Countdown to CAT 2017 – Toppers Advice #1: CAT 100% from IIMA, FMS, SPJIMR, MDI on how to utilize MOCK TESTs

MBAUniverse.com News Desk |
November 22, 2017
To present before you the key tips and advice from CAT toppers with 100 and 99 percentile, MBAUniverse.com spoke to past CAT toppers and experts and in the series of Countdown to CAT 2017 the first Article is an important Advice from CAT Toppers and Experts on how to utilize Mock tests in CAT exam to score high
CAT 2017- toppers’ advice
“One can experiment with various exam attempting strategies and come upon an optimal one, best for oneself” Gyayak Jain CAT 100 percentile and IIM Ahmedabad student

CAT 2017 exam is 3 days away and at this eleventh hour you need some key last minute tips from CAT preparation experts and CAT 100 & 99 percentilers who are studying in IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Calcutta, FMS Delhi, SPJIMR Mumbai, MDI Gurgaon or other top rated B-schools to advise and guide you in your preparation and test taking strategy on CAT 2017 exam day on November 26, 2017.

To present before you the key tips and advice from CAT toppers with 100 and 99 percentile, MBAUniverse.com spoke to past CAT toppers and experts and in the series of Countdown to CAT 2017 the first Article is an important Advice from CAT Toppers and Experts on how to utilize Mock tests in CAT exam to score high.

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Past CAT toppers who have advised how to best utilize Mock tests in next 3-4 days and on actual CAT exam day are the PGP/MBA students of 2017-19 batch at IIM Ahmedabad, Gyayak Jain with 100 percentile in CAT; Mukesh Goyal, 100 percentile in CAT and FMS Delhi student; Chanchal Gupta, 99.79 percentile in CAT and IIM Ahmedabad student; Atul Goyal, FMS Delhi student with 99.99 percentile in CAT 2016; Ayush Saraf with CAT percentile of 99.99 and IIM Ahmedabad student; Akhil Garg with CAT percentile of 99.73 and IIM Ahmedabad student;  Divya Subramoniam, CAT 99.36 percentile & SPJIMR student among others.

The number of Mock tests that you have taken are supposed to have provided sufficient grooming and lift to your preparation level. Now armed with your well practiced Mock tests, how you should utilize these mock tests to score high in CAT 2017 – this is advised by CAT toppers based on their experience.

The very first thing advised by CAT toppers is not to get any feeling of nervousness and take the actual CAT 2017 exam just like another Mock test. According to CAT topper with 99.79 percentile and IIM Ahmedabad student of PGP 2017-19 batch, Chanchal Gupta, “The best way to use mock tests is to analyse them afterwards. The mistakes should be identified and worked upon.”

Endorsing the views of the CAT toppers, Arun Sharma expert on CAT preparation and author of books on CAT preparation highlights in his book, “Model Test paper based on the Online CAT is an important resource for any CAT aspirant, as you get a chance to not only practice question paper solving, but also to check what level of scores you are getting in a full length CAT exam scenario.”

Sharing with MBAUniverse.com CAT toppers have suggested best ways & means to utilize the experience of taking Mock tests on CAT 2017 exam day:

Use Mock to draw own CAT attempting strategy
The more Mocks you take, the more experienced you become to chalk out your CAT exam attempting strategy. Sharing this view, IIM Ahmedabad student of PGP 2017-19, Gyayak Jain with 100 percentile in CAT exam suggests “After giving many mock tests, I came out with a section attempting strategy. It was selection of appropriate sets out of 8 sets of questions, in which mostly 4 were DI and 4 of LR. One can experiment with various exam attempting strategies and come upon an optimal one, best for oneself.”

FMS Delhi student and CAT topper with 100 percentile, Mukesh Goyal also advises “One can try different types of strategies in mocks and accordingly see what kind of strategy suits him/her better.”    

Mocks equip you to face surprises in CAT
CAT exam is famous for throwing surprises in the exam. By taking variety of Mocks, you become well equipped to face and win these surprises without much difficulty as you have already faced them now and then in Mocks.

Sharing his experience Ayush Saraf, IIM Ahmedabad student of PGP 2017-19 with 99.99 percentile in CAT 2016 says, “My preparation strategy can be summed up in just two words – ‘Mock Tests’. The purpose of the entire exercise was to test myself in as many different scenarios as possible and ensure that nothing on the D-Day comes as a surprise. Further, solving past year CAT papers, past year mock papers, online sectional tests and topic wise tests were also an essential part of the overall strategy.”

In his view, the mocks throw a number of surprises at you so that one is equipped to deal with any kind of surprises on the D-Day.

Analysis of Mocks is necessary to avoid recurrence of mistakes
All the CAT toppers studying at IIM Ahmedabad, FMS Delhi, SPJIMR Mumbai are unanimous on the point that CAT test paper should be analysed and reviewed with their solutions to understand what and where you have gone wrong so that the same mistake is not repeated again. 

Atul Goyal CAT topper with 99.99 percentile and student of MBA 2017-29 batch at FMS Delhi shares his experience, “What I have witnessed is that students give mock tests and then forget about it. This is not the right way. They should go back home and analyze their mistakes first, study the concepts they forgot and re do the wrong questions. This is one way to reduce your chances of making the same mistake again.”

Akhil Garg who scored 99.73 percentile in CAT 2016 and a student of IIM Ahmedabad, emphasizes, “Mocks are not useful until you thoroughly analyse your performance afterwards, understanding where and why you went wrong so that you know which areas to work upon.”

