Days 1 and 2
Let’s say you are engaged with a formal CAT coaching for 2 days (let’s call them Day-1 and Day-2) a week (this would be the weekend for most regular college students/working professionals), you need to plan for the remaining 5 days for around 2 hours a day.
For the first few months of your CAT prep, you just need to get comfortable with various topics. Put in enough time in each and then assessing each as a strength or weakness is the best way forward (We do a SWOT for each topic at MBAGuru for each of our students). This SWOT of each topic proves invaluable later when you practice mock CATs, and also when you actually appear for the CAT because it allows you to select questions or leave them as per your strengths and weaknesses.
Days 3, 4 and 5
In the initial stages of your prep, look to devote 1.5 hours (90 minutes) to VARC (basically English), DILR and QA (Quant) in rotation on fixed days (say Day-3, Day-4, Day-5) of the week. This will ensure a basic minimum in each area on a regular basis and also ensure continued focus on each.
For 30 minutes daily, focus on areas such as reading, listening, watching, writing, speaking – language, as a skill takes even more regular effort to develop and comfort with it, proves invaluable not only during the written test i.e. the CAT but also during the interviews, written ability test and group discussions that form the final steps in the selection to various top MBA colleges.
Read from as diverse sources as possible regularly – it is a proven technique for ensuring good performance in RC portion at the CAT, which has been the single biggest component of CAT, with 24 questions out of a total of 100, over the past several years.
You should work more on the weakest of your areas among VARC, DILR and QA. Weakest areas typically allow for the maximum scope of improvement and extra focus on them ensures a much better return on time invested as compared to traditional prep, which does not take into account an individual’s needs or requirements.
Make it your rest day – that allows you to take a break and re-energize. A good performance in CAT requires you to be fresh in your mind and looking forward to more, rather than being exhausted and jaded by the time the CAT arrives.
At MBAGuru, we ensure this weekly plan for a student through a time-tested, super-powerful ADAPTIVE homework plan that ensures you get the maximum bang for each minute you put into your CAT preparation.
Your plan will need to change once you start getting closer to the CAT, with more focus needed on mock-CATs, analysis and temperament. But remember, a beautiful building wouldn’t last long without a solid foundation. That is exactly what you need to be focused upon right now. Pacing yourself well, and peaking at the right time is crucial to success not just in CAT, but in most spheres of life including sports or even elections. And while you are at it, don’t forget to enjoy the process!
About the author: Deekshant has sleep-walked through several 100 and 99.9 %iles in practically every section of the CAT. That he is a cricket fan and he writes okay is evident from most of his posts. 1000s of our students swear that he can motivate almost anyone to double his/her percentile through very simple yet powerful inputs. And that’s why every MBAGuru student has direct access to him via mail and Telegram. Oddly, he somehow also finds the time to write songs professionally. And yes … almost missed this … he is an alumnus of IIT Delhi & IIM Cal