Common Admission Test also (CAT) is a national level examination for candidates aspiring to take management courses like MBA from the country’s premier B-schools like IIMs. It is a computer-based exam which is conducted by the Indian Institutes of Management (IIM). This exam scores a candidate based on his/her skills on quantitative ability, data interpretation, verbal ability and logical reasoning.
Data Interpretation is one of the most important sections in CAT exam. Data Analysis or Data Interpretation as the name suggests is all about data. The Data Interpretation Section of CAT checks the aspirant’s ability to understand and analyze data and make critical decisions based on it. To score good marks in this section, it is important that candidates read all the given data carefully.
What is Data Interpretation?
Data Interpretation is the section which consists of charts and tables, myriad of graphs, from which candidates will have to analyze and glean data. The key to crack data interpretation is to quickly identify the key pieces of the data given in the question.
The data interpretation questions may seem lengthy but the key to solving these questions is to identify the important pieces of data and approach the question in a step by step process. Charts, venn diagrams, myriad graphs, tables, etc. usually dominate the data interpretation section. Aspirants can use the following strategy to solve data interpretation questions.
- Familiarity
- Conditions
- Reasoning
- Sequence of Solutions
As the CAT does not have a predefined exam syllabus, a huge number of aspirants face difficulty and get confused during their preparation. But candidates should note that questions are normally asked from very few repeating topics every year. So, aspirants are suggested to go through the CAT syllabus and get well familiar with the related details and prepare accordingly.
The syllabus of data interpretation for CAT exam is mentioned below.
Data Interpretation Syllabus |
Tables |
Caselets |
Column Graphs |
Bar Graphs |
Venn Diagrams |
Line Charts |
Pie Chart |
The basic concept that operates behind data interpretation questions is to test candidates on their ability to make decisions and establish what would be the best for different situations. Each set of DI question in CAT exam generally consists of multiple conditions and candidates are supposed to use the clues to solve the questions.
Tips to solve Data Interpretation questions
- Candidates should read the figures given carefully and should not over approximate to simplify their task.
- Candidates should not assume data or information that is not mentioned in the questions.
- Candidates should improve their speed, as data interpretation questions revolve around arithmetic and calculation speed.
The competition is increasing over the years with numerous CAT aspirants applying for the exam every year. So, aspirants are required to be dedicated and well-focused for the exam. With proper preparation, the data interpretation questions can be solved easily and admission into the IIMs or any other prestigious B-School can be easily acquired.
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