IIM CAT exam 2021: How to prepare for this MBA entrance in these three months; Know pattern and best books

CAT preparation enters a decisive stage by September. If you are preparing for CAT 2021, you should read what experts say about time management and how you can prepare for the CAT exam in just three months.

IIM CAT exam 2021: How to prepare for this MBA entrance in these three months; Know pattern and best books
Team Careers360 | Sep 9, 2021 - 6:56 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad is scheduled to conduct the Common Admission Test (CAT 2021) in computer-based mode on November 28, 2021. Candidates planning to appear for the CAT exam 2021 should gear up their preparation with the preparation tips and strategies shared by experts and toppers. One should focus on efficiently utilizing these next three months to boost their CAT preparation to get 99+ percentile in the IIM entrance test CAT 2021.

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For CAT 2021 preparation, by September, students must ensure that they have completed the entire CAT syllabus. Once they have everything covered, it will be easy for them to brush up on the CAT important topics and get ready to ace the CAT exam. Here are some CAT exam tips to help the management aspirants get a higher score in the exam.

CAT exam 2021: Preparation tips for these last three months

Common Admission Test (CAT) is one of the most popular national-level management entrance exams taken by over 2 lakh candidates every year. Apart from IIMs, more than 1000 MBA colleges in India accept the CAT score for admission to various postgraduate management programmes.

Mentioned below are pragmatically proven strategies recommended by toppers,

  • Understand and get familiar with CAT exam pattern

Candidates should spend adequate time in understanding the CAT exam pattern as it helps them to know the sections from which the questions are asked in the exam along with the division of marks weightage for each question.

  • Adhere to the CAT preparation plan with 100% sincerity

CAT examination is one of the most dreaded exams among the MBA entrance exams. Candidates should rigorously prepare to crack the CAT 2021 exam. One smart way is to strictly adhere to the CAT preparation plan with utmost sincerity and dedication. Candidates should make sure that their preparation is on track and they are taking ample CAT mocks and solving questions with varied difficulty levels etc.

  • Consider SWOT analysis and do it as early as possible

Doing SWOT analysis is an advantage as it helps in identifying the strong and weak areas. It can help the CAT 2021 aspirants plan their CAT preparation well, invest time in preparing the right topics, and improving the weak areas.

  • Divide and organize your CAT 2021 preparation into three phases for 3 months

With 3 months left for the CAT 2021 exam, the experts suggest that candidates should wisely divide these three months like the first month for completing the whole syllabus, the second month to work for attempting mock tests and online tests, and the third month to revise the CAT 2021 important topics and giving and analyzing the mocks.

  • Keep practicing the questions of varied difficulty level

Candidates should solve questions of CAT having varied difficulty levels rather than solving the same kind of questions. By doing this, they will get confident and by November, they will be able to solve every kind of question with ease and 100% accuracy.

  • Keep tracking CAT 2021 preparation through CAT mock test and analyzing them

Mock tests are the best source to check the preparation level of CAT 2021 as it provides immediate feedback. So, it is essential to invest ample time in CAT 2021 mock tests to improve the performance level in terms of speed and accuracy. Additionally, it also helps in figuring out the tricks and shortcuts to solve the question quickly. Therefore, taking CAT mock tests is worthy and should be given importance.

  • Revision is the key to success

Revising the concepts and formulae helps in remembering them and retaining them for a longer time. The thorough revision helps in acing the CAT 2021 exam with much ease. During revision, the candidates should pay attention to all sections equally as sectional CAT cut off applies while the shortlisting.

CAT 2021 exam pattern

The CAT 2021 exam papers consist of three sections namely,

  • Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)

  • Quantitative Ability (QA)

  • Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR)

The CAT 2021 question paper is expected to have a total of 76 questions, 24 questions in the DILR section and 26 questions in the VARC and QA section. According to the CAT exam pattern, the duration of the CAT 2021 will be 120 minutes (two hours) and for each CAT section, the time limit will be 40 minutes.

Best books for CAT exam preparation

CAT section name

Best CAT books and authors/ publication

Quantitative Ability


  • Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinhaat

  • How to prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Arun Sharma

Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation

  • Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for CAT by Nishit K. Sinha

  • How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT by Arun Sharma

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

  • Mastering the Verbal Ability for CAT by Ajay Singh

  • Word Power made easy by Norman Lewis


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