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Right Mock-strategy is key to cracking CAT, says 99.97 perce

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Arshpreet Singh cracked CAT 2012 with an overall 99.97 percentile and secured admission to IIM Ahmedabad. Mr Arshpreet is a CBSE Merit scholar & scored 6th Rank in Punjab state in AIEEE. He has done his Bachelor of Technology in Chemical Engineering from IIT Kanpur. Arshpreet is an Academic Excellence Awardee with CGPA of 9.1.

In this Exclusive interview with, the IIM Ahmedabad student advises CAT 2013 aspirants to revise all the concepts thoroughly before the CAT and attempt a lot of mock tests. Arshpreet also shares his success strategies, weekly study plans, D-day strategy and also speaks on how he handled his difficult areas during CAT preparation.

Our readers will remember that has earlier published interviews with other CAT 2012 Toppers. Links below.

Sumedha Deogharia scored 99.35%ile in CAT 2012

Rohit Anand Garg cracked CAT 2012 with an overall 99.16 percentile

What made 9 IIMs, FMS Delhi to select 99.97 %iler Debjit Nag?

What was your overall and sectional CAT 2012 percentile?

My CAT 2012 percentile was 99.97. I scored 99.05 percentile in Quant & DI section and in Verbal and LR section I scored 99.99 percentile

What was the toughest & easiest section for you in CAT? Why?

The toughest section for me was the QA+DI section, specifically the DI part. I could not solve the DI questions in the ideal amount of time in the mock tests and also, my overall attempt in this section used to be low due to slower speed.

The easiest section for me was the VA+LR section. I felt I had a good enough grasp logical reasoning skills combined with a good grasp on English, as I am an avid reader.

How were your strategies to handle the difficult part?

I practiced a lot of question sets in DI to improve my speed as well as to gain much needed confidence. I made sure that every set I attempted was time bound. I devoted ample time in analyzing my mistakes after the mocks.

How did you manage your weekly study schedule? Ideal duration for study in a week?

I started my self-preparation for CAT 3 months before the actual date. So, I devoted around 3 hours a day on studying the concepts and solving exercises related to them. The ideal duration for study should be around 2 hours a day if you start early with around 3-4 hours on weekends for the online mock tests and their analysis. So, around 15 hours a week for the preparation is ideal.

One preparation area which influenced your selection to this Top B-school heavily. How?
It was not something that I prepared but something that I used to do as a hobby that heavily influenced my selection to IIMA.  Around 40 per cent of my interview was focused on a book on History that I had read recently which the interviewers were quite interested to hear about.

What was your long-term preparation strategy for GD/PI?
For GD, I used to prepare with 8-10 of my hostel mates in college regularly. For PI, my preparation for placements at my college was quite helpful in which I had prepared for similar HR and technical questions. Mock interviews also help a lot.

What was your biggest mistake during selection process beginning with CAT?
There were no major mistakes that I committed in the CAT. However, I feel I was a little under prepared for the interview part and needed to prepare more for the technical questions. My biggest mistake was probably goofing up on some really basic questions on Probability & Statistics in my IIMC interview.

Your advice for CAT 2013 Aspirants
Revise all the concepts thoroughly before the CAT and attempt a lot of mock tests. Spend plenty of time on analyzing your mistakes after the tests. Read a lot – be it newspapers or novels. During the CAT, remember that it’s not how many questions that you attempt but how many questions that you answer correctly that matters. All the best! May the force be with you!

What is the best part of doing/being an MBA?
The best thing about doing an MBA is that you get to learn what ‘Time Management’ really means. Also, the broad and diverse nature of the teaching opens doors to immense possibilities and opportunities after an MBA.

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