CAT 2016 Topper Interview: Mock tests helped me in allocating time for each question type, says 99.57 percentiler Saakshi Goel
Tenzin pema, 21 Aug 2017, #CAT
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Saakshi Goel, first year PGDM student at SPJIMR Mumbai, hails from a commerce background, nevertheless that did not impede her from obtaining a glorious percentile in CAT. A Chartered Accountant by profession, her journey to success comprised various elements: crash course, regular practice and time management among others. Saakshi's preparation strategy commenced three months before taking the national level entrance exam. During her three months preparation journey, she took around 25 mock test and took note of areas which she was not able to tackle well. Saakshi worked on her weak area such as the QA section by understanding its concepts and devoting more time.

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In an interview with Careers360, Saakshi puts forward her CAT 2016 preparation strategy and how prospective applicants preparing for CAT 2017 can learn from her experience. 

 

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Careers360: Congratulations on your admissions to SPJIMR. What was your overall and sectional score in CAT 2016? Any other exam you had appeared for, please share the score for the same.

Saakshi: Thank you for your wishes. My overall CAT score was 99.57 percentile with sectional percentiles as follows:

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  • Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC): 99.8 percentile

  • Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DI & LR): 99.05 percentile

  • Quantitative Ability (QA): 93.29 percentile

I also appeared for XAT and secured a score of 97.23 percentile.

 

Careers360: Which was the most challenging and easiest section in CAT according to you?

Saakshi: The easiest section for me in CAT 2016 was VARC. It was manageable to answer all the questions within the given time limit. The toughest was Quantitative Ability (this is the general opinion of almost all students from a commerce background). However, even DI & LR was extremely challenging.

 

Careers360: Please share your preparation journey. How did you strike a balance between your professional life and preparation for CAT?

Saakshi: I took time off from work for three months, joined a crash course and prepared for CAT. For me, QA was a challenge since I knew I had to compete with Engineers who are well versed with the subject. Hence, I dedicated 75 per cent of my time to QA and the rest of the time was devoted to practicing VARC and DILR. Since I had just three months, I studied full time.

 

Careers360: Were you a part of any coaching institute? Do you think coaching is necessary for aspirants to bag the top rank?

Saakshi: Yes, I joined a crash course with T.I.M.E. In my opinion, coaching classes give students a direction to solve the paper. It is definitely not a prerequisite to bag the top rank. This completely depends on the individual and how proficient and well versed he/she is in these subject areas. 

 

Careers360: Please share your specific section wise strategy for VARC, DI & LR and QA.

Saakshi: For VARC, solving one comprehensive passage per day was a real bonus. This gave me an idea about how to extract information and inferences from such texts.

 

DI and LR also required regular practice. The main problem in LR is how to approach a problem. Doing a wide variety of questions helped me get a head start in the exam since I could create an outline approach for every question. Practice is the key in this section.

 

While in the QA section, I focused on understanding concepts rather than tricks to solve the questions. Solving even half the amount of questions (correctly) in QA can lead to a fairly good score (The amount of time is also such that not all the questions can be solved). So, I focused on the topics which were my strengths and did not give much time to those that I was struggling with.

 

Careers360: What is the significance of mock test in your success? When did you start taking mock test and what was the frequency?

Saakshi: Mock tests played a huge role. I took about 25 mock tests after I finished my course. One test per day. These tests familiarised me to the CAT pattern and helped me identify problem areas.

 

Careers360: How did you get the mock tests analysed and modified your strategy after that?

Saakshi: I did not specifically get mock tests analysed. I just identified my problem areas while I took the tests and worked on those. I identified the areas I was strong in and solved those questions first in the final paper.

 

Above all, mock tests helped me in planning the allocation of time for each type of question.

 

Careers360: How did you utilise the features like calculator and non-MCQs in CAT?

Saakshi: Calculator was barely used as it’s a mouse operated calculator and consumes a lot of time.

Non-MCQs carry no negative marking but are very lengthy. So I left these questions for the end.

 

Careers360: What is your suggestion for CAT 2017 aspirants?

Saakshi: There are a number of important things I learnt from the entire process. Some I implemented and some I wished I had. The most important thing is time management, both during preparations and during the exam. It’s a game of how one performs best in a limited time. Second is playing on your strengths. Apart from all this, try not to get worked up. Remain focused and be calm.

