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From an IIM student to an IIM aspirant

Last updated on: October 21, 2011 18:43 IST

From an IIM student to an IIM aspirant


Mangesh Zope, a student of Post Graduate Diploma in Management at IIM Calcutta finds time to pen down a few essential notes to CAT aspirants. Interestingly, he scribbled this while waiting for a train at Munich railway station. Read on.

Dear Aspirant-friend,

First things first. Why should you worry about using these last few days effectively?

Let me tell you that I am not writing to give you random "Gyaan". But just thought of letting you know that I am writing this article from Munich railway station while backpacking in Europe and heading to Budapest and Prague for skydiving and bungee jumping.

Do you envy the life I am living?

Well, if this piece of information doesn't excite you, then you better not use these last few days effectively.

Also read:

50 most important formulae for CAT 2011

The 10-point mental strategy for CAT 2011

It seems the pattern of CAT exam has changed since I appeared for it. But it still tests your basic computing skills and confidence. So do not neglect the fact that if you can't bell the CAT this time, it's not the end of the world. If you have this attitude I don't think your "confidence factor" can hamper your performance due to anxiety, pressure to perform, etc.

Now let's get back to the part where what exactly you should do in next 10 days, I will try and keep it in 3 parts namely, Verbal Ability, Quantitative Analysis, Data Interpretation/Logical Reasoning.

Verbal Ability

There are several types of question RC, Grammar, VR, etc.

List them and take 20 mocks and attempt one type for one day from all the mocks.

If at the end of day, you are still not achieving 60 to 70 percent accuracy, that particular topic is not meant for you. Give that topic lower preference when taking CAT on the final day.

Quantitative Analysis

Do the legendary score-per-minute analysis. Here again, 20 mocks and 16-17 topics will be your inventory.

Choose two topics per day; pick up 10 problems from the same topic and give yourself only 20 minutes to solve them.

This helps you in two ways: one, you become better at choosing the sitters and second, you know how much you score per minute in the given topic. This advice goes out particularly to those engineers who firmly declare: I can solve any problem in Mathematics.

If you ask me, it's not an achievement to solve a difficult problem in 5 minutes during CAT; rather the challenge is to solve 3 easy ones in the same 5 minute time.

Data Interpretation-Logical Reasoning

Even two caselets each per day could do wonders to keep your confidence going and help you brush all major concepts in DI and LR.

I used to warm up with DI/LR caselets before mock to get into the groove. I am hoping it will help you too before the final day so that you don't waste first 5 minutes in getting into the groove.

I was no high percentiler in mocks; I still made it to IIM Calcutta. It just takes some will power to change your destiny. I wish you guys all the best. Finally, the way we say it in Joka lingo, "Macha ke aao".