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Toppers Mantra: What made Jayesh Ruchandani to score 99+ CAT

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Mr. Jayesh Ruchandani scored 99.12 percentile in CAT and accepted an admission offer from one of the new IIMs.  In this Topper’s Mantra session with, Mr. Jayesh shares his CAT prep strategy and talks on the challenges he faced during his preparation. He also speaks on his GD/PI strategy and suggests MBA aspirants to prepare the same along with their preparation of CAT.


Q: What was your CAT percentile?

A: I scored overall percentile of 99.12 in CAT and took admission in IIM Kashipur.

Q:  What was the change in your prep strategy during last 30 days to CAT?

A: During the last 30 days to CAT, besides focusing on mock CATs, I decided to solve at least 2 Reading Comprehensions and 2 Data Interpretation exercises daily. I devoted around 25 hours/week towards preparation for CAT besides teaching hours of coaching institute.

 In QA, my strong areas were time-distance, time-speed-work, numbers, P&C, probability and geometry. I made a habit to solve at least two-three problems of each of the above topics daily so that I was in touch with the topics and further strengthen my concepts. Remaining time was devoted in improving other areas in quant.

I was good in verbal ability. Besides solving RCs daily, I solved exercises from handouts and book material provided by coaching institute and also revised the vocabulary words.

Q: Did you expect to get this much percentile after your CAT? How did you evaluate yourself on the basis of your mock test scores before CAT?

A: In my mock CATs, I consistently scored more than 95%ile and at times scored more than 98%ile. My mock CATs helped me analyze which areas are my forte, time taken to solve a problem of a particular difficulty level, accuracy and speed. Taking inputs from my previous mock CATs, I adopted a preparation strategy accordingly and was able to inch closer to the 99%ile mark with each test. With each coming test, my performance was improving which boosted my confidence to perform on D-day.

Q: What was your biggest mistake during selection process beginning with CAT

A: In a time critical exam like CAT, we try to solve each question as quickly as possible. One mistake I did in QA section of CAT was proceeding to solve the questions in haste without reading and understanding the problem properly. It is better to first fully understand the problem and then proceed to solve it than to stop in between and realize that you are stuck. This mistake cost me critical few minutes in the exam.

Q: How did you prepare yourself a day before the D-day (your CAT Test day)?

A: One day before the D-day, I revised formulas from geometry and reviewed some concepts from numbers, probability and permutation and combination. I was relaxed and even went to a movie in the afternoon.

Q: What was your question solving strategy on the CAT testing day?

A: In quant section, I first solved data interpretation questions since I am good at analysis and fast calculation and had already solved a variety of exercises on data interpretation. Also, DI questions save a lot of time if you are good at speed mathematics because with a single set of data, 3 questions are solved and much time is saved. After solving DI questions, I solved questions from areas in which I was strong.

For VA section, I approached logical reasoning part first since most of the time, they are easy and quick to solve and do not take much time. After that, I moved to solving other VA questions.

Also, I took care that I do not spend too much time on a single question if I was stuck and moved on to other questions.

Q:  Your advice for CAT 2013 Aspirants

A: My advice is to solve as many as problems as you can, take feedback and adopt your own preparation and test-taking strategy. Success constitutes of perseverance, hard work and discipline. As is the mantra of IIM Kashipur students, “Every peak is within reach if you keep climbing.” Best of Luck to CAT 2013 aspirants.

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