SET Preparation

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Updated on
June 15, 2022

SET Preparation: Sectional & Overall composition, Best Preparation Books, Study Plan

Symbiosis SET 2022 preparation strategy needs to be devised as per the revised exam structure, syllabus and time duration. The SET 2022 exam date is postponed twice to July 3, 2022 from earlier June 26 and May 14, 2022 and the test duration is reduced to one hour. SET exam preparation is very much similar to class 12 preparation plan for English and class 10 preparation for Mathematics.


SET Preparation: Devise a Well Planned Strategy
Before randomly beginning your SET exam preparation, you need to devise a well planned strategy and march on your study plan. Divide your SET Preparation in two areas:


 1. Get Acquainted with the Exam
Check the SET Exam Pattern for Key changes, sectional composition, number of questions, time duration, scoring pattern among others


2. How to Prepare for SET?
Understand the section wise key topics to prepare, check for the best books for SET preparation, make your study plan with time management and follow the key preparation tips from experts and toppers


Let us study each aspect so that you can march on your SET exam preparation


1. Get Acquainted with the Exam


1.1 SET Exam Preparation: Key Changes in Test Structure

  • SET Test duration reduced to 2 hours from earlier 2½ hours
  • SET 2020 Question paper consists of 90 MCQs as against 150 earlier
  • SET Exam 2020 test paper has 5 sections as against 4 earlier
  • New section of Written Ability Test (WAT) of 30 minutes duration added in SET 2020
  • Total maximum marks in SET 2020 are 90 for MCQs + Marks for WAT as per performance
  • WAT evaluation is subject to the candidate’s shortlisting for further admission process 

1.2 SET 2020 Exam Pattern: Revised and Divided in 5 Sections
SET 2020 exam is revised again. The test paper has 5 sections now: General English, Quantitative Aptitude, General Awareness, Analytical and Logical Reasoning.

Sl No.

Section Name

Number of questions

Total marks


General English








General Awareness




Analytical & Logical Reasoning




Written Ability Test (WAT)

WAT on One Topic of 30 minutes duration

Based on performance and skill





1.3 SET 2020 Preparation: Important Points

  • Symbiosis Entrance Test (SET) 2020 is an online exam of 2 hours duration and consists of 5 sections.
  • First 4 sections with MCQs are to be attempted in 90 minutes
  • The 5th WAT topic section must be completed within 30 minutes after completion of 4 sections in 90 minutes.
  • Marks will be awarded as per the coherent, meaningful and error free writing skills
  • There is no negative marking in the exam
  • You will get +1 mark for each correct answer and zero mark for wrong answer

1.4 SET Preparation Strategy

  • The Symbiosis Entrance Test (SET) is an online computer based test which covers questions on major topics of class 12. Except for General Awareness and Reasoning, the candidates can very well prepare for SET exam with their class 12 books.
  • Since there is no Negative marking in SET 2020, a good guess work can also be made in the exam judiciously keeping in mind that time is not wasted.

How to Prepare for SET? Key Topics and Study Plan

2.1 Preparation for SET 2020 can be based on following important topics:


Section-1: General English - 24 Questions (MCQs)
This section in SET 2020 includes questions on Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension passages. Vocabulary and Grammar based questions are an important part of General English section. Key topics are:

  1. Reading Comprehension
  2. Para-jumble
  3. Idioms and Phrases
  4. Fill in the Blanks
  5. Para Completion
  6. Antonym, Synonym, Confusing Words

Best SET Preparation Books for English
The basic required Preparation books for SET exam are:

  • High School English Composition by Wren & Martin
  • ‘Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT’ - by Nishit K Sinha
  • Latest RC Passages and practice questions provided by Study centres
  • Editorial and short articles published in English news papers
  • ‘Word Power Made Easy’ – by Norman Lewis
  • Regularly solve the Verbal Ability questions from your study material especially on Para summary, Jumbled Paragraphs  

Section 2: Quantitative – 24 Questions (MCQs)

