The Coaching Institutes | Top

Many students, especially engineers and more so engineers with work experience believe that they are God’s gift to mankind and
any B-School would be eager to take them in. You may believe that you are smart, talented and good looking, with excellent
academic background and a great software job and so that makes you a perfect pick for any MBA college. But please don’t forget
that there are thousands of more smart, talented and good looking people , with excellent academic backgrounds and a great
software jobs entering the race for CAT, while the number of seats has remained more or less constant. The point is : The only
difference between those who make it and those who don’t is simply the number of hours put in. If you put in more hours than the
others, you have a much better chance than an IIT engineer working with Infosys. Believe me .
So this is where the role of Coaching Institutes comes in. They help you put in your effort in the right places where it reaps
maximum benefit. It’s really like the headlamp on your bike on a dark night. It doesn’t move the bike, but does the show the way to
follow.
It is advisable to all candidates( both freshers and working) to join one of the various coaching institutes in your city. Freshers
should always prefer to go in for a complete 7 to 9 months classroom course as it gives them lots of practice and also helps in all
round personality development. Also attending a group of similar students also gives you an indication of the competition that you
will be facing and thus helps to drive away the complacency. Those working or taking CAT for the second time should prefer the
various Weekend courses or Correspondence courses offered.

The Books | Top
In terms of content, the basic questions asked in CAT are on fundamentals learnt up to Class 10. The reason for this is simple. All
schools, in India, have more or less the same course content up to Class 10. So all students have learned the same stuff until
then. It’s only after that that they get differentiated into different streams such as Science, Commerce and Arts. Since CAT is a
common test for students from all streams, it makes sense to have questions from the subjects known by all. This does prevent
any undue advantage to those from any particular stream.
Given below is the list of books that you should have completed before taking CAT.

Basic Reference Material : This is the material provided your coaching institute.
Quantitative Aptitude :
• Quantitative Aptitude by A.K. GUHA
• Quicker Maths by M. TYRA
Verbal Ability :
• Structured Drills (Part I & II) by Thompson & Martinet
• Verbal Exercises (Part I & II) by Thompson & Martinet
Word Power :
• GRE Master Word-List from BARRON’S GRE GUIDE
• IMS Advanced Vocabulary List.
Logical Reasoning :
• Verbal and Non Verbal Reasoning by B.S.Sijwali
• Logical Reasoning by R.S. Agarwal
Previous year CAT papers from any publication.

IMPORTANT NOTE :
It is not mandatory that you prepare from these books only. With the plethora of books available in the market today, you are
literally spoilt for choice. These books have been suggested only as additional reference along with the material provided by your
coaching institute. Also read this page.






The Newspapers | Top
Okay, so all of you read some newspaper or the other. Well. good for you.... But now that you are preparing for CAT, there needs
to be a slight change in your attitude towards newspapers. So read on..
What you should be reading in newspapers :
Ideally, you should be reading at least three pages in your newspapers. These are: THE FRONT PAGE, THE EDITORIAL
COLUMNS and THE BUSINESS PAGE. Plus you can also read the sports and cartoon pages for relaxation, if you wish.
Here is a list pages which you absolutely should be reading daily at least for the next year.
1. All pages from the Times of India
2. The editorial page from THE HINDU
3. The editorial and news page from the Economics Times.
What you should be reading in newspapers :
Irrespective of your interests, you should not be reading the second page of TOI, the regional politics pages from all newspapers,
the crime pages from all newspapers the regional politics pages from all newspapers and the heavy market and finance pages
from the ET. This is because, these pages don’t contribute anything to your intellectual growth and thus don’t serve you at all in
your preparation for CAT. Also develop an allergy to politics simply because otherwise, it will make you skeptical and put you in a
negative frame of mind. Avoid the jargon heavy sections of ET because you will not be able to understand most of it and will lose
an interest in the subject which could prove suicidal in future.
Also please stay away from novels and pornography as they will not only be a waste of time and emotional bandwidth, but also
prove to be distractions in the long run.
PLEASE ALSO GO THROUGH THE READING MATERIALS PROVIDED IN THE DOWNLOADS PAGE





The Magazines | Top
Here again, there are some magazines that are an absolute must for anybody preparing for CAT and other exams.
These include:
• Competition Master ( Great for GK and great articles and essays for both RC and GD )
• Business and Management Chronicle ( Great All-round Magazine )
• Career Economy ( Again great MBA specific Magazine)
• Advancedge ( Published by IMS, a must for GK and all exam related info )
• Business World ( Great Industry Scenario Mag)
Other then these, you may read any publication that you prefer. here is a list of some more very useful magazines.
• News Panaroma
• Effective Manager from the ICFAI Press
• The Sahara Times
• India Today
• Outlook
• Frontline
• Economic and Political Weekly
• The Week
• MBA Review
• Business Today
• Business India
• Competition Success Review
• The Tehelka
• Yojana or Kurukhsetra






What Is CAT all about ? | Top
How often have you heard this statement : CAT is not a test of Math and English ? Your faculty or friends who have taken the test
will testify to this maxim. CAT actually uses Math and English as tools to assess whether the aspirant has the potential to be a
manger.
One of the biggest mental hurdles while preparing for the CAT is the over emphasis on learning the ropes in Math and English and
not understanding the hidden agenda underlying the various topics. Across the CAT, while the topics vary, they are all assessment
tools to check managerial qualities. Thus be it Problem Solving and data Interpretation in Maths or Verbal Ability and Reading
Comprehension in English, right through the 2 hour test, a student is tested on the inherent managerial qualities which can be
polished when selected for admission to a B-School. While English tests one’s language and communication skills, Math
essentially tests your analytical and conceptual skills - two very critical traits in an effective manager.
Thus when seen in this light, the following aspects of the CAT stand out:
• It is one of the most fascinating aptitude tests in the country, if not the toughest. It is complex not because of the level of
Math and English, but because of the competition.
• It is the test of one’s managerial potential and not whether somebody is already a manager.
• It is not a test of one’s subject knowledge but of one’s aptitude to be a corporate manager.
• Thus one of the most critical qualities needed to crack the cat is strong fundamentals and loads of common sense.
All this obviously does not mean that one can ignore the importance of Maths and English to crack the CAT. In a relay race, the
baton is the tool for success. If the baton is not used properly, success becomes elusive. Thus, make no mistake about it, Maths
and English are critical for success in CAT.





Common Mistakes | Top
The first mistake is to take the test too seriously. The hype created by the media and preparatory institutes create an unnecessary
tension in the minds o f the students. When one goes to the exam hall, an average student maybe a bundle of nerves: raring to
attempt questions without waiting to pause and think.
Usually, the moment the paper is received, the candidate starts attempting without giving thought to the test taking strategy. But,
after a while, when one sees that very few questions have been attempted, one tends to panic and then one tends to panic and
mark indiscriminately. This is suicidal, because the number of mistakes will increase and so will the negatives.
The most important lesson to be learnt is to to keep your cool. That is the only thing that separates the winners from the also-rans.
As one attempts the paper, the clock keeps ticking away and in the end one may find the number of attempts below one’s
expectation. This is all right because it is not the number of attempts that are important, but the final score.





How to Keep Cool | Top
Keeping cool, is obviously easier said than done. Usually the pressure mounts when one compares oneself with others and one
feels hopeless. When this happens, remind yourself that you are competing with none other but yourself. What others do, or not
do, is meaningless. If you can conquer your emotions during the exam, you have one half the battle.
When the pressure rises, and you find that you can’t answer a question despite reading and re-reading it, just close your eyes and
shut off your mind for a moment. You will find that you will most probably be able to solve it. It’s a bit like rebooting the computer, it
always speeds up the machine.
Another way to stop panic is to approach the exam with an open mind. Don’t crowd your mind with cut-offs and minimum attempts
and other such thoughts. Just leave it to the day. If the paper is easy, you will automatically attempt more questions and if it’s
difficult, the attempts will drop. Also remember that 99.9% of the people taking CAT are normal people like you with a similar level
of preparation. So if the paper seems difficult to you, it’s almost same for all others and so the cut-offs will almost surely be lower.
So never resort to guess-work to increase the number of attempts. Especially in a tight low scoring paper, since the marks that you
may lose on negative scoring due to guess-work, may prove to be the difference between success and failure. So go to the exam
thinking anyone of the following thoughts.
1. I am very good and have prepared thoroughly and so will do very well. OR
2. Nothing bad can happen to me. It’s only an exam, not the end of life.





Test Taking Strategies | Top
You should have your strategy outlined very clearly during your preparations stage. Do a large number of full-length tests based
on different patterns. Experiment with yourself, attempting different sections and different order in different tests. Soon you will be
able to discover what is your best way to attempt the paper. This will help you decide: (i) which section you should do first; (ii) the
kind of questions you should attempt and avoid; and (iii) your optimum attempt.
The strategy will, of course, vary from person to person. Remember, there is no fixed strategy which is a “magic formula” that can
guarantee 100% success. On the day of the exam, just follow the strategy that you have perfected. Don’t get confused on seeing
the paper. The paper will look formidable at first glance, but don’t let that bother you. Spend a minute to see how the questions
and sections are arranged.
Always strategize the order in which you are attempting the sections. The classic order is first VA&RC followed by PS and then by
DI/DS. This is because VA is the easiest and fastest section and completing it first will give you confidence and momentum which
will carry you through the next 2 sections. You may follow ANY ORDER in attempting the sections. But the thumb rule is start and
end with the sections that you are good at and have the weakest section in the middle.
For more test taking strategies, click HERE.





Speed vs Accuracy | Top
A common question asked by students is, “how many questions should I attempt” ? This is a faulty question, because there is no
point attempting questions if one can’ t keep a measure of accuracy. Too many mistakes simply spoil you score. Each person will
have a different level of attempt.
Generally speaking, the number of mistakes should be kept at about 20 in a full 2-hour full length test. Remember, no one knows
for sure what is the scoring pattern for CAT. It is assumed that there is negative marking of minus one-fourth per question, but you
never know for sure. There could be progressive negative marking, which means that as the number of mistakes increase, the
deduction per question also increases.
I don’t really want to scare you, but the ideal number of attempts in a paper of 3 sections/ 150 questions (3/150) should be 90-100
attempts with around 20 mistakes. That’s what most toppers would be attempting. If you are near that range, you have a very
good chance of getting calls from B-L-A-C-K-I, that’s an acronym for all 6 IIMs (IIMB, IIML...etc)
At the same time, please don’t avoid or favor any section or type of question. This is because the CAT paper clearly mentions
YOU WILL HAVE TO DEMONSTRATE YOUR COMPETENCE IN ALL SECTIONS. So you may get 99.9+ percentile in your
favorite section, but you can be rest assured that if you have neglected any section, then you will be extremely lucky to receive
any IIM calls.





Smart vs Hard Work | Top
What aspirants of CAT need to do is work SMART rather than work hard. This means that the candidate should be able to spot
what is required rather than work it out by lengthy calculation, Whether it is PS, or verbal, many questions can be done simply by
looking at the questions. Same for DI and DS. The technique is called THINK WITHOUT INK. The trick is to try to spot the clue in
the question. For example, in a quadratic equation, it is always faster to obtain answer by substituting the options rather than
solving the equation.
Remember, CAT is not like your college paper, where you had to write lengthy answers ( especially those from Utkal University).
Here, you can score even when you don’t know the answer. YOU just have to find the 3 WRONG answers and your job is done !!
SO how does one get into the habit of working smart ? frankly, that is an attitude that one must acquire. It comes with the way you
approach life in general. It is not about solving questions only. If one is smart in other areas of life, cracking CAT would not be
difficult.
Ultimately, it maybe said that CAT is not difficult to crack. It can be done, simply because so many people have done it in the past.
Simply put in your best effort, solve each question on it’s merit and stay cool and composed for the entire 2 hours. That is the
formula for success.





The Check List | Top
• Do the basics first.
• Do a large number of section tests and identify strengths and weaknesses.
• Attempt all sections: don’t ignore any.
• Work out the best way to tackle problems and look for smart way of doing things.
• Work out your own success strategy by doing a large number of full length tests.
• Do the past 10 years CAT papers.
• Control the number of mistakes to about 20 : avoid wild blind guessing.
• Look at all sections before attempting.
• Don’t panic, keep your cool and follow your strategy.
• Avoid the hype of the exam; don’t compare with others but always compete.
• If you lose control, close your eyes and reboot..
• BELIEVE IN THE LORD. He never lets you down.


What is a Group Discussion ? | Top
A GD is a methodology used by an organization to gauge whether the candidate has certain personality traits and/or skills that
it desires in its members. In this methodology, the group
of candidates is given a topic or a situation, given a few minutes to think about the same,
and then asked to discuss the it among themselves for 15-20 minutes.

Some of the personality traits the GD is trying to gauge may include :-

Ability to work in a team

Communication skills, reasoning ability

Leadership skills

Initiative

Assertiveness

Flexibility

Creativity

Ability to think on ones feet



Why GDs ? | Top
The reason why institutes put you through a Group discussion and an interview, after testing your technical and conceptual
skills in an exam, is to get to know you as a person and gauge how well you will fit in their institute.
The Group discussion tests how you function as a part of a team. As a manager, you will always be working in teams, as a
member or as a leader. Therefore how you interact in a team becomes an important criterion for your selection. Managers
have to work in a team and get best results out of teamwork. That is the reason why management institutes include GD as a
component of the selection procedure.
The purpose of conducting a Group Discussion is to test the participant on areas like communication skills, team skills,
situation handling , listening skills so on and so forth. Fundamentally a GD is conducted to separate leaders from non leaders
from amongst the participants , an opinion which the panel consolidates through 15-20 mins of interview.
Who is a leader? In a group situation when formal leadership has not been defined, the person who is capable of generating a
following emerges as an informal leader. Generally a person who is respected, admired, liked and who can inspire confidence
among others in himself generates a following. Certain attributes that are common to all leaders are:

1) The display of proficiency in the particular area of competence required in the group situation. This inspires respect among
others.

2) The display of sensitivity to others. This generates a level of ease in interaction with others which is conducive to
comfortable group environment.

3) The display of ability to handle rough situations with a cool mind. This induces people to have confidence in you as a
person who will capable of handling stress and manage situations proactively.
This is true in any sphere of life and so also in a Group Discussion for MBA Entrance Examination.




GD Topics | Top
GDs can be topic-based or case-based.

Topic based GD

Topic based Gds can be classified into three types :-
• Factual topic
• Controversial topics
• Abstract topics

Factual Topics
Factual topics are about practical things, which an ordinary person is aware of in his day-to-day life. Typically these are about
socio-economic topics. These can be current, i.e. they may have been in the news lately, or could be unbound by time. A
factual topic for discussion gives a candidate a chance to prove that he is aware of and sensitive to his environment.

E.g. The education policy of India, Tourism in India, State of the aged in the nation.

Controversial Topics
Controversial topics are the ones that are argumentative in nature. They are meant to generate controversy. In GDs where
these topics are given for discussion, the noise level is usually high, there may be tempers flying. The idea behind giving a
topic like this is to see how much maturity the candidate is displaying by keeping his temper in check, by rationally and
logically arguing his point of view without getting personal and emotional.

E.g. Reservations should be removed, Women make better managers

Abstract Topics
Abstract topics are about intangible things. These topics are not given often for discussion, but their possibility cannot be ruled
out. These topics test your lateral thinking and creativity.

E.g. A is an alphabet, Twinkle twinkle little star, The number 10

Case-based GD

Another variation is the use of a case instead of a topic.
The case study tries to simulate a real-life situation. Information about the situation will be given to you and you would be
asked as a group to resolve the situation. In the case study there are no incorrect answers or perfect solutions. The objective
in the case study is to get you to think about the situation from various angles.
IIM A, IIM Indore and IIT SOM Mumbai have a case-based discussion rather than topic-based discussion in their selection
procedures.

For lots of GD topics and reading material visit
http:/www.imsindia.com/csb/gd_bank.htm


How To Prepare for GDs ? | Top
One can be successful at a GD with proper preparation and guidance.
Given below are 5 easy to follow tips which will help you in your GD preparation :-
Tip 1 #
Brushing up on your general awareness is a must. Being aware of current affairs and issues and happenings, which affect our
lives, however remotely, shows a well-rounded personality. Interest in one’s environment is an essential quality for a manager,
as only when he is well informed about all the facets is he able to take correct decisions. Make a habit of reading newspapers
like TOI and Economic Times and general interest and business magazines like Frontline, Outlook and Business India.

Tip 2 #
Being aware of current happenings is not enough. One must also form opinions on those happenings and issues that arise.
Think about what you feel about different issues, say, terrorism. Write down your thoughts. Ask yourself why you feel that
way, what are the premises underlying your thoughts and beliefs. Also question whether your point of view is based on facts,
or on opinions and hearsay.
Tip 3 #
The process of opinion formation is incomplete without getting inputs from others. Get into the habit of discussing issues with
your friends and family. Hear multiple points of view. Listen, question and argue. Express your opinion. If you are proven
wrong, accept it with good grace. Modify your opinions as you go along. This will help you clear your own thought process
plus it will get you into the habit of discussion.
Tip 4 #
While discussing, learn to check your temper. Maybe you’ll find others holding view which are abhorrent to you. But remember
that they have a right to their opinions. Everyone does. Learn to respect their points of views even if you don’t accept them. It
shows maturity on your part. This will be a good training for controlling your emotions, which is of utmost importance in a GD.
Tip 5 #
Practice: Try and mobilize other people who are interested in GDs and simulate GDs. Get someone who has been through
GDs before to observe it and give you feedback on your performance. It is better if the group consists of people who you don’t
know too well



Master Tips For GDs | Top
Certain Dos for a Group Discussion

- Make sure that all the points that you make are original and backed by substantial reasoning as to why you believe so.

- If somebody has already made the point you wanted to make, you can go ahead and either support or oppose the point
provided you can give substantial reasoning as to why you think so.

- Whatever you have to say has to be wrapped around with a logical flow. State your point, substantiate it with a reason and
validate it with an example wherever and whenever possible.

- Modulate the various aspects of your voice, viz. volume, pitch and tone so as to suite the nature of the point that you are
making. Make sure you don’t sound rude or arrogant.

- Your posture should be straight and upfront.

- Make use of hands and facial expressions to make your point more emphatic.

- Whatever position you occupy in the discussion make sure that while speaking you make eye contact with each and every
one in the group.

- When not speaking make sure that you are looking at the person who is speaking.

- Whether you agree with the person who is speaking or not, ensure that you give him credit for what he is speaking by use of
non - verbal like nodding your head, etc.

- If possible, make an attempt at opening the discussion. But if you venture ahead with it make sure that you make a good job
of it. The opening has to be a general introduction to the topic briefly laying the scope of the discussion.

- If the discussion is revolving around a certain point for too long give a new direction by introducing a new angle to it.

- Incase of fish markets first and foremost make sure that you don’t contribute to the mayhem. If the crowd is too unruly wait
for the right opportunity, make your point and get out of it.

- If the discussion is straying from it’s main idea, get it back on track by giving a new directional point.
Don’ts of a GD

- Do not get into arguments with people, remember you are there to make effective points, do not waste time on futile
arguments that do not contribute to the topic under discussion.

- Making yourself heard is important but do not try to hog the lime-light all the time, evaluate the worth of what you are saying,
or you may simply make points that are irrelevant or were better left unsaid.

- Do not act patronising with your fellow group members, it could backfire.

- Do not make use of gestures excessively as you may come across as aggressive, learn to toe the line between assertive
and aggressive.

- Do not slouch but seat yourself comfortably, awkward posture could indicate nervousness or discomfort with your position in
the group.

- Most of all remember belief in your own ability to remain poised in any situation will allow you to sail through.

- Do not fidget or act restless.

- Do not stare at the floor or out of the window, you may come across as uninterested or inattentive.
Knowledge is Supreme – Please read on all current topics – from any current affairs magazine like CSR, Services Chronicle
and don’t forget to include Competion Master. Just brush them up.
Keep your composure – Make salient points and be a good listener


Frequently Asked Questions | Top
What is the normal duration of a GD?
A GD is generally of 15-20 minutes duration.

How many panel members are there to evaluate?
There are usually 3-4 panel members to evaluate.
Is there time given for preparation after the topic is given and before starting the GD?
Usually some time (2-5 minutes) is given to collect one’s thoughts, but there could be instances when this does not
happen, so it is best not to bank on this.
Should I address the panel or the group members?
Don’t ever make the mistake of addressing the panel members. The GD is between you and the other members, not
the panel members. You must avoid even looking at the panel members while the GD is in progress. Just ignore their
existence.
What is the seating arrangement like?
It could be semi-circular, or circular, or seating along side a rectangular table, depending upon the venue. It is best
not to bother about trivial issues like this, which you have no control over.
How should I address the other group members?
If you are initiating the discussion, you could do so by collectively addressing the group as “Friends”. Subsequently,
you could use names (if the group has had a round of self-introduction prior to starting the discussion and you
remember the names) or simply use pronouns like “he” or “she”.
Suppose I have a lot to say on the topic, should I say all of it?
You would not be looked upon favourably if you kept speaking all the time and did not listen to anyone else.
Contrary to the misconception, the person who talks the most is not necessarily the one who is judged the best. The
quality and not the quantity of your contribution is the success factor.
Should I encourage others to speak up?
Do not directly put someone who is consistently silent on the spot by asking him/her to speak up. If someone has
been trying to speak and has a good point but is cut off constantly, you may encourage him/her to continue with her
point as you would like to hear her out.
Are the group members supposed to keep track of the time or will the panel keep track?
It would be good if you are conscious of the time, but not to the point of getting so distracted looking at your watch
that you do not contribute to the discussion.


What is a Personal Interview ? | Top
The end of the first part of the elimination process ,the written test, signals the start of the next and probably the
most important part of your selection process..... the Group discussions and the Personal interviews. A stage which
is not only important but also , to a large extent , psyching out of many of us. In this particular page we shall look at
some parameters on which you are judged through a Personal Interview and also all those things which go into the
making of a quintessentially good PI performance.
Please understand PI is the first time you come face to face with the people who are finally going to select you. How
you need to prepare, there would thousands of advice and methods to do well but the moment you enter the room
90% of all your learning goes into thin air. At the very moment you are what you are.


