How to study for CAT while working?
CAT (Common Admission Test), is definitely an essential MBA entrance exam to get admission into the top 100 B-schools in India. Many students appear for CAT exam in the final year of their undergraduate program. However, there are CAT aspirants who initially wish to join an industry to gain work experience and then appear for CAT exam.
But for working professionals, working 5-6 days a week, CAT preparation becomes all the more difficult. Though the syllabus of CAT exam is something that we have already covered in 8th, 9th and 10th standard, one still needs time to refresh all the topics and concepts. Some aspirants also face the dilemma of whether to leave the job altogether or prepare while continuing their job. With some studies and observation, our experts have come deduced the fact that the people who have managed to stay in their job and study are the ones who were able to crack the exam. The science behind it is – people work when there is a little bit of pressure acting upon them and when they face some stymie in life. Otherwise, the easy way never works out.
Then, WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT?
The Answer to this is Time Management- “The Art of Juggling Work with Studies”
Laura Vanderkam, author of What the Most Successful People Do at Work (Portfolio, 2013) and All The Money In The World (Portfolio, 2012), agrees that people generally decide to pursue higher education because they
“……hope additional education will help them achieve their career goals, like making more money, advancing in their current occupation, or starting in a different one.”
Therefore, here are few “mantras” which will definitely help a working professional “Bell The CAT”:
To IDENTIFY where you stand is the basic step to start your preparation for CAT entrance exam. You need to identify your strengths and weaknesses in the beginning so that throughout your preparation you put maximum effort on your weaker sections and improvise on those areas. Meanwhile, do not be overconfident about your stronger sections. Regardless of the fact that you know everything about that particular section, do not ignore it, because we all know practice makes a man perfect!
CAT aspirants should have a specific study schedule apart from their daily work. However, in case of working professionals DISCIPLINE plays a vital role. Since they have office commitments, which are equally important and cannot be ignored, working professionals have to make a study plan according to this. During weekdays 8-10 hours in total is sufficient to get a 98+ percentile. More hours can be devoted during weekends where they can spend more time on weaker sections.
Get your FUNDAMENTALS right! Yes, CAT is known for its unexpected surprises. Pattern change and variation in the level of difficulty is not a new thing. Therefore, to be adapted to these kinds of changes one has to have solid fundamentals. We all are aware of the fact that shortcut techniques are very important for the D-day to manage time, but to jump directly to shortcut without having the fundamentals cleared is sheer waste of time and energy. You can definitely improve your fundamentals and basics through the following videos of Mr. Byju Raveendran (Serial CAT topper) and Mr. P. N. Santhosh (Alumni of ISB Hyderabad):
Importance of sectional tests and ANALYSIS: Without appearing for mock and sectional tests, one can never be ready for the D-day. Sectional tests should ideally form the most important part of a working professional’s preparation.
For wholesome CAT preparation, download BYJUs – THE LEARNING APP (available on android and IOS phones) to get FREE demo lectures and mock exams and test series.
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