasesand odd man out. Build a command over the language and good vocabulary by referring to vocabulary and grammar books.


While attempting any section, the most important aspect is to keep checking the accuracy as there will be negative marking in the exam. Attempt onlythose questions which you are 100% sure about.

Take Mock Test Daily

Make sure you take CAT mocks at regular intervals as it the best way to test your performance. This will not only help to monitor your progress but also improve your exam score to a great extent. This would allow you to focus more on your weaker sections.

Solve Previous Years Papers

Although there are very few chances of getting repeated questions, solving previous papers of CAT will help you get a brief insight of the difficulty level, sections, time duration, etc.

Focus on your Study Plan

Last but not the least, start focusing on improving your weak areas and make your strong areas stronger. Once you feel, you have improved, take a CAT mock test again and repeat the cycle.