Types Of Question | Top
Lets understand how the questions are been asked to us and what is looked into all of them :
Part 1 – Personal Module
• Tell me something about your self, strength and weakness, hobbies and interests.
• Tell me something about your self – is just to break ice with the student and make him comfortable. Include your
last education, job if applicable, a brief about family, place you belong and what qualities you would like to
highlight like I am optimist and love interacting with others.
• Strength – to find out how many managerial qualities you possess. Please keep them quantifiable and you can
give example to substantiate.
• Weakness – what are you going to do about it? Your urge to improve your self
• Hobbies and Interest – It can be anything no problem, but always mention what you learned from it

Part 2 – Academic or Job knowledge
Prepare your final year paper, project or Hons Subject
If work exp be sure of your industry knowledge
This could be a difficult area to justify each and every question, but in case of any answer you are unable to make please
be honest and don’t make any bluff

Part 3 – Career Objective
What you want to achieve in life, your career goal in specific
How MBA is going to help in achieving it
A strong rationale why you want to do MBA
Please have a good knowledge about the institute, read their prospectus at least once

Part 4- Miscellaneous
What if you don’t get in to our college
Which other institute you have qualified for
What’s the meaning of your name
What you have learnt from your parent, friends, teachers


What is a Good Personal Interview ? | Top
It is really hard to say. If there is any part of the admission process, that is really beyond your control, it is the
Personal Interview. It really depends upon the whim of the panel that is in front of you on D-Day. You may feel that
you have done a really good job at the interview but you might end up getting chucked out. On the other hand,
sometimes you may feel that you have messed up the interview but you may get a final call.
Believe me, it really is that strange. BUT PLEASE DON’T UNDERMINE THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS PROCESS IN
YOUR ADMISSION PROCESS. In fact many believe that this is the round which determines whether you are in or out.
So if you want to do well in this round, read on...


How To do well in an Interview ? | Top
Okay, so if the Interview is so unpredictable, what can you do to ensure that your interview does not become a
nightmare ? Well here are a few tips which will serve you well on the D-Day.
Tip 1 #
Brushing up on your general awareness is a must. Being aware of current affairs and issues and happenings, which
affect our lives, however remotely, shows a well-rounded personality. Interest in one’s environment is an essential
quality for a manager, as only when he is well informed about all the facets is he able to take correct decisions. Make
a habit of reading newspapers like TOI and Economic Times and general interest and business magazines like
Frontline, Outlook and Business India.

Tip 2 #
Being aware of current happenings is not enough. One must also form opinions on those happenings and issues
that arise. Think about what you feel about different issues, say, terrorism. Write down your thoughts. Ask yourself
why you feel that way, what are the premises underlying your thoughts and beliefs. Also question whether your point
of view is based on facts, or on opinions and hearsay.
Tip 3 #
Always remember that the interview is NOT an elimination round. The written tests have taken care of that. If you
have made it this far, then you are one of the better students of the country. Maybe even among the top 1%. Let this
knowledge give you the confidence you need. Be confident. Remember, as you are looking for a good college, the
college is also looking for good students.
Tip 4 #
What ever you have written in the application form of the institute, please read it again and again. It is very possible
and probable that most of the questions will be based on the information given by you in this form. Try asking
yourself as many questions as possible. You are your best judge, no body know better than you as what are your
strength and weakness.

Tip 5 #
Never use jargon. Unless you are really thorough about everything related to that field. The Interview panelists are
usually the most experienced people around and they hate the kind of arrogance that the use of jargon suggests. So
it best to avoid jargons. Even if you do use them, please be sure that you are sure about what you are talking.

Tip 6 #
Never bluff. Okay, so you have found out that the panelists are all from humanities background and so you, being an
engineer, think that you can afford to bluff your way through the technical questions. Don’t even think about it.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Remember that the panelists, irrespective of their background always know
everything about everything. They are very experienced and can detect a bluff even by looking at you. So please
don’t LIE. If you don’t know the answer, please say so. An answer like “ I don’t know..” or “ I don’t recollect..” is
always more appreciated than a bluff. Even if you are guessing, start with something like “I’m not sure, but I guess....
“ You will get points for both honesty and clarity of expression.

Tip 7 #
Do your homework. The Interviews are almost always after the writtens are over, so the tension level is much less
and so students tend to lower their guard a bit. Don’t commit this folly, especially for those who have industry work
experience. Be sure to prepare your graduation subjects and expect a lot of questions on your work experience for
those who do have some of it. Be aware of the latest happenings in your field of study. Be prepared with some of the
frequently asked questions (you will find some of the most important ones in the next section).


Frequently Asked Questions | Top
I am including a few questions below which are asked to students from all backgrounds. I have also included list of
questions specific the students from Engineering, Science and Commerce streams. Also go through the GD/PI
Experiences available on the DOWNLOADS page.
Engineering | Science | Commerce
The following is a list of 50 frequently asked questions in the MBA qualifying interviews. The student is well advised
to prepare complete and convincing answers to these questions before proceeding to the interview.
1. What are your long-range and short-range goals and objectives, when and why did you establish these goals, and
how are you preparing yourself to achieve them?
2. What specific goals, other than those related to your occupation, have you established for yourself for the next 10
years?
3. What do you see yourself doing five years from now?
4. What do you really want to do in life?
5. What are your long-range career objectives?
6. How do you plan to achieve your career goals?
7. What are the most important rewards you expect in your career?
8. Which specialization would you like to take in MBA? Why?
9. Why did you choose the career for which you are preparing?
10. Which is more important to you, the money or the type of job?
11. What do you consider to be your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
12. How would you describe yourself?
13. How do you think a friend or a professor who knows you well would describe you?
14. What motivates you to put forth your greatest effort?
15. How has your education prepared you for a career?
16. What are your reading habits? Favorite book? Favorite author?
17. What qualifications do you have that make you think that you will be successful?
18. How do you determine or evaluate success?
19. What have you learned from your hobbies?
20. In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our institute?
21. What qualities should a successful manager possess?
22. Describe the relationship that should exist between a supervisor and subordinates.
23. What two or three accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction? Why?
24. Describe your most rewarding college experience?
25. If you were the interviewer, what qualities would you look for?
26. Why did you select your college or university?
27. What led you to choose your field of major study?
28. What academic subjects did you like best? Least?
29. Do you enjoy doing independent research?
30. If you could do so, would you plan your academic study differently?
31. What changes would you make in your college or university?
32. Do you think that your grades are a good indication of your academic achievement?
33. What have you learned from participation in extracurricular activities?
34. Do you have plans for continued study?
35. In what kind of an educational environment are you most comfortable?
36. How do you work under pressure?
37. In what part-time or summer jobs have you been most interested? Why?
38. How would you describe the ideal job for you following post-graduation?
39. What are the three major characteristics that you bring to the job market?
40. What do you know about our Institute?
41. What two or three things are most important to you in your job?
42. Are you seeking employment in a company of a certain size? Why?
43. What criteria are you using to evaluate the company for which you hope to work?
44. Why did you choose _____ Institute of Management to conduct your higher education?
45. What have you done in the past year to improve yourself?
46. Why should we take you rather than another candidate?
47. Give an example of something you have done in the past that demonstrates your initiative and willingness to
work?
48. Who are your role models? Why?
49. What major problem have you encountered and how did you deal with it?
50. What have you learned from your mistakes?



B-School Rankings
Okay, Let’s face it. You are probably skeptical of this page already. Here comes another ranking, I hear you think.
Relax I am not going to bother you with another ranking for the simple reason that there is already so many of them
around. So what I am going to do is to give you a compilation of all the rankings, by different agencies on a single
page. Be warned to take these and every other ranking with a pinch of salt.
Remember that life at a B-School and thus it’s final ranking is not something that can always be quantified in
tangible terms. Thus, that which can’t be quantified, can’t be compared. Comparing B-Schools, especially the best
ones, is like comparing apples and oranges. Each has it’s unique pros and cons.
Also, please don’t try to choose a B-School based on the rankings. These rankings are at best just an indication and
at worst, doctored. So don’t EVER try to make decisions based on rankings. There is much more to B-Schools than
the rankings show. But Still for your knowledge...
Here they come.
• Career Forum Rating
• Discipline-Wise Ranking
• Exam-Wise Rating
• Parameter-Wise Ranking
• Business World Ranking
• Business Today Ranking
• Outlook Ranking
• Business Standard Ranking


What Is Statement Of Purpose (SOP) ? | Top
The Statement of Purpose is the single most important part of your application that will tell the admissions
committee who you are, what has influenced your career path so far, your professional interests and where you plan
to go from here.

As the name signifies, the Statement of Purpose is your personal statement about who you are, what has influenced
your career path so far, your professional interests and where you plan to go from here. It need not be a bald
statement of facts; several successful SoPs address these questions through anecdotes, stories or by describing
their hero. But whether your SoP is subtle or to the point, it must be well written to be successful.
This is because the SoP is the only part of your application packet over which you have full control. Your academic
and extra-curricular records are in the past. Most people only take one or two shots at the CAT, XAT or GRE, and
these scores could be adversely affected by conditions on the test day. It is important to choose recommendation
letter writers carefully, but while you hope they give you the best possible recommendation, this is not within your
control.
The SoP is your chance to talk directly to the admissions committee. To make
yourself stand out from among a multitude of similarly qualified candidates. To
convince the committee that you have the spark, the thirst for knowledge that
could add value to your class.
Writing a reasonably good Statement of Purpose is not an impossible task. It
requires care, attention and patience. And enough time for you to be able to
write several drafts, show them to people and polish the essay till you get a
version you are happy with.
Done right, this will even turn out to be an enjoyable process. And you will be the richer for it. Read on.

WHY BOTHER?
"...the SoP is the only part of
your application packet over
which you have full control."




What Do Colleges Look For In SOPs ? | Top
The primary question admissions committee members ask themselves when they read a Statement of Purpose is:
What does this essay tell me about the person who wrote it?
Put yourself in an admission officer’s shoes. From among thousands of applications, you have to choose the
fraction of students that will comprise next year’s incoming class. A mix of interesting, confident and enthusiastic
people who will make the class a stimulating place. Academic achievements and good test scores are important. But
in an era where the majority of applicants have good academic records, it becomes increasingly difficult to
distinguish between individuals and decide who gets the offer of admission.
When you apply, each of the items in the application packet
-recommendations, extra-curricular achievements, work samples - adds an extra dimension to your personality. But
it is the SoP that brings you to life. Which is why each essay is read carefully by at least two and often four or five
people before a decision is taken on the application.
Does this mean that the SoP is the main deciding factor? No. Your academic record . grades and the courses you
took- are the first section admission committee members turn to. Standardized test scores are useful to know where
you stand in the applicant pool. For graduate schools, relevant work or academic experience is important. Being
from a reputed school or college confers a distinct advantage. What your teachers or boss think of you goes a long
way towards the school’s opinion. A good work sample can show your creativity, skill and professionalism.
However, only the SoP or application essays can bring out your uniqueness. And therefore make or break your
application. An applicant who does not take the essay seriously is throwing away the best opportunity available.
So are the admission officers looking for specific personality sorts? Well, yes and no. Creativity, curiosity, pride in
your work, an enthusiasm for learning, a capacity for teamwork, the ability to think independently and so on are all
good attributes, and most of us share these in varying proportions. But what schools look for is a mix of individuals
that together, form a well-balanced class. This would include several personality types.
It is good to go through the school’s brochure or web site, speak to people about it, visit if that is possible; get a feel
of the student mix that they look for and decide if this is the school for you. However, trying to tailor your SoP to
reflect what you think the school is looking for is dangerous business. The people who read your application have
been doing so for years and are skilled at spotting fakes. They are likely to know soon if a particular author is saying
something for effect or if an essay does not ring true. And that means almost certain rejection.
What is this, you might ask. Of course we want to have an effect on the admissions officers. The important thing is to
do so without appearing dishonest. If, for instance, you talk about your deep desire to make society a better place,
your application should reflect it. Have you done anything about this desire? Can you talk about your actions and
experiences? A small example of something you did, not necessarily spectacular, can do more towards boosting
your chances than the noblest platitude can.
Don. t try to be something you are not. Don. t try to tell the admissions committee what you think they want to hear.
Be honest, look inside yourself and do your best.
Which brings us to the next point - self-knowledge. The people who read your essay want to be convinced that you
have thought long and hard about who you are, what are the things you appreciate, what inspires you. What you
want out of life, and where you are going from here. It is not necessary to have all the answers . after all, several
admirable people have no idea where they are going even at age 40 or 50. It is necessary to show that you have
thought about this. And that these life experiences have taught you something.
Finally, you have to show a desire to learn. From your books and teachers, from your classmates, from music or art,
from life itself.


Starting The Essay | Top
Writing your admissions essays or Statement of Purpose (SoP) is a long and intensive process - ten to twelve drafts
over a two-month period are fairly common. It is necessary to put in this hard work to come up with an essay that is
uniquely yourself, and a compelling read which convinces the admissions committee that you are right for their
school. This is a great opportunity to look inside yourself and be rewarded by a better understanding of who you are
and what you want.

Preliminary Research
Write out your resume. It is best to get this out of the way so that your SoP is not a repetition of the information in
the resume. It should instead, use the resume as a reference and highlight the learnings you have received during
some key points in your career. There are a number of sites that help you to write a suitable resume for your college
applications. You could also browse your local bookstore for resume-writing aids.
Research the institutes you are considering applying to. Find out the strengths and weaknesses of each. Good
sources for this exercise are - university and department web sites and brochures, home pages of students, your
seniors or friends who are studying at that university or in the same field elsewhere, your college professors, friends
in the same field. If it is possible for you to access the university’s web site, find out which professors work in areas
that interest you and write to them about your plans. Some professors respond, some don’t - but you have nothing to
lose at this stage. In fact, you could gain a better idea about the areas of research emphasized upon by that
particular department. After finding out some details about your potential universities, decide whether you still wish
to apply there. While you should start work on this as early as possible, recognize that it is a long process and will
continue through the various stages of writing your SoP. At the same time, you will have to draw the line at
background research sometime as you are working on a timetable.
Visit some web sites that talk about how to write your essay. A search for ‘college admission essays’ on Yahoo will
yield some sites. Check out the sample essays. If you do not have easy access to the Internet, go to your local
bookstore and browse through a few books. In India, ‘The Princeton Review: The Student Access Guide to College
Admissions’ is good and easily available. Read their section on application essays. Remember that the essays you
read are usually the best the authors could find. You are not expected to write as well; most people who get
admission to top schools do not
Background Issues
Ask yourself why you want to study further. Take a piece of paper and start writing down all the reasons. Spend
about half an hour on this, so that you can go beyond clichéd ideas like wanting to improve your prospects or
contribute to society. Write a few sentences on any reason that particularly strikes a chord with you.
Make lists of instances you can use in your SoP. For example, if you’ve been asked to talk about an important event
in your life, list down events that have made a significant impression on you. Don’t worry if these are events that are
not ‘conventionally’ important or seem insignificant; what matters is that they have had some influence over you.
Similarly, make a list of people you admire or who have influenced you - this could be a friend, a family member, a
teacher, etc. and need not necessarily be a famous person.
Go through your resume and reflect on what you have learned from your various experiences. How have they
molded your interests and led you to this point? Pick one or two cases that you can talk about in-depth. For graduate
school, it is best to take at least one professional situation and show what you did and learned.
Make a list of schools you plan to apply to. As you continue through the background check, you will add a few
universities and delete several. A final shortlist of ten to fifteen schools is common. Ask yourself why you wish to
study at each of the schools you have listed. For graduate study, it is important to ensure that your interests are
compatible with the research interests of the department you are applying to. As you progress through the
background check and understand more about your interests through subsequent revisions of the SoP, add to and
improve the list.


Writing The Essay | Top
Read the essay question carefully to find out what the university expects you to write about. While you don’t have to
stick to the questions asked, you must be sure to answer them all in your SoP. Refer to your lists of background
research and write about two handwritten pages in response to the essay question. Go through them the next day.
Remember that your essay has the following objectives:
Show your interest in the subject. Rather than saying that you find electronics interesting, it is more convincing to
demonstrate your interest by talking about any projects you may have done and what you learnt from them. If you
have taken the initiative to do things on your own, now is the time to talk about them
Show that you have thought carefully about further studies, know what you are getting into, and have the confidence
to go through with it. Have the admissions committee like you! Avoid sounding opinionated, conceited, pedantic or
patronizing. Read your essay carefully, and have others read it to find and correct this.
Demonstrate a rounded personality. Include a short paragraph near the end on what you like to do outside of your
professional life. Keep the essay focused. Each sentence you use should strengthen the admissions committee’s
resolve to admit you. So while you may have done several interesting things in life, avoid falling into the trap of
mentioning each of them. Your essay should have depth, not breadth. The resume is where you should list
achievements. Remember that you have very little space to convey who you are, so make every sentence count.
Pitfalls your essay must avoid : It is a repetition of the resume or other information available from the application
form, It could have been written by just about anybody; your individuality does not come through, It is not a honest
account in response to the essay question (why you want to study what you do, what you have learned from an
event/person in your life and so on) It has embarrassing, highly personal and emotional content that should be
avoided unless it makes a unique, creative point. The admissions committee would not appreciate reading about the
pain you went through after breaking up with your boyfriend. An account of how you overcame difficult family
circumstances, illness, or a handicap, would be a valid point to include in your essay. However, avoid emotional
language.


Language Issues | Top
Take another 7-8 days to write 3-4 more drafts. Go through the objectives and pitfalls often. Refer to, and edit your
lists as you go along.
Flow
While each paragraph should make a complete statement on its own, the essay should logically progress from
paragraph to paragraph. Read your essay for flow, or have someone else read it, and ask yourself if there seems to
be an abrupt shift between ideas in two consecutive paragraphs.
Structure
This follows naturally from flow. Do all the paragraphs mesh together to form a cogent whole? Does the essay,
through a logical progression of ideas, demonstrate your interest, enthusiasm, and fit in the department you have
applied to?
Language
Avoid slang and abbreviations. For acronyms, use the full form the first time and show the acronym in parentheses.
Use grammatically correct English and ALWAYS read your essay carefully for spelling mistakes before you send it
off - your computer’s spell-check may not flush out all the errors. Try to make your essay crisp, cutting out
unnecessary adverbs, articles and pronouns (for instance, a careful reading may yield several “the’s” that are
superfluous).
Tone
Use a consistent tone throughout the essay - it will only confuse the admissions officers if you alternately sound like
Ernest Hemingway and Shakespeare, and is hardly likely to endear you to them! While you should avoid flowery
language and clichés, there is no harm in looking for the most apt phrase or sentence. Be careful while using humor
- it can misfire and harm your chances.


The ‘In their shoes’ check | Top
Put your essay away for a day or two. When you take it out, lay it face down for two minutes while you put yourself in
the admissions committee’s place. Imagine yourself to be a professor or graduate student who is going through a
few hundred applications and classifying them into ‘yes’, ‘maybe’ and ‘no’ piles. Think of how you would look at
SoPs and try to read yours through a stranger’s eyes. What do you see?
• Remember that for graduate school, your essay need not be great writing. What the school is looking for is a
competently written statement of goals and interests that demonstrates how you think, whether you have
thought through this decision to apply, and whether your interests and strengths fit in with the program you are
applying to. To this end, they expect to see the following in an essay –
What areas are you interested in and why,
How well defined your interests are,
Are these interests based on experience (academic or on the job) that the school may find useful,
Where do you see these interests taking you,
How do you think graduate school will help you,
What experience have you had that will help.
Does your essay cover these points? Does it do so in an honest and interesting manner? Many of the students
applying will have backgrounds similar to yours, so avoid cliched ideas.
• Are you repeating information that is available from the resume? Do so very sparingly, and only if you are
making a point about your learnings or achievements during that experience. Weed out all other information that
sounds like repetition (it will only irritate the reader), or can be included in your resume, or does not actively
contribute towards making a point in your essay.
• Does your essay have an interesting beginning? This need not be witty, but should persuade the reader to stay
with you.
• Have you talked about specific incidents that illustrate your interest or familiarity with the subject, or show
something about you? These incidents might include, for example:
• A college or work project that was instrumental in confirming your interest in the field (be sure to include a
recommendation from your guide!),
• Extra-curricular activities that brought out useful aspects in you (leadership skills or team activities are
particularly helpful for business school applications!),
• A book or person who had a strong influence on you.
• Does the essay bring out your personality? Or could it have been written by just about anybody?
• Have you mentioned why you are applying to that particular school? Does this section of the essay demonstrate
that you have researched the school and the program? DON’T stop at the standard formula phrase, ‘I am
applying to XYZ because of it’s great reputation in _______.’
• Does your essay flow smoothly? If it is choppy and abruptly jumps from paragraph to paragraph, your readers
will have a tough time keeping up. Make it easy on them – smoothen the transition between paragraphs.
• Is the tone too formal or not formal enough? Be professional yet informal – the tone you would take with your
Principal or Head of Department, for instance.
• Does the essay end well? Does it leave the reader with a sense of completion? Avoid usage of cliches like, ‘ I
hope the admissions committee finds my application up to their expectations’.
This self-check will yield a few ideas for improvement. Use it at least 3-4 times during this last stage of polishing up
your SoP.