Mocks – tool to devise Time Management Strategy
If you take Mocks as if appearing in real CAT exam, you will learn how to manage time for each section in CAT 2017 with high accuracy level. Divya Subramoniam, CAT 99.36 percentiler & SPJIMR student advises, “Mock tests are the best way to get practice for the CAT exam. I used the mock tests to practice time management and the use of online calculator. After each test, the test solutions have to be analysed. The solutions will give us more shortcuts and are really helpful in improving solving speed and knowledge base.”

Don’t take a question as a challenge: Learning from Mock
Usually, CAT test takers start with the 1st question and by the time they arrive at the end of the test section, they find that no time is left to solve the doable questions. How to find out the easy and doable questions and solve them in the beginning can be learned through the practice of Mocks.

FMS Delhi student & CAT topper with 100 percentile Mukesh Goyal is of the view “Attempting the easy and doable questions first and leaving the difficult ones for the last is really important and one can learn about this through mocks.”

Mukesh says, “I prepared for CAT mainly through mocks. I used to write 1-2 mocks per weekend and then analyse those mocks and make changes to my approach accordingly. I used to prepare mainly through mocks, sectional and topic specific tests.”

Mocks provide a repository of questions
You are not aware about the topics and types of questions that you would encounter on the CAT day in the exam. Mocks provide you with a large variety of questions for your practice to win the race.

Ayush Saraf, IIM Ahmedabad student and CAT topper with 99.99 percentile observes that Mocks provide variety of questions and advises the CAT aspirants, “The candidates should ensure that they diligently maintain the repository of the known question-types by continuously adding any new variety they witness in a mock.”

Mocks teach how to skip questions & how to improve accuracy level
It is not possible to attempt all the 100 questions of MCQ and Non-MCQ type in CAT 2017 exam. CAT aspirants need to learn which questions they should skip to maximise their score. If they are tempted to attempt all the questions, the negative marking, wastage of time will pull down the percentile score.

Chanchal Gupta, CAT 99.79 percentile and IIM Ahmedabad student shares her experience, “I appeared for multiple mock tests in the last 3 months leading up to CAT. Instead of trying to attempt all the questions, I focussed on improving my accuracy in the questions that I solve.”

Mocks are great help to find out areas of improvement
Mocks are a great source to understand which areas you are weak at and whatm improvement is required to maximise your scores in the exam. According to Ayush Saraf, “They reveal our mistakes and indicate potential areas for improvement. The utility of mock tests lies in analysing, understanding and rectifying these mistakes.”

Gyayak Jain with 100 percentile in CAT and IIM Ahmedabad student says “My overall preparation strategy for CAT 2016 revolved around giving mock tests, reviewing my performance and improving in the areas where the performance was not good enough.”

Mocks, in view of Gyayak are the best place to learn about the areas of improvement as by looking through the solution you realise the types of questions you could have done and type which you have no clue about, so that you can modify your preparation strategy accordingly. “So, I believe that mocks are to be used with most effectiveness as their results have no effect on your life.”

Putting a positive note to inspire CAT 2017 aspirants in their preparation journey of next 3 days, CAT topper with 99.73 percentile and IIM Ahmedabad student of PGP 2017-19 batch, Akhil Garg says, “My main preparation strategy was regular practice. I regularly solved questions of each section with time limit, and also gave mocks at least once a week.” Akhil advises to identify your weak areas, plan your strategies and monitor your improvement through mocks and score high.

Stay tuned to MBAUniverse.com for more tips from CAT toppers to crack CAT 2017 with high score

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MBA/PGDM Admissions 2018 Open - Important Dates
For your benefit, MBAUniverse.com has listed important MBA/PGDM Admission Application Deadlines. Check now

XLRI – XAT 2018
Application to XAT is open till November 30 without late fee and till December 15 with late fee
MDI Gurgaon
Application for PGPM 2018-20 at MDI Gurgaon is open till November 24, 2017
SPJIMR Mumbai
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at SPJIMR is open till November 24, 2017.
IMI New Delhi
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at IMI New Delhi is open till December 4, 2017
IMT Ghaziabad
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at IMT Ghaziabad is open till November 24, 2017
TAPMI Manipal
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at TAPMI is open till January 16, 2018
XIM Bhubaneshwar
Application for MBA 2018-20 at XIM Bhubaneswar is open till December 8, 2017
SCMHRD, Pune – SNAP 2017
SNAP 2017 registration is open till November 24, 2017
Great Lakes Chennai and Gurgaon
The application for 2 years PGDM 2018-20 is open till Feb 25, 2018
Application for 1 year PGPM 2018-19 is open till Nov 30, 2017
KJ SIMSR Mumbai
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at K J Somaiya is open till January 31, 2018
GIM Goa
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at GIM Goa is open till January 3, 2018
LIBA Chennai
Online Application for PGDM 2018-20 at LIBA is open till January 31, 2018 at a cost of Rs.1500/-
IBSAT 2017
Application to IBSAT 2017 is open till December 12, 2017
CIMP Patna
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at CIMP is open till March 2nd week, 2018
SIBM Hyderabad – SNAP 2017
To apply to SIBM Hyderabad, apply to SNAP 2017 on Dec 17 and also apply to SIBM-H in the SNAP Form
SIBM Bengaluru
To apply to SIBM Bengaluru, apply to SNAP 2017 on Dec 17 and also apply to SIBM-B in the SNAP Form
 
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CAT Previous Year Question Papers, Answer With Solution:
CAT 2008    |    CAT 2007    |    CAT 2006    |    CAT 2005   |    CAT 2004
Section 1: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension
Section 2: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
Section 3: Quantitative Ability