Exactly how much time is required to prepare for CAT? If you google this question, then you will find that you definitely need more time than you think. CAT is considered one of the toughest exams to crack and one of the things that help the most in cracking the exam is - time. Time plays the most important role and can make you from zero to hero. CAT is a hurdle that every management aspirant has to cross to get into the most prestigious IIMs in India (see top B-Schools accepting CAT scores) like IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Lucknow, IIM Kozhikode, IIM Calcutta, IIm Kashipur, IIM Raipur etc. Not just IIM's, you need to crack CAT 2018 for admission to the top MBA colleges in India like SP Jain - Mumbai, Narsee Monjee - Mumbai, FMS - Delhi University etc.
Basis your Common Admission Test (CAT) score, you can take admission in various Masters in Business Management (MBA) courses in India in specialisations like - human resources management, finance management, marketing management, and even hotel management & hospitality management.
Traditionally, a Bachelor in Business Management (BMS) course best augments your MBA aspirations, but a student with a background of any other stream can also prepare for CAT & other management entrance exams in India. Some of the popular regions where MBA colleges are very much in demand include Assam, Calicut, Mysore, Vadodara, Kerala & Karnataka. Kolkata, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mysore, Ahmedabad etc. are other popular destinations to complete your MBA/ PGDM from.
While people may argue that 6 - 10 months of dedicated preparations will help you sail through, but if you ask the CAT toppers of previous years, they will tell you that they have spent a dedicated 1 - 1.5 years to crack the CAT exam. And that too, not aimlessly. They had chartered a time table with designated slots to crack each section of the CAT paper - Verbal, Quantitaive, Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning. Plus, continuous brush up of news & happenings around the world, which will help you in the GDPI process.
So, here are some tips that can help you make your CAT 2018 preparation process a lot more easier & streamlined.
Is CAT Coaching Necessary?
This is one of the most asked questions and the answer is - it really depends on you. Coaching provides an organised way to success and is the best way to get in touch with people who know more about CAT than you do. Coaching does not make you great, it just helps you in your way to prepare and clear the CAT exam. It gives you a schedule that you have to follow, notes that will be most helpful, and customised mock papers.
So, it just leaves us with the answer that if you are organised enough and dedicated enough then you probably do not need coaching because coaching is just one of the things, not THE thing. Preparing by yourself is also an amazing idea and this way you will be able to give more time to studies and will be able to practice a lot.
Understand the Pattern and Syllabus
CAT has following four sections and each section requires the same level of loyalty.
- Quantitative Ability
- Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning
- Verbal Ability
Do You Need to Quit Your Job?
It is very important that you figure out whether you need to quit your job in order to prepare for CAT or not. You must weigh all the advantages and disadvantages of quitting your job for the preparation of CAT as it is a huge decision. Also, Most of the top MBA colleges give points for work experience, so keep in mind that a gap in your resume can be a disadvantage. MAke sure that you can explain that gap during your interview for selections before deciding to quit. Figure out how much time you need and then make your decision.
Now that you are done deciding whether you want to join coaching or prepare by yourself and now you also understand the syllabus of the exam so it is time to make the ‘Action Plan’. You need to make a timetable and stick to it because organisation is the key. You need to take each section one by one and complete it and you can check your progress through mock tests because it is the easiest way.
It is the time to enroll in coaching institutes and attend classes regularly and subsequently practically analyse your progress and ask yourself the question - are you really CAT ready?