Polishing The Essay | Top
Showing your stuff around
It is essential to show your SoP to a few people whose opinion you respect – an English teacher from school, a
professor, an older friend, a parent or a relative. Include among these, 2-3 people who know you well. Ask your
readers to pay particular attention to the following points:
The beginning and the end – do they hold interest?
The logical and smooth flow of ideas – does each paragraph smoothly give way to the next?
The structure – does each paragraph bring home a central idea and contribute to the overall ‘feel’ of the essay?
Are the paragraphs in proper positions?
The style and language – are they appropriate and consistent? Does the essay have too many cliches? Does it
repeat particular words or phrases too often? Does it have too many superlatives?
The tone – is it unnecessarily boastful or overly modest?
The quality of the essay – is it boring? Does it bring out the writer’s personality? Does it include superfluous
information? Or conversely, are there incidents or aspects the essay should mention?
Ask your readers to write their comments on the essay. Also, spend some time discussing it with them. Listen to
their suggestions carefully but remember that this is your essay. You don’t have to implement every suggestion,
only those that make sense to you


The Final Printout | Top
Once you have the final draft ready (you have to stop sometime!), do the following before you take a final printout:
• Run a spelling and grammar check.
• Read the essay carefully two-three times for spelling or grammar errors the program did not detect.
• Look for and correct any anomalies in spacing, font and margins.
• Choose a readable font and size, nothing fancy. Avoid special effects like underlining, boldface and italics
(except in the title, if you have one). Don’t use colors. Don’t use special stationery or your letterhead.
• Make sure that the school and program mentioned in the essay are correct. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT.
• Include a header in the top right-hand corner with your name and the name of the program you are applying to.
Use a smaller font size for this.
• Take a rough print and show it to someone else who can read it over carefully for errors and anomalies.
• As far as possible, print out your SoP on a separate sheet of paper. Make sure that the printer cartridge is good
enough to print clear, crisp copies. Put in a good-quality sheet of white paper. Keep the printed copy carefully in
a folder till you are ready to transfer it to the application envelope.
If you must print or write your essay on the application form itself, take a photocopy of the form. Print or write the
essay on the copy first, to ensure that it fits easily in the space provided. If it doesn’t, and you don’t have the option
of attaching more pages, cut portions of the essay to reduce its length. This is painful, but a much better idea than
reducing font size to unreadable levels or using tiny, cramped handwriting – the essay should never cause strain
while reading. While writing by hand, use a good pen, write slowly and carefully and if necessary, draw light pencil
lines on the form to ensure that your letters are uniform and in a straight line.


Making it to the MBA : The Nitty Gritty
This article is basically a bird’s eye-view and a synopsis of the skills required to clear the rigorous entrance tests for
the Indian business schools. We hope that this effort will help the students hone their preparations for the final kill.
In this article, we’ll discuss certain basic issues about the selection procedure for MBA.
Fact No. 1
Any business school in India (or abroad), while selecting students, tries to take those who are suited to its
environment and are competent enough to take the rigours of the course. Thus, the entire selection process
comprising the written test, the group discussion (GD) and the personal interview is designed to check three basic
skills : A. academic oriented knowledge, B. capacity to take stress and yet produce results and C. communicate
intelligently and effectively with other humans. Any MBA aspirant must keep all these in mind while preparing for the
tests. Any other approach shall be myopic at best, disastrous at worst.
Fact No. 2
Be ready for the worst, the most unexpected and the least desired! This is a fact that astonishes most of the students
so accustomed to standardized test patterns and the ubiquitous “I-M-P s”. In fact, the moment you decide to enter
the field of high-flying management, you ought to prepare yourself for the rigours of the modern managers’
workplace. The truth is : life is unpredictable and the managers’ lives all the more so. These MBA Entrance tests
basically test your innate capacity to react to new situations. So please put away all your school and college time
conceptions and have the “Managerial Mindset,” as we call it. The simple advice is : Prepare your syllabus
thoroughly and be ready for any test pattern whatsoever. If your fundamentals are in place, rest assured!!

Fact No. 3
Knowledge is the most important aspect but it is not everything. Knowledge of academics helps in the written test,
knowledge of current affairs helps in the GDs and knowledge of your “Self” helps in the personal interviews. But
more important than possessing mere knowledge is the art of presenting it. In the written test, you have to be super
quick; in the GD, extremely suave and cutting-edge; and in the interview extremely cogent. A bland approach to
knowledge gathering can be self-defeating. Ask yourself the simple question : Can I analyse situations ? Can I think
beyond the obvious ? Am I a mere database or a thinking human being ?
Fact No. 4
No matter what happens, concentrate as much as you can on the written test. The reason is pretty simple : if you
crack the written test, you’re miles ahead of the competition. Literally. Hence the cost-benefit analysis proves it
beyond doubt that score maximisation in the written test should be the first priority. This means that : A. You must
have a specific time table for your preparations and B. You must work in every crucial test area (i.e. Reading
Comprehension, English Usage, Mathematical Aptitude, and Data Interpretation). From the next article onwards, we’ll
give a thorough analysis of each test area and its peculiarities.

Fact No. 5
Be aware of the extent and magnitude of the competition. Your competition is not only your local area ! It is Delhi,
Hyderabad, Pune, Coimbatore, Vijaywada, Bangalore, Mumbai, Baroda, etc. There are students all over the nation
fighting for the same few seats in top notch B-schools and you’ll be benchmarked against them. So realize the fact
that unless you are ready to give your 100% to the preparations to these tests nothing may come out of it. This is not
to scare you but to present the factual picture.

Fact No. 6
Be Focussed. Except for geniuses, nobody ever made it to the best b-schools in India without a consistent, smart
and dedicated study schedule. As you prepare for the test, again and again mull over the basic tricks of shortcuts,
try working backwards from the options wherever possible and devise your own strategies to crack new types of
problems. This needs time. And you should be ready to put it in. When you are 4 or 5 weeks into your preparations,
you should be able to identify your core strengths and weaknesses. Build upon your strengths and ensure that the
weaknesses are not too damaging. Thus, for ex. if you’re basically good at English, you must crack the RC and EU
sections in MBA tests at the same time ensuring that your quantitative portions are not left out. (Remember : in most
exams every section carries a cutoff limit).

Fact No. 7
Be sensible and prepare for the GD and Interview stage right from now. In fact, reasonably sensible students need
not be told that when they are preparing for the RC section in CAT, they’re automatically getting prepared for the GD
part of it. Make your informal groups and at least for 30 min per day, discuss current issues and general topics. Don’t
get bogged down by GDs. It should be a simple and pleasant exercise for you before the written test. Be careful :
your prime focus now is cracking as many Written Tests as possible. As far as the PIs are concerned, remember that
academics and personal background may play the most crucial part in it.

Fact No. 8
Visit libraries. Read diverse stuff. With every new type of book you read, your horizons get even broader. This is a
crucial difference between successful students and unsuccessful ones. An average metro student would have been
exposed, by virtue of an active environment, to English books and newspapers all through his life. This develops the
positive mindset towards the language which in turn may help tremendously in the language sections in the written
test and later on at the GD stage. You must try to develop this mindset for yourself. Always have a good friend circle
and discuss things with them. Break the mental barriers. It helps.

Fact No. 9
No teacher in the world can make a champion out of you in a few months. If you have never participated in any extra-
curricular activity, if you’ve never read anything apart from the textbooks, if you don’t have any hobby at all, if you
read English newspapers because your teacher asks you to do so, then it’s not adding up. You must have a good
profile : What’s your niche after all ? Think about it. You ought to have a USP (Unique Selling Proposition). Try to
visualise it from the examiner’s point of view. Out of a mass of thousands of aspirants, why should he choose you
after all. This is the crux of the matter.

Fact No. 10
YOU CAN DO IT. Clearing the MBA tests is a matter of consistent drive, determination and dedication. As
encapsulated in our catchphrase “Vision, Power, Drive”, we urge you to get started now!!
YOU CAN DO IT. Clearing the MBA tests is a matter of consistent drive, determination and dedication. As
encapsulated in our catchphrase “Vision, Power, Drive”, we urge you to get started now!!


The A to Z of MBA Preparation
MBA entrance today is one of the most coveted career pathway as seen by the young graduates and college going
students. Needless to emphasize, that MBA offers every aspirant a challenge to make it to a Top B-school,
Perseverance to survive the grind at the B-School , consequently followed by a very bright and lucrative career.
However clearing the MBA entrance requires specific traits and preparation. These traits are an integral part of a
personality of a student and have to be inculcated as strong values to be made a part of their own system of
learning.
The A to Z of these values can be listed as follows:
Attitude - MBA entrance is all about a perfect mix of attitude and aptitude. These primarily include Speed & Accuracy,
Language Skills, Quantitative skills, Personality, Communication skills & Sincerity. Only a perfect Fit of all these
qualities will make it through.
Balance - In your approach to preparation a balance is a must. Focus on all the test area specifically and not over do
or under do a test area. Usually a student fails to perform only on account of a test area he has been strong in and
therefore had been neglecting it during preparatory stage.
Conviction - MBA entrance is all about a perfect mix of attitude and aptitude. These primarily include Speed &
Accuracy, Language Skills, Quantitative skills, Personality, Communication skills & Sincerity. Only a perfect Fit of all
these qualities will make it through.
Direction – It is imperative to give yourself a proper direction for career pathway i.e. if you are appearing for MBA
entrance, focus on it as a Career Alternative and just an entrance exam, Management has to be taken up as a
profession and not a mere source of Income.
Efficacy - Doing right things is also equally important to efficiency (doing things right). It is possible that you may be
solving the mock entrance papers with correct techniques, but are focusing on the areas that need to be developed
at the same time, analysing your approach for a better score in the test paper?
Face it - Take the MBA entrance preparations head on. It is possible that initially you may feel let down looking at
your performance in the mock papers but every thing takes time, and you have to face it “Rome was not built in a
day”
Gear up - For the challenge ahead. Just when you think you have got the grip on vocabulary for example , you might
simply lose points on account of the same. This happens, you must gear up for the element of surprise in the MBE
entrance test paper.
Home work - Do your homework before you attempt any national level MBA entrance test. Know the patterns of the
question papers in the past, analyse and formulate a strategy to attempt it, manage you time effectively. Bottom line,
go prepared.
Introspection – Do your SWOT analysis, find out the areas you are weak in. If you are unable to improve your scores
in RC (Reading Comprehension), chances are that your reading habits have not been strong or focused on reading a
variety of topics. Work on it, start reading today, it is never to late.
Judge your improvement - During your preparation focus on improvements and not just high scores have you
improved on the test taking techniques ? , have you been able to manage your time well in the test ? evaluate your
performance and be discreet in your judgment.
Killer Instinct - Approach the preparations with a Do or Die attitude, tell yourself “ I am going to make it even if it
takes working long hours and late nights for the preparation“
Like what you do - Many students indicate “I hate reading philosophy !!” well how do you plan to face a
philosophical passage in the RC section in an exam for all you know it might have 12 questions attached to it. You
cannot afford to ignore it honestly you do not have much of a choice but to fall in love with reading, preparing on the
topics you hate or don’t know.
Maturity - Approach your preparations with maturity. Accept first that you need to learn and that there is much more
to learn than what you know. This is the first step for preparation.
Nitty Gritty - Work on the detailing. Check out whether or not you have been able to rectify the errors you made plus
also work on the time factor i.e. could you have solved the same question which you got right in lesser time?
Optimistic attitude - Attitude makes a difference in the kind of scores you can expect. Focus on it for making things
happen for yourself and refrain from thinking parameters like “this is too tough, not meant for me” or “This is so
lengthy, how can a person ever attempt the whole section?”
Perseverance - Keep working no matter what it takes. You cannot afford to take anything for granted or leave it to
chance; your career is on the line. Perseverance is the golden key, things might just happen to be in your favour at
the last minute and you would realise “Thank goodness I worked on it. I can handle it now”
Quality + Quantity - Blindly solving examples 50 questions a day or 100 questions a day or 2 papers a day etc. does
not help go in for the right kind of quantity, get your technique right by using qualitative preparatory material.
Reading - Bead, read and yet more read. Read magazines, Newspapers, Reference books, Management books, etc.
enough is never enough, you will realise when it all adds up in the end.
Sincerity - To self and cause is a pre requisite for MBA entrance preparation. Students tend to lose focus after a
while and try to find out short cuts to learning, cramming, not solving enough examples or even not even revising
regularly remember you need to be sincere to yourself, you are doping for yourself and your career.
Tolerance - To handle frustration and failures. Start with acceptance that “Yes I failed” or “I did not get good enough
marks because I messed up” the fact that you have scored less only indicates that you still have a scope to improve
drastically. Use you performance benchmarks to motivate yourself and a tool for improvement. For this you need to
develop Tolerance.
Ultimatum - Give yourself an ultimatum. “its now or never. I have to make it happen” This will help you to boost your
morale and make you work still more and especially when you need it the most.
Vision and Values - A vision for self is a must. Look at your self 25 years from now. How do you want to see yourself
down the career pathway? Self employed as a consultant or a manufacturer or an exporter; or in the corporate sector
as a CEO. Think about it. 100 years from now when none of us reading this article would be alive, how would you like
yourself to be remembered as…? Give yourself a vision combine it with values and look at MBA as a mere stepping
stone to achieving it.
Wisdom - To work and plan out well in advance. Do not leave anything for the last minute. It is advisable to start at
least 12 to 18 months in advance to give yourself a cutting edge.
Yen - For success (a strong urge/desire – fire in the belly as we say)
Zeal - To reach the Pinnacle of a Successful Career Pathway


Our Future - Give it a thought Now !
Swami Vivekanand has so pithily put it : “All of us wish to be kings but few realize that the crown will come to us on
its own the day we are ready for it.”
Outdated though we may think our own thinkers are, but the above statement by Swami has never been more
relevant! Today when we see huge masses of our youth desperately struggling to gain a foothold in the intensely
competitive marketplace and to carve a niche for themselves, we do get a feel that something somewhere is amiss.
An analysis of the successful clearly tells that there is much more than conventional education that has gone into
their making...in fact, the contribution of regular university education can be dramatically low in many cases.
So, if a young man decides today to make his own mark, what should be an ideal game plan ? Let us try and list
down certain rules-of-thumb. These can serve as a good indicator and a general road-map.
First of all, one must start early. It gives one the terrific advantage of planning at a leisurely pace and then
implementing the plan systematically. This also gives you an ample leeway to effect changes to the plan depending
on expert advice from time to time. To develop such a plan, you must consult as many experts (or so-called experts!)
as possible. It helps...in any case several brains are better than one.
Secondly, you must work on multiple plans at the same time. What this means is that tying your horses to just one
post may be a fatal strategy. So in case a particular game-plan does not work out, you must have an alternative back-
up present. Having a knee-jerk reaction to situations may not be the best thing to do.
Thirdly, diversify your skill-set. This, you will realize in due course of time, is possibly the best preparation you can
do for the future. Thus, not only should you be good at your core competence i.e. your chosen field of academics,
you should also be good at supportive skills like working knowledge of computers, latest trends in information
technology, at least 2 major languages including English, at least one well-known game or sport, extensive reading
skills, interpersonal human skills, and at least one strong hobby. This combination will prepare you adequately for
the future work-place where getting ahead is more a function of personality skills and presentation capabilities than
mere bookish knowledge. Worst of all, these can not be done at all after you finish your schooling...these things
need time, a lot of time and must start during the school days.
One caveat though : Diversification of skill set should not at all mean that one should be scared of specialising in a
skill. It simply means keeping your wild-cards open till the last moment.
Fourthly, be cosmopolitan. Develop a liberal mind-set. Be open to radical ideas and different thoughts, while
maintaining your own identity. The rate at which all the economies are opening up and disparate cultures are coming
together is a clear pointer to the fact that narrow-minded, parochial and provincial mindsets will not be able to
integrate themselves wholly with the mainstream in the coming millennium. Suffocating boundaries of gender, caste,
creed, religion, language and region will be as anachronous in the working place of the next millennium as a steam
engine is today! Your success will be largely determined by your capacity to integrate yourself in a largely
cosmopolitan workplace.
Finally, understand clearly that experience of the past is possibly the worst indicator of what lies ahead ! In fact, the
converse may be true !! Thus, the only thing that we might learn from our past experience is that the entire world is
changing at a breakneck speed and in order to stay where you are you need to run pretty fast. Constant up gradation
of skills, regular learning process and a creative bent of mind is the basis of future progress.
As a young man keen on breaking new grounds, you must learn to manage your time well, remain self-disciplined
and be as open to criticism as possible. Nothing is sacrosanct....business policies that worked in the past are
anachronistic today. Thinking about your future must involve discounting newer technological developments as fast
as possible. The employer of the future will be keener to recruit a holistic individual rather than a mere specialist who
is found wanting in personality areas. Do not harbour the typically public-sector-like romantic notion that your
employer is responsible for ensuring your life-long job....it could well be exactly the opposite. In this age of
retrenchment of the inefficient and survival of the fittest (no social Darwinism intended!), there is little that anyone
can do for an inefficient, outdated and outclassed individual. (Pity that the Indian PSUs still need to understand this!)
Rise, Awaken, Shine....
...and Define your own destiny !!


Culture and Education
Systematic education is the cumulative effort on part of the human society, and especially the established interests,
to perpetuate in the coming generations the knowledge, the skills and the traditions that have been accumulated
over the years through collective human effort.
This is possibly a very cosmopolitan definition of education and it is unlikely that any education system in the world
would be actually ensuring the most democratic distribution of knowledge. What happens practically is that
education gets segmented and parochial. It starts catering to local interests and provincialism rather than focusing
on developing a broad minded individual capable of seeing through things and taking his own decisions.
Talking of culture, what comes to mind (at least my mind) is possibly a very rigid definition of human mores and
customs and the way we are supposed to behave in a society. Culture again is a diffused concept taking into
account several aspects of human existence and it is almost impossible to define it in a compartmentalized manner
or a rigid manner taking into account all its aspects.
Over the past 100 years or so, human society in general and western society in particular has witnessed a dramatic
change in value systems and traditional approaches. Rigid mindsets and Victorian values have given way to open
minded liberalism, provincial lifestyles have been replaced by a cosmopolitan outlook and the overall growth, spread
and development of globalization and liberalization has ensured a “global culture.”
Given these realities, the issue of “culture and education” or “culture v/s education” becomes extremely crucial and
deserves the most open minded appreciation. What we find is that every society has started feeling a need for its
own definition of what constitutes the “right” thing for them—this may not be what is right for the others... Also we
find a hankering for the past values, despite apparent victory and success of the present ones. This brings to mind
the open contradiction in the process of growth of a young human individual.
What I feel is necessary is :
--- an open debate as to what liberalism actually means and to what extent can individual human independence be
guaranteed without affecting societal good
--- who gets the right to define what culture is and more important what “cultural imperialism” is ?
--- should our young people not be left free to decide for themselves, given the right kind of education, what is right
and what is wrong for them ?
--- should educational institutes become a status quo perpetrating mechanism or should they actually encourage
students and young people to break free of shackles and stereotyped moulds?
I believe that the answer to the question lies in the above. For each one of us, it might be different but then, that is
what makes us human! Isn’t it ? Let us take a broad-minded view of life as it shall be in the net millennium. It might
be important lest we should be left irrelevant in the global scheme of things. At the same time, let us not underrate
the collective intelligence gathered by man over millennia.
Ultimately it is going to be a delicate balancing act.


How to Shortlist a Business School
There are over 900 B-schools in India - and about half a dozen rankings. All schools look good on paper, but the
rankings vary widely... so how do you weed out the wannabees? Here is a frame work yu can use to shortlist a
school.
ALUMNI STRENGTH : If a school’s alumni occupy senior positions in major corporates, you can bet the school has a
strong standing - or goodwill - in the corporate world. This goodwill directly translates into better placements.
Naturally, an older school will have a larger alumni network. You can get an idea of the alumni network from the
school brochure, and the current students.
BOARDING PROGRAMME VERSUS DAY SCHOOL : In a typical B-School, classes are held for just four hours per
day, but a student ends up working for more than 10 hours. Thus, a lot of learning happens outside the classroom
through group tasks like case study analysis, projects, presentations, research etc. Besides assessing personality
development, these group tasks also help the student learn from the knowledge and experience of his peers. A
boarding programme offers much more opportunity for this kind of learning. Therefore, B-Schools with a compulsory
boarding programme are rated higher than those with a day programme. Another benefit of the boarding programme
is the increased usage of facilities such as the library and the computer center.
DIRECTOR AND THE ACADEMIC TEAM : The director plays a very important role in building a B-Schools reputation.
For example, MDI shot into the limelight once Pritam Singh became it’s Director. Now that Singh has moved to IIM-L,
a lot is expected from that school. If nothing else, a visionary director ensures that the quality of teaching is above
average.
AFFILIATIONS AND PARTNERSHIPS : Many MBA courses are launched in collaboration with a reputed foreign
business school. For instance, IIM-A started off in active collaboration with the Harvard Business School. These
days schools also have partners for student and faculty exchange. The reputation of partner schools and their
international rankings can tell you a lot about the B-School.
AUTONOMOUS VERSUS UNIVERSITY AFFILIATED PROGRAMMES : Contrary to the common perception, an
autonomous school is rated higher than a school with a university affiliations. Affiliated programmes are usually
burdened with excessive bureaucracy, which can come in the way of fine tuning the course in line with industry
standards. SP Jain was initially affiliated to the Mumbai University but soon opted for autonomy - since by then it
had carved an enviable position for itself.
RESERVATIONS : Reservations of any kind can lead to a mediocre student body. All B-Schools that are part of the
Maharashtra CET, suffer from this drawback: the number of seats for students from outside is less than 10%.The
batch composition is skewed in favour of a certain region and this can create an unfavourable impression on
recruiters.
LOCATION OF THE INSTITUTE : If the school is new, it’s location does affect placements. An HR manager would
think twice before devoting 2 days time to go to a remote area. On the other hand, new B-Schools situated in the
metros or highly industrialized locations might find it easier to attract companies. Of course, location is not much of
a problem once the school has been able to build a reputation in the market.
PLACEMENTS : Placement is a crucial factor most students look for. As we all see it, all the above parameters have
an impact on the placements. Companies will do their own assessment of a school based on the above parameters.
You should not go by the last years placement figures alone. Placements in a particular year may have been an
aberration or simply the results of a great economic boom ( or bust). So look for the placements for at least three
years - an average will give a much better picture.


Preparation Schedule | Top
How you prepare is more important than how much you are preparing. The success at CAT every year is a function
of both level of preparedness and method adopted for it. The idea behind giving this write-up is to help students plan
their step wise preparation in the best possible manner to get maximum benefit out of IMS training program.

