CAT 2023 Countdown: Unlock Success with Last-Minute Tips from IIM Ahmedabad, Calcutta, Kozhikode, SPJIMR, MDI Toppers!

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Updated on November 9, 2023
As CAT 2023 approaches, presents last-minute preparation tips from CAT toppers who are now studying at India’s top B-schools like IIM Ahmedabad, Calcutta, Kozhikode, SPJIMR and MDI. In exclusive interactions with, the Toppers share essential strategies for your effective last-minute preparation. So, get ready for ten last minute CAT toppers strategies and tips that will help you prepare for the D Day – November 26.
Last Minute CAT Exam Day Tips by CAT Toppers

1. Develop your strategy!

First, CAT toppers and students from leading management institutions emphasize the significance of crafting personalized strategies. The focus is on discouraging blind imitation, and acknowledging the uniqueness of individual journeys. Padmasandhya S, an IIM Ahmedabad student says, “The biggest mistake I have seen, is students following another “successful” student’s exam-taking strategy. You must realize that the strategy works for them because they worked hard to tailor it for themselves. You need to find out, by trial and error, what works for you. Do not follow the herd!”

cat topper

2. Prepare a Clear Study Plan 

Next up, CAT toppers, who are now studying at top IIMs and IITs advocate for developing effective day wise study strategies. Akshat Agarwal, a student of IIT Delhi MBA 2023-25 batch recommends, “Create a well-structured study plan and stick to it. Consistent, daily effort is crucial.” Soumik Banerjee, IIM Calcutta MBA 2023-25 student adds, “As I am a working professional, I had prepared a month-wise schedule for myself, to effectively utilize my time.” 

3. Build on your Strengths 

As obvious as it may sound, CAT toppers stress the importance of planning their last minute CAT preparation based on individual strengths. Sashank Kartik, a student of IIM Kozhikode PGP 2023-25 batch recommends, “As I knew that my strengths were LRDI and Quant, so I was prepared for managing my time efficiently.” Bhanu Pratap, IIM Calcutta MBA student of the 2023-25 batch shares, “I realized that my stronghold lies in RC rather than VA so I kept my plan simple to solve RC and then move to VA.”

4. Ignore your Weaknesses

CAT toppers emphasize that exam takers should avoid focusing on their weaknesses, especially in the last minute CAT preparation, and also during taking the exam. Shreyasee Sarkar, IIM Calcutta student of MBA 2023-25 said, “I ignored my weak area in the exam and had the target of solving 2 out of 4 problems which constituted 10 questions because that was enough to get a good percentile in DILR as this was my weakest Section.”

5. Taking Mocks and thorough Analysis is key 

Several CAT aspirants stress the vital role of mock tests in their preparation. They highlight the significance of these tests in identifying weaknesses, refining strategies, and enhancing problem-solving speed. 

Kunal Singh Bhadauria, MDI Gurgaon PGDM 2023-25 said, “By taking Mocks and analyzing them properly I was able to identify the areas of improvement and work upon them to increase my scores. The solution provided for the Mock tests helped me discover better methods to solve a particular problem and thus helped me increase my solving speed.” Sundar Rajan, SPJIMR Mumbai, PGDM 2023-25 said, “After each mock test, I conducted a detailed analysis to identify areas where I could make improvements”

6. Take a week off from your job/studies before CAT Exam 

Successful CAT candidates emphasize the importance of strategic planning for the days leading up to the exam. Shubham Bajaj of IIM Calcutta says, “I was a working person, and I did save my leave initially to take a couple of weeks leave before D-day to keep my mind calm, composed, and focused towards my goal.” Pooja Sudhakar of SPJIMR Mumbai says, “I recommend finishing your prep in advance and keeping the last 1-2 days light.”

 7. Avoid stress in the Last 24 hours to D Day

CAT students stress the importance of maintaining composure on the exam day. Strategies include ensuring adequate sleep, engaging in calming activities like listening to soothing music, and consciously avoiding excessive stress to prevent making avoidable mistakes.

Nandan Goel, an IIM Calcutta student told, “On the day of CAT, I took an 8 hours sleep. I listened to songs and resorted to various other means to remain calm.” Rahul Gupta of IIM Ahmedabad added, “I tried to keep myself relaxed on the day of the exam. Worrying too much makes me make silly mistakes which I wanted to avoid.” 

8. CAT Exam Test Taking is Key 

CAT candidates emphasize effective time management and strategic question selection for effective last minute CAT preparation. IIM Kozhikode student Sashank Kartik, recognizing strengths in LRDI and Quant, prioritizes efficient time usage. Pranita Maheshwari, an IIM Udaipur student suggests avoiding any questions the day before CAT, focusing instead on a personally drafted concept booklet.

Sashank Kartik student of IIM Kozhikode told, “As I knew that my strengths were LRDI and Quant, so I was prepared to manage my time efficiently. For VARC, I tried to do the less time-consuming questions first then came back to the longer ones. In my view identifying such questions is the key.” Pranita Maheshwari, an IIM Udaipur student said, “There should not be any questions to be seen or solved a day before CAT day. Rather, one should go through their own drafted concept booklet.” Anish R., SPJIMR Mumbai student added, “I went through all the questions in the first few minutes, and picked the easiest ones to start with and then gradually went on to the more difficult ones.” 

9. Follow Exam Day Dos and Don’ts 

To crack the CAT, it is very important to follow the exam day dos and don’ts shared in your CAT admit card. You can check the CAT exam days at or the a few days before the CAT exam date. Important CAT exam day dos and don’ts are:


  • Reach the CAT Test Centre as per the Reporting Time (90 Minutes before the test commencement time) given in your Admit Card
  • Carry only your original ID and CAT exam Admit Card affixed with your photograph
  • Follow the Dress code as detailed in your CAT Admit card
  • Follow the security check guidelines


  • Don’t carry any electronic gadgets like a watch, calculator, digital car key 
  • Women candidates should not wear jewelry, apply Hina (Menhdi) on the palm side

10. Ignore Social Media but stay tuned to the CAT Official Website, 

For Last Minute CAT Exam Day Tips and other important updates you should regularly visit the official CAT website and The correct authentication information about CAT 2023 is updated here. Please avoid using Social Media like Instagram or YouTube for the latest updates and information as there may be confusing information there. This is an important CAT 2023 Last Minute Tips by CAT Toppers.

So, as you embark on your CAT voyage armed with the pearls of wisdom shared by these seasoned navigators, we hope these CAT 2023 Last Minute Preparation Tips by Toppers. May these topper-endorsed strategies be the wind in your sails, propelling you toward triumph. Best of luck! 

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