Fundoo Methods & Faadu Concepts for CAT 2013

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We have had threads like Special Tricks for CAT 2011 (Closed), mind blowing concepts@quant & Concepts...total fundas!! (Closed) These threads made us learn some of the best methods & tricks for solving CAT questions. I would like ever...
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Sushobhan_Sanya - Fill In The Blanks - Solving Strategy

[Disclaimer: The strategies mentioned here are the brainchild of Subodh_Kant]

FIBs test your ability to use the information found in complex, but incomplete, sentences in order to correctly complete the sentences. FIBs test two separate aspects of your verbal skills: your vocabulary and your ability to follow the internal logic of sentences. These sentences are often quite complex. Fortunately, there are some strategies that will greatly increase your score on these questions. Each of these questions has one blank (or, on some tests, two blanks) within a single sentence. Often the sentences are long and difficult to follow, but with practice you can learn to master them.

When it comes to FIBs, the word that does not appear is the key to the meaning of the sentence. The words that do appear offer clues to the missing word. If you can find out how the words that appear are connected, you can find the correct answer. This means that you must know more than just the meaning of the words involved. You must also understand the logic of the sentence. Here is a sampling of strategies:

Read the entire sentence saying “blank” for the blank(s). This gives you an overall sense of the meaning of the sentence and helps you figure out how the parts of the sentence relate to each other. If an answer occurs to you before you even look at the choices, you may have a synonym for the answer or the answer itself.

Pay special attention to introductory and transitional words—but, although, however, yet, even though—because they are key to forming the logical structure of the sentence.
Be sure your choice is both logical and grammatically correct.

What if you don't know some words?

If you don't know some words, use elimination and educated guessing, which means you are able to eliminate one or more of the choices as definitely wrong; or guessing from context when you know a related word. There are several types of sentence completions:

A. Restatement

B. Comparison

C. Contrast

D. Cause and effect

Here is an example of a cause-and-effect FIB question:

Ex 1: After a brief and violent ______ that ousted the president, General Monsanto declared himself the dictator of the country.
a. nuance
b. coup
c. solicitation
d. upbraiding
e. lament

Sol: The answer is choice b. A coup (n.) is a sudden and decisive change of leadership illegally or by force, a takeover. What (the cause) led the general to declare himself dictator (the result)? Something brief and violent, that ousted the president, a coup.

Here is an example of a restatement question:

Ex 2: The city council formed a committee to simplify several dozen ______ city ordinances that were unnecessarily complicated and out-of-date.
a. feckless
b. empirical
c. byzantine
d. slovenly
e. pedantic

Sol: The answer is choice c, byzantine, an adjective that means “highly complicated and intricate.” Here, you are looking for a restatement of the clue words complicated and out-of-date, and for something that needs simplifying.

Types of FIB Questions in Details

As you practice sentence completions, you may discover signal words and phrases—clues that help you choose the correct answer. Here are common signal words and an example for each kind of question:

Restatement: namely, in other words, in fact, that is

Ex 3: The pickpocket was a trickster, in other words, a ______.

(The answer, which restates “trickster,” might be knave or scoundrel.)

Comparison: likewise, similarly, and, just as, as ______ as, for example, as shown, as illustrated by

Ex 4: Anna was cleared of all charges; similarly, Sam was ______.

(The answer compares to being “cleared of all charges,” so perhaps Sam was vindicated.)

Contrast: though, although, however, despite, but, yet; on the other hand, but, however, despite, or on the contrary

Ex 5: Although the tiger is a solitary beast, its cousin the lion is a ______ animal.

(The answer is something that contrasts with “solitary,” such as gregarious or sociable.)

Cause and effect: thus, therefore, consequently, and because and phrases such as due to, as a result, leads to

Ex 6: A truck stole her parking spot; consequently, Sally's ______ look showed her displeasure.

(The answer would be a look caused by someone stealing Sally's parking spot, maybe scowling or sullen.)

You will have to get used to identifying the relationships of words within a sentence. The more comfortable you are with the question format and the more familiar you are with the range of FIB types, the easier the verbal or reading section of your test will be.

Your performance on these questions will help you assess your vocabulary strengths and weaknesses. Also, you will learn, through practice, to spot and disregard wrong answer choices. You may also discover a pattern to your wrong answers. (Are you weak on cause-and-effect questions?)
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We have had threads like Special Tricks for CAT 2011 (Closed), mind blowing concepts@quant & Concepts...total fundas!! (Closed)

These threads made us learn some of the best methods & tricks for solving CAT questions.

I would like everybody to share their most useful shortcuts, methods, concepts and tricks to solve different CAT questions. Please don't provide only the concept. Also provide questions and show how to apply the concept in such questions.

The format should be Username - Topic - Concept. One can post concepts for QA, LR, DI, VA & RC.

Let us make this thread a one of its kind repository where all fundoo methods & faadu concepts are collated. I am looking forward to the best brains in PG junta to make the CAT journey this year, a walk in the park.
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