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CAT: How to conquer Reading Comprehension

September 21, 2005

I find Reading Comprehension very tough. Any tips to improve?' asked an anxious Common Admission Test aspirant in a recent chat with CAT gurus Asan Dasari and Vinayak Kudva of IMS Learning Resources


The key is to read and understand, rather than merely read fast, say Asan and Vinayak.

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

Here is the final part of the chat transcript. 

Don't forget to watch out for more CAT chats on Get Ahead, in the coming weeks!

Part I: Study for CAT in just two months

Part II: How important is vocabulary 

Part III: Improve your percentile 

adityanathani: i have less than 50% marks in and i have 3 yrs work ex in a reputed FMCG co. what kind of course or institute do u suggest for me ?

IMS: Aditya, always strive for the best. Having a low graduation score is not a deterrent. You should not compromise. Aspire to get into the best schools in the country so that you a even stronger career.

vinod: Sir, i m doing MCA from IGNOU. which stream is best for me - finance, marketing, IT or HR

IMS: If you are pursuing MCA, then you should build your career in the IT industry.

CATAspirant: Does Accuracy matters in CAT or is it only about score. I mean what is more preferable, a score of 70 with 70% accuracy or a score of 63 with 90% accuracy?

IMS: Hi, if I were to prepare, I will not settle for either scores. I will strive for even more. I will not prepare for a score because I do not know what is the good score for a particular test.

Himanshu: How can I improve my RC skills??

IMS: Read and understand what you read. Rather than reading fast, concentrate on how well you understand what you read.

kirti: do iims take students with 2-3 years gap bafore joining iit.

IMS: In case you have a break in your career after Class XII, the IIMs would seek an explanation or would pose this as a question at the interview. However, if you have a genuine reason, it will not be a deterrent.


IMS : Yes, ISB is a good institute and will fall in the league of IIMs and XLRI.

maneet: sir,well as each section imean quat eng. and DI are separately divided into sections of different weitage,so do we need to clear thse sub-sub sectional cutoffs too or just sub-sectional cutoffs.

IMS: Though there is no definite answer for sub-sectional cutoffs, the best bet would be to perform equally across all sections.

ameet: Hi.Will my GRE prep help in cat?

IMS: Yes, it will help.

maddie: what is meant by analysing the paper and y does one need 6-8 hours for it.

IMS: Each test has about 150 questions, so if you take five minutes to analyse each question, you get 5 x 150 = 750 minutes which is the answer to your question.

CATTIE: how do u know wot wud b the probBLe cut-off while attempting the paper.

IMS: You will not know the cut-off while attempting the paper, so it is important that you score as much as you can without losing focus on competency and accuracy.

Pradeep: Why do all the engireers get into MBAs??

IMS: No, not all engineers do an MBA. There are enough graduates from other streams too.

ravishankar_ak: How far is academic record and extracurricular activities important in selection.

IMS: Both are very critical because they reflect your past performance.

Munish: hi, just wanted to ask the best way to attemp CAT paper.

IMS: Spend equal time across all sections is the mantra to success.

Part I: Study for CAT in just two months

Part II: How important is vocabulary

Part III: Improve your percentile 

Illustration: Dominic Xavier


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Sub: mba inquiry

i have completed M.Sc(physics)in 2004 and now i am planning to prepare for MBA entrance test and so i want to know in which sector ...

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