The three stage of MBA preparation:
- Basic Concept Build-Up
- Test Taking skill and practice
- and GD/PI & GK Preparation

Basic Concept Build-Up
This is the basic foundation of your preparation. All coaching Institutes provides you Basic Reference Materials( with
different names); its purpose is to introduce various concepts and problems on all the topics across all the sections
of CAT. A thorough reading of it should suffice for students from Maths or Engineering background. However for
students from non-maths background additional reference is suggested. Quicker Maths – M.Tyra, Mathematics for
MBA – R.S Agarwal. The objective is to get thorough with basic concepts and get introduced to different type of
problems.
Short Cut Techniques :
One myth need to be cleared please understand short-cut for all questions are not possible. Don’t try to remember
any formula for short-cut it always leads to confusion rather than help. Learn faster calculation and adopt the
attitude of making approximation as much as possible. Read first 5 chapters of either M.Tyra or Trachenberg for this.

Test Taking Skills :
How much time to devote to each section, which section to start off. These are some basic question are encountered
by everyone. Now there is no definite answer for this, it depends upon individual’s comfort which he develops by
sheer practice.

Schedule of Preparation
Last Week August – Completion of BRM of all sections followed by one week of revision.
1st to 15th Sept – Part B section test and Comprehensive Test + 2 SIM CATs. This will .
give a complete picture of your strength and weakness.
No reference to BRM should be done after this.
3rd Week of Sept - Revision of all class test (all important questions) and part –B
1st Oct to 15th Nov – Only test practice + SIM CATs.
On 21st Nov – Best Wishes to all of you..

This schedule is specific to those taking coaching from IMS, but others can also co-relate this by just changing the
terminology. For example, TIME students read SIM CATs as AIMCATs etc. Besides it is highly recommended that all
those who are preparing should DEFINITELY go in for SIM CATs conducted by IMS, since it is the most
comprehensive and exhaustive test around and the results most accurately predict actual CAT results.
Download my exclusive preparation schedule here.


How to Shortlist a Business School
There are over 900 B-schools in India - and about half a dozen rankings. All schools look good on paper, but the
rankings vary widely... so how do you weed out the wannabees? Here is a frame work yu can use to shortlist a
school.
ALUMNI STRENGTH : If a school’s alumni occupy senior positions in major corporates, you can bet the school has a
strong standing - or goodwill - in the corporate world. This goodwill directly translates into better placements.
Naturally, an older school will have a larger alumni network. You can get an idea of the alumni network from the
school brochure, and the current students.
BOARDING PROGRAMME VERSUS DAY SCHOOL : In a typical B-School, classes are held for just four hours per
day, but a student ends up working for more than 10 hours. Thus, a lot of learning happens outside the classroom
through group tasks like case study analysis, projects, presentations, research etc. Besides assessing personality
development, these group tasks also help the student learn from the knowledge and experience of his peers. A
boarding programme offers much more opportunity for this kind of learning. Therefore, B-Schools with a compulsory
boarding programme are rated higher than those with a day programme. Another benefit of the boarding programme
is the increased usage of facilities such as the library and the computer center.
DIRECTOR AND THE ACADEMIC TEAM : The director plays a very important role in building a B-Schools reputation.
For example, MDI shot into the limelight once Pritam Singh became it’s Director. Now that Singh has moved to IIM-L,
a lot is expected from that school. If nothing else, a visionary director ensures that the quality of teaching is above
average.
AFFILIATIONS AND PARTNERSHIPS : Many MBA courses are launched in collaboration with a reputed foreign
business school. For instance, IIM-A started off in active collaboration with the Harvard Business School. These
days schools also have partners for student and faculty exchange. The reputation of partner schools and their
international rankings can tell you a lot about the B-School.
AUTONOMOUS VERSUS UNIVERSITY AFFILIATED PROGRAMMES : Contrary to the common perception, an
autonomous school is rated higher than a school with a university affiliations. Affiliated programmes are usually
burdened with excessive bureaucracy, which can come in the way of fine tuning the course in line with industry
standards. SP Jain was initially affiliated to the Mumbai University but soon opted for autonomy - since by then it
had carved an enviable position for itself.
RESERVATIONS : Reservations of any kind can lead to a mediocre student body. All B-Schools that are part of the
Maharashtra CET, suffer from this drawback: the number of seats for students from outside is less than 10%.The
batch composition is skewed in favour of a certain region and this can create an unfavourable impression on
recruiters.
LOCATION OF THE INSTITUTE : If the school is new, it’s location does affect placements. An HR manager would
think twice before devoting 2 days time to go to a remote area. On the other hand, new B-Schools situated in the
metros or highly industrialized locations might find it easier to attract companies. Of course, location is not much of
a problem once the school has been able to build a reputation in the market.
PLACEMENTS : Placement is a crucial factor most students look for. As we all see it, all the above parameters have
an impact on the placements. Companies will do their own assessment of a school based on the above parameters.
You should not go by the last years placement figures alone. Placements in a particular year may have been an
aberration or simply the results of a great economic boom ( or bust). So look for the placements for at least three
years - an average will give a much better picture.


What makes a Good MBA Candidate ?
Just wanting the degree is not enough. The strongest candidates competing to gain admission into graduate
business schools are very focused on their intended career paths. They are reasonably clear about what is needed to
get there and what it takes to be successful. Are you one of those people? Can you compete favorably in the
applicant pool?

The MBA is designed for people who want to learn about business across many different disciplines. But schools
want you to have already identified an area of interest that you plan to pursue after you obtain this broad base of
knowledge. Most MBA programs do not provide the time to find those interests during the course of study, so you
need to have a good sense of what you are planning to do with the degree.

Business school admissions counselors want to see evidence of your professional interests to ensure that you will
take full advantage of the MBA program. At a minimum, they consider career history and aspirations, evidence of
leadership potential, and academic achievement. Therefore, the typical MBA candidate has several years of full-time,
post-undergraduate work experience in a responsible capacity and can clearly articulate his or her motivations for
wanting to earn an MBA.

Signs That You Are Not Ready
To be ready for business school, you must have a clear picture of what you want to do with an MBA.

You are not ready if:

Your career goals are no more specific than “I want to manage people” or “I want to command a higher salary.”
There are more would-be MBAs than seats available in MBA programs. You will be competing against candidates
who can articulate why they want the degree and relate their goals to the strengths of a particular program.
Experience has shown that applicants without clear goals will not have them by graduation. Although you may
adjust your original plan while in business school, having that focus from the start is the key to challenging your
assumptions and exploring an MBA field in depth.
You are avoiding the job market by buying additional time in school. This is an expensive way to plan for your future.
It also misses a major point: You should choose a school because it matches your academic and career interests. All
programs are better at some things than others. What criteria are important to you?


Courtesy (www.mba.com)


Preparation Schedule | Top
How you prepare is more important than how much you are preparing. The success at CAT every year is a function
of both level of preparedness and method adopted for it. The idea behind giving this write-up is to help students plan
their step wise preparation in the best possible manner to get maximum benefit out of IMS training program.

The three stage of MBA preparation:
- Basic Concept Build-Up
- Test Taking skill and practice
- and GD/PI & GK Preparation

Basic Concept Build-Up
This is the basic foundation of your preparation. All coaching Institutes provides you Basic Reference Materials( with
different names); its purpose is to introduce various concepts and problems on all the topics across all the sections
of CAT. A thorough reading of it should suffice for students from Maths or Engineering background. However for
students from non-maths background additional reference is suggested. Quicker Maths – M.Tyra, Mathematics for
MBA – R.S Agarwal. The objective is to get thorough with basic concepts and get introduced to different type of
problems.
Short Cut Techniques :
One myth need to be cleared please understand short-cut for all questions are not possible. Don’t try to remember
any formula for short-cut it always leads to confusion rather than help. Learn faster calculation and adopt the
attitude of making approximation as much as possible. Read first 5 chapters of either M.Tyra or Trachenberg for this.

Test Taking Skills :
How much time to devote to each section, which section to start off. These are some basic question are encountered
by everyone. Now there is no definite answer for this, it depends upon individual’s comfort which he develops by
sheer practice.

Schedule of Preparation
Last Week August – Completion of BRM of all sections followed by one week of revision.
1st to 15th Sept – Part B section test and Comprehensive Test + 2 SIM CATs. This will .
give a complete picture of your strength and weakness.
No reference to BRM should be done after this.
3rd Week of Sept - Revision of all class test (all important questions) and part –B
1st Oct to 15th Nov – Only test practice + SIM CATs.
On 21st Nov – Best Wishes to all of you..

This schedule is specific to those taking coaching from IMS, but others can also co-relate this by just changing the
terminology. For example, TIME students read SIM CATs as AIMCATs etc. Besides it is highly recommended that all
those who are preparing should DEFINITELY go in for SIM CATs conducted by IMS, since it is the most
comprehensive and exhaustive test around and the results most accurately predict actual CAT results.
Download my exclusive preparation schedule here.


Finer Points | Top
Lets talk about some finer points in your preparation:
Why so much stress on sectional test:
What a student needs before sitting in the CAT , is to have confidence in all the sections. Next question is how ? Lets
start with PS and VA:
Remember the biggest confidence is with the student who is introduced to all type of problems in both PS and VA
section. Imagine in the first page of PS section in CAT paper there are 10 questions of which 2,4,7 and 8 are type of
problem you have done earlier. Now if I ask which is the problem you would attempt first, of course 2,4,7 and 8. I
hope you understood the point I want to convey. In other words the paper will seem easy the more the type of
problem you have practiced. The more type of problem done, more is the familiarity, the more familiarity, the more is
your confidence. This is the real essence of sectional test. They contain probably the largest and best collection of
questions from all topics.
How to get confidence in DI and RC :
DI and RC are like diamonds the more you brush the more they shine.

For DI follow these 4 steps :
Prioritizing the set of questions:
Generally DI is given in 5-6 sets of questions. First look for DS questions because they are the simplest in the entire
paper. Next glance through rest of set of questions, you need to pick the least complicated set first and then next
and so on. Do I need to attempt all the question of a given set? No, until all of the questions in the set are easy,
which itself is a rare possibility. So what to do: the best is to attempt all easy questions from each set then go
randomly to the difficult ones. In other words you need to attempt all set of DI section.
Choosing the easy questions:
The only way to find the easy questions in a set is to make sure that you see all the questions at least once. Keep
solving all the easy ones and leave the difficult ones. Repeat this for all sets. If still time is left go randomly for the
difficult ones left. The idea is not to get stuck with any question, engineers please don’t get sentimental with any
questions because CAT paper is designed to test your ability more in planning than solving. Never forget IIMs or
others are looking for managers not intellectual.

Time allocation :
DI is all about understanding data clearly and pure calculation after that. 2/3rd of all the questions are easy and rest
difficult and time consuming ones. This could be best understood when solving sectional test. Whatever is the time
allocated in the first 2/3rd make sure you rush through all the sets at least once and must have picked all the easy
ones. I know its not that easy but a sincere practice of sectional test will give you the desired mindset.
Approximation making :
I am a perfectionist; I love to do exact calculation. If this is your attitude then my sincere suggestion is try becoming
a rocket scientist not an MBA. Lot of people do make poor beginning while doing approximation but never lose heart
even a sincere practice for one month will help you reach 70% accuracy level which is good enough. Last but not the
least please stay away from calculators till your exams are not over.
What about RC ?
For most of CAT aspirants RC seems like a horror film. Why is to so? The basic reason most of us don’t possess a
good reading habit. Most talented students who are not able to get through in written are those who fail in RC (please
read this sentence again). Good RC skills can be developed only over a period of time. CAT aspirants are advised to
read newspapers, magazines and books so that the habit of reading is inculcated and the range of reading widens.
The idea is to read everything that one can.
A daily habit of reading editorial of a leading newspaper or any serious stuff for at least 1hour will help to a great
extent. The problem with RC is that it makes a student mentally tired, why, this emphasis on RC because by October
you feel comfortable with most of section but RC always remains a weak point. So you need the daily dose of serious
stuff to make you comfortable on the D-Day.

Suggested Books:
English Grammar – A practical English grammar by Thomson and Martinet
Calculation Speed – Speed System by Trachenberg or 1st 3 chapters of M.Tyra
Reasoning – M.K Pandey or Edgan Thorpe

Preparation Time:
How much time to invest – In next 120 days at least 4-6 hours daily.
Final Advice:
What is all required for CAT is fundamental knowledge and mental strength. There are students who are highly
talented but cannot keep their concentration for more than 1hour it’s all because of lack of zeal and passion to make
success. What ever may be you method of preparation if its not coupled with high motivation you are bound to lose
the race.


Sectional and Full Length Tests | Top
Sectional Tests are very important because they contain large number of questions on similar topics. How this helps
is that by the time you have completed some sectional test, you are very thorough with all the different types of
questions on that particular subject. while appearing for sectional tests aim for accuracy rather than speed.
Full Length Tests are similar to the ones that you face in the real exams. They are meant to be taken in one seating
without any breaks and never more than one a day. They are meant to test both your test taking skills and
concentration. Try to maintain a balance between speed and accuracy.
I have added some Tests below. I will be adding more test as soon as I have time. Enjoy solving these for the
moment.

Sectional Tests :
Quantitative Aptitude : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4
Reading Comprehension : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4
Logical Reasoning : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4
Verbal Ability : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4
Full Length Tests :
Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 | Test 5 | Test 6 | Test 7 | Test 8


Vocabulary Resources | Top
Almost 15 to 25 questions in the Verbal section of CAT and about 40 to 50 questions in XAT are direct word based
questions. These include FIBs, Meanings, Analogies, Antonyms and Synonyms etc. Now the thing about these
questions is that you either know the words or you don't. If you know the words, you can solve these 20 questions in
about 7 to 8 mins. Which means you will have the time to devote extra attention to the other sections, because you
would have cleared the cut-off in this section even without attempting the RC questions.
The point I am trying to make is that you can never do enough as far as words are concerned. The absolute must dos
are the IMS Vocabulary List and the GRE Guide's Wordlist by BARRONS. I have added some more resources here
that you may find useful in your efforts to build up your vocabulary. Do go through them. I will add more stuff as
soon as I get them.
• The Dictionary
• The Top 1000 Most Used Words
• Most Commonly Used Nouns
• Ad-World Vocabulary
• Business Vocabulary


CAT-alogue | Top
Objective of a CAT Paper
• Minimum number of attempts
• Desired level of accuracy
• Securing sectional cut-offs

The three Mantra required to achieve the above stated:
• Time Management
• Choosing the right question
• Positive mental frame work

The final CAT-alogue for November 21st
• Ensure that you are carrying the CAT admit card, watch / stop watch, eraser(s), sharpener(s) and enough number
of HB pencils.
• Reach the test venue well in time and make yourself comfortable.
• Fill in your details properly in the AFAS.
• When asked to begin the test, take note of the time as per your watch.
• When you begin the test, take a minute or two to familiarize yourself with the test pattern and general
instructions. Make a mental assessment of the order in which you will attempt the questions. It is advisable that
you attempt questions in your ‘strong’ areas initially and not leave your weakest section till the very end. For
instance, a section like RC should not be done at the fag end when mental fatigue is likely to have set in.
• Read the question instructions carefully. Scan and look for words like except, untrue, not, apart from, dissimilar
etc.
• Do not hesitate to skip a question. Be prudent. Bear in mind that your aim is not to attempt all questions but to
select questions carefully and to try to attempt most of them correctly. Always try to hit the end of the section
without becoming unduly nervous about the number of problems you have had to skip in the process. If time
permits, you can always come back to those skipped.
• Do not get into an ego hassle with any question. If you have already spent time on a question without making
any significant headway just forget it and move on. Be clear when to give up. Be reassured that you would have
left a lot of questions unanswered anyway.
• Whereas some amount of caution is necessary, there is no harm in intelligent guessing. For example, if you are
unable to decide between two options, guess but guess fast; however only in those cases, where you have
clearly narrowed down your choice to the two “close” ones. This is especially true for questions that are
inherently subjective (typically in the English part of the test).
• Success in CAT depends to a considerable extent, on your stress management skills. You should keep a cool
head and not get stressed. Avoid losing your concentration due to a tough section or a string of tough
questions. If the test or a particular section seems inordinately difficult to you, chances are that most others are
also facing the same music.
• Always remember that CAT is a ‘relative marking’ test where the cut-off scores will vary according to two factors
namely the difficulty level of the test and others’ performance. Hence do not have any pre-conceived notions
about the score that you need to attain – if the paper is easy, the cut-offs will shoot up and vice-versa. Simply,
put in your best.
• A very good overall score without the minimum required in each section is of little use for most top-level
institutes. Do not go overboard in sections or areas that you are strong in at the expense of your weaker ones.
• Stay focused on the job at hand till the very end. Most people give up halfway through the test due to a
combination of mental fatigue and a growing feeling that their chances are diminishing with every minute. The
day will surely belong to those who maintain a peak rate performance throughout the test.
• Last but not the least, ensure that no mismatch happens between your answer and the oval which you shade in
the AFAS. For those who prefer block transfer, do make sure that you transfer all your solved answers to the
OMR sheet correctly at regular intervals.


More Gyan | Top
Time Distribution – The first and most important thing to keep in mind. Until unless you make proper appropriation of
timing its not possible to get cut-offs. VA- 15-20min, RC- 20-25min, PS- 40min, DS- 10min, DI/LR30min.
Cut-Offs – Cut offs are always for the entire section not for sub-section. For example it’s enough to get 18+ in VA/RC
combined. There is no rule how much to attempt in VA or RC separately. But don’t ignore any sub-section. It simply
means if VA is simple do more from it and less from RC or vice versa.
Chose questions wisely – This is key to your number of attempts and overall score. Do not hesitate to skip a
question. Be prudent. Bear in mind that your aim is not to attempt all questions but to select questions carefully and
to try to attempt most of them correctly. Always try to hit the end of the section without becoming unduly nervous
about the number of problems you have had to skip in the process. If time permits, you can always come back to
those skipped.
Freedom to choose – The best part of CAT is that there are lots of question to choose from. Do not get into an ego
hassle with any question. If you have already spent time on a question without making any significant headway just
forget it and move on. Be clear when to give up. Be reassured that you would have left a lot of questions unanswered
anyway.
Intelligent Guessing - Whereas some amount of caution is necessary, there is no harm in intelligent guessing. For
example, if you are unable to decide between two options, guess but guess fast; however only in those cases, where
you have clearly narrowed down your choice to the two “close” ones. This is especially true for questions that are
inherently subjective (typically in the English part of the test).
Keep Your Cool - Success in CAT depends to a considerable extent, on your stress management skills. You should
keep a cool head and not get stressed. Avoid losing your concentration due to a tough section or a string of tough
questions. If the test or a particular section seems inordinately difficult to you, chances are that most others are also
facing the same music.
The most important - Always remember that CAT is a ‘relative marking’ test where the cut-off scores will vary
according to two factors namely the difficulty level of the test and others’ performance. Hence do not have any pre-
conceived notions about the score that you need to attain – if the paper is easy, the cut-offs will shoot up and vice-
versa. Simply, put in your best.
CAT is easy – Though difficult to believe, in my last 7 years of CAT taking every year I find there at least 70-80
questions which an average student could always do and get them correct. So never lose hopes even if the first few
question of each section are tough. There would certainly be some sitters in each section, go ahead and find them.
CAT look for smart people more than those who are academically superior.


More Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs) | Top
Are the Section cutoffs for IIMs mentioned sacrosanct?
The cut-offs which we have mentioned, are possible cut-offs and lot many other factors such as work ex and acads
will be significant. Though the sectional cutoffs are compulsory you can expect a call from IIM with the net score of
more than 65.
What are the cutoffs for SP Jain; MDI?
The cutoffs for SPJain and MDI would be around 58-60. Though the essay for SPJain will make a difference in
selection. The last date of applying to MDI is 29th Nov.
What are the cutoffs for TAPMI, MICA?
The cutoffs would be around 55. But remember the MICA tests you on others skills through its own test and if you
should always apply only if you are interested in the career of Advertising. The last date for applying to MICA is over.
What are the cutoffs for FORE School, IMI Delhi, NIRMA?
The cutoffs at these levels are very difficult to determine, it depends on many factors as how many students have
applied to these institutes and again a very high number of students are in the score range of 50, hence the cutoff
could be guessed at 48-50.
I have attempted 60-70 and can get a score of 45, which Institutes I should apply?
Most of the students have attempted around 60-70 and, if you can get a score of around 45, you can apply to
Institutes like TAPMI, KJ Somaiya, NIRMA, IMI, and Fore School of Mgmt.
I have attempted 50 in English and expect 40, but other sections attempted only 40, will I get a call?
IIMA prefers people good in English, will I get a call from IIMA?
If you expect a call from IIMs, then you have to clear the sectional cutoffs, you might get a call as DI/DS and Verbal
Sections relatively have low cut-offs. As a stray cases IIMA must have given calls, but at the same time the academic
performance of such students is also very good.
I hope to get a slightly low score of 58-60, but have a good 2 years work ex, what are my chances with IIMs.?
It is seen that work ex helps and the net score can be less than the normal cutoffs for freshers. If you have a good
work ex more than 2 years and can get a score of 58+ you have a chance of getting a call from either of the IIM.
How many students all India took the CAT, TOI said 40,000, you have said 90,000 does it make a difference?
The number of students is more than 80,000 and it does not make much of a difference, as the seats of IIMs are
constant.
Does IIMB prefer work ex?
Though last year IIMB had called many students who had work ex, the same thing might not be valid as the selection
criteria changes every year.
Does your SimCAT cutoff take into account the actual performance of majority of students?
I had consistently got 98+ percentile in SimCATs with similar scores in actual CAT, can I expect a call?
The SimCAT percentile score largely takes into account the national performance of the students. If you have score
more than 95 percentile consistently and also shown similar performance in the CAT then there is a very high chance
that you would get a call.
Note: If you are sure that you might score more than 40+ score in the CAT, without spending much time in
anticipating, you should start your preparation for Group Discussion and Personal Interview.
How to prepare
July 14,
2003
Start early on MBA preparation
Times News Network

If securing a place in a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) programme in the coming year
is your goal, the time has arrived to start planning on preparations for the entrance examinations.

