CAT 2018 results has put an end to the specualtions of many CAT test takers. Meet Mayur Arora who has scored 99.88 percentile in CAT 2018 Results. Mayur has also scored 99.83 percentile in Quantitative Aptitude, 99.59 percentile in DILR and 97.75 percentile in VARC. He shares his journey from CAT Preparation to being a CAT 2018 Topper.
1. Congratulations on being in the 1% of the CAT aspirants! What are your overall and sectional scores in CAT 2018?
Mayur: Overall = 99.88%le, VARC = 97.75%le, DILR = 99.59%le, QA= 99.83%le
2. When did you start your CAT 2018 Preparation? What is the ideal time required to complete the CAT syllabus before the exam?
Mayur: I started my prep somewhere around July, I think 6 months are more than enough to study all concepts and take 15-20 mock tests.
3. What was your overall preparation strategy for CAT 2018?
Mayur: I took it earlier, hence was clear with most basic formulas. I took plenty of mock tests.
4. Was there any particular section/area that you were weak at? How did you overcome this challenge? What strategies did you adopt to master that section?
Mayur: My VARC section is not strong. I used to practice it a lot from sectional tests online.
5. Please share your section-wise preparation strategy for QA, DILR and VARC.
Mayur: I’ll share section wise strategy to get good scores in mock.
VARC: You need to understand that this section is no longer VARC but RCs only. 70.6% questions (or 24 out of 34 questions are from RCs). It’s better to focus on RCs and nothing else. There are 5 RCs(6,6,6,3,3) with I advise people to start with RCs which have 6 questions and try to complete each of them in 10 minutes each. Then take 6 minutes each for the other 2 RCs.
By now, you’d have spent around 40-44 minutes with around 16-20 minutes left for VA. Now you can use that time to attempt 6-7 questions from VA and your total attempts would be 30+. An 80% accuracy will ensure 99.2+ in this section.
DILR: The best thing about this section is that 16 correct questions mean 99+ %le in CAT for sure. My strategy has been to attack all DI sets, get at least 14-15 questions correct and then just attempt 1-2 sets from LR. (DI is my stronger part, yours can be LR). To decide which one to pick and attack, give 5 sectional tests each for DI and LR. See your average scores in all tests, identify your stronger section and then keep on working hard to make it even stronger. The key to this section is that you must get a minimum of 13-14 questions correct in the section of your choice, be it LR or DI. QA: This is the quintessential section which actually judges the true strength and hard work of a candidate. I would suggest you to take 2 sectional tests from each topic and find out which topics you’re really good at. Then during mocks, always pick questions from that topic first and keep the questions which sound alien for the last. I am pretty sure that in first 40 minutes, everybody can easily solve the easiest 20 questions. Then in those last 20 minutes, even if you solve 3-4 questions, you’re already 99+ in CAT. This year, 53 marks were around 99%le in QA. Never ever dare to touch some question which looks extremely different from what you have studied/practiced. Read it and then skip unless you’re sure of the concept behind it. QA section often contains some questions which are time-wasters
6. Were you a part of any coaching institute? Do you think coaching is necessary to ace CAT?
Mayur: I was not a student per se, but I took test series of IMS and TIME. Coaching is not necessary but if you are taking CAT for the first time, it is suggested to take coaching as it gives great support for solving doubts and get career counselling sessions.
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7. Any particular book or study material that helped you gain an edge over other candidates?
Mayur: Just keep taking sectional tests and full 3 hour tests. These tests are updated very frequently.
8. What role did Mocks play in your success? How many mocks did you attempt before the exam?
Mayur: Mocks are important to keep yourself patient and make you sit for adequate amount of time. They also let you know about latest changes in pattern and make you alert all the time during your preparation. I took about 40 mock tests this season.
9. Please share your exam-day strategy for the CAT 2018. What was your last-minute preparation? How did you plan your CAT test taking?
Mayur: My exam was at 2:30 pm; I reached there by 11:30 am and ate something. I sat nearby in a restaurant with a friend and discussed life other than the exam. The last minute preparation was revising all the formulas once.
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10. Do you think academic background plays an important role in CAT Prep and Why?
Mayur: Not in CAT preparation but in getting calls for sure. A lot of colleges are giving due weight-age to non-engineering people to decrease homogeneity in batch.
11. Which institutes have you applied to admission and why did you opt for them particularly?
Mayur: I have applied to all IIMs, FMS, MDI, XLRI, SPJIMR. These are top ranked colleges which provide great learning opportunities.
12. How are you preparing for GD – PI and WAT rounds of the selection process?
Mayur: I will start writing questions like why MBA? Etc. and prepare for GD PI with my friends’ help.
13. What is your message for CAT aspirants? One crucial piece of advice that you would like them to follow and wish you had known.
Mayur: Never lose hope. It is going to be a very long journey and often, people lose hope. But please keep faith and keep working hard till you succeed.
14. What is your dream career choice after completing your MBA?
Mayur: I would like to work in a product management role post MBA, preferably in tech sector as in this way, I would be able to utilise my skills as a software engineer and a computer science engineering graduate.