CAT 2017 Topper Interview: Solving and analysing mock tests is the key to success, says 99.91 percentiler Suryansh Bhargava
Nancy Johri, 08 Jan 2018, #CAT
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A current student of the topmost engineering institute in India, IIT Bombay, Suryansh Bhargava has cracked Common Admission Test (CAT) for 2018-20 admission with flying colours by securing 99.91 percentile. The topper is not someone who is surrounded by his course books all the time; rather he also follows his passion for playing the guitar seriously. An adventure lover, Suryansh is leaving for a four-day trek to Dayara Bugyal, Uttarakhand next week to celebrate this victory with friends. His smart engineering mind combined with dedicated preparation led to his success.

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Suryansh didn’t appear in any other MBA entrance exams apart from CAT 2017, but he made sure to perform well in this in the first attempt itself. In this interview with Careers360, he shares his entire CAT experience in detail.  

 

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Read the full interview below:

 

Careers360: Please tell us something about yourself.

Suryansh: Right now, I am in the fifth year of the dual degree in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science at IIT Bombay. Talking about my parent’s occupation, I come from a family of doctors. Both my parents are doctors and my father is also an Indian Army officer.

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Careers360: What is your overall and sectional percentile?

Suryansh: My overall percentile is 99.91. I have obtained 99.49 percentile in Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension, 99.52 in Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning, and 99.54 in Quantitative Ability.

 

Careers360: How was your exam day experience?

Suryansh: It was my first attempt, and it was pretty good. I found the test quite easy, especially Verbal and Quantitative Ability sections. I had expected the test to be like that only, based on my mock tests.

 

Careers360: How did you prepare for CAT 2017?

Suryansh: I started solving mock tests in January, but my serious studies commenced from July onwards only. So, it was all hard work of five months with CAT held in November. I believed that apart from taking mock tests, analysing them is more important. You should be able to identify your weak areas so that you can refrain yourself from committing the same mistake next time.

I attended coaching classes at T.I.M.E. and the teachers helped me a lot in improving. At that time, I had my academic commitments along with placement season going on, but I ensured that I spent at least three hours on rigorous studies daily. Also, I used to read a lot during the preparation phase. 

 

Careers360: What according to you were the toughest and easiest sections?

Suryansh: I found Verbal and Quantitative Ability sections easy. Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning section was a bit tough for me. It consumed a lot of my time.

 

Careers360: What was your strategy during the test?

Suryansh: I devoted nearly 45 minutes to solve questions of Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension. In Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning section, I solved the easy questions first. While solving questions of Quantitative Ability, I answered the ones I knew first and marked the difficult ones to solve later. 

 

Careers360: Did you take coaching? How helpful was it? Is it possible to succeed with only self-study?

Suryansh: Yeah, I took coaching classes, although I was not a regular student there. But surely it proved to be helpful. The teachers aided me in realising how much time has to be given to a particular question. Having said that, I would also like to add that there are students, who have cracked CAT based on self-study only. Improving speed and analysing weak areas is something that has to be done by the student itself. No teacher can help in that. So, it is definitely possible to succeed in this test depending on self-study only.    

 

Careers360: What are the factors behind your success?

Suryansh: Apart from my sincere efforts and serious studies, motivation from my parents, teachers and friends is a major factor in my success. Moreover, I have strong faith in the concept of “Believe in yourself”, and this did the magic for me.

 

Careers360: Which is your dream B-School?

Suryansh: I am really hoping to get calls from IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore and IIM Calcutta. I would be happy if I get admission in any one of these. 

 

Careers360: What are your hobbies?

Suryansh: I love to play guitar in my leisure time. Also, I am fond of exercising. To have a fit and strong body, I hit the gym regularly. I like listening to Coldplay and Prateek Kuhad. All these are stress busters for me and work wonders when I am stressed. This way, I was able to relax amidst hectic preparation phase as well.

