Right time to start taking Mock Tests
CAT preparation comprises various factors which lay the foundation of a successful attempt at the exam. The most important aspect is, of course, the basic fundamentals or the concepts, then the strategy, the speed, the accuracy, and another important facet, i.e. the Mock Tests. They are the test of your preparation before the main exam. They are the final stage of your preparation to test your preparedness and readiness to give the exam. In this article, we will be discussing the Right Time to start taking Mock Tests for CAT 2021.
No candidate should start the mock tests too soon or too late. Starting too soon might make you lose all your energy and motivation till the exam day and starting too late might give you less time to analyze your weaknesses and strengths and work on them.
Guidelines for Mock Tests
Some basic guidelines for taking Mock Tests:
Waiting for the preparation to be completed is a big mistake:
Do not try and finish your preparation first and then take the mock tests. The preparation will not be over even after the CAT exam because you will always feel that something is missing from your preparation and try to waste time on it. Preparation is never complete. So start taking mock tests at least when 50% of your preparation is over. In the exam, you do not have to attempt all the 100 questions so do not waste your time in preparing for all the 100 questions as well. Instead, invest your time in giving mock tests which will yield far better results for you.
You should start taking Mock Tests today:
You need to start taking Mock tests as soon as possible as it will enable you to analyze or evaluate different strategies for the CAT exam. You will have to take at least 15 – 20 mock tests to be able to accomplish this task. This does not mean that you have to keep taking the tests one after the other. The main goal is the analysis of each test. This analysis, of each mock test you take, will help you to know where you went wrong and thus help you to improve your score.
The Mock tests are always tiring:
You will get highly exhausted after taking a 3 hour Mock Test. Mock tests are always very tiring. You will be on the edge of your seat the whole time because you will be so engrossed in finishing the test or exam on time. No matter how many times you have taken the test, if you are not sweating profusely at the end of the test then that means something is not right. There is probably something that you are missing. You have to make yourself accustomed to the habit of sitting for three hours with full concentration. Mock tests will help keep you more patient.
Percentiles do not matter:
This is something that you should always keep in mind while starting to analyze your mock test. Do not obsess over it unnecessarily. Percentiles do not matter. Identification and comprehension of your mistakes in the tests is what matters the most. After all, the main purpose of taking mock tests is to improve and analyze to decide upon your strategies. Even if you get low percentiles in tests, you will learn from such failures which will help you to succeed eventually in the exam. Everything takes time.
Accuracy over attempts:
This cannot be said enough. Accuracy matters a lot in CAT. You cannot take risk with questions just for the sake of attempting them because there is negative marking in the exam. If you are attempting, say 14 questions, then you have more time to answer those questions with greater accuracy than 20 questions with 80% accuracy. You will get lesser percentile in the latter scenario.
Setting realistic goals in Mock Tests:
Do not think that you will score a 90+ percentile right in your first Mock test. This is really unrealistic and absurd. Unless you have taken the exam a number of times, you will have a starting with a low percentile. Do not set absurdly high goals and then regret and get demotivated by the results.
When should you start taking Mock Tests?
Ideal time to start taking mock tests
Start taking mock tests after some basic preparation. Do not wait for the whole preparation to end for taking the mock tests. You can even start taking the tests right at the beginning, if you feel comfortable, just to gauge where you stand and how much you already know.
Frequency of taking Mock Tests
Maintain a schedule for taking the tests. Start by taking 1 test every 1 or 2 weeks in the months of June and July than in August and September, start giving 1 test every week, and then in October onwards take 2 or 3 mock tests every week.
Full length Mock tests v. Sectional Mock Tests
In full-length mock tests, you take the mock test for the full duration with all three sections, whereas in sectional mock tests, you take test of only one section at a time. If in the beginning, you are not comfortable giving a full mock test as you feel you have not done enough preparation then you can always go for sectional tests. You can analyze your preparation and performance in each section separately. This will give you a clearer idea of your mistakes or areas to work upon in each section. You can try and perfect each section separately and then move on to the full-length tests when your preparation in each section is quite enough to be tested together.
To make the best out of the Mock Tests for CAT during your Online CAT 2021 Preparation, read this article and boost your scores exponentially.
Still have any trouble, read this article on How to Crack CAT 2021.
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