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CAT: 5-point strategy for Quant
RMS Atwal,
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October 02, 2008

The CAT is a different 'ball game' -- where you guess and you are gone; you fumble and you tumble. Talking of Quant, it is not just doing your math right; it is much more than that.  

You can save yourself from a lot of stress, if you plan well at this stage when there's just over a month left for the exam. Here's a great consolation for you -- Quant is the only section where less is more -- you have the privilege of attempting just 40 per cent questions with all the sectional cut-offs. You do that right and you are guaranteed a berth at the GD/PI desk at one or more of the coveted IIMs.  

Yes, it is as simple as that. The art lies in picking the best options (out of those given) and not just solving the sum. Needless to say, speed and accuracy do play a vital role; the smarter act would be to prioritise rather than panic and strategise rather than stumble.  

So, take a deep breath and get ready to pull out all stops for D-day.  For now, try to attempt as many mock tests as possible. Additionally, attempt all the CAT papers of the last 7-8 years. 

Now that you are busy taking mock tests, here are some tips:

~ Prioritising is the key:  As a smart student, set your priorities right. Also,  

~ Showdown or lowdown: Post the mock test, you get a fair idea where you stand. Now is the time for introspection, to work on the grey areas. Think what and where you went wrong. You need not feel low even if your score fell low because of unknown reason.

~ Practice, practice, practice...
It goes without saying that while practice is the key, it's no use banging your head against the wall. For this you need a right direction. Go for free online tests at and practice scores of Quant tests. Try to finish these online tests within the definite time-frame. The analytics that follow would do you a world of good. All the vital Quant concepts would be crystal clear to you.

~ Measured approach: Now that you have limited time at your disposal, all your efforts should be channeled towards time management. Whether it is splitting your study time or playtime (coming India-Australia cricket series), the amount of time you devote in working on the grey areas could spell success or failure for you.  It is in your hands to make or mar your future.

~ Benchmarking: Benchmarking your performance against the best in the country would go a long way in improving your percentile. So, don't shy away from your weak areas. Be smart and act smart. Without pressing any panic buttons, double up your efforts and you will see that even the sky is not the limit.

Top Careers & You has been preparing national and international candidates for high-end tests viz. CAT, XAT, JMET, SNAP, CET, FMS, IIFT and GMAT since 1998. Visit to gain FREE access to thousands of these tests.

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