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CAT: How important is vocabulary?

September 19, 2005

Are there 'special' books to help you spruce up your Quantitative Analysic skills for the Common Admission Test?

Just analyse test papers from the earlier years and solve them, said CAT gurus Asan Darasi and Vinayak Kudwa of IMS Learning Resources in last week's chat with anxious Get Ahead readers gearing up for CAT 2005.

Asan, an engineer and MBA from IIM-Calcutta, guides students through their CAT preparation. Vinayak, an engineer and MBA from Mumbai University, is the the head of academics at IMS, has rich experience in academia-based research and teaches mathematics in his free time.

For those who missed the chat, here is Part II of the transcript:

Part I: Study for CAT in just two months

jayant: What is the age limit to pursue an MBA from IIM and what is the competency and skill needed?

IMS: There is no upper age limit to study at the IIMs. You have to excel at CAT and then perform well in the group discussion and personal interview to secure admission at the IIMs.

smita: How important is it to have good vocabulary of English to clear CAT?

IMS: Good vocabulary is helpful. However it is usage, reasoning and the ability to comprehend passages that is critical for you to excel at CAT.

rajith: How does a person without work experience have an upperhand over experienced candidates? What are the tips to be followed to cover work-ex?

IMS: Be honest. You do not have to hide the fact that you are not working. The IIMs want an able candidate, not just any candidate with work experience.

Mitesh: I am in the process of taking Mock Cats and tests on a regular basis. But as of now my improvement hs been only marginal.Shall i concentrate on basics again, but doin that i am apprehensive of losing out on momentum...

IMS: You should analyse your tests. Learning derived from analysing tests will help you to enhance your performance.

karthi: Is there any advantage for a working person in giving CAT exam?

IMS: No such advantage. You have to be a good candidate and you need to perform well vis-a-vis your peers.

selvajayapal: Does state government work experience count for IIMs, because my friend posses more than 10 yrs... whether it will be counted?

IMS: Yes, it will be counted.

roxy: Sir.. i want to knw how much time shd i give to prepare for the cat at this stage... as i'm now going 2 start my preparations.

IMS: About three to four hours daily will help you to prepare in case you are starting now.

nitinbalchandani: Is it required to study 11th and 12th class mathematics in order to score well in quant. Kindly suggest some good books for practising of maths puzzle and certain other tricky questions such as those based on geometry, probability, number system and question based on logic.

IMS: Study the basics of permuations, combinations, probability and functions from your Class XI class books.

jitu: hi, please now answers. I did my 12th standard in two attemts with only 40%, now I am doing my Bachelors in distance mode. If I will score above all cut off list in all the sections, will I get call from IIMs?

IMS: Yes. You will get calls for GD and PI if you score well as compared to others. Moroever each IIM reserves the right to select.

Kapil: Can you tell me some techniques of Speed Reading?

IMS: It is not about reading fast. Scoring well in RC is all about how well can you comprehend what you read.

Yogee: Is it better to go for 2 mark questions or the one mark questions according to last years CAT?

IMS: You have to score well in each section, this would mean that you have to attempt questions which have 0.5, 1 or 2 marks proportionately.

sg: pls suggest some good books for practising quant.

IMS: With three months to the CAT, analysing the test papers and solving them will help you improve your quant skills.

Ravikanth: What is the minimum cut off for IIMs?

IMS: The minimum cut-offs are not declared by the IIMs. If we look at last year, students with an overall percentile of 97+ received a call. But not all students with more than 97 percentile received calls.

Mihir: I am aiming to attempt CAT 2006. Is it neccessary for me to decide upon my MBA SPECIALISATION (banking, marketing, etc) in advance. If no, when shall i think about that???

IMS: No, it is not. Infact the best B-schools ask you to choose your specialisation at the end of year one of MBA.


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Number of User Comments: 4

Sub: how to maintain a good score.

I,would like to ask that whenever i solve "MOCK-CATS" I generally attempts 55-60 questions & i get sometimes 40 rights & sometimes 50 rights ,but ...

Posted by Vishal Sehgal

Sub: question

Please tell me the name of the site where i can get the free past cat papers. I just do not remember thye name of ...

Posted by sandeep

Sub: Previous CAT PAPERS

Please tell me the name of the site where i can get the free past cat papers. I just do not remember thye name of ...

Posted by Manoj Kumar


Hi,myself naresh.I did my B.E. in (part time)simultaneously i had nearabout 2 yrs. of exp as a h/w service engineer. At present i am ...

Posted by NARESH


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