How to prepare for CAT Quantitative Aptitude?

How to prepare for CAT Quantitative Aptitude?

Quantitative aptitude is the most significant part of the CAT exam. How can you make sure that you excel in it? Here are a few tips from students and

Quantitative aptitude is the most significant part of the CAT exam. How can you make sure that you excel in it? Here are a few tips from students and experts.

For every exam, you must give sufficient time to it and manage your time in the exam hall. As CAT 2020 is getting closer, every single hour you have becomes more important for preparation. Having a clear plan of action will let you relax before the exam and you can make good use of the remaining time. Let us help you with that.

Quantitative aptitude appears at the last i.e. the Section 3 hence a good start to your exam will let you score a good mark in it.

How do you start planning?

Let’s assume your exam is in a few days and you’ve 100 hours in your hand. That is a lot of time if you sleep a little less, distract yourself a little less and study a bit more! Anyways try to take these 100 hours out from your schedule so that you’ve got enough time for the final revision of the quant section.

Quantitative aptitude can be divided into 4 sub-sections, what are they?

Arithmetic – 28 hours
Number Systems – 12 hours
Algebra – 30 hours
Geometry – 30 hours

This breakup might be different for you, if you’re strong in arithmetic and weak in geometry, then you can dedicate a few extra hours to the latter and cut short the hours for the former. You can take away 10 hours from 2 of your strongest subsections and invest them in one/two of your weakest area(s) among the four.

How do you start planning?

You can also divide the 100 hours equal to the 4 subjects that are another plan to go about. You can practice each of the subsections and then come back and revise the first; you can make sure that you are in touch with all the subjects henceforth.

Try to keep some time for revising the entire syllabus because you must be familiar with all the terms in the CAT portion.

It is a general tendency that you want to do more in topics you’re good at. For example, you’re good at geometry and you practice it more but avoid looking at topics like algebra which you’re weak at.

Planning your hours this way won’t lead you to improvement at all, so try to practice questions in which you’re weak. It is also said that you should improve your strengths and spend more time in it, but if you’re already good at it, say a 4.5 out of 5 then it is time you start giving effort to the topics you’re weak at.

Within the 4 areas, you must spend more time on topics you’re weak at and less time on topics you’re stronger in.

CAT 2020 will be held in the last week of November in two sessions, one in the morning (9 to 12) and one in the afternoon (2 to 5). You might see a slight change in the weightage of topics for this year. The usual chronology of the

CAT exam paper is:

Section 1: Verbal Ability and reading comprehension
Section 2: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
Section 3: Quantitative Aptitude

Next, we will talk about a few strategies through which you can make a good score in the quant section easily. Six strategies to ace the CAT exam is here:

No new strategy required

No new strategy required

Over the years if you see, the exam pattern has changed slightly. It should not be a concern for the students because these changes are very minor.

Try to focus on the test-taking strategy and devise a plan for the sections which are time-bound. You must know to manage your time rather than preparing any innovative exam strategy for CAT 2020.

CAT 2019 was conducted in online

On-screen calculator mode so you should be well – versed with the computer-based mode of the exam. You are provided with an on-screen calculator during the exam, hence you must know how to operate it. As you know, CAT is a logic-based exam for most of its part except for a few questions. Try to use the calculator only when you need it and don’t rely on it.

You can learn quite a few shortcuts and tricks for it.

Attempt of non – MCQ questions


MCQ questions are always tricky and you may lose marks easily with negative marking. It is advised that you don’t leave the non – MCQ questions because those answers can give you a great score. Quant questions are such; they don’t give you marks for what you choose but what you calculate. So, focus on the formulas and theorems to be able to answer these questions.

CAT Mock tests

It is always beneficial when you get a first – hand experience of what you’re going to face and i.e. mock tests. Through these tests you can understand the time required for each section and which topics are you lagging in.

The 3-hour long exam can be overwhelming for you but not if you take several mock tests before the real one! You must take at least one Quantitative aptitude section test every week. It will help you increase speed, accuracy and get into exam mode.

You can find several mock tests online and even the official page of the CAT exam has mock test papers for download.

Shortcuts and Tricks

Shortcuts and Tricks

There is no shortcut to cracking the CAT exam but there are surely some tricks that can help you calculate the answers in the Quant section. In the MCQ questions of QA section, sometimes you might get a different answer than what is there.

These shortcuts will help you recheck and make your calculations faster. Coaching classes, online forums, and books offer such shortcuts and tricks to make your calculations faster.

Quantitative aptitude books other than coaching material: If you’re going to coaching for CAT then you will have access to study material given by them, other than that you can look for QA books written by R.S Agarwal, R.D Sharma and many more.

So, what are you waiting for? It is time you kick – start your practice for CAT 2020 and with this huge amount of time you get this quarantine. By the time the actual exam arrives, you will be able to manage your time, excel shortcuts in calculations, and have improved your weaknesses if you start now.