The CAT is reputed to be one of the most difficult exams in the world, but in my view if prepared for properly it could be one of the easiest ways to achieve success in life. In my view the CAT is perceived to be a very difficult exam mainly because most aspirants do not really know the right way to prepare for it. If prepared for properly, there is no reason why even students with average intelligence cannot crack the examination. The following issues are key to understand for the preparations of this exam:
It is an aptitude test – and unlike a knowledge-based examination where your only role as a test taker is to retrieve knowledge from your memory - your ability to succeed in an aptitude test depends on your ability to be able to understand and react to the situation thrown up by the questions that are being asked. Principally there are four broad areas from which one would face questions in the CAT (and most other aptitude exams too) – these are: Quantitative aptitude; data interpretation; logical reasoning and verbal ability. For each of these areas, the focus of the student needs to be on understanding each of the various question types and on developing the most ideal and efficient thought processes to solve each question type. The main idea of preparation is to make sure that the questions that you face inside the exam do not ‘surprise’ you or catch you unawares.
Who is eligible for CAT:
The CAT is for any graduate student (either appearing for the final year or someone who has graduated) with a strong ambition to scale lofty professional goals and generally make it big in life. But one critical thing that an aspirant needs to realise is that the MBA course is not a getting out of college course. A couple of years between completing your graduation and starting off an MBA is the normal time frame that most people plan for. At the same time it is not necessary that you would be able to crack the exam in your very first attempt. In other words patience and perseverance is critical. Ideally, one should start preparing for the CAT in the final year of graduation (or preferably in the pre-final year) and take one’s first attempt in the final year as an appearing candidate. Keep a minimum of three attempts as a part of your plan to ensure you get the institute you aspire for
One thing that all CAT aspirants should know:
Cracking the CAT challenge can be a huge game changer for you in your life – Hence, make sure that you understand the process of preparation correctly and not waste your efforts in unproductive preparation work.
The CAT is a very simple exam if you get to the point of preparation where you have ‘seen and experienced’ each of the questions asked in your test before actually appearing for the exam. So the essential battle is to get to the point where you stop seeing new questions in any question type or chapter.
The author is CAT Guru and bestseller author of Mac Graw Hill Education India