CAT Preparation 2021 - Strategy, Books and Study Material
CAT 2021 Preparation Strategy and Study Time table
Common aptitude test or CAT is one of the most renowned entrance tests written to get admission in elite B Schools in India. More than 2 lakh plus applicants are in the race after 4000 seats in 20 IIMs consistently. The number of candidates increases every year. Consequently, the initial move towards getting a decent percentile is to have a complete preparation plan for CAT exam.
The application for the Cat 2021 is open on the CAT official website. The wise aspirants apply earlier to avoid last-minute hiccups and also to pressurize themselves to start serious preparations.
IIM Kozhikode was lead CAT exam 2019 on November 24, 2019. The combination of the right methods of learning and the self-study is the crux of preparation. While the methodology to learn can be: learning by self, online mode or classroom coaching. It is an individual preference and is subjected to availability of resources like time and money.
Before going ahead with the strategies that one can adopt,
While we leave the decision to take coaching externally to the aspirants, we believe that the following three steps can see a candidate through IIMCAT 2020.
- Understanding the CAT 2021 exam and self – Strength and improvement areas
- Planning of preparation based on individuals’ strengths
- Executing the same without a miss
Before doing anything, every aspirant of CAT 2020 inevitably has to ask the following questing to oneself:
- What amount of time is left for CAT 2020?
- What is the CAT exam?
- What are the significant dates? How about the syllabus? Do I know the CAT 2021 exam pattern?
- Is Online/classroom model of coaching required or self-study will be adequate for complete preparation?
- How to set up the time table to cover the complete syllabus?
- What are the essential books and material for CAT 2021 Preparation?
Once the candidate is aware of the above details, one can go ahead and plan about ‘How to prepare for CAT’?
The following initial steps that a candidate can follow to prepare for the Cat exam 2021:
a. Understand the CAT exam syllabus and pattern
- Understand the elements of different sections of the CAT exam 2021.
- CAT 2021 comprises of three sections; namely: Quantitative aptitude (QA), Verbal and reading comprehension (VARC) and Data interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR)
- There is sectional cut off for all the sections mentioned above, and therefore any of the above sections cannot be ignored. That is how the CAT exam pattern is designed, and the percentile will be affected upon neglecting any part of the CAT 2021 exam.
b. Understanding oneself:
- Take a minimum of three mock tests at full length. Ensure that the previous year’s papers are considered for mock analysis
- Analyse the overall score and also understand the sectional cutoff. Compare the same with the CAT 2020 cutoffs
- Understand the performance based on the topics that are covered in the syllabus of the CAT 2021 exam. For e.g., arithmetic, geometry, syllogism, cloze tests, bar graphs etc.
Once the above analysis is over, the candidates are well aware of themselves and can set the start for preparation.
Steps for CAT 2021 Preparation:
1. Understanding the CAT 2021 exam:
The aspirants need to know the following details, which is highly significant to start their exam preparation plan.
|Date of examination||28th November 2021|
|Number of questions||Hundred (100)|
|Total marks||Three Hundred (300)|
|Sections||Three – QA, VARC and DILR|
|Number of options in MCQ||Four (4)|
|Marking Scheme||+3 for a correct answer and -1 for an incorrect answer|
|Total number of MCQ questions||Seventy – Seventy-Five (70 – 75) – Only these will have negative marking|
|Total number of Non-MCQ questions||Twenty Five to Thirty (25 – 30) – No negative marking here|
|Duration of test||3 hour or 180 minute – 60 minute per section|
CAT 2021 isn’t just a trial of intelligence but also of the planning and management capabilities in a candidate.
The following are the elements which are under test for any aspirant who takes up CAT 2021
- Intellectual capability
- Time management
- The balance between speed and accuracy
- Ability to focus and perform under pressure
While all of the above seems simple, the CAT toppers feel that;
(a) proper preparation strategy, (b) the execution of the same are the only elements of success in this examination.
2. Understanding Self and compared with expectations of CAT 2021:
- Take CAT mock tests and understand the performance in each section and every topic
- It will help a candidate to understand their strengths and areas of improvements
3. Choose – Self-study or Coaching (Classroom mode / Online)
- Considering the level of preparation done and the mode of learning required, the method of training is to be chosen
- On the off chance that self-study methodology is selected, aspirants must be careful about the most recent updates, right books and material and plan with their time in a likely manner
- On the off chance that classroom mode of learning is chosen, picking the correct CAT coaching centre is of extreme significance
- Candidates can likewise settle on online learning as a preparation methodology. It is an advantageous alternative for working professionals who can’t find time for regular classes.
