CAT 2018 is scheduled to be held in CBT mode on November 25, 2018 and the online registration for the same has already been started. With as many as only three months left, these will prove to be very crucial for each and every student aspiring for CAT 2018. The previous year trends reflect that engineers usually perform better than any other group of students. So, in order to give a fair chance to all students, IIMs in recent years have tweaked the pattern of the CAT exam and selection criteria.
As per experts, the change in pattern or selection criteria is not sufficient to ensure diversity in population which will eventually gets selected to one of the prestigious IIMs. Candidates who are appearing for CAT 2018 are required to plan their preparation based on their strengths and weaknesses.
Candidates from engineering background do have an obvious advantage when it comes to acing CAT. Now, the question arises that how students from non engineering background prepare for CAT 2018? To get answer to this important question, read the article given below.
What should be the strategy for Non-Engineers to crack CAT 2018?
Generally, there is hardly any difference in the strategy and focus areas between Engineers and Non-Engineers. Every year, a good deal of students from non-engineering background do manage crack CAT, in spite of not being from an Engineering/ Statistics/ Mathematical background. In 2017, three non-engineering background students got 100 percentile score in CAT. From these reports it is evident that if you prepare hard and smartly, you have a fairly better chance to score 99 plus percentile in CAT.
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So, such notions or spreading negativity among non-engineers are totally vague. In order to succeed in CAT 2018, don’t focus on these false notions. How a student perform in aptitude exams like CAT has little to do with his educational background and his success totally depends on candidate’s perseverance, hard work and ability to learn something new.
According to changed pattern of CAT, the problem of ‘time management’ has been solved. As, now students need not worry about the time they spend on each section and they can devote their entire attention on solving as many questions as they can. This changed pattern help students in reducing their mental stress and this will help in increasing the accuracy level in the examination. As per students, earlier, they find it difficult to focus on dividing their time cautiously and smartly between the different sections. IIMs have solved this problem somehow by helping students in dividing their time equally.
Tips for Quantitative Aptitude (QA) Section
Before sitting for exams like CAT, you need to distinguish between QA and Mathematics. For CAT, you have to master the mathematical skills which you have learnt till Class 10. This exam focuses on application of basic mathematical concepts rather than focusing on theoretical ideas. So, in order to crack CAT 2018, your should possess knowledge of Basic Arithmetic and Proportionality Tools, Number System, Speed, Distance and Time, Elementary Combinatory, Algebra and Geometry.
As you can see in the above paragraph, that knowledge up to Class 10 is required to excel in the examination. So, there isn’t any special advantage that engineers or other mathematical background people have. Most of the students spend most of their time in focusing on glamorous concepts and neglect simpler topics.
To excel in QA section, students must possess various skills such as handling pressure situations, observation skills, decision making, flexibility of studying and an ability to analyze and solve the questions.
Solving a problem of QA section in CAT, students need to follow the steps mentioned below:
- Read the question carefully
- Analyze the question i.e. what is given and what is required
- Solve the problem (if necessary)
To follow these skills, one needs to practice exceptionally well. Candidates preparing for CAT, need to understand a topic in depth first and then solve all the questions related to that particular topic.
How to master Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR) Section?
Students find this section comparatively easy as this is less knowledge oriented and more skill oriented. CAT’s latest pattern shows that majority of question in this section are a mixture of both DI and LR. Major change in pattern of the examination is that there are no sub sections now under the name of DI and LR in DILR section. These areas require less concepts and require more practice. To master this section, it is very important that students will be able to master the skill of working under pressure. This section proves to be an equalizer for both engineering and non-engineering students.
To solve questions in this section, students have to master three basic skills such as comprehension, interpretation and analysis of problems. The important tip to excel this section is after reading the given information, take a look at the questions given before solving them.
Non-engineering background students are required to focus more on evaluating factors in CAT i.e. maintain balance between speed and accuracy. So, to crack CAT in one go, you need to prepare for this examination by distributing your time equally for VA, DILR and Quant sections.