The MBA examination is a test of speed and knowledge in reading comprehension, numeric
ability, capacity for analysing situations, drawing deductions and decision-making. Management
entrance exams are an elimination process. Since performance is judged on a relative scale, both
knowledge and speed are of equal importance. While the former is broadly present in every
individual, it is normally the latter that needs to be developed and can often prove to be a crucial
in the written test.

Testing pattern
The Common Admission Test (CAT) jointly conducted on behalf of the six Indian Institutes of
Management (IIM), Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI) exam and Faculty of Management
Studies (FMS) exam are some of the most sought after examinations in India.

The examinations are different from conventional examinations and are conducted in various
stages to test knowledge, general awareness and inter personal skills. Broadly, the testing
process can be classified into three stages - written test, group discussion and personal interview.

The first stage is an objective type written exam, testing skills in English and mathematics. These
are subdivided into quantitative ability, data interpretation and sufficiency, reading
comprehension, verbal reasoning and ability.

Some exams carry a section on general knowledge.

Analyse weak areas
Competition being stiff, no area of testing can really be ignored or overlooked. A good starting
point is to identify weak areas since that can improve performance tremendously.

Based on your core skills, evaluate a strategy that would help you gain expertise in them. For
instance, if you find verbal ability section a weak one, make a conscious effort to improve verbal
skills. Indulge in extensive reading on complex issues - imbibe the habit of reading editorials in
newspapers and magazines. Look up meanings of all unfamiliar words you come across in a
thesaurus and try to remember them. Perhaps, maintain a separate lexicon of your own to note
these words down and refer to them regularly.

Extensive reading has a two-pronged benefit - it improves vocabulary and reading speed as well
as concentration levels. It will enhance your level of comfort while reading abstract and tedious
passages in the reading comprehension sections.

On the other hand, those from a non-science background fearing mathematics would benefit from
starting with an elementary high school book to understanding basics of algebra, commercial
mathematics, geometry and trigonometry. Most questions in the numeric section would be based
on these mathematical concepts. Once the basics are clear in a few weeks, graduate to a higher
level of mathematics.

At the same time, train the brain in quick mental calculations. Practice additions, multiplications,
working out average, squares and cubing of integers. Working quickly with numbers increases
problem-solving speed and enables tackling voluminous calculations with remarkable ease. A
critical area in a well-rounded preparation in the early days is to keep abreast of current
developments in the economy, politics, corporate sector and major world events. Think of some
relevant topics and attempt to organise mock GD sessions with your peer group. This would help
you develop a fluency of expression and overcome any inhibitions you may have of public
speaking.

Supporting preparation
It may be early days but given the complexity of the testing process and the competition being
stiff, an early start to preparation can put you ahead of the game. Now, devote at least two hours
to test preparations every day. Once you are clear on your basics and have gained adequate
familiarity with all patterns of questions, shift focus towards attempting mock tests, which come
with coaching manuals.

The Newspapers | Top Okay, so all of you read some newspaper or the other. Well. good for you.... But now that you are preparing for CAT, there needs to be a slight change in your attitude towards newspapers. So read on.. What you should be reading in newspapers : Ideally, you should be reading at least three pages in your newspapers. These are: THE FRONT PAGE, THE EDITORIAL COLUMNS and THE BUSINESS PAGE. Plus you can also read the sports and cartoon pages for relaxation, if you wish. Here is a list pages which you absolutely should be reading daily at least for the next year. 1. All pages from the Times of India 2. The editorial page from THE HINDU 3. The editorial and news page from the Economics Times. What you should be reading in newspapers : Irrespective of your interests, you should not be reading the second page of TOI, the regional politics pages from all newspapers, the crime pages from all newspapers the regional politics pages from all newspapers and the heavy market and finance pages from the ET. This is because, these pages don’t contribute anything to your intellectual growth and thus don’t serve you at all in your preparation for CAT. Also develop an allergy to politics simply because otherwise, it will make you skeptical and put you in a negative frame of mind. Avoid the jargon heavy sections of ET because you will not be able to understand most of it and will lose an interest in the subject which could prove suicidal in future. Also please stay away from novels and pornography as they will not only be a waste of time and emotional bandwidth, but also prove to be distractions in the long run. PLEASE ALSO GO THROUGH THE READING MATERIALS PROVIDED IN THE DOWNLOADS PAGE

The Magazines | Top Here again, there are some magazines that are an absolute must for anybody preparing for CAT and other exams. These include:

Business World ( Great Industry Scenario Mag) Other then these, you may read any publication that you prefer. here is a list of some more very useful magazines.

• • • • •

Competition Master ( Great for GK and great articles and essays for both RC and GD ) Business and Management Chronicle ( Great All-round Magazine ) Career Economy ( Again great MBA specific Magazine) Advancedge ( Published by IMS, a must for GK and all exam related info )

• • • • • • •

News Panaroma Effective Manager from the ICFAI Press The Sahara Times India Today Outlook Frontline Economic and Political Weekly

• • • • • • •

The Week MBA Review Business Today Business India Competition Success Review The Tehelka Yojana or Kurukhsetra

What Is CAT all about ? | Top How often have you heard this statement : CAT is not a test of Math and English ? Your faculty or friends who have taken the test will testify to this maxim. CAT actually uses Math and English as tools to assess whether the aspirant has the potential to be a manger. One of the biggest mental hurdles while preparing for the CAT is the over emphasis on learning the ropes in Math and English and not understanding the hidden agenda underlying the various topics. Across the CAT, while the topics vary, they are all assessment tools to check managerial qualities. Thus be it Problem Solving and data Interpretation in Maths or Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension in English, right through the 2 hour test, a student is tested on the inherent managerial qualities which can be polished when selected for admission to a B-School. While English tests one’s language and communication skills, Math essentially tests your analytical and conceptual skills - two very critical traits in an effective manager. Thus when seen in this light, the following aspects of the CAT stand out:

• • • •

It is one of the most fascinating aptitude tests in the country, if not the toughest. It is complex not because of the level of Math and English, but because of the competition. It is the test of one’s managerial potential and not whether somebody is already a manager. It is not a test of one’s subject knowledge but of one’s aptitude to be a corporate manager.

Thus one of the most critical qualities needed to crack the cat is strong fundamentals and loads of common sense. All this obviously does not mean that one can ignore the importance of Maths and English to crack the CAT. In a relay race, the baton is the tool for success. If the baton is not used properly, success becomes elusive. Thus, make no mistake about it, Maths and English are critical for success in CAT.

Common Mistakes | Top The first mistake is to take the test too seriously. The hype created by the media and preparatory institutes create an unnecessary tension in the minds o f the students. When one goes to the exam hall, an average student maybe a bundle of nerves: raring to attempt questions without waiting to pause and think. Usually, the moment the paper is received, the candidate starts attempting without giving thought to the test taking strategy. But, after a while, when one sees that very few questions have been attempted, one tends to panic and then one tends to panic and mark indiscriminately. This is suicidal, because the number of mistakes will increase and so will the negatives. The most important lesson to be learnt is to to keep your cool. That is the only thing that separates the winners from the also-rans. As one attempts the paper, the clock keeps ticking away and in the end one may find the number of attempts below one’s expectation. This is all right because it is not the number of attempts that are important, but the final score.

How to Keep Cool | Top Keeping cool, is obviously easier said than done. Usually the pressure mounts when one compares oneself with others and one feels hopeless. When this happens, remind yourself that you are competing with none other but yourself. What others do, or not do, is meaningless. If you can conquer your emotions during the exam, you have one half the battle. When the pressure rises, and you find that you can’t answer a question despite reading and re-reading it, just close your eyes and shut off your mind for a moment. You will find that you will most probably be able to solve it. It’s a bit like rebooting the computer, it always speeds up the machine. Another way to stop panic is to approach the exam with an open mind. Don’t crowd your mind with cut-offs and minimum attempts and other such thoughts. Just leave it to the day. If the paper is easy, you will automatically attempt more questions and if it’s difficult, the attempts will drop. Also remember that 99.9% of the people taking CAT are normal people like you with a similar level of preparation. So if the paper seems difficult to you, it’s almost same for all others and so the cut-offs will almost surely be lower. So never resort to guess-work to increase the number of attempts. Especially in a tight low scoring paper, since the marks that you may lose on negative scoring due to guess-work, may prove to be the difference between success and failure. So go to the exam

That’s what most toppers would be attempting. you can score even when you don’t know the answer.9+ percentile in your favorite section. Each person will have a different level of attempt.thinking anyone of the following thoughts.etc) At the same time.. The classic order is first VA&RC followed by PS and then by DI/DS. Test Taking Strategies | Top You should have your strategy outlined very clearly during your preparations stage. It is assumed that there is negative marking of minus one-fourth per question. the deduction per question also increases. or verbal. Whether it is PS. not the end of life. 1. This is because VA is the easiest and fastest section and completing it first will give you confidence and momentum which will carry you through the next 2 sections. then you will be extremely lucky to receive any IIM calls. Do a large number of full-length tests based on different patterns. Speed vs Accuracy | Top A common question asked by students is. Nothing bad can happen to me. because there is no point attempting questions if one can’ t keep a measure of accuracy. Remember. Experiment with yourself. click HERE. where you had to write lengthy answers ( especially those from Utkal University). many questions can be done simply by looking at the questions. If you are near that range. in a quadratic equation. Don’t get confused on seeing the paper. attempting different sections and different order in different tests. For example. just follow the strategy that you have perfected. I don’t really want to scare you. but don’t let that bother you. Spend a minute to see how the questions and sections are arranged. you have a very good chance of getting calls from B-L-A-C-K-I. that’s an acronym for all 6 IIMs (IIMB. it is always faster to obtain answer by substituting the options rather than solving the equation. but you never know for sure. This means that the candidate should be able to spot what is required rather than work it out by lengthy calculation. Too many mistakes simply spoil you score. Smart vs Hard Work | Top What aspirants of CAT need to do is work SMART rather than work hard.. IIML. The technique is called THINK WITHOUT INK. YOU just have to find the 3 WRONG answers and your job is done !! . For more test taking strategies. which means that as the number of mistakes increase. But the thumb rule is start and end with the sections that you are good at and have the weakest section in the middle. The paper will look formidable at first glance. I am very good and have prepared thoroughly and so will do very well. of course. CAT is not like your college paper. OR 2. Always strategize the order in which you are attempting the sections. “how many questions should I attempt” ? This is a faulty question. but you can be rest assured that if you have neglected any section. and (iii) your optimum attempt. but the ideal number of attempts in a paper of 3 sections/ 150 questions (3/150) should be 90-100 attempts with around 20 mistakes. This is because the CAT paper clearly mentions YOU WILL HAVE TO DEMONSTRATE YOUR COMPETENCE IN ALL SECTIONS. Here. Generally speaking. Remember. There could be progressive negative marking. Same for DI and DS. The strategy will. So you may get 99. On the day of the exam. the number of mistakes should be kept at about 20 in a full 2-hour full length test. there is no fixed strategy which is a “magic formula” that can guarantee 100% success. no one knows for sure what is the scoring pattern for CAT. It’s only an exam. (ii) the kind of questions you should attempt and avoid. The trick is to try to spot the clue in the question. please don’t avoid or favor any section or type of question. Soon you will be able to discover what is your best way to attempt the paper. Remember. vary from person to person. You may follow ANY ORDER in attempting the sections. This will help you decide: (i) which section you should do first.

Ultimately. solve each question on it’s merit and stay cool and composed for the entire 2 hours.SO how does one get into the habit of working smart ? frankly. and then asked to discuss the it among themselves for 15-20 minutes. What is a Group Discussion ? | Top A GD is a methodology used by an organization to gauge whether the candidate has certain personality traits and/or skills that it desires in its members. Work out the best way to tackle problems and look for smart way of doing things. If one is smart in other areas of life. given a few minutes to think about the same. the group of candidates is given a topic or a situation. Some of the personality traits the GD is trying to gauge may include :Ability to work in a team Communication skills. cracking CAT would not be difficult.. It comes with the way you approach life in general. reasoning ability Leadership skills Initiative Assertiveness Flexibility Creativity Ability to think on ones feet . Work out your own success strategy by doing a large number of full length tests. Attempt all sections: don’t ignore any. simply because so many people have done it in the past. That is the formula for success. it maybe said that CAT is not difficult to crack. Simply put in your best effort. Do a large number of section tests and identify strengths and weaknesses. close your eyes and reboot. that is an attitude that one must acquire. don’t compare with others but always compete. If you lose control. Control the number of mistakes to about 20 : avoid wild blind guessing. He never lets you down. Do the past 10 years CAT papers. In this methodology. keep your cool and follow your strategy. Look at all sections before attempting. It can be done. Don’t panic. It is not about solving questions only. Avoid the hype of the exam. The Check List | Top • • • • • • • • • • • • Do the basics first. BELIEVE IN THE LORD.

i. The education policy of India. This is true in any sphere of life and so also in a Group Discussion for MBA Entrance Examination. team skills. In GDs where these topics are given for discussion. situation handling . That is the reason why management institutes include GD as a component of the selection procedure. This induces people to have confidence in you as a person who will capable of handling stress and manage situations proactively.g. 3) The display of ability to handle rough situations with a cool mind. liked and who can inspire confidence among others in himself generates a following. which an ordinary person is aware of in his day-to-day life. The purpose of conducting a Group Discussion is to test the participant on areas like communication skills. As a manager.e. Who is a leader? In a group situation when formal leadership has not been defined. Generally a person who is respected. Controversial Topics Controversial topics are the ones that are argumentative in nature. 2) The display of sensitivity to others. Tourism in India. as a member or as a leader. is to get to know you as a person and gauge how well you will fit in their institute. This inspires respect among others. E. They are meant to generate controversy. an opinion which the panel consolidates through 15-20 mins of interview. State of the aged in the nation. GD Topics | Top GDs can be topic-based or case-based. you will always be working in teams. These can be current. the noise level is usually high. listening skills so on and so forth. Fundamentally a GD is conducted to separate leaders from non leaders from amongst the participants . the person who is capable of generating a following emerges as an informal leader. This generates a level of ease in interaction with others which is conducive to comfortable group environment. A factual topic for discussion gives a candidate a chance to prove that he is aware of and sensitive to his environment. Managers have to work in a team and get best results out of teamwork. The Group discussion tests how you function as a part of a team. after testing your technical and conceptual skills in an exam. Topic based GD Topic based Gds can be classified into three types :- • • • Factual topic Controversial topics Abstract topics Factual Topics Factual topics are about practical things. admired. The idea behind giving a topic like this is to see how much maturity the candidate is displaying by keeping his temper in check. Certain attributes that are common to all leaders are: 1) The display of proficiency in the particular area of competence required in the group situation. or could be unbound by time. Therefore how you interact in a team becomes an important criterion for your selection. Typically these are about socio-economic topics. by rationally and . they may have been in the news lately. there may be tempers flying.Why GDs ? | Top The reason why institutes put you through a Group discussion and an interview.

Get someone who has been through GDs before to observe it and give you feedback on your performance. If you are proven wrong. The case study tries to simulate a real-life situation. Reservations should be removed. Interest in one’s environment is an essential quality for a manager. A is an alphabet. In the case study there are no incorrect answers or perfect solutions. Make a habit of reading newspapers like TOI and Economic Times and general interest and business magazines like Frontline. Tip 5 # Practice: Try and mobilize other people who are interested in GDs and simulate GDs. Tip 2 # Being aware of current happenings is not enough. Modify your opinions as you go along.imsindia. IIM A. but their possibility cannot be ruled out. learn to check your temper. shows a well-rounded personality. Hear multiple points of view.com/csb/gd_bank. Express your opinion. It is better if the group consists of people who you don’t know too well . as only when he is well informed about all the facets is he able to take correct decisions. Tip 4 # While discussing. These topics test your lateral thinking and creativity. question and argue. which affect our lives.g. Being aware of current affairs and issues and happenings. or on opinions and hearsay. This will help you clear your own thought process plus it will get you into the habit of discussion. however remotely. terrorism. Tip 3 # The process of opinion formation is incomplete without getting inputs from others. E. The objective in the case study is to get you to think about the situation from various angles. Also question whether your point of view is based on facts. what are the premises underlying your thoughts and beliefs. But remember that they have a right to their opinions. IIM Indore and IIT SOM Mumbai have a case-based discussion rather than topic-based discussion in their selection procedures. Ask yourself why you feel that way. E. These topics are not given often for discussion.logically arguing his point of view without getting personal and emotional. which is of utmost importance in a GD. Given below are 5 easy to follow tips which will help you in your GD preparation :Tip 1 # Brushing up on your general awareness is a must. say. The number 10 Case-based GD Another variation is the use of a case instead of a topic. Twinkle twinkle little star. Get into the habit of discussing issues with your friends and family. Learn to respect their points of views even if you don’t accept them. Information about the situation will be given to you and you would be asked as a group to resolve the situation. It shows maturity on your part. accept it with good grace. Everyone does. Listen. One must also form opinions on those happenings and issues that arise. Maybe you’ll find others holding view which are abhorrent to you. Think about what you feel about different issues. This will be a good training for controlling your emotions. Women make better managers Abstract Topics Abstract topics are about intangible things. Outlook and Business India.htm How To Prepare for GDs ? | Top One can be successful at a GD with proper preparation and guidance. Write down your thoughts.g. For lots of GD topics and reading material visit http:/www.

If the discussion is straying from it’s main idea. . If the crowd is too unruly wait for the right opportunity.Do not fidget or act restless. . . .Do not get into arguments with people. make your point and get out of it. volume. .Modulate the various aspects of your voice. . or you may simply make points that are irrelevant or were better left unsaid.Incase of fish markets first and foremost make sure that you don’t contribute to the mayhem. . awkward posture could indicate nervousness or discomfort with your position in the group. evaluate the worth of what you are saying. .If possible. . The opening has to be a general introduction to the topic briefly laying the scope of the discussion. make an attempt at opening the discussion. . viz.Whatever you have to say has to be wrapped around with a logical flow.Master Tips For GDs | Top Certain Dos for a Group Discussion . remember you are there to make effective points. . .Most of all remember belief in your own ability to remain poised in any situation will allow you to sail through. get it back on track by giving a new directional point.Make use of hands and facial expressions to make your point more emphatic. .Do not slouch but seat yourself comfortably.If the discussion is revolving around a certain point for too long give a new direction by introducing a new angle to it. . it could backfire.Do not make use of gestures excessively as you may come across as aggressive. .Making yourself heard is important but do not try to hog the lime-light all the time. etc. learn to toe the line between assertive and aggressive. do not waste time on futile arguments that do not contribute to the topic under discussion. Make sure you don’t sound rude or arrogant. pitch and tone so as to suite the nature of the point that you are making. State your point.When not speaking make sure that you are looking at the person who is speaking.If somebody has already made the point you wanted to make.Do not act patronising with your fellow group members.Your posture should be straight and upfront. . .Make sure that all the points that you make are original and backed by substantial reasoning as to why you believe so. But if you venture ahead with it make sure that you make a good job of it.Whatever position you occupy in the discussion make sure that while speaking you make eye contact with each and every one in the group. . Don’ts of a GD .verbal like nodding your head.Whether you agree with the person who is speaking or not. substantiate it with a reason and validate it with an example wherever and whenever possible. you can go ahead and either support or oppose the point provided you can give substantial reasoning as to why you think so. . ensure that you give him credit for what he is speaking by use of non .

the person who talks the most is not necessarily the one who is judged the best. Just brush them up. You must avoid even looking at the panel members while the GD is in progress. Suppose I have a lot to say on the topic. The quality and not the quantity of your contribution is the success factor. which you have no control over.. . Knowledge is Supreme – Please read on all current topics – from any current affairs magazine like CSR. Contrary to the misconception. to a large extent . you could do so by collectively addressing the group as “Friends”. but not to the point of getting so distracted looking at your watch that you do not contribute to the discussion. How should I address the other group members? If you are initiating the discussion. In this particular page we shall look at some parameters on which you are judged through a Personal Interview and also all those things which go into the making of a quintessentially good PI performance. A stage which is not only important but also . should I say all of it? You would not be looked upon favourably if you kept speaking all the time and did not listen to anyone else. depending upon the venue. It is best not to bother about trivial issues like this. or circular. signals the start of the next and probably the most important part of your selection process. Keep your composure – Make salient points and be a good listener Frequently Asked Questions | Top What is the normal duration of a GD? A GD is generally of 15-20 minutes duration. What is a Personal Interview ? | Top The end of the first part of the elimination process . Should I encourage others to speak up? Do not directly put someone who is consistently silent on the spot by asking him/her to speak up.. the Group discussions and the Personal interviews. psyching out of many of us.. How you need to prepare. Is there time given for preparation after the topic is given and before starting the GD? Usually some time (2-5 minutes) is given to collect one’s thoughts. At the very moment you are what you are. If someone has been trying to speak and has a good point but is cut off constantly. How many panel members are there to evaluate? There are usually 3-4 panel members to evaluate. not the panel members. Are the group members supposed to keep track of the time or will the panel keep track? It would be good if you are conscious of the time.. Just ignore their existence.. you may come across as uninterested or inattentive.Do not stare at the floor or out of the window. or seating along side a rectangular table. Services Chronicle and don’t forget to include Competion Master. there would thousands of advice and methods to do well but the moment you enter the room 90% of all your learning goes into thin air. Please understand PI is the first time you come face to face with the people who are finally going to select you. Should I address the panel or the group members? Don’t ever make the mistake of addressing the panel members. The GD is between you and the other members. you may encourage him/her to continue with her point as you would like to hear her out. but there could be instances when this does not happen. What is the seating arrangement like? It could be semi-circular. you could use names (if the group has had a round of self-introduction prior to starting the discussion and you remember the names) or simply use pronouns like “he” or “she”. so it is best not to bank on this.the written test. Subsequently.

