CAT for most people I know is a phobia. The hype about it being one of the toughest exams ever (which might be true) and the like only add to the frenzy of the already frantic souls preparing to give it their best shot.
One should be able to look at CAT as a gateway, an opportunity to a plethora of options. While the importance of sound preparation cannot be undermined, smart work is the key. The foremost task would be that of identifying one’s own strong and weak areas from the format. Once this task has been accomplished it would be to ones benefit to try making the strong areas stronger so that on the D day minimal time is spent in comprehending. On the other hand some smart work is required for sharpening comprehension of the weak areas.
From personal experience I can confidently say that on the day of the CAT exam, it would be of great help if one does not panic about the gamut of portion one has not covered (as it would not make any difference). It’s all about
- managing time
- managing to find questions that one can answer and even in this picking the easier ones first, and finally
- ensuring that the cutoffs in all the sections have been taken care of.
All the gyan gurus in every famous and infamous J CAT coaching centre will tell you that it would be stupid for anyone to attempt the tough questions in the CAT paper to satisfy oneself of their hold of the subject. This time could be used more fruitfully (yes it’s advisable to eat a banana after every section) in skimming through the paper and rounding up all the easy and simple questions that the examiners have so cleverly distributed through the paper. They would be more than happy to see these answered. Once these questions which I can guarantee will be present in every section have been taken care of, one can in a more relaxed manner approach all the brain teasers (which I personally could never figure out). This approach not only ensures that you have marks but also more time in your kitty.
And please don’t make the mistake of marking the answers only on the question paper to later be copied onto the answer sheet provided. This not only builds tension but also paves the way to wash all your hard work down the drain when you mark the incorrect answers. And finally no matter how cool and chilled out in life you are don’t go to the exam hall expecting that the rest of the exam givers in your room have the onus of providing you the required stationery.
I know that the CAT is far away, but the mouse always needs to be ready to bell it.
Image Credit : Swanky
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