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The 3-hour schedule for next two months

Full disclosure: The writer appeared for CAT and other aptitude tests for the first time in 2016. He secured more than 99%ile in his first attempt in 4 of India’s most popular aptitude examinations(CAT,SNAP,IIFT and NMAT). This blog is about the lessons learned in his 9 months journey to B-school.

 

It often happens that, we stumble upon scenarios when we look back and wonder what have we been doing for the last couple of months. As they say ‘Time flies’. However, a proper schedule helps more than in completing the course as it gives a documentation of  what one has completed already. The following is designed as a plan for an investment of 3 hours per day. The time are not specific as one can’t find 3 continuous hours everyday. However gleaning through your day, if you can find 3 intermittent sections of half an hour each, you are at the right place.

HOUR 1:

In a CAT(or other similar exams) question paper, the VA section is totally dependent on your ability of solving RC(Reading Comprehension) questions. This is the most feared section of the VA section yet the easiest to master. ‘Perseverance’ is the key here. You need to start practising even if you are getting 0 out of 70 odd marks. So, the first half an hour is dedicated to this.

00:00 – 00:15 : Read a short story by Charles Dickens, Raymond Carver or any other Classic writer. (Sherlock Holmes won’t be much helpful as they will make you happy.) Start reading a author with whom you are uncomfortable.

00:15 – 00:30 : 10 new words a day. You can’t conquer the vicious RCs if you are not comfortable with words. Increasing your vocab is of paramount importance. The author is planning to make a Whatsapp group for the same, if enough number of people show interest. So, drop your number by in the comment section.

00:30-01:00 : It’s dedicated to the most mark fetching section. The Quant. Start solving quant from your coaching materials or Arun Sharma book. Begin with clearing your concepts and then move on to more difficult ones. To those who are doing Arun Sharma, don’t practise LOD:3 .It’s far too difficult from the CAT level.

 

HOUR 2:

01:00 – 01: 30 : Continue with your Quantitative practice. Try solving questions in less than 2 minutes first. If you are unable to do so, keep it aside and move on. We will deal with them later. It’s important that by the end of 2 months , you can look at a question and decide if you can solve it within 2 minutes or not. That will help you immensely in real examinations.

01:30 – 02:00 : Time for RC practise. Never, ever practise them from physical books. Solving something on computer screen is a completely different experience. Find out a good RC website(try rcprep.com or wordpandit.com) and solve 3 RCs per day. Keep track of why you think your answers went wrong and read it the before you start RC next time.

HOUR 3:

02:00 – 02: 45 : Devote this time for you LRDI section. 2 LRs and 2 DIs will suffice per day. Quite opposite to all other sections, focus on accuracy rather than speed. Solving 5 sets in a CAT will give you 99.5%ile. So, even if you can solve only one set in 45 minutes now, don’t let your spirits droop. You will get there.

02:45 – 03:00 : The final 15 minutes is for you. Your obsession. After appearing for 12 interviews, what I realised is post CAT process is equally,if not more, important . SO, pick up something you love. Anything under the sun from pottery to origami to novels to space science. Keep yourself updated.

 

That’s it for today guys, next blog post will try to help you more with the QUANT section. If MBA is the way forward, check back the same space in a couple of days. Adios.

Follow the blogger on twitter: @Pranay_sUman

Send your queries related to CAT,XAT,IIFT,NMAT or SNAP. I will be happy to help. And since you are here. spread the word about the blog and subscribe.

PS: STAR WARS celebration week is going on. Check out the heart wrenching tribute to Carrie Fisher.

 

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CAT

7 months to the C-day

Full disclosure: The writer appeared for CAT and other aptitude tests for the first time in 2016. He secured more than 99%ile in his first attempt in 4 of India’s most popular aptitude examinations(CAT,SNAP,IIFT and NMAT). This blog is about the lessons learned in his 9 months journey to B-school.

It’s high time. Time to decide how serious you are about your MBA. You might have heard stories about the need tremendous amount of effort, time and labour for CAT and others . STRIKE THAT LINE.It doesn’t. All you need is commitment. This post will deal with things that will help you decide about whether to go for CAT or not.

Depression Screening

  1. Work Ex or Work X: Do i need to quit my job for CAT? What effect it will have on the final selection? These questions come to the mind of all working professional at some time or other. I wish there were a simple answer. But sadly, it’s more convoluted than even the X-men universe timeline.
    Think about these two.

    1. “This job is frustrating, I can’t spend my whole life doing this. I need more money and less work. MBA’s the answer.” If this narrative seems familiar, take your time. You are not ready for a decision yet. After all said and done, life in B-school and the next chapters will be 10 times tougher than your current job.
    2.  “This job is frustrating, I can’t spend my whole life doing this. I need something different. and.. Since I am good at managerial things and I can work smarter, MBA’s the answer.” If this is you, read ahead. BTW, I am back with two more questions. First you have to decide, where do you stand in terms of grasp on the subject material? If you are comfortable with it and just need more practice, I think a routine job won’t have much effect. All you need is making 3 hours in a day. On the other hand, if you don’t have a firm grasp on the basics and you are serious about the MBA, quit your job. Trust me on this, all you will have to prepare is a decent answer during your interview showing your commitment to studies. 7 months is the ideal time to drop your papers. Start now and you will be doing a favour to your future self.
  2. To job or not to: You have a job in your hand and 7 months to CAT. You are dying to do an MBA. But people say if you don’t have work-ex, it will be difficult to get into top B-schools. Seems familiar? Read on. The current scenario of B-schools has a 3:7 ratio for non-work ex and work ex students. But 2017 calls have shown a distinct inclination towards more work-ex oriented culture. Considering the tilt of Indian B-schools towards western ones, it’s not all that surprising. Also, how can you expect yourself to be a better manager if you weren’t a subordinate ever. The bottom line is, don’t go for a job if you want to go into a B-school. Go for a job if you want to be a better manager after your B-school.Let me tell you two facts.
    1. You can get into a top notch B-school without work ex.
    2. Having work ex will make you a better student in these schools.

That’s it for today guys, next blog post will try to find a routine for your preparation. In the meanwhile, decide what you want with your life. If MBA is the way forward, check back the same space in a couple of days. Adios.

Follow the blogger on twitter: @Pranay_sUman

Send your queries related to CAT,XAT,IIFT,NMAT or SNAP. I will be happy to help. And since you are here. spread the word about the blog and subscribe.

PS: The THOR:Ragnarok trailer looks great.