4. Preparation Break up and two-month study plan:
As it is inevitable for a CAT aspirant to be good at all of the sections, the section-wise study plan is the most suitable.
With almost two more months left for the CAT exam, the candidates can follow the following study plan, designed by the experts at Pagalguy.com.
Also, to note that devoting around 5 hours a day, in the last two months is essential for the exam preparation.
Therefore an aspirant has to ensure that they use the upcoming holidays like weekends, Gandhi Jayanti, Dussehra, and Diwali well so that they can reach to the preparation level expected.
Study Plan for QA, VARC and DILR – CAT 2021 – Last two month Plan
The table below has listed the topics from CAT syllabus. There are to to be covered and the activity that is to be performed on a specific date. One should understand that, for CAT preparation, mere understanding of the topics is not enough. There are multiple types of questions within a topic that are to be learnt individually. Therefore, the cycle of study (understanding and learning), practising and analyzing the learnt concepts is critical. Practising the one who went wrong after analyzing is very important.
The study plan provided here is based on the CAT exam analysis and also the previous CAT question paper. The time allotted to a topic is based on the number of questions previously asked from the subject.
|Date||QA (2hrs/day)||VARC (1.5hr/day)||DILR(1.5hrs/day)|
|26/09/2020||Number Systems – Study||Grammar – Study||Arrangements – Study|
|27/09/2020||Number Systems – Study||Grammar – Practice||Arrangements – Practice|
|28/09/2020||Number Systems – Practice||Grammar – Practice||Arrangements – Practice|
|29/09/2020||Number Systems – Practice||Grammar – Analyse||Arrangements – Analyse|
|30/09/2020||Number Systems – Practice||Grammar – Practice||Arrangements – Practice|
|01/10/2020||Number Systems – Analyse||Sentence correction – Study and Practice||Arrangements – Practice|
|02/10/2020||Number Systems – Practice||Sentence correction – Practice||Venn Diagrams – Study and Practice|
|03/10/2020||Averages – Study||Sentence correction – Practice||Venn Diagrams – Analyse|
|04/10/2020||Averages – Practice||Sentence correction – Analyse||Venn Diagrams – Practice|
|05/10/2020||Averages – Analyse and Practice||Sentence correction – Practice||Set Theory – Study and Practice|
|06/10/2020||Percentages – Study and practice||Fill in the blanks – Study and Practice||Set Theory – Practice|
|07/10/2020||Percentages – Analyse and practice||Fill in the blanks – Practice||Set Theory – Analyse|
|08/10/2020||Profit and loss – Study||Fill in the blanks – Practice||Set Theory – Practice|
|09/10/2020||Profit and loss – Practice||Fill in the blanks – Analyse||Selections and ordering – Study and Practice|
|10/10/2020||Profit and loss – Analyse and Practice||Fill in the blanks – Practice||Selections and ordering – Practice|
|11/10/2020||SI and CI – Study and Practice||Para Completion – Study and practice||Selections and ordering -Analyse|
|12/10/2020||SI and CI – Analyse and Practice||Para Completion – Practice||Selections and ordering – Practice|
|13/10/2020||TSD – Study and practice||Para Completion – Practice||Selections and ordering – Practice|
|14/10/2020||TSD – Practice||Para Completion – Analyse||Network and routes – Study and Practice|
|15/10/2020||TSD – Analyse and Practice||Para Completion – Practice||Network and routes – Analyse|
|16/10/2020||Ratio and Proportion – Study and Practice||Jumbled Paragraph – Study and Practice||Network and routes – Practice|
|17/10/2020||Ratio and Proportion – Practice and analyse||Jumbled Paragraph – Practice||Games and Tournaments – Study and Practice|
|18/10/2020||Time and Work/Mixtures and Allegations – Study and Practice||Jumbled Paragraph – Practice||Games and Tournaments – Practice|
|19/10/2020||Time and Work/Mixture and allegations – Practice and analyse||Jumbled Paragraph -Analyse||Games and Tournaments – Analyse|
|20/10/2020||Linear equations – Study and Practice||Jumbled Paragraph – Practice||Games and Tournaments – Practice|
|21/10/2020||Linear equations – Practice and Analyse||Odd sentence Out – Study and Practice||DI based reasoning – Study and Practice|
|22/10/2020||Quadratic equations – Study and Practice||Odd sentence Out – Practice||DI based reasoning – Practice|
|23/10/2020||Quadratic equations – Practice and Analyse||Odd sentence Out – Practice||DI based reasoning – Analyse|
|24/10/2020||Quadratic equations – Practice||Odd sentence Out – Analyse||DI based reasoning – Practice|
|25/10/2020||Inequalities – Study and Practice||Odd sentence Out – Practice||Tables – Study and Practice|