 

Stay tuned to bschool.careers360.com for more information on CAT 2016 toppers

 

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Showing 7362 out of 7363 Questions
6 Views

I have less than 50% marks in high school, can I apply for cat,mat and GMAT???

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 19th Nov, 2019
CAT, MAT and GMAT are entrance examinations for admission tio Post Graduation courses. Now as their eligibility criteria, CAT has a condition that Candidates should score a minimum aggregate of 50% in the Graduation. It is 5% for General Category and 45% for Reserved Categories. MAT has no minimum aggregate requirement. Your High school aggregate is not counted for eligibility criteria of these exams. In fact, it is only considered for the shortlisting process.
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i have got 50 percent marks in graduation..if i will get good percentile in CAT OR MAT. will i get admission in good college or should i stop dreaming of mba?

Shareef 19th Nov, 2019
Hello,
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No, Never give up. When there's a will, there is a way.
.
Now, getting admission into MBA is not based on your graduation marks, most of the Institutes only care about your performance in CAT/MAT examinination.
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If you a good percentage in your entrance examination, then most of the Institutes don't consider your graduation percentage, where few Institutes need a minimum percentage in graduation.
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Don't get tensed about your graduation percentage, you have a minimum percentage which is news for getting admission.
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So, don't get tensed about it, just prepare best, and give your best. Best of luck
14 Views

i m 34 yrs old, having work ex of 5 yrs as an Officer in Ministry of Defence. I wanted to do full time MBA from top IIM-A/B/C through CAT exam. M having poor academics record below 65%, also belongs to Reserve category. is thr any chance for me to get into TOP IIMs, nt interested in Exe-MBA.plz help

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 19th Nov, 2019
Mr. Gupta, each IIM has its own selection procedure. While CAT percentile remains the main criteria, there are other factors as well. Here we shall help you with the criteria, cut offs and the selection procedure. IIMs shortlist candidates for the interview stage based on their own criteria, which may be independent of each other. The process may include Written Ability Test, Group Discussion, and Personal Interviews. Performance in the CAT examination is an important component in the admission process. IIMs may additionally use other factors such as the previous academic performance of the candidates, relevant work experience, gender and academic diversity and other similar inputs in shortlisting and ranking of candidates at various stages of the admission process. The processes, academic cut-offs and the weights allocated to the evaluation parameters may vary across IIMs.

IIM Ahmedabad:

CAT SECTIONAL WEIGHTAGE:

QA DLR VARC Overall
General: 70 70 70 80
NC-OBC/Trans: 65 65 65 75
SC: 60 60 60 70
ST: 50 50 50 60
PwD-UR,OBC,SC: 60 60 60 70
PwD: ST: 50 50 50 60

10th Rating:

Percent score Rating Score

<= 55 1

> 55 and <= 60 2

> 60 and <= 70 3

> 70 and <= 80 5

> 80 and <= 90 8

> 90 10

The same rating score is used for 12th Science /Commerce Streams. For Arts/Humanities:

Percent score Rating Score

<= 45 1
> 45 and <= 50 2
> 50 and <= 60 3
> 60 and <= 70 5
> 70 and <= 85 8
> 85 10

Work Experience in Months as on July 31, 2019 Rating Score

< 12 months 0

> 36 months 5

Work-experience Multiplication Factor (MF) = 0.20

Minimum cut offs for Average percent of marks scores:
Stream in 12th UR NC- OBC/Trans SC ST PWD PWD -ST

Science 80 75 70 65 70 65

Commerce 77 72 67 62 67 62

Arts & Humanities 75 70 64 59 64 59

From each Academic sectors top 5% from each stream and each Category will be short listed. It might look like:

Category Upper Limit

General 100

NC-OBC-cum-transgender 57

SC 32

ST 16

PwD 6

After shortlisting the Candidates, the selected Candidates will have to go through WAT and PI rounds. Selection at this stage will strictly be based on the shortlisting of the candidates done separately for each Category on the basis of their Final Composite Score. . The numbers selected in different reservation categories will be in proportions mandated by law.

Personal Interview Multiplication Factor (PIF) = 0.50

AWT Multiplication Factor (AWTF) = 0.10

CAT Score Multiplication Factor for Final Composite Score (CATF_FCS) = 0.25

Application Rating Multiplication Factor for Final Composite Score (ARF_FCS) = 0.15

After the AWT & PI round, admission offers are made by IIMA to successful candidates. The final selection is based on a diverse set of attributes which includes performance in CAT, performance in AWT & PI, academic, co-curricular and extra-curricular achievements, work experience, etc.