Please keep them quantifiable and you can give example to substantiate. read their prospectus at least once Part 4. place you belong and what qualities you would like to highlight like I am optimist and love interacting with others. hobbies and interests. strength and weakness. teachers .Types Of Question | Top Lets understand how the questions are been asked to us and what is looked into all of them : Part 1 – Personal Module • • • • • Tell me something about your self. friends. project or Hons Subject If work exp be sure of your industry knowledge This could be a difficult area to justify each and every question. Strength – to find out how many managerial qualities you possess. your career goal in specific How MBA is going to help in achieving it A strong rationale why you want to do MBA Please have a good knowledge about the institute. but always mention what you learned from it Part 2 – Academic or Job knowledge Prepare your final year paper. Include your last education. Weakness – what are you going to do about it? Your urge to improve your self Hobbies and Interest – It can be anything no problem. job if applicable. but in case of any answer you are unable to make please be honest and don’t make any bluff Part 3 – Career Objective What you want to achieve in life. a brief about family. Tell me something about your self – is just to break ice with the student and make him comfortable.Miscellaneous What if you don’t get in to our college Which other institute you have qualified for What’s the meaning of your name What you have learnt from your parent.

terrorism. what are the premises underlying your thoughts and beliefs. Think about what you feel about different issues. please say so. that is really beyond your control. Let this knowledge give you the confidence you need. Tip 6 # Never bluff. Tip 3 # Always remember that the interview is NOT an elimination round. If there is any part of the admission process. Being aware of current affairs and issues and happenings. One must also form opinions on those happenings and issues that arise. If you don’t know the answer. Okay. or on opinions and hearsay. say. If you have made it this far. Maybe even among the top 1%. They are very experienced and can detect a bluff even by looking at you. Tip 5 # Never use jargon. it is the Personal Interview. So if you want to do well in this round. Tip 4 # What ever you have written in the application form of the institute. How To do well in an Interview ? | Top Okay. The written tests have taken care of that. Even if you do use them. please be sure that you are sure about what you are talking. as only when he is well informed about all the facets is he able to take correct decisions. Ask yourself why you feel that way.. then you are one of the better students of the country. It is very possible and probable that most of the questions will be based on the information given by you in this form. which affect our lives. Make a habit of reading newspapers like TOI and Economic Times and general interest and business magazines like Frontline. think that you can afford to bluff your way through the technical questions.. Tip 2 # Being aware of current happenings is not enough. It really depends upon the whim of the panel that is in front of you on D-Day. start with something like “I’m not sure.. as you are looking for a good college. You are your best judge. Believe me. Also question whether your point of view is based on facts. the college is also looking for good students.What is a Good Personal Interview ? | Top It is really hard to say. so if the Interview is so unpredictable. Remember. shows a well-rounded personality. On the other hand.” or “ I don’t recollect. In fact many believe that this is the round which determines whether you are in or out.” is always more appreciated than a bluff. Unless you are really thorough about everything related to that field. Try asking yourself as many questions as possible. Don’t even think about it. but I guess. The Interview panelists are usually the most experienced people around and they hate the kind of arrogance that the use of jargon suggests. read on.. what can you do to ensure that your interview does not become a nightmare ? Well here are a few tips which will serve you well on the D-Day. So please don’t LIE. An answer like “ I don’t know. please read it again and again. Be confident. irrespective of their background always know everything about everything. Write down your thoughts. BUT PLEASE DON’T UNDERMINE THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS PROCESS IN YOUR ADMISSION PROCESS. Remember that the panelists. Interest in one’s environment is an essential quality for a manager. being an engineer. You may feel that you have done a really good job at the interview but you might end up getting chucked out. “ You will get points for both honesty and clarity of expression. Outlook and Business India. So it best to avoid jargons. .. so you have found out that the panelists are all from humanities background and so you. Nothing could be further from the truth. it really is that strange. sometimes you may feel that you have messed up the interview but you may get a final call. no body know better than you as what are your strength and weakness.. Even if you are guessing. Tip 1 # Brushing up on your general awareness is a must. however remotely..

What do you really want to do in life? 5. and how are you preparing yourself to achieve them? 2. the money or the type of job? 11. Science and Commerce streams. How do you think a friend or a professor who knows you well would describe you? 14. The Interviews are almost always after the writtens are over. I have also included list of questions specific the students from Engineering. The student is well advised to prepare complete and convincing answers to these questions before proceeding to the interview. What qualifications do you have that make you think that you will be successful? 18. Which is more important to you. when and why did you establish these goals. In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our institute? 21. Why did you select your college or university? 27. What do you consider to be your greatest strengths and weaknesses? 12. so the tension level is much less and so students tend to lower their guard a bit. How has your education prepared you for a career? 16. What led you to choose your field of major study? 28. If you could do so. What academic subjects did you like best? Least? 29. Don’t commit this folly. 23. In what kind of an educational environment are you most comfortable? 36. What do you see yourself doing five years from now? 4. would you plan your academic study differently? 31. If you were the interviewer. Also go through the GD/PI Experiences available on the DOWNLOADS page. Do you enjoy doing independent research? 30. Frequently Asked Questions | Top I am including a few questions below which are asked to students from all backgrounds. In what part-time or summer jobs have you been most interested? Why? 38. How do you work under pressure? 37. What specific goals. What are the most important rewards you expect in your career? 8. What changes would you make in your college or university? 32. especially for those who have industry work experience. What have you learned from your hobbies? 20. Be prepared with some of the frequently asked questions (you will find some of the most important ones in the next section). Which specialization would you like to take in MBA? Why? 9. what qualities would you look for? 26. have you established for yourself for the next 10 years? 3. How do you plan to achieve your career goals? 7. What have you learned from participation in extracurricular activities? 34. Do you think that your grades are a good indication of your academic achievement? 33. What are your long-range and short-range goals and objectives. How would you describe the ideal job for you following post-graduation? 39. What two or three accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction? Why? 24. What are the three major characteristics that you bring to the job market? . Describe the relationship that should exist between a supervisor and subordinates. 1. What are your long-range career objectives? 6. other than those related to your occupation. Describe your most rewarding college experience? 25. Be aware of the latest happenings in your field of study. Do you have plans for continued study? 35. How would you describe yourself? 13. Why did you choose the career for which you are preparing? 10. What qualities should a successful manager possess? 22. Be sure to prepare your graduation subjects and expect a lot of questions on your work experience for those who do have some of it. How do you determine or evaluate success? 19. Engineering | Science | Commerce The following is a list of 50 frequently asked questions in the MBA qualifying interviews. What are your reading habits? Favorite book? Favorite author? 17.Tip 7 # Do your homework. What motivates you to put forth your greatest effort? 15.

But whether your SoP is subtle or to the point. • • • • • • • • Career Forum Rating Discipline-Wise Ranking Exam-Wise Rating Parameter-Wise Ranking Business World Ranking Business Today Ranking Outlook Ranking Business Standard Ranking What Is Statement Of Purpose (SOP) ? | Top The Statement of Purpose is the single most important part of your application that will tell the admissions committee who you are. the Statement of Purpose is your personal statement about who you are. This is because the SoP is the only part of your application packet over which you have full control. Give an example of something you have done in the past that demonstrates your initiative and willingness to work? 48.. please don’t try to choose a B-School based on the rankings. your professional interests and where you plan to go from here. Also. Each has it’s unique pros and cons. There is much more to B-Schools than the rankings show. can’t be compared. But Still for your knowledge. What do you know about our Institute? 41. Here comes another ranking. It need not be a bald statement of facts. These rankings are at best just an indication and at worst. is like comparing apples and oranges. What two or three things are most important to you in your job? 42. stories or by describing their hero. several successful SoPs address these questions through anecdotes. by different agencies on a single page. Here they come. So don’t EVER try to make decisions based on rankings. You are probably skeptical of this page already. Let’s face it. Your academic . Comparing B-Schools.40. that which can’t be quantified.. What criteria are you using to evaluate the company for which you hope to work? 44. doctored. Who are your role models? Why? 49. Remember that life at a B-School and thus it’s final ranking is not something that can always be quantified in tangible terms. Are you seeking employment in a company of a certain size? Why? 43. what has influenced your career path so far. Thus. your professional interests and where you plan to go from here. what has influenced your career path so far. Why should we take you rather than another candidate? 47. Be warned to take these and every other ranking with a pinch of salt. Relax I am not going to bother you with another ranking for the simple reason that there is already so many of them around. What have you done in the past year to improve yourself? 46. As the name signifies. What major problem have you encountered and how did you deal with it? 50. especially the best ones. What have you learned from your mistakes? B-School Rankings Okay. I hear you think. it must be well written to be successful. Why did you choose _____ Institute of Management to conduct your higher education? 45. So what I am going to do is to give you a compilation of all the rankings.

Academic achievements and good test scores are important. And therefore make or break your application. But what schools look for is a mix of individuals that together. Writing a reasonably good Statement of Purpose is not an impossible task. it becomes increasingly difficult to distinguish between individuals and decide who gets the offer of admission. A mix of interesting. The important thing is to . the thirst for knowledge that could add value to your class. A good work sample can show your creativity. It is important to choose recommendation letter writers carefully. Most people only take one or two shots at the CAT. and most of us share these in varying proportions. relevant work or academic experience is important. an enthusiasm for learning. XAT or GRE. From among thousands of applications. WHY BOTHER? What Do Colleges Look For In SOPs ? | Top The primary question admissions committee members ask themselves when they read a Statement of Purpose is: What does this essay tell me about the person who wrote it? Put yourself in an admission officer’s shoes. For graduate schools. What is this. pride in your work. and these scores could be adversely affected by conditions on the test day. form a well-balanced class. Being from a reputed school or college confers a distinct advantage. So are the admission officers looking for specific personality sorts? Well. Of course we want to have an effect on the admissions officers. They are likely to know soon if a particular author is saying something for effect or if an essay does not ring true. Does this mean that the SoP is the main deciding factor? No. you have to choose the fraction of students that will comprise next year’s incoming class. And that means almost certain rejection. To make yourself stand out from among a multitude of similarly qualified candidates. The people who read your application have been doing so for years and are skilled at spotting fakes. However. attention and patience.and extra-curricular records are in the past. To convince the committee that you have the spark. skill and professionalism. work samples . Done right. each of the items in the application packet -recommendations.adds an extra dimension to your personality. But in an era where the majority of applicants have good academic records. yes and no. this will even turn out to be an enjoyable process. And you will be the richer for it. grades and the courses you took. An applicant who does not take the essay seriously is throwing away the best opportunity available. the ability to think independently and so on are all good attributes. But it is the SoP that brings you to life. Your academic record . a capacity for teamwork. confident and enthusiastic people who will make the class a stimulating place. but while you hope they give you the best possible recommendation. What your teachers or boss think of you goes a long way towards the school’s opinion. show them to people and polish the essay till you get a version you are happy with. visit if that is possible.are the first section admission committee members turn to. Standardized test scores are useful to know where you stand in the applicant pool. extra-curricular achievements. this is not within your control. you might ask. It requires care. get a feel of the student mix that they look for and decide if this is the school for you. The SoP is your chance to talk directly to the admissions committee. And enough time for you to be able to write several drafts. trying to tailor your SoP to reflect what you think the school is looking for is dangerous business. When you apply. Read on. However. It is good to go through the school’s brochure or web site. This would include several personality types. Creativity. speak to people about it. only the SoP or application essays can bring out your uniqueness. curiosity. Which is why each essay is read carefully by at least two and often four or five people before a decision is taken on the application.

friends in the same field. what inspires you. several admirable people have no idea where they are going even at age 40 or 50. This is a great opportunity to look inside yourself and be rewarded by a better understanding of who you are and what you want. after all. for instance. what are the things you appreciate.do so without appearing dishonest. From your books and teachers. Some professors respond. It is not necessary to have all the answers . use the resume as a reference and highlight the learnings you have received during some key points in your career. Be honest. There are a number of sites that help you to write a suitable resume for your college applications. from music or art. you talk about your deep desire to make society a better place. In India. Spend about half an hour on this.ten to twelve drafts over a two-month period are fairly common. find out which professors work in areas that interest you and write to them about your plans. It is best to get this out of the way so that your SoP is not a repetition of the information in the resume. A search for ‘college admission essays’ on Yahoo will yield some sites. you could gain a better idea about the areas of research emphasized upon by that particular department. And that these life experiences have taught you something. and where you are going from here. After finding out some details about your potential universities. The people who read your essay want to be convinced that you have thought long and hard about who you are. some don’t .but you have nothing to lose at this stage. If. most people who get admission to top schools do not Background Issues Ask yourself why you want to study further. from life itself. In fact. Have you done anything about this desire? Can you talk about your actions and experiences? A small example of something you did. go to your local bookstore and browse through a few books. home pages of students. look inside yourself and do your best. It is necessary to put in this hard work to come up with an essay that is uniquely yourself. ‘The Princeton Review: The Student Access Guide to College Admissions’ is good and easily available. you have to show a desire to learn.self-knowledge. You are not expected to write as well. Check out the sample essays. Research the institutes you are considering applying to. from your classmates. Visit some web sites that talk about how to write your essay. What you want out of life. You could also browse your local bookstore for resume-writing aids. At the same time. If it is possible for you to access the university’s web site. Remember that the essays you read are usually the best the authors could find. Starting The Essay | Top Writing your admissions essays or Statement of Purpose (SoP) is a long and intensive process . It should instead. decide whether you still wish to apply there. Read their section on application essays. Find out the strengths and weaknesses of each. Good sources for this exercise are . recognize that it is a long process and will continue through the various stages of writing your SoP. so that you can go beyond clichéd ideas like wanting to improve your prospects or . and a compelling read which convinces the admissions committee that you are right for their school. Finally. It is necessary to show that you have thought about this. Preliminary Research Write out your resume.university and department web sites and brochures. Don. not necessarily spectacular. Take a piece of paper and start writing down all the reasons. Don. can do more towards boosting your chances than the noblest platitude can. If you do not have easy access to the Internet. Which brings us to the next point . t try to be something you are not. t try to tell the admissions committee what you think they want to hear. your seniors or friends who are studying at that university or in the same field elsewhere. you will have to draw the line at background research sometime as you are working on a timetable. While you should start work on this as early as possible. your application should reflect it. your college professors.

it is best to take at least one professional situation and show what you did and learned. if you’ve been asked to talk about an important event in your life. While you don’t have to stick to the questions asked. avoid falling into the trap of mentioning each of them. and need not necessarily be a famous person. A final shortlist of ten to fifteen schools is common.contribute to society. Remember that your essay has the following objectives: Show your interest in the subject. An account of how you overcame difficult family circumstances. Write a few sentences on any reason that particularly strikes a chord with you. or a handicap. However. creative point. As you continue through the background check. Your essay should have depth. and have the confidence to go through with it. conceited. you will add a few universities and delete several. How have they molded your interests and led you to this point? Pick one or two cases that you can talk about in-depth. Each sentence you use should strengthen the admissions committee’s resolve to admit you. Pitfalls your essay must avoid : It is a repetition of the resume or other information available from the application form. Have the admissions committee like you! Avoid sounding opinionated. For graduate study. The admissions committee would not appreciate reading about the pain you went through after breaking up with your boyfriend. Don’t worry if these are events that are not ‘conventionally’ important or seem insignificant. know what you are getting into. would be a valid point to include in your essay. list down events that have made a significant impression on you. etc. your individuality does not come through. So while you may have done several interesting things in life. not breadth. Make a list of schools you plan to apply to. For graduate school. what you have learned from an event/person in your life and so on) It has embarrassing. so make every sentence count. Demonstrate a rounded personality. Rather than saying that you find electronics interesting. highly personal and emotional content that should be avoided unless it makes a unique. It could have been written by just about anybody. what matters is that they have had some influence over you. Ask yourself why you wish to study at each of the schools you have listed. Remember that you have very little space to convey who you are. you must be sure to answer them all in your SoP. .this could be a friend. and have others read it to find and correct this. Read your essay carefully. Make lists of instances you can use in your SoP. pedantic or patronizing. make a list of people you admire or who have influenced you . a family member. Similarly. Writing The Essay | Top Read the essay question carefully to find out what the university expects you to write about. it is important to ensure that your interests are compatible with the research interests of the department you are applying to. Go through them the next day. Go through your resume and reflect on what you have learned from your various experiences. Keep the essay focused. It is not a honest account in response to the essay question (why you want to study what you do. Refer to your lists of background research and write about two handwritten pages in response to the essay question. illness. avoid emotional language. add to and improve the list. a teacher. now is the time to talk about them Show that you have thought carefully about further studies. it is more convincing to demonstrate your interest by talking about any projects you may have done and what you learnt from them. The resume is where you should list achievements. For example. If you have taken the initiative to do things on your own. As you progress through the background check and understand more about your interests through subsequent revisions of the SoP. Include a short paragraph near the end on what you like to do outside of your professional life.

Where do you see these interests taking you. . What do you see? • Remember that for graduate school. demonstrate your interest.your computer’s spell-check may not flush out all the errors. Are these interests based on experience (academic or on the job) that the school may find useful. lay it face down for two minutes while you put yourself in the admissions committee’s place. use the full form the first time and show the acronym in parentheses. Use grammatically correct English and ALWAYS read your essay carefully for spelling mistakes before you send it off . and whether your interests and strengths fit in with the program you are applying to. When you take it out. articles and pronouns (for instance. What the school is looking for is a competently written statement of goals and interests that demonstrates how you think. The ‘In their shoes’ check | Top Put your essay away for a day or two. Flow While each paragraph should make a complete statement on its own. and is hardly likely to endear you to them! While you should avoid flowery language and clichés. Think of how you would look at SoPs and try to read yours through a stranger’s eyes.it will only confuse the admissions officers if you alternately sound like Ernest Hemingway and Shakespeare. Refer to. ‘maybe’ and ‘no’ piles. Read your essay for flow. and edit your lists as you go along. Imagine yourself to be a professor or graduate student who is going through a few hundred applications and classifying them into ‘yes’. whether you have thought through this decision to apply. and fit in the department you have applied to? Language Avoid slang and abbreviations. Be careful while using humor . or have someone else read it. through a logical progression of ideas. a careful reading may yield several “the’s” that are superfluous). they expect to see the following in an essay – What areas are you interested in and why. Try to make your essay crisp.it can misfire and harm your chances. Go through the objectives and pitfalls often. cutting out unnecessary adverbs. and ask yourself if there seems to be an abrupt shift between ideas in two consecutive paragraphs. Structure This follows naturally from flow. the essay should logically progress from paragraph to paragraph. Do all the paragraphs mesh together to form a cogent whole? Does the essay. How well defined your interests are. For acronyms. Tone Use a consistent tone throughout the essay . your essay need not be great writing. enthusiasm.Language Issues | Top Take another 7-8 days to write 3-4 more drafts. To this end. there is no harm in looking for the most apt phrase or sentence.

Ask your readers to pay particular attention to the following points: The beginning and the end – do they hold interest? The logical and smooth flow of ideas – does each paragraph smoothly give way to the next? The structure – does each paragraph bring home a central idea and contribute to the overall ‘feel’ of the essay? Are the paragraphs in proper positions? . Make it easy on them – smoothen the transition between paragraphs. a professor. for instance. and only if you are making a point about your learnings or achievements during that experience.How do you think graduate school will help you. your readers will have a tough time keeping up. or can be included in your resume. Have you talked about specific incidents that illustrate your interest or familiarity with the subject. a parent or a relative. for example: A college or work project that was instrumental in confirming your interest in the field (be sure to include a recommendation from your guide!). Extra-curricular activities that brought out useful aspects in you (leadership skills or team activities are particularly helpful for business school applications!). an older friend. ‘ I hope the admissions committee finds my application up to their expectations’. Polishing The Essay | Top Showing your stuff around It is essential to show your SoP to a few people whose opinion you respect – an English teacher from school. Weed out all other information that sounds like repetition (it will only irritate the reader). Does the essay end well? Does it leave the reader with a sense of completion? Avoid usage of cliches like. • Are you repeating information that is available from the resume? Do so very sparingly. A book or person who had a strong influence on you. Does the essay bring out your personality? Or could it have been written by just about anybody? Have you mentioned why you are applying to that particular school? Does this section of the essay demonstrate that you have researched the school and the program? DON’T stop at the standard formula phrase. Is the tone too formal or not formal enough? Be professional yet informal – the tone you would take with your Principal or Head of Department. so avoid cliched ideas. Does your essay cover these points? Does it do so in an honest and interesting manner? Many of the students applying will have backgrounds similar to yours. Include among these. or does not actively contribute towards making a point in your essay. Use it at least 3-4 times during this last stage of polishing up your SoP. but should persuade the reader to stay with you. • • • • • • • • • • This self-check will yield a few ideas for improvement.’ Does your essay flow smoothly? If it is choppy and abruptly jumps from paragraph to paragraph. 2-3 people who know you well. ‘I am applying to XYZ because of it’s great reputation in _______. What experience have you had that will help. or show something about you? These incidents might include. Does your essay have an interesting beginning? This need not be witty.

Any MBA aspirant must keep all these in mind while preparing for the tests. Use a smaller font size for this. nothing fancy. print out your SoP on a separate sheet of paper. Listen to their suggestions carefully but remember that this is your essay. Don’t use colors. In this article. Fact No. take a photocopy of the form. Read the essay carefully two-three times for spelling or grammar errors the program did not detect. crisp copies. only those that make sense to you The Final Printout | Top Once you have the final draft ready (you have to stop sometime!). cramped handwriting – the essay should never cause strain while reading. You don’t have to implement every suggestion. Look for and correct any anomalies in spacing. If it doesn’t. 1 Any business school in India (or abroad). write slowly and carefully and if necessary. boldface and italics (except in the title. Make sure that the printer cartridge is good enough to print clear. Make sure that the school and program mentioned in the essay are correct. the group discussion (GD) and the personal interview is designed to check three basic skills : A. We hope that this effort will help the students hone their preparations for the final kill. If you must print or write your essay on the application form itself. while selecting students. Making it to the MBA : The Nitty Gritty This article is basically a bird’s eye-view and a synopsis of the skills required to clear the rigorous entrance tests for the Indian business schools. capacity to take stress and yet produce results and C. Don’t use special stationery or your letterhead. and you don’t have the option of attaching more pages. do the following before you take a final printout: • • • • • • • • Run a spelling and grammar check. if you have one). Avoid special effects like underlining. font and margins. cut portions of the essay to reduce its length. disastrous at worst. use a good pen. communicate intelligently and effectively with other humans. While writing by hand. academic oriented knowledge. Choose a readable font and size. are there incidents or aspects the essay should mention? Ask your readers to write their comments on the essay. Also. Any other approach shall be myopic at best. Include a header in the top right-hand corner with your name and the name of the program you are applying to. Thus. we’ll discuss certain basic issues about the selection procedure for MBA. to ensure that it fits easily in the space provided. . Keep the printed copy carefully in a folder till you are ready to transfer it to the application envelope. but a much better idea than reducing font size to unreadable levels or using tiny. B. Print or write the essay on the copy first. tries to take those who are suited to its environment and are competent enough to take the rigours of the course.The style and language – are they appropriate and consistent? Does the essay have too many cliches? Does it repeat particular words or phrases too often? Does it have too many superlatives? The tone – is it unnecessarily boastful or overly modest? The quality of the essay – is it boring? Does it bring out the writer’s personality? Does it include superfluous information? Or conversely. draw light pencil lines on the form to ensure that your letters are uniform and in a straight line. spend some time discussing it with them. Put in a good-quality sheet of white paper. the entire selection process comprising the written test. This is painful. Take a rough print and show it to someone else who can read it over carefully for errors and anomalies. As far as possible. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT.