  1. Number System
  2. Percentage
  3. Simple Interest and Compound Interest
  4. Profit, Loss and Distance
  5. Average
  6. Time and Work
  7. Ratio, Proportion and Variation
  8. Time, Speed and Distance
  9. Sequence and Series
  10. Mensuration
  11. Permutations and Combinations
  12. Probability
  13. Equations
  14. Logarithm
  15. Geometry
  16. Coordinate Geometry
  17. Matrices and Determinants

Best SET Preparation Books for Quantitative
Following books and study material have remained a good SET preparation tool for Quant for past many years:

  • ‘The Pearson Guide to Quantitative Aptitude for competitive exams’
  • Class X CBSE prescribed books on Mathematics
  • ‘How to prepare for Quantitative for the CAT’ - by Arun Sharma, published by MGH Education
  • ‘Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT’ – by Nishit K.Sinha, Published by Pearson
  • Quant study modules by TIME, CL, IMS

Section 3: General Awareness – 24 Questions (MCQs)
General Awareness with 24 questions, is an equally important section in SET 2020. Major topics covered in SET syllabus are:

  1. Current national Affairs
  2. Current International Affairs
  3. Static GK questions like Currencies, capitals, Geography, Books & Authors, based questions
  4. Appointments, Agreements, questions based on constitution
  5. Questions based on Economics, finance

Best Books for SET 2020 Preparation on GK
It is advisable to go through the following on regular basis:

  • News papers like The Hindu, ToI, Economic Times
  • Current Manorama Year Book
  • Mock tests, sample GK questions provided by top preparation centres like CL, T.I. M.E.
  • Previous SET exam papers

Section-4: Analytical & Logical Reasoning – 18 Questions (MCQs)
Reasoning section has 30 questions but is considered as very important section in SET exam. Following are the major topics to be prepared for SET 2020:

  1. Sequencing and Arrangement
  2. Team Selection
  3. Fact Inference Judgment
  4. Passage Conclusion
  5. Analogy
  6. Statement Argument
  7. Assertions reasons
  8. Family tree
  9. Direction
  10. Series, cause & effect, calendar, distribution

The section is supposed to have moderate level of difficulty but may be more time consuming. Make sure that you have covered all of them.


Best books for preparation on Analytical & Logical Reasoning:

  • A Modern Approach to Logical reasoning by R.S. Agarwal published by S.Chand & Co
  • How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for the CAT’ - by Arun Sharma (Published by McGraw Hill)
  • ‘Logical Reasoning and data Interpretation for the CAT’ - by Nishit K Sinha (Published by Pearson)

Section-5: Written Ability Test (WAT) – 30 Minutes Writing Test

  • The section of WAT will be evaluated only if the applicant has been shortlisted for further admission process
  • This is the new section added in SET 2020 for BBA admission
  • This is a descriptive type section
  • Time to write on WAT topic is 30 minutes maximum
  • WAT will include subjective essay questions
  • WAT will have two questions from which the applicant will have to answer any ONE only.
  • If an applicant has answered both the questions in the WAT section, then only the first one among them shall be considered for evaluation.    

WAT Topics to prepare for SET Exam
There can be any topic under the Sun on which you may be asked to show your writing skills in 30 minutes. The broad theme topics on which writing skills can be tested could be:

  • Indian Polity
  • Political scenario
  • Indian and world Economy
  • Literature
  • Social Issues
  • Current Affairs
  • Management Sector- problems & solutions
  • Business & Commerce
  • Technology
  • Sports
  • Culture & Cinema

2.2 How to Prepare for SET? Your Study Plan


2.2.1 Gather Study Material,  Previous Question Papers
Gather the right study material, SET preparation books as advised above and material available on Net

  • Start studying by making section wise study plan
  • Take Mocks and Analyze Errors
  • Simulated tests online/offline are a good preparation tool for SET exam
  • Practice the simulator test, analyse errors and move on
  • Practice previous exam questions. This will help to know the type and difficulty level of questions that you may face in the exam.

2.2.2 Time Management to prepare for SET

  • Divide your preparation time as per your weak and strong areas in SET test sections
  • Calculate the time you need to give for sectional preparation
  • The time that you decided for each section/topic should be judiciously arrived at so that you are able to study and resolve each issue within the prescribed time frame
  • Include short breaks if you have long study hours to keep you energetic and receptive
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