IIM BANGALORE:
QA DLR VARC Overall
General: 80 80 85 90
NC-OBC: 70 70 75 80
SC: 65 65 70 75
ST: 60 60 60 70
PwD: 50 50 50 60
For all the Candidates shortlisted, the 10th and 12th board results are initially adjusted by dividing each such score by 90th percentile score of that board. And then an adjusted score is calculated for the Bachelor's degree for each of the candidates based on the final scores obtained by the candidate are used for the Bachelor's degree and professional degrees. For example,
CAT = 40
10th board = 20
12th board = 10
Bachelors = 20
Gender Diversity = 2
Work Experience = 8
The 40 points for CAT are derived from the performance in each of the three sections as follows:
Verbal & Reading Comprehension - 14 points
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning - 16 points Quantitative Aptitude - 10 points.
IIM CALCUTTA:

QA DLR VRC Over All
OPEN: 75 80 80 85
NC-OBC: 65 65 70 75
EWS: 65 65 70 75
SC: 60 60 65 70
ST: 55 55 55 65
PWD: 55 55 55 65


And the final selection is based on:
CAT 2019 Score 30
Personal Interview 48
Written Ability Test 10
Academic Diversity 04
Work Experience 08
Total 100

What IIMs also look for apart from Academics is the diversity factor. So with your work experience, that might actually work in your favour. So secure atleast 85-90 percentile and you can be shortlisted for any of the IIMs.
5 Views

hii ths is jitesh, i jst want to make it clear tht i m t good in maths n bczx of ths i he fear of cat exam so can i do mba from abroad n wat are the examinations tio be gvn fr abroad ??/ plzz somone reply

Niveditha 19th Nov, 2019

Hi Jitesh...

Firstly do not be scared of maths just because of CAT exam. It is not just the mathematics which you do as your subject but it is an aptitude test test your mathematics skills obviously along with your thinking ability to solve the problem.

So coming to your question first thing you have to keep in mind when have to do MBA abroad is the minimum requirements to do MBA abroad.

The second thing is the exams that you must attend.

Firstly lets looks at the eligibility requirements where the candidate must must have minimum of 3 years of bachelor's degree of any discipline,

A masters or doctoral is also acceptable. Some colleges in abroad also accept distance or the education in correspondence.

Unlike the MBA colleges in India, the colleges abroad ask for minimum two years of work experience or the work exposure for pursuing MBA. The do not need your technical skills or the marks which you have scored , rather than that they need your managerial skills.

The exams that must be given for MBA abroad are GMAT or GRE.

GMAT score is highly predict your verbal and aptitude level to manage the strees and workload of MBA.

TOFEL for US, Canada

IELTS or PTE for UK,Australia,New Zealand

CAE or CPE for UK

CELPIP for Canada

TOFEL , IELTS is conducted to check the vocabulary and the English proficiency. This evaluates the listening, speaking,writing and reading skills of English.

Even the GRE and GMAT exams have a section similar to the quantitative ability which you are probably scared of .

The subject quantitative ability will not be for these competitive exams but also in your placements you attend after your education.

The foreign universities also assess your application on the basis of your achievements, experience, leadership qualities at work and other academic achievements.

MBA is not just learning theory in the class rooms, it is the application of the experience that you gain.

All the best!!!



93 Views

I have 96% in 10th, 92.4% in 12th and 81.1% in Engineering. What percentile should I score in CAT to get calls from IIM Indore, Kozikhode and Trichy(NC- OBC Category)?

Sonali Sahu Student Expert 18th Nov, 2019

Hello,

your score is good until now. You have did your best all the way. For CAT exam, IIM Consider 90% to get an admission.

For IIM Kozhikode:- 75% for CAT,Sectional Cutoff:- 65% for  10th:- 60% and for 12th 60%.

For IIM Trichy:- 78% for OBC-NC

for IIM Indore :- 80% for OBC-NC

for OBC category there will very less relaxation. But there is high competition but number of seats available is very less.

So you have to prepare accordingly and get an admission.

CAT exam score hold a 45-50 % weightage for admission at IIM Kozhikode. You have so good qualification in the rest. If you put more effort into it then you can get it.

Hope it helps!

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