2 Be ready for the worst. 8 Visit libraries. So realize the fact that unless you are ready to give your 100% to the preparations to these tests nothing may come out of it. This develops the positive mindset towards the language which in turn may help tremendously in the language sections in the written test and later on at the GD stage. you ought to prepare yourself for the rigours of the modern managers’ workplace. And you should be ready to put it in. reasonably sensible students need not be told that when they are preparing for the RC section in CAT. Build upon your strengths and ensure that the weaknesses are not too damaging. Bangalore. Your competition is not only your local area ! It is Delhi. Fact No. concentrate as much as you can on the written test. and in the interview extremely cogent. This needs time. if you’ve never read anything apart from the textbooks. English Usage. remember that academics and personal background may play the most crucial part in it. It should be a simple and pleasant exercise for you before the written test. try working backwards from the options wherever possible and devise your own strategies to crack new types of problems. You must have a specific time table for your preparations and B. Knowledge of academics helps in the written test. if you don’t have any hobby at all. then it’s not adding up. The truth is : life is unpredictable and the managers’ lives all the more so. The reason is pretty simple : if you crack the written test. This means that : A. they’re automatically getting prepared for the GD part of it. knowledge of current affairs helps in the GDs and knowledge of your “Self” helps in the personal interviews. the most unexpected and the least desired! This is a fact that astonishes most of the students so accustomed to standardized test patterns and the ubiquitous “I-M-P s”. You must try to develop this mindset for yourself. Don’t get bogged down by GDs. your horizons get even broader. Pune. smart and dedicated study schedule. 6 Be Focussed. Hence the cost-benefit analysis proves it beyond doubt that score maximisation in the written test should be the first priority. 3 Knowledge is the most important aspect but it is not everything. nobody ever made it to the best b-schools in India without a consistent. Fact No. rest assured!! Fact No. Ask yourself the simple question : Can I analyse situations ? Can I think beyond the obvious ? Am I a mere database or a thinking human being ? Fact No. you must crack the RC and EU sections in MBA tests at the same time ensuring that your quantitative portions are not left out. So please put away all your school and college time conceptions and have the “Managerial Mindset. Always have a good friend circle and discuss things with them. If you have never participated in any extracurricular activity. Fact No. From the next article onwards. With every new type of book you read. In fact. 9 No teacher in the world can make a champion out of you in a few months. You must work in every crucial test area (i. You must have a good . When you are 4 or 5 weeks into your preparations. 4 No matter what happens. you should be able to identify your core strengths and weaknesses. we’ll give a thorough analysis of each test area and its peculiarities. Mumbai. Fact No. These MBA Entrance tests basically test your innate capacity to react to new situations. Vijaywada. Thus. Make your informal groups and at least for 30 min per day. In the written test. Fact No. In fact. Be careful : your prime focus now is cracking as many Written Tests as possible. by virtue of an active environment. The simple advice is : Prepare your syllabus thoroughly and be ready for any test pattern whatsoever. in the GD. Hyderabad. Literally.Fact No. to English books and newspapers all through his life.” as we call it. This is not to scare you but to present the factual picture. A bland approach to knowledge gathering can be self-defeating. 7 Be sensible and prepare for the GD and Interview stage right from now. if you read English newspapers because your teacher asks you to do so. extremely suave and cutting-edge. As far as the PIs are concerned. As you prepare for the test. (Remember : in most exams every section carries a cutoff limit). Read diverse stuff. Break the mental barriers. if you’re basically good at English. discuss current issues and general topics. you have to be super quick. again and again mull over the basic tricks of shortcuts. Except for geniuses. Baroda. for ex. and Data Interpretation). It helps. Coimbatore. Reading Comprehension. There are students all over the nation fighting for the same few seats in top notch B-schools and you’ll be benchmarked against them. This is a crucial difference between successful students and unsuccessful ones. 5 Be aware of the extent and magnitude of the competition.e. etc. An average metro student would have been exposed. If your fundamentals are in place. the moment you decide to enter the field of high-flying management. Mathematical Aptitude. But more important than possessing mere knowledge is the art of presenting it. you’re miles ahead of the competition.

These traits are an integral part of a personality of a student and have to be inculcated as strong values to be made a part of their own system of learning. 10 YOU CAN DO IT.Do your homework before you attempt any national level MBA entrance test. Personality. Only a perfect Fit of all these qualities will make it through. if you are appearing for MBA entrance. Out of a mass of thousands of aspirants. Management has to be taken up as a profession and not a mere source of Income. focus on it as a Career Alternative and just an entrance exam.In your approach to preparation a balance is a must. Perseverance to survive the grind at the B-School . Needless to emphasize. Focus on all the test area specifically and not over do or under do a test area. you might simply lose points on account of the same. Home work . Only a perfect Fit of all these qualities will make it through. but are focusing on the areas that need to be developed at the same time. It is possible that initially you may feel let down looking at your performance in the mock papers but every thing takes time. that MBA offers every aspirant a challenge to make it to a Top B-school. Fact No. determination and dedication. determination and dedication. analysing your approach for a better score in the test paper? Face it .For the challenge ahead. manage you time effectively. we urge you to get started now!! YOU CAN DO IT. Personality.MBA entrance is all about a perfect mix of attitude and aptitude. Clearing the MBA tests is a matter of consistent drive. Communication skills & Sincerity. Power.profile : What’s your niche after all ? Think about it. Language Skills. consequently followed by a very bright and lucrative career. These primarily include Speed & Accuracy. go prepared. Language Skills. Balance . As encapsulated in our catchphrase “Vision. This happens. The A to Z of these values can be listed as follows: Attitude . Direction – It is imperative to give yourself a proper direction for career pathway i. Drive”. and you have to face it “Rome was not built in a day” Gear up . Usually a student fails to perform only on account of a test area he has been strong in and therefore had been neglecting it during preparatory stage. It is possible that you may be solving the mock entrance papers with correct techniques. Know the patterns of the question papers in the past. Clearing the MBA tests is a matter of consistent drive. Drive”. However clearing the MBA entrance requires specific traits and preparation. These primarily include Speed & Accuracy. you must gear up for the element of surprise in the MBE entrance test paper. This is the crux of the matter. Conviction . Try to visualise it from the examiner’s point of view.Doing right things is also equally important to efficiency (doing things right). Just when you think you have got the grip on vocabulary for example . Communication skills & Sincerity. Quantitative skills. analyse and formulate a strategy to attempt it. Efficacy . Bottom line. As encapsulated in our catchphrase “Vision. Power. Quantitative skills.MBA entrance is all about a perfect mix of attitude and aptitude. we urge you to get started now!! The A to Z of MBA Preparation MBA entrance today is one of the most coveted career pathway as seen by the young graduates and college going students.e. . why should he choose you after all. You ought to have a USP (Unique Selling Proposition).Take the MBA entrance preparations head on.

Management books. If you are unable to improve your scores in RC (Reading Comprehension). Ultimatum . Reading . Think about it. Killer Instinct . you will realise when it all adds up in the end. things might just happen to be in your favour at the last minute and you would realise “Thank goodness I worked on it. how can a person ever attempt the whole section?” Perseverance . This is the first step for preparation. How do you want to see yourself down the career pathway? Self employed as a consultant or a manufacturer or an exporter. I can handle it now” Quality + Quantity . how would you like yourself to be remembered as…? Give yourself a vision combine it with values and look at MBA as a mere stepping stone to achieving it.Approach the preparations with a Do or Die attitude. Sincerity . Accept first that you need to learn and that there is much more to learn than what you know. . start reading today.e. could you have solved the same question which you got right in lesser time? Optimistic attitude . find out the areas you are weak in. For this you need to develop Tolerance. Read magazines. you are doping for yourself and your career. have you been able to manage your time well in the test ? evaluate your performance and be discreet in your judgment. Nitty Gritty . You cannot afford to take anything for granted or leave it to chance.Give yourself an ultimatum. Use you performance benchmarks to motivate yourself and a tool for improvement. Newspapers. etc. Check out whether or not you have been able to rectify the errors you made plus also work on the time factor i. Wisdom . your career is on the line. Vision and Values . does not help go in for the right kind of quantity. Start with acceptance that “Yes I failed” or “I did not get good enough marks because I messed up” the fact that you have scored less only indicates that you still have a scope to improve drastically. It is advisable to start at least 12 to 18 months in advance to give yourself a cutting edge.To self and cause is a pre requisite for MBA entrance preparation. Perseverance is the golden key.Keep working no matter what it takes.Introspection – Do your SWOT analysis. You cannot afford to ignore it honestly you do not have much of a choice but to fall in love with reading.Bead. 100 years from now when none of us reading this article would be alive. not solving enough examples or even not even revising regularly remember you need to be sincere to yourself. Students tend to lose focus after a while and try to find out short cuts to learning. Maturity . it is never to late. “its now or never. Judge your improvement . enough is never enough. Look at your self 25 years from now.Attitude makes a difference in the kind of scores you can expect.Blindly solving examples 50 questions a day or 100 questions a day or 2 papers a day etc. chances are that your reading habits have not been strong or focused on reading a variety of topics.Approach your preparations with maturity. not meant for me” or “This is so lengthy. I have to make it happen” This will help you to boost your morale and make you work still more and especially when you need it the most.To handle frustration and failures. tell yourself “ I am going to make it even if it takes working long hours and late nights for the preparation“ Like what you do .Many students indicate “I hate reading philosophy !!” well how do you plan to face a philosophical passage in the RC section in an exam for all you know it might have 12 questions attached to it.Work on the detailing. Tolerance . Work on it.During your preparation focus on improvements and not just high scores have you improved on the test taking techniques ? . Reference books. Focus on it for making things happen for yourself and refrain from thinking parameters like “this is too tough. get your technique right by using qualitative preparatory material.A vision for self is a must. cramming. Do not leave anything for the last minute. or in the corporate sector as a CEO.To work and plan out well in advance. read and yet more read. preparing on the topics you hate or don’t know.

Do not harbour the typically public-sector-like romantic notion that your employer is responsible for ensuring your life-long job. This. It simply means keeping your wild-cards open till the last moment. diversify your skill-set. these can not be done at all after you finish your schooling. understand clearly that experience of the past is possibly the worst indicator of what lies ahead ! In fact.To reach the Pinnacle of a Successful Career Pathway Our Future . the only thing that we might learn from our past experience is that the entire world is changing at a breakneck speed and in order to stay where you are you need to run pretty fast.. we do get a feel that something somewhere is amiss. and at least one strong hobby. extensive reading skills.business policies that worked in the past are anachronistic today. not only should you be good at your core competence i.. language and region will be as anachronous in the working place of the next millennium as a steam engine is today! Your success will be largely determined by your capacity to integrate yourself in a largely cosmopolitan workplace. It gives one the terrific advantage of planning at a leisurely pace and then implementing the plan systematically. The employer of the future will be keener to recruit a holistic individual rather than a mere specialist who is found wanting in personality areas. while maintaining your own identity. These can serve as a good indicator and a general road-map. a lot of time and must start during the school days. be cosmopolitan.in fact. regular learning process and a creative bent of mind is the basis of future progress. the contribution of regular university education can be dramatically low in many cases. Suffocating boundaries of gender. one must start early.. To develop such a plan.in any case several brains are better than one. you must work on multiple plans at the same time.Yen . but the above statement by Swami has never been more relevant! Today when we see huge masses of our youth desperately struggling to gain a foothold in the intensely competitive marketplace and to carve a niche for themselves. Secondly. you must consult as many experts (or so-called experts!) as possible.Give it a thought Now ! Swami Vivekanand has so pithily put it : “All of us wish to be kings but few realize that the crown will come to us on its own the day we are ready for it. Having a knee-jerk reaction to situations may not be the best thing to do. outdated and outclassed individual. at least 2 major languages including English. interpersonal human skills.. The rate at which all the economies are opening up and disparate cultures are coming together is a clear pointer to the fact that narrow-minded. One caveat though : Diversification of skill set should not at all mean that one should be scared of specialising in a skill. This combination will prepare you adequately for the future work-place where getting ahead is more a function of personality skills and presentation capabilities than mere bookish knowledge. Thinking about your future must involve discounting newer technological developments as fast as possible. the converse may be true !! Thus. you must learn to manage your time well. First of all. So in case a particular game-plan does not work out. Thirdly. is possibly the best preparation you can do for the future.For success (a strong urge/desire – fire in the belly as we say) Zeal . As a young man keen on breaking new grounds. caste.. In this age of retrenchment of the inefficient and survival of the fittest (no social Darwinism intended!)... parochial and provincial mindsets will not be able to integrate themselves wholly with the mainstream in the coming millennium.. if a young man decides today to make his own mark.e. Constant up gradation of skills. at least one well-known game or sport. your chosen field of academics.these things need time. what should be an ideal game plan ? Let us try and list down certain rules-of-thumb. you will realize in due course of time.. What this means is that tying your horses to just one post may be a fatal strategy. religion. you should also be good at supportive skills like working knowledge of computers. Worst of all. latest trends in information technology.it could well be exactly the opposite. Finally... It helps.. (Pity that the Indian PSUs still need to understand this!) . you must have an alternative backup present. Nothing is sacrosanct.” Outdated though we may think our own thinkers are. Develop a liberal mind-set. Fourthly. Thus. An analysis of the successful clearly tells that there is much more than conventional education that has gone into their making. remain self-disciplined and be as open to criticism as possible. This also gives you an ample leeway to effect changes to the plan depending on expert advice from time to time. creed. there is little that anyone can do for an inefficient. So. Be open to radical ideas and different thoughts.

and especially the established interests. provincial lifestyles have been replaced by a cosmopolitan outlook and the overall growth. what is right and what is wrong for them ? --. It might be important lest we should be left irrelevant in the global scheme of things. This is possibly a very cosmopolitan definition of education and it is unlikely that any education system in the world would be actually ensuring the most democratic distribution of knowledge. Rigid mindsets and Victorian values have given way to open minded liberalism. human society in general and western society in particular has witnessed a dramatic change in value systems and traditional approaches. Over the past 100 years or so. . to perpetuate in the coming generations the knowledge.and Define your own destiny !! Culture and Education Systematic education is the cumulative effort on part of the human society.. what comes to mind (at least my mind) is possibly a very rigid definition of human mores and customs and the way we are supposed to behave in a society.” Given these realities.. Awaken. Culture again is a diffused concept taking into account several aspects of human existence and it is almost impossible to define it in a compartmentalized manner or a rigid manner taking into account all its aspects.who gets the right to define what culture is and more important what “cultural imperialism” is ? --. that is what makes us human! Isn’t it ? Let us take a broad-minded view of life as it shall be in the net millennium. What we find is that every society has started feeling a need for its own definition of what constitutes the “right” thing for them—this may not be what is right for the others. What happens practically is that education gets segmented and parochial. For each one of us. spread and development of globalization and liberalization has ensured a “global culture. How to Shortlist a Business School . Also we find a hankering for the past values. despite apparent victory and success of the present ones.should educational institutes become a status quo perpetrating mechanism or should they actually encourage students and young people to break free of shackles and stereotyped moulds? I believe that the answer to the question lies in the above. the issue of “culture and education” or “culture v/s education” becomes extremely crucial and deserves the most open minded appreciation.. At the same time..should our young people not be left free to decide for themselves. It starts catering to local interests and provincialism rather than focusing on developing a broad minded individual capable of seeing through things and taking his own decisions. Shine. Talking of culture. This brings to mind the open contradiction in the process of growth of a young human individual..Rise..an open debate as to what liberalism actually means and to what extent can individual human independence be guaranteed without affecting societal good --. given the right kind of education. the skills and the traditions that have been accumulated over the years through collective human effort. Ultimately it is going to be a delicate balancing act. it might be different but then. What I feel is necessary is : --.. let us not underrate the collective intelligence gathered by man over millennia.

a lot is expected from that school. Thus. DIRECTOR AND THE ACADEMIC TEAM : The director plays a very important role in building a B-Schools reputation. Another benefit of the boarding programme is the increased usage of facilities such as the library and the computer center. Affiliated programmes are usually burdened with excessive bureaucracy. You can get an idea of the alumni network from the school brochure. All schools look good on paper. a visionary director ensures that the quality of teaching is above average. Of course. but a student ends up working for more than 10 hours. but the rankings vary widely. On the other hand. Companies will do their own assessment of a school based on the above parameters.since by then it had carved an enviable position for itself. SP Jain was initially affiliated to the Mumbai University but soon opted for autonomy . PLACEMENTS : Placement is a crucial factor most students look for. new B-Schools situated in the metros or highly industrialized locations might find it easier to attract companies. research etc. This goodwill directly translates into better placements. MDI shot into the limelight once Pritam Singh became it’s Director. Therefore. These days schools also have partners for student and faculty exchange. The reputation of partner schools and their international rankings can tell you a lot about the B-School. LOCATION OF THE INSTITUTE : If the school is new.There are over 900 B-schools in India . an autonomous school is rated higher than a school with a university affiliations. BOARDING PROGRAMME VERSUS DAY SCHOOL : In a typical B-School. an older school will have a larger alumni network. All B-Schools that are part of the Maharashtra CET. all the above parameters have an impact on the placements. Besides assessing personality development. Now that Singh has moved to IIM-L. ALUMNI STRENGTH : If a school’s alumni occupy senior positions in major corporates.. RESERVATIONS : Reservations of any kind can lead to a mediocre student body. AUTONOMOUS VERSUS UNIVERSITY AFFILIATED PROGRAMMES : Contrary to the common perception. A boarding programme offers much more opportunity for this kind of learning. it’s location does affect placements.or goodwill . For instance.and about half a dozen rankings. location is not much of a problem once the school has been able to build a reputation in the market. classes are held for just four hours per day. so how do you weed out the wannabees? Here is a frame work yu can use to shortlist a school. AFFILIATIONS AND PARTNERSHIPS : Many MBA courses are launched in collaboration with a reputed foreign business school. these group tasks also help the student learn from the knowledge and experience of his peers. For example. projects. presentations. As we all see it. Preparation Schedule | Top .an average will give a much better picture. You should not go by the last years placement figures alone. IIM-A started off in active collaboration with the Harvard Business School. Placements in a particular year may have been an aberration or simply the results of a great economic boom ( or bust). B-Schools with a compulsory boarding programme are rated higher than those with a day programme. and the current students. If nothing else. An HR manager would think twice before devoting 2 days time to go to a remote area. which can come in the way of fine tuning the course in line with industry standards. a lot of learning happens outside the classroom through group tasks like case study analysis. you can bet the school has a strong standing .in the corporate world. So look for the placements for at least three years . suffer from this drawback: the number of seats for students from outside is less than 10%.The batch composition is skewed in favour of a certain region and this can create an unfavourable impression on recruiters. Naturally..

These are some basic question are encountered by everyone. The idea behind giving this write-up is to help students plan their step wise preparation in the best possible manner to get maximum benefit out of IMS training program.Tyra. 1st to 15th Sept – Part B section test and Comprehensive Test + 2 SIM CATs. All coaching Institutes provides you Basic Reference Materials( with different names).Tyra or Trachenberg for this. No reference to BRM should be done after this. Short Cut Techniques : One myth need to be cleared please understand short-cut for all questions are not possible. Read first 5 chapters of either M.S Agarwal. Schedule of Preparation Last Week August – Completion of BRM of all sections followed by one week of revision. its purpose is to introduce various concepts and problems on all the topics across all the sections of CAT. Now there is no definite answer for this. . The three stage of MBA preparation: Basic Concept Build-Up Test Taking skill and practice and GD/PI & GK Preparation Basic Concept Build-Up This is the basic foundation of your preparation. it depends upon individual’s comfort which he develops by sheer practice. which section to start off.. Mathematics for MBA – R. . Learn faster calculation and adopt the attitude of making approximation as much as possible. On 21st Nov – Best Wishes to all of you. This will give a complete picture of your strength and weakness. However for students from non-maths background additional reference is suggested. The objective is to get thorough with basic concepts and get introduced to different type of problems. Don’t try to remember any formula for short-cut it always leads to confusion rather than help. A thorough reading of it should suffice for students from Maths or Engineering background. 3rd Week of Sept .How you prepare is more important than how much you are preparing.Revision of all class test (all important questions) and part –B 1st Oct to 15th Nov – Only test practice + SIM CATs. The success at CAT every year is a function of both level of preparedness and method adopted for it. Quicker Maths – M. Test Taking Skills : How much time to devote to each section.