|26/10/2020||Inequalities –Analyse and Practice||Para Summary – Study and Practice||Tables – Analyse|
|27/10/2020||Logarithms – Study, practice and Analyse||Para Summary – Practice||Tables – Practice|
|28/10/2020||Progressions – Study and Practice||Para Summary – Analyse||Combinations – Study and Practice|
|29/10/2020||Progressions – Analyse and Practice||Para Summary – Practice||Combinations – Analyse|
|30/10/2020||Surds and Indices – Study and Practice||Para Summary – Practice||Combinations – Practice|
|31/10/2020||Surds and Indices – Analyse and Practice||Verbal Reasoning – Study and Practice||Graphs – Study|
|01/11/2020||Permutations, Combinations and Probability – Practice||Verbal Reasoning – Practice||Graphs – Practice|
|02/11/2020||Permutations, Combinations and Probability – Practice||Verbal Reasoning – Analyse||Graphs – Practice|
|03/11/2020||Permutations, Combinations and Probability – Analyse||Verbal Reasoning – Practice||Graphs – Practice|
|04/11/2020||Permutations, Combinations and Probability – Practice||Critical Reasoning – Study and Practice||Graphs – Analyse|
|05/11/2020||Functions – Study and Practice||Critical Reasoning – Practice||Graphs – Practice|
|06/11/2020||Functions – Analyse and Practice||Critical Reasoning – Analyse||Graphs – Analyse|
|07/11/2020||Geometry – Study||Critical Reasoning – Practice||Graphs – Practice|
|08/11/2020||Geometry – Study||Reading Comprehension – Study and Practice||Charts – Study and Practice|
|09/11/2020||Geometry – Study||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Practice|
|10/11/2020||Geometry – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Practice|
|11/11/2020||Geometry – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Analyse|
|12/11/2020||Geometry – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Practice|
|13/11/2020||Geometry – Analyse||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Practice|
|14/11/2020||Geometry – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Analyse||Charts – Analyse|
|15/11/2020||Geometry – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Charts – Practice|
|16/11/2020||Coordinate Geometry – Study and Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Caselets – Study and Practice|
|17/11/2020||Coordinate Geometry – Analyse and practice||Reading Comprehension – Analyse||Caselets – Practice and Analyse|
|18/11/2020||Mensuration – Study and Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Caselets – Practice|
|19/11/2020||Mensuration – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Data Sufficiency – Study and Practice|
|20/11/2020||Mensuration – Analyse||Reading Comprehension – Analyse||Data Sufficiency – – Practice and Analyse|
|21/11/2020||Mensuration – Practice||Reading Comprehension – Practice||Data Sufficiency – Practice|
|22/11/2020||CAT Mock test – I – 3 hours – Full Length and Analysis|
|23/11/2020||Reworking on the areas of improvement based on the test|
|24/11/2020||Reworking on the areas of improvement based on the test|
|25/11/2020||CAT Mock test – II – 3 hours – Full Length and Analysis|
|26/11/2020||Reworking on the areas of improvement based on the test|
|27/11/2020||CAT Mock test – III – 3 hours – Full Length and Analysis|
|28/11/2020||Reworking on the areas of improvement based on the test/Visit the exam centre|
|29/11/2020||Stay calm and enjoy the examination|
The above study plan needs to be diligently followed by the serious aspirants to ace through the CAT 2020 examination.
Best books and study material for CAT 2020:
The best books for CAT preparation are listed here, section wise. The buyer should go through each book in a bookstall and understand which one suits them the most.
The second-hand copies can be bought online at OLX and Quikr.
For QA, it is prescribed to get ready from Class X and XII NCERT books.
The best source to get ready for VA/RC is material like books, papers, magazines, and so on.
Arun Sharma’s CAT books are the most popular in the market. However, there are many more authors who can suit a specific reader.
For more details about the best books for CAT preparation, click here https://www.pagalguy.com/articles/best-books-for-cat-preparation-2019-section-wise-cat-books
Apart from the above, the team at PaGaLGuY will continuously be providing useful material on various topics. Download the app now and access the preparation whenever and wherever.
May you have any difficulty in understanding a topic or a specific question, post it on our discussion forum, and the solution will be ready in minutes. So join our CAT 2020 discussion group now.
All The best for your preparations!!!