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Common Admission Test (CAT) 2020 is about to be conducted on November 29, 2020, and around 2.3 lakh students have registered for the exam. Even though this is the least number of CAT registrations in 5 years, you have to be one of the top 23,000 scorers in CAT 2020 to get a 99+ percentile. While this may seem to be easy at the first glance, you may want to think again.
Many top MBA aspirants compete in CAT 2020 for admission in the Indian Institutes of Management (IIM) and also many of the top MBA colleges in India and the fight to push your way up to the top bracket can get intense. Every management aspirant is aware of the importance of CAT in MBA admissions, and the immense popularity of the exam.
Check our college predictor and percentile predictor tools for CAT 2020 to get an idea of your results based on your performance in the exam.
|CAT College Predictor||CAT Percentile Predictor|
CAT 2020 Score vs 99 Percentile
If we take a look at the CAT 2020 Score vs Percentile Analysis, a score ranging from 155 - 165 is expected to land you at the 99th percentile rank in CAT 2020. Getting around 130-135 score for 95 percentile in CAT 2020 is comparatively very easy but increasing every mark after that gets increasingly difficult at a rapid pace.
What I mean to say here is that going from 130 to 131 marks is easier than going from 131 to 132. This is not that apparent in lower scores but when you are aiming for the top, even a single mistake can cost you dearly.
In this article, we attempt to answer one of the most commonly asked questions by CAT 2020 aspirants -- 'How many questions do I have to attempt to get a 99+ percentile score in CAT 2020?'
CAT 2020 Exam Pattern & Marking Scheme
CAT has a total of 100 questions divided into 3 sections. All of the sections in CAT have different weightage. The exam pattern of CAT 2020 can be found below.
No. of Questions
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning
Each section of CAT 2020 comprises MCQs and Non-MCQs or TITA-type questions. While TITA questions are a bit more difficult to attempt, they do not have any negative marking. The marking scheme of CAT 2020 is as follows.
For Correct Answer
For Incorrect Answer
|-1 mark for MCQs|
No Negative Marking for TITA
Now, as you can see here, the story of the number of questions to answer in CAT 2020 for a 99 percentile score starts to a little complicated as there are many factors to consider. Let's take a look at this in a bit more detail.
How Many Questions to Attempt in CAT 2020 for 99 Percentile
Currently, all of the projections put out by top institutes are based on previous year data. However, the CAT exam pattern has been changed this year. The CAT exam duration has been reduced from 3 hours to 2 hours and experts are of the opinion that the number of questions in CAT 2020 will also be reduced.
Of course, this will also have an impact on the average score of the candidates and, hence, the score required to get 99 percentile. Let's get a simple estimate with the help of ratios on the new score required to get 99 percentile in CAT 2020.
CAT Time Duration
Old-time duration - 3 hours
New time duration - 2 hours
Ratio - 3:2
CAT Score Required for 99 percentile
|The old score required - 155 to 165||New Score Required - 103 to 110|
This is a very simple projection but it gives a more or less very clear picture as time would be limited for every aspirant. Adding a buffer to be safe, we can say that around 110-115 marks will be required in CAT 2020 with reduced time duration for 99 percentile.
Now, coming to the question of the number of attempts, it will depend on your accuracy. Bear in mind that:
- Maintaining high accuracy will slow your speed. A balance is required between accuracy is time.
- If your accuracy is low, you must increase your speed to increase the number of questions you solve.
- While your aim should be to be 100% accurate, don't waste time on it as it is not possible in most cases.
The following table shows an ideal depiction of the number of attempts for 99 percentile in CAT if we assume that 110-115 marks are required for 99 percentile.
How Many Questions to Attempt in CAT 2020 for 99 Percentile
(37x3) - 0 = 111
(39x3) - 5 = 112
(40x3) - 10 = 110
(44x3) - 19 = 113
Hence, it is apparent here that the difference between going from 100% accuracy to 90% or 80% is only of 6-7 attempts but to go from 80% to 70% accuracy, an increase of 13 attempts is required. Hence, maintaining 90% to 80% accuracy is best for a candidate to get 99 percentile in CAT 2020.
|CAT 2020 Cut Off|
Candidates must keep in mind that CAT 2020 Normalization Process is not taken into account here as it is not in the control of a candidate. However, a margin of +5/-5 marks should be kept if you want to factor it in. Now, let's break this information down section-wise.
Section-Wise Attempts for 99 Percentile in CAT 2020
Each section of CAT 2020 contains roughly equal questions and 40 minutes are allotted for each but the time taken per question varies. The average time taken to attempt a VARC is less as compared to the average time taken to attempt a Quant question because of the difference in the difficulty level.
Hence, the number of attempts is not equally divided between sections. Check the table below for details.
Total No. of Questions
No. of Attempts Required
16 - 18
45 - 47
12 - 14
34 - 37
14 - 16
35 - 38
|42 - 48||114 - 122|
How to Get 99 Percentile in CAT 2020
Getting a 99+ percentile score in CAT 2020 is not easy and requires a good preparation strategy, hard work and will power. However, what it basically boils down to is establishing a balance between speed and accuracy. Here are some of the best tips to increase your speed and accuracy in CAT 2020.
Find Out Your Strengths and Weaknesses
As can be seen above, you only need to attempt around 60% of the questions in CAT 2020 to get a 99 percentile score. Knowing your strong and weak areas will have to spend the least time on the remaining 40%. When aiming for the top, it is not only what you attempt that matters but also what you choose to leave.
Practice Solving Questions
Solving questions on a daily basis is a great way to increase speed and accuracy in CAT 2020. Solving questions every day will also help you find the best ways to reach the answer and which questions to leave.
Work on Time Management
Keep a clock running during and take note of the time you are taking to solve questions. Time management is very important as you only get 40 minutes to solve one section.
Check CAT Exam Analysis
Take a look at the exam analysis of CAT and note the paper pattern, difficulty level, topics covered in each section etc. to adjust your preparation accordingly.
Check CAT Toppers Tips
It is a good idea to take a look at the preparation strategy followed by CAT toppers or the best books for CAT 2020 they recommend. But you must always try to mould and adapt their advice to suit your style and needs.
Check Our CAT Preparation Tips
We have compiled some of the best preparation tips for CAT 2020 for you in the table below. Follow our tips to get a good score in CAT.
Scoring well in CAT requires smart preparation and not just hard work. Focus is essential and many successful aspirants draw inspiration from their goals or from other successful candidates. If you have any queries, you can ask them on the CollegeDekho QnA Zone.