 

Careers360: Do you watch movies? Any favourite actors?

Suryansh: I like both Bollywood and Hollywood movies. Movies of Leonardo DiCaprio and Aamir Khan impress me the most.

 

Careers360: How are you preparing for the next phase of the selection process?

Suryansh: Now I am preparing for GD/PI/WAT with complete seriousness. For that, I read The Hindu and Mint daily.

 

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what is the pass mark of cat exam

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 17th Nov, 2019
There is no pass or fail marks for CAT. For example if you get 70 percentile, it means that ypu have done better than 70% of the Candidates who appeared for the exam.
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How I crack CAT examinations for MBA to take admission in IIMs.. I also want to go abroad for further studies after completing my bcom degree but i am confused so much what path can I go for future if I want to earn good money ?? Please give me advice guys..

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 17th Nov, 2019

Ayush, CAT exam paper can be Categorised into 3 parts:

Quantitative Ability
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning

The Verbal Ability section and Reading Comprehension has 34 Questions, Data interpretation-Logical Reasoning section has 32 MCQ questions and Quantitative Ability has 34 MCQ questions totalling up to 100 questions. Each Question has 3 marks and a wrong answer takes away 1 mark.

Quantitative Aptitude covers almost 30% of the CAT question paper. QA can be categorised into Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry and Advanced Mathematics. Practise chapter by chapter and develop mental calculations. Like practise more of basic summation, subtraction, fractions and tables. Numbers, Percentage, Profit and Loss, Simple and Compound Interest, Ratio, Proportionality, Time-Distance, Time-Work, Mixtures, Averages, Partnership, Permutation and Combinations, Probability, Set Theory, Progression and Series, Line, Angles, Triangles, Quadrilaterals, Polygon, Circles, Ares, Volume, Height and Distance, Coordinate Geometry, Basic Trigonometry are few important topics.

In Verbal Ability session, command on your English, Grammar, Vocabulary, Understanding of the given paragraph are of more importance. Reading English NewsPaper will also help you in your preparation.

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning needs to be practised as much as possible. Comparison of data, Data Analysis, taking clues, interpreting missing data, coming to conclusions and making future projections will be covered under this Category. The questions here are interlinked and so if you get one formula correct, cracking the next few questions will be easy. So it's important to memorise and practise formulae. You should cover topics like Data tables, Data Charts, Bar Diagrams, Pie Charts, Graphs, Data Comparison and Analysis.

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. Now based on your Category, to be shortlisted for an IIM, you should score atleast 85 and more percentile.

Now the IIMs part has been cleared, you need to decide one among MBA in India via CAT or go abroad for higher studies. You cannot be double minded on this. You know your strengths and capabilities and so this should be completely your call.

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Cat Application form correction course by mistake type BAA instead of BBA

Rehan Alam Student Expert 17th Nov, 2019

Dear Aspirant,

If you are planning to get your details corrected in the form of CAT 2019, then now you don't have any option as it is now too late. The exam is scheduled for 24th November, 2019 which is just a week away.

However, in the meantime you can ask on the helpline for any assistance if they can provide.

Hope this helps. Thank you.

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Good Mba colleges with cat cutoff 80 to 90 percentile

Mayank Chowdhary 17th Nov, 2019

Yes I'll enlist down some of the top institutes for MBA whose cutoffs are between 80 to 90 percentile.

  1. Tapmi Institute Manipal, CAT cutoff was 80 percentile.
  2. KJ Somaiya Institute of Management And research, Mumbai,, 85 was the cutoff percentile -
  3. IIM DELHI - cutoff percentile for cat exam was 90
  4. BIMM Pune - cutoff 80
  5. IIM Ghaziabad - cutoff 90

Thank-you. Best wishes.

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how to calculate std10,12and CAT exam persantage/persantile rank for IIM entership?

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 16th Nov, 2019
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. For example, IIM Ahmedabad folliws the following rating scale:

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
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.

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