DIRECTOR AND THE ACADEMIC TEAM : The director plays a very important role in building a B-Schools reputation. classes are held for just four hours per day. presentations. and the current students.. Thus. BOARDING PROGRAMME VERSUS DAY SCHOOL : In a typical B-School.since by then it had carved an enviable position for itself. These days schools also have partners for student and faculty exchange. For example. a lot is expected from that school. Now that Singh has moved to IIM-L. On the other hand. An HR manager would think twice before devoting 2 days time to go to a remote area. SP Jain was initially affiliated to the Mumbai University but soon opted for autonomy . .The batch composition is skewed in favour of a certain region and this can create an unfavourable impression on recruiters. an older school will have a larger alumni network. For example. but a student ends up working for more than 10 hours. All B-Schools that are part of the Maharashtra CET.or goodwill . You can get an idea of the alumni network from the school brochure. projects.This schedule is specific to those taking coaching from IMS. IIM-A started off in active collaboration with the Harvard Business School. Another benefit of the boarding programme is the increased usage of facilities such as the library and the computer center. but others can also co-relate this by just changing the terminology. a lot of learning happens outside the classroom through group tasks like case study analysis. If nothing else. Download my exclusive preparation schedule here. The reputation of partner schools and their international rankings can tell you a lot about the B-School. ALUMNI STRENGTH : If a school’s alumni occupy senior positions in major corporates. TIME students read SIM CATs as AIMCATs etc. an autonomous school is rated higher than a school with a university affiliations. Of course. a visionary director ensures that the quality of teaching is above average. MDI shot into the limelight once Pritam Singh became it’s Director. suffer from this drawback: the number of seats for students from outside is less than 10%. Affiliated programmes are usually burdened with excessive bureaucracy. AFFILIATIONS AND PARTNERSHIPS : Many MBA courses are launched in collaboration with a reputed foreign business school. B-Schools with a compulsory boarding programme are rated higher than those with a day programme. it’s location does affect placements. All schools look good on paper. but the rankings vary widely. Naturally. For instance. you can bet the school has a strong standing . RESERVATIONS : Reservations of any kind can lead to a mediocre student body. Besides assessing personality development. How to Shortlist a Business School There are over 900 B-schools in India .and about half a dozen rankings. which can come in the way of fine tuning the course in line with industry standards.in the corporate world. research etc. Therefore. This goodwill directly translates into better placements. A boarding programme offers much more opportunity for this kind of learning. new B-Schools situated in the metros or highly industrialized locations might find it easier to attract companies. so how do you weed out the wannabees? Here is a frame work yu can use to shortlist a school. these group tasks also help the student learn from the knowledge and experience of his peers. LOCATION OF THE INSTITUTE : If the school is new.. Besides it is highly recommended that all those who are preparing should DEFINITELY go in for SIM CATs conducted by IMS. AUTONOMOUS VERSUS UNIVERSITY AFFILIATED PROGRAMMES : Contrary to the common perception. location is not much of a problem once the school has been able to build a reputation in the market. since it is the most comprehensive and exhaustive test around and the results most accurately predict actual CAT results.

mba. But schools want you to have already identified an area of interest that you plan to pursue after you obtain this broad base of knowledge. It also misses a major point: You should choose a school because it matches your academic and career interests. Companies will do their own assessment of a school based on the above parameters. you must have a clear picture of what you want to do with an MBA. Experience has shown that applicants without clear goals will not have them by graduation. You will be competing against candidates who can articulate why they want the degree and relate their goals to the strengths of a particular program. post-undergraduate work experience in a responsible capacity and can clearly articulate his or her motivations for wanting to earn an MBA. all the above parameters have an impact on the placements. At a minimum. They are reasonably clear about what is needed to get there and what it takes to be successful.PLACEMENTS : Placement is a crucial factor most students look for. You are not ready if: Your career goals are no more specific than “I want to manage people” or “I want to command a higher salary.an average will give a much better picture. The strongest candidates competing to gain admission into graduate business schools are very focused on their intended career paths. You are avoiding the job market by buying additional time in school. so you need to have a good sense of what you are planning to do with the degree. having that focus from the start is the key to challenging your assumptions and exploring an MBA field in depth. Although you may adjust your original plan while in business school. You should not go by the last years placement figures alone. and academic achievement. All programs are better at some things than others. Business school admissions counselors want to see evidence of your professional interests to ensure that you will take full advantage of the MBA program. So look for the placements for at least three years . The idea behind giving this write-up is to help students plan their step wise preparation in the best possible manner to get maximum benefit out of IMS training program.” There are more would-be MBAs than seats available in MBA programs. This is an expensive way to plan for your future. Are you one of those people? Can you compete favorably in the applicant pool? The MBA is designed for people who want to learn about business across many different disciplines. Most MBA programs do not provide the time to find those interests during the course of study.com) Preparation Schedule | Top How you prepare is more important than how much you are preparing. The success at CAT every year is a function of both level of preparedness and method adopted for it. the typical MBA candidate has several years of full-time. . What criteria are important to you? Courtesy (www. Therefore. Signs That You Are Not Ready To be ready for business school. they consider career history and aspirations. Placements in a particular year may have been an aberration or simply the results of a great economic boom ( or bust). As we all see it. What makes a Good MBA Candidate ? Just wanting the degree is not enough. evidence of leadership potential.

but others can also co-relate this by just changing the terminology. . Mathematics for MBA – R. Read first 5 chapters of either M. The objective is to get thorough with basic concepts and get introduced to different type of problems. it depends upon individual’s comfort which he develops by sheer practice. This will give a complete picture of your strength and weakness. This schedule is specific to those taking coaching from IMS. 3rd Week of Sept .Tyra or Trachenberg for this.S Agarwal. All coaching Institutes provides you Basic Reference Materials( with different names). Short Cut Techniques : One myth need to be cleared please understand short-cut for all questions are not possible.. Learn faster calculation and adopt the attitude of making approximation as much as possible. These are some basic question are encountered by everyone. its purpose is to introduce various concepts and problems on all the topics across all the sections of CAT. Quicker Maths – M. No reference to BRM should be done after this. Schedule of Preparation Last Week August – Completion of BRM of all sections followed by one week of revision. 1st to 15th Sept – Part B section test and Comprehensive Test + 2 SIM CATs. On 21st Nov – Best Wishes to all of you. Now there is no definite answer for this. However for students from non-maths background additional reference is suggested. A thorough reading of it should suffice for students from Maths or Engineering background. since it is the most .Revision of all class test (all important questions) and part –B 1st Oct to 15th Nov – Only test practice + SIM CATs. Don’t try to remember any formula for short-cut it always leads to confusion rather than help.The three stage of MBA preparation: Basic Concept Build-Up Test Taking skill and practice and GD/PI & GK Preparation Basic Concept Build-Up This is the basic foundation of your preparation. Besides it is highly recommended that all those who are preparing should DEFINITELY go in for SIM CATs conducted by IMS. which section to start off.Tyra. TIME students read SIM CATs as AIMCATs etc. For example. Test Taking Skills : How much time to devote to each section.

I hope you understood the point I want to convey. Imagine in the first page of PS section in CAT paper there are 10 questions of which 2.4. They contain probably the largest and best collection of questions from all topics. In other words you need to attempt all set of DI section. How to get confidence in DI and RC : DI and RC are like diamonds the more you brush the more they shine. more is the familiarity. 2/3rd of all the questions are easy and rest .7 and 8. Never forget IIMs or others are looking for managers not intellectual. The more type of problem done.7 and 8 are type of problem you have done earlier.4. Do I need to attempt all the question of a given set? No. of course 2. the more is your confidence. Next glance through rest of set of questions. you need to pick the least complicated set first and then next and so on. Now if I ask which is the problem you would attempt first. This is the real essence of sectional test. Next question is how ? Lets start with PS and VA: Remember the biggest confidence is with the student who is introduced to all type of problems in both PS and VA section. the more familiarity. until all of the questions in the set are easy. For DI follow these 4 steps : Prioritizing the set of questions: Generally DI is given in 5-6 sets of questions. Time allocation : DI is all about understanding data clearly and pure calculation after that. If still time is left go randomly for the difficult ones left. Keep solving all the easy ones and leave the difficult ones. Finer Points | Top Lets talk about some finer points in your preparation: Why so much stress on sectional test: What a student needs before sitting in the CAT . So what to do: the best is to attempt all easy questions from each set then go randomly to the difficult ones.comprehensive and exhaustive test around and the results most accurately predict actual CAT results. Choosing the easy questions: The only way to find the easy questions in a set is to make sure that you see all the questions at least once. First look for DS questions because they are the simplest in the entire paper. which itself is a rare possibility. The idea is not to get stuck with any question. is to have confidence in all the sections. Repeat this for all sets. In other words the paper will seem easy the more the type of problem you have practiced. engineers please don’t get sentimental with any questions because CAT paper is designed to test your ability more in planning than solving. Download my exclusive preparation schedule here.

Good RC skills can be developed only over a period of time. this emphasis on RC because by October you feel comfortable with most of section but RC always remains a weak point. Lot of people do make poor beginning while doing approximation but never lose heart even a sincere practice for one month will help you reach 70% accuracy level which is good enough. I love to do exact calculation. Whatever is the time allocated in the first 2/3rd make sure you rush through all the sets at least once and must have picked all the easy ones. why. There are students who are highly talented but cannot keep their concentration for more than 1hour it’s all because of lack of zeal and passion to make success.K Pandey or Edgan Thorpe Preparation Time: How much time to invest – In next 120 days at least 4-6 hours daily. A daily habit of reading editorial of a leading newspaper or any serious stuff for at least 1hour will help to a great extent.difficult and time consuming ones. Final Advice: What is all required for CAT is fundamental knowledge and mental strength. Most talented students who are not able to get through in written are those who fail in RC (please read this sentence again). If this is your attitude then my sincere suggestion is try becoming a rocket scientist not an MBA. Suggested Books: English Grammar – A practical English grammar by Thomson and Martinet Calculation Speed – Speed System by Trachenberg or 1st 3 chapters of M. Sectional and Full Length Tests | Top . What about RC ? For most of CAT aspirants RC seems like a horror film. So you need the daily dose of serious stuff to make you comfortable on the D-Day. Last but not the least please stay away from calculators till your exams are not over. Why is to so? The basic reason most of us don’t possess a good reading habit. CAT aspirants are advised to read newspapers. What ever may be you method of preparation if its not coupled with high motivation you are bound to lose the race. This could be best understood when solving sectional test. Approximation making : I am a perfectionist.Tyra Reasoning – M. The idea is to read everything that one can. magazines and books so that the habit of reading is inculcated and the range of reading widens. I know its not that easy but a sincere practice of sectional test will give you the desired mindset. The problem with RC is that it makes a student mentally tired.

The point I am trying to make is that you can never do enough as far as words are concerned. Full Length Tests are similar to the ones that you face in the real exams. These include FIBs. They are meant to be taken in one seating without any breaks and never more than one a day. I will add more stuff as soon as I get them. Analogies.Sectional Tests are very important because they contain large number of questions on similar topics. I have added some more resources here s that you may find useful in your efforts to build up your vocabulary. Do go through them. I will be adding more test as soon as I have time. while appearing for sectional tests aim for accuracy rather than speed. The absolute must dos are the IMS Vocabulary List and the GRE Guide' Wordlist by BARRONS. • • • • • The Dictionary The Top 1000 Most Used Words Most Commonly Used Nouns Ad-World Vocabulary Business Vocabulary CAT-alogue | Top . you are very thorough with all the different types of questions on that particular subject. Sectional Tests : Quantitative Aptitude : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 Reading Comprehension : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 Logical Reasoning : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 Verbal Ability : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 Full Length Tests : Test 1 | Test 2 | Test 3 | Test 4 | Test 5 | Test 6 | Test 7 | Test 8 Vocabulary Resources | Top Almost 15 to 25 questions in the Verbal section of CAT and about 40 to 50 questions in XAT are direct word based questions. you can solve these 20 questions in t. I have added some Tests below. about 7 to 8 mins. Enjoy solving these for the moment. Try to maintain a balance between speed and accuracy. How this helps is that by the time you have completed some sectional test. Now the thing about these questions is that you either know the words or you don' If you know the words. They are meant to test both your test taking skills and concentration. Which means you will have the time to devote extra attention to the other sections. because you would have cleared the cut-off in this section even without attempting the RC questions. Meanings. Antonyms and Synonyms etc.

When asked to begin the test. there is no harm in intelligent guessing. take note of the time as per your watch. apart from. Do not go overboard in sections or areas that you are strong in at the expense of your weaker ones. dissimilar etc. Last but not the least. sharpener(s) and enough number of HB pencils. not. a section like RC should not be done at the fag end when mental fatigue is likely to have set in. take a minute or two to familiarize yourself with the test pattern and general instructions. You should keep a cool head and not get stressed. This is especially true for questions that are inherently subjective (typically in the English part of the test). When you begin the test. Success in CAT depends to a considerable extent. eraser(s). put in your best.Objective of a CAT Paper • • • Minimum number of attempts Desired level of accuracy Securing sectional cut-offs The three Mantra required to achieve the above stated: • • • • Time Management Choosing the right question Positive mental frame work The final CAT-alogue for November 21st • • • • • Ensure that you are carrying the CAT admit card. if you are unable to decide between two options. If you have already spent time on a question without making any significant headway just forget it and move on. Most people give up halfway through the test due to a combination of mental fatigue and a growing feeling that their chances are diminishing with every minute. Do not get into an ego hassle with any question. guess but guess fast. Be reassured that you would have left a lot of questions unanswered anyway. Do not hesitate to skip a question. If the test or a particular section seems inordinately difficult to you. chances are that most others are also facing the same music. watch / stop watch. Avoid losing your concentration due to a tough section or a string of tough questions. ensure that no mismatch happens between your answer and the oval which you shade in the AFAS. The day will surely belong to those who maintain a peak rate performance throughout the test. For example. For those who prefer block transfer. For instance. Be clear when to give up. Fill in your details properly in the AFAS. A very good overall score without the minimum required in each section is of little use for most top-level institutes. Always remember that CAT is a ‘relative marking’ test where the cut-off scores will vary according to two factors namely the difficulty level of the test and others’ performance. Whereas some amount of caution is necessary. Bear in mind that your aim is not to attempt all questions but to select questions carefully and to try to attempt most of them correctly. Simply. If time permits. however only in those cases. Scan and look for words like except. Reach the test venue well in time and make yourself comfortable. Stay focused on the job at hand till the very end. It is advisable that you attempt questions in your ‘strong’ areas initially and not leave your weakest section till the very end. Make a mental assessment of the order in which you will attempt the questions. Always try to hit the end of the section without becoming unduly nervous about the number of problems you have had to skip in the process. do make sure that you transfer all your solved answers to the • • • • • • • • • . you can always come back to those skipped. where you have clearly narrowed down your choice to the two “close” ones. the cut-offs will shoot up and vice-versa. Read the question instructions carefully. on your stress management skills. untrue. Hence do not have any pre-conceived notions about the score that you need to attain – if the paper is easy. Be prudent.

There is no rule how much to attempt in VA or RC separately. CAT look for smart people more than those who are academically superior. Intelligent Guessing . Do not get into an ego hassle with any question. Be prudent. Until unless you make proper appropriation of timing its not possible to get cut-offs. RC. So never lose hopes even if the first few question of each section are tough. More Gyan | Top Time Distribution – The first and most important thing to keep in mind. if you are unable to decide between two options. in my last 7 years of CAT taking every year I find there at least 70-80 questions which an average student could always do and get them correct. Freedom to choose – The best part of CAT is that there are lots of question to choose from. PS.15-20min. Simply. Always try to hit the end of the section without becoming unduly nervous about the number of problems you have had to skip in the process.Success in CAT depends to a considerable extent. Be clear when to give up.OMR sheet correctly at regular intervals. You should keep a cool head and not get stressed. There would certainly be some sitters in each section. Chose questions wisely – This is key to your number of attempts and overall score. More Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs) | Top . DS. Cut-Offs – Cut offs are always for the entire section not for sub-section. Bear in mind that your aim is not to attempt all questions but to select questions carefully and to try to attempt most of them correctly. where you have clearly narrowed down your choice to the two “close” ones. guess but guess fast. Keep Your Cool . It simply means if VA is simple do more from it and less from RC or vice versa. For example. DI/LR30min.Whereas some amount of caution is necessary. CAT is easy – Though difficult to believe. Avoid losing your concentration due to a tough section or a string of tough questions. If you have already spent time on a question without making any significant headway just forget it and move on. on your stress management skills. The most important . you can always come back to those skipped. For example it’s enough to get 18+ in VA/RC combined. This is especially true for questions that are inherently subjective (typically in the English part of the test). Do not hesitate to skip a question. chances are that most others are also facing the same music. Hence do not have any preconceived notions about the score that you need to attain – if the paper is easy. there is no harm in intelligent guessing.Always remember that CAT is a ‘relative marking’ test where the cut-off scores will vary according to two factors namely the difficulty level of the test and others’ performance. But don’t ignore any sub-section. VA. Be reassured that you would have left a lot of questions unanswered anyway.40min. If the test or a particular section seems inordinately difficult to you. put in your best. however only in those cases. go ahead and find them.10min. If time permits.20-25min. the cut-offs will shoot up and viceversa.

Are the Section cutoffs for IIMs mentioned sacrosanct? The cut-offs which we have mentioned. 2003 . Does IIMB prefer work ex? Though last year IIMB had called many students who had work ex. if you can get a score of around 45. what are my chances with IIMs. IMI Delhi. it depends on many factors as how many students have applied to these institutes and again a very high number of students are in the score range of 50. will I get a call? IIMA prefers people good in English. What are the cutoffs for FORE School. you have said 90. then you have to clear the sectional cutoffs. How to prepare July 14.? It is seen that work ex helps and the net score can be less than the normal cutoffs for freshers. Though the sectional cutoffs are compulsory you can expect a call from IIM with the net score of more than 65. What are the cutoffs for TAPMI. are possible cut-offs and lot many other factors such as work ex and acads will be significant. you should start your preparation for Group Discussion and Personal Interview. But remember the MICA tests you on others skills through its own test and if you should always apply only if you are interested in the career of Advertising. If you have a good work ex more than 2 years and can get a score of 58+ you have a chance of getting a call from either of the IIM. TOI said 40. you can apply to Institutes like TAPMI. without spending much time in anticipating. MDI? The cutoffs for SPJain and MDI would be around 58-60. will I get a call from IIMA? If you expect a call from IIMs. Does your SimCAT cutoff take into account the actual performance of majority of students? I had consistently got 98+ percentile in SimCATs with similar scores in actual CAT. NIRMA? The cutoffs at these levels are very difficult to determine. The last date of applying to MDI is 29th Nov. MICA? The cutoffs would be around 55.000 and it does not make much of a difference. If you have score more than 95 percentile consistently and also shown similar performance in the CAT then there is a very high chance that you would get a call. Though the essay for SPJain will make a difference in selection. The last date for applying to MICA is over. but other sections attempted only 40. How many students all India took the CAT. can I expect a call? The SimCAT percentile score largely takes into account the national performance of the students. but at the same time the academic performance of such students is also very good. which Institutes I should apply? Most of the students have attempted around 60-70 and. the same thing might not be valid as the selection criteria changes every year. I have attempted 60-70 and can get a score of 45. KJ Somaiya. as the seats of IIMs are constant. you might get a call as DI/DS and Verbal Sections relatively have low cut-offs. but have a good 2 years work ex. and Fore School of Mgmt. IMI. I have attempted 50 in English and expect 40. Note: If you are sure that you might score more than 40+ score in the CAT. I hope to get a slightly low score of 58-60. NIRMA.000. hence the cutoff could be guessed at 48-50.000 does it make a difference? The number of students is more than 80. As a stray cases IIMA must have given calls. What are the cutoffs for SP Jain.

It will enhance your level of comfort while reading abstract and tedious passages in the reading comprehension sections. make a conscious effort to improve verbal skills. A good starting point is to identify weak areas since that can improve performance tremendously. Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI) exam and Faculty of Management Studies (FMS) exam are some of the most sought after examinations in India. A critical area in a well-rounded preparation in the early days is to keep abreast of current developments in the economy.it improves vocabulary and reading speed as well as concentration levels.imbibe the habit of reading editorials in newspapers and magazines. numeric ability. maintain a separate lexicon of your own to note these words down and refer to them regularly. group discussion and personal interview. The examinations are different from conventional examinations and are conducted in various stages to test knowledge. This would help . geometry and trigonometry. those from a non-science background fearing mathematics would benefit from starting with an elementary high school book to understanding basics of algebra. corporate sector and major world events. Management entrance exams are an elimination process. verbal reasoning and ability. On the other hand. Since performance is judged on a relative scale. working out average. Working quickly with numbers increases problem-solving speed and enables tackling voluminous calculations with remarkable ease. politics.written test. data interpretation and sufficiency. Practice additions. reading comprehension. Extensive reading has a two-pronged benefit . Indulge in extensive reading on complex issues . Broadly. both knowledge and speed are of equal importance. Look up meanings of all unfamiliar words you come across in a thesaurus and try to remember them. commercial mathematics. For instance. The first stage is an objective type written exam. evaluate a strategy that would help you gain expertise in them. drawing deductions and decision-making. the testing process can be classified into three stages . it is normally the latter that needs to be developed and can often prove to be a crucial in the written test. Some exams carry a section on general knowledge. the time has arrived to start planning on preparations for the entrance examinations. no area of testing can really be ignored or overlooked. train the brain in quick mental calculations. While the former is broadly present in every individual. if you find verbal ability section a weak one. At the same time. The MBA examination is a test of speed and knowledge in reading comprehension. graduate to a higher level of mathematics. Think of some relevant topics and attempt to organise mock GD sessions with your peer group. multiplications. Based on your core skills. Once the basics are clear in a few weeks. Perhaps. capacity for analysing situations. general awareness and inter personal skills. Analyse weak areas Competition being stiff. Most questions in the numeric section would be based on these mathematical concepts. Testing pattern The Common Admission Test (CAT) jointly conducted on behalf of the six Indian Institutes of Management (IIM). squares and cubing of integers.Start early on MBA preparation Times News Network If securing a place in a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) programme in the coming year is your goal. testing skills in English and mathematics. These are subdivided into quantitative ability.

Now. devote at least two hours to test preparations every day. which come with coaching manuals. . shift focus towards attempting mock tests. Supporting preparation It may be early days but given the complexity of the testing process and the competition being stiff.you develop a fluency of expression and overcome any inhibitions you may have of public speaking. an early start to preparation can put you ahead of the game. Once you are clear on your basics and have gained adequate familiarity with all patterns of questions.

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