Change in CAT format: does it encourage the student community?


This is a time when the scope of managerial education is really big. The number of students who are adopting the management related courses in the country has been increasing on a whole. Nowadays, the individuals also are concerned about getting in to a course which will enhance their skills, knowledge and aptitude in all important respects. The candidates through constant efforts have to clear all the main hurdles that come in their way with regard to getting admitted for any professional course. The professional courses are in high demand because of the increasing employment opportunities in this regard.

When we take the case of Master of Business Administration (MBA) course, it is certainly creating new milestones in the job market with the large number of students getting in to this field on a whole. It’s not easy to get in to this course by merely having a graduation degree in any disciplines. It necessitates equal efforts from the part of the students to get in to this course by preparing in a good manner. The candidates enter in to the courses through an entrance exam namely CAT (Common Admission Test). CAT exam is a door through which the candidates can enter in to some of the most reputed and prestigious institutions in the country engaged in the management education namely the IIMs (Indian Institute of management).  The candidates who want to build a successful career in the field of management will certainly wish to make it in to the IIMs. It is only through sheer hard work and commitment towards their studies.

The candidates always approach the CAT exam with one element of risk and other element of uncertainty. The reason being you cannot predict a clear picture of this exam every year. There is always some element of uncertainty involved in this. The candidates will be approaching this exam in a mixed state of mind and hence may receive in many surprise packages which is kept inside the pattern and syllabus of this exam on a whole. CAT is based on a point that Change is always constant.

When we observe, we can see that its exam time. The candidates are busy preparing for the next round of CAT exam which is coming about in a month or two times. . Now itself one can imagine the mindset of the students who will be busy preparing for the exams. It’s a really a significant and a tough time also in this regard. CAT has the label of being one of the most important and tough competitive examinations which are conducted all over the country which includes the participation rate scaling up on a whole.

As already mentioned every year the students are subject to some of the format changes in the exam which will make them more confused when they approach the exam with high level of confidence. But when we take this year’s exam there is no such things to worry about. The candidates who have prepared well in all respects can surely be successful in being a winner in the exam.

Understand the Pattern change!

When we observe the total exam pattern, this will have time limit of around 140 minutes. Hence it requires the candidates to solve around 30 questions in each section by taking only 70 minutes in general. The major pattern change has been made in the sense that the total section in this exam has been limited to only two. The first major section involves quantitative and data interpretation techniques.

The second major section is the Verbal and logical reasoning section. Another important change is that the students are exposed to an onscreen timer which records the exact time taken to complete. As per time plan if the individuals who are not able to complete the required amount of questions within half the time limit that is 70 minutes they will not be able to do that again. When we think about this in broader sense the candidates can monitor and manage their time in a perfect manner with equal and even distribution of the total time limit in a good manner.

Even though this factor will create fear among many of the individual students, this will help the students in learning the skills of time allocation and managing it accordingly. The change in the format of CAT is very crucial as because the entire syllabus has been evenly distributed which enhances the opportunities of non science students to attempt it. Earlier it was more of numerical and data interpretation questions. Less prominence was given to the verbal skills.

Preparation Tips!

Practice, Practice and Practice – The only method of making big in this exam is only through prior practice. There are different study modules and material which are available. Hence always try in for mock tests and see till how much area you are able to succeed.

Time Allocation – Time management skill is also crucial. The candidates have to understand all the given instructions in all sections. It is important from the part f the students to divide the whole questions in to small sections and do allocate some amount of time to each sections separately. The candidates should decide on one point that they should not select on a question which they no knowledge in. Why scoring a negative mark along with time wastage also.

Answer in Speed – The candidates should always go in for short cut methods for calculations which will help them to reduce the time taken to do a particular question. It should be made a point to read the questions more fast in a way reducing the time of solving also. The candidates should take a decision about the relative and correct answer as there is no time for doing again the same question.

Point of Elimination- The question which will be followed by options will make the students think about the pattern in which they should be solved. Usually in some cases, there is no need of working out the answers instead they can find the answers from the options itself by eliminating between them. It should be from the part of the students to read questions carefully before answering them.

The candidates should always be engaged in a more balanced preparation strategy. This means in all ways the candidates should give in equal importance and stress to all the sections of examination. The candidates must be very flexible in their approach towards the examination also. As already mentioned there is no short cut to success, it is only through constant effort and hard work that the candidates put in the results ill be on the basis of that. Hence all the individuals should be 100% committed towards the exam and attempt it with full confidence which will definitely fetch them high success in this examination.



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