What is the ideal number of CAT mocks you should write?
During the CAT Exam Preparation, this one question keeps popping up inside the mind of every aspirant, “What is the ideal number of Mock Tests to write before CAT?” Well, there cannot be a standard answer to these types of questions as there is a lot of subjectivity. Nevertheless, we will try to determine the adequate number of mocks that are essential in preparation for CAT.
In reality, how many mocks you take before CAT does not matter. What truly matters is how much improvement you make while going from one mock test to another. You have to analyze your mistakes and your weaknesses in every mock test you give and try to rectify them. You might take 30 – 40 mock tests and still not improve while any other candidate may take only 3 – 4 mock tests and improve his percentile drastically.
One has to work hard quite tenaciously for clearing any type of exam in our education system. Hard work gives you guaranteed success but this is not the case with CAT. In CAT, hard work is essential but only along with some quality. Here, the quality takes precedence over quantity. You have to work hard smartly and strategically with a proper balance between time and speed.
There is no maximum number as to how many mocks you should take. Still, you should write a minimum of 15 tests to do a basic CAT preparation.
You might get good results right at the beginning when you start writing the tests or after you have written a minimum of 5 mocks, you will start getting better and start understanding the different nuances of how to approach the questions of each section. Consequently, you will be able to formulate a strategy of your own for the exam.
With respect to Mock Tests three things are very important to be understood:
- What you should do before you start writing the CAT mocks?
- What you should do while writing the CAT mocks?
- What you should do after writing the CAT mocks?
What should you do before you start writing the CAT mocks?
Good preparation is necessary for a candidate to be able to starting writing Mock Tests. Mock tests are also meant to figure out your level of preparedness but such mock tests should not be more than one or two in number.
If you write more than 1 or 2 Mocks without being prepared, it might lead you to feel de – motivated after getting its results. Those results, which will not be up to the mark, will give a wrong impression of your capability to attempt the exam. It might de – motivate you to the extent that you might lose all interest in giving CAT or it might make you over – confident because of your good performance more than what you were expecting.
Therefore, before you start writing Mocks tests, you should first try to write 7 – 8 Sectional Tests which will help you in preparing section – wise and also help you to identify and analyze your problem areas in each section. This way you will be able to maintain a fine balance between speed and accuracy.
Sectional tests are far less tiring and exhausting than the full length Mock tests which are of three hours duration. Sectional tests help you prepare better and increase efficiency because of a relaxed state of mind instead of anxiety and stress.
What should you do while writing the CAT mocks?
The practice which is recommended for exams is to be exercised in Mock Tests too. You have to identify the questions that are easy and less time consuming and attempt them first. You do not have to worry about the difficult questions because they do not make your percentile. You just have to identify the easy ones and answer all of them correctly in less time. This is what accuracy is and this will help in getting a good percentile.
It is seen that if a candidate selects the easy questions and answer all of them correctly, he can score as high as 80 – 90 percentile in all the three sections in the exam. In addition to this, if you attempt some average number of difficult questions also, then your percentile can go as high as 95% in all the three sections. Therefore, you should develop the habit of spotting and identifying the easy questions in the Mock tests too.
What should you do after writing a CAT mock test?
The most important step is what to do after writing a mock test. It is even important than what to do before taking the test.
You have to strategize your post – mock analysis very carefully. Your whole preparation will go in vain if this step is not considered seriously. This stage will determine your chances of qualifying to the WAT/GD/PI process of the IIMs.
You have to keep telling yourself that the CAT exam is just another Mock test that you will be writing. There should be no pressure on your mind. If you maintain your composure then nothing can stop you from qualifying the exam. You just have to take the mock tests religiously and sincerely. If your performance in the tests has been excellent then you need not worry about the main exam.
This situation is in contrast to the one where you have not written your mocks seriously. If you taken them lightly and hence avoided them altogether then nothing can stop you from performing exceedingly bad in the CAT exam. You have to analyze each and every mock that you write and work upon your improvement areas and strategies for their execution in the CAT exam.
Therefore, after every mock test, you, on your own, should carry out the analysis of the test and strategize accordingly. A teacher can only guide you and teach you how to approach a particular question but the scrutiny of your test has to be done only by you. This way you can know about your mistakes firsthand and try to improve upon it. If after your analysis, still some doubts persist, then you can take the aid of your teacher or mentor. The step of Mock Test analysis teaches you 10 times more than what your CAT preparation does.
There is nothing worse than avoiding giving mock tests because of the thought or fear of faring badly. You have to overcome this fear to learn important lessons in the process at the right time before it is too late.
Hope you’ve understood about “How Many Mock Tests to Write Before CAT”.
All The Best!!
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