The All India Management Association (AIMA) conducts the MAT 4 times each year for admissions into over 600 colleges in the country. MAT is conducted in both, online and paper-base format. The paper consists of 5 sections, namely, Mathematical skills, Critical Reasoning, Language Comprehension and Data interpretation and Indian & Global Environment. The focus of this article is the last section, which has questions from General Knowledge.
The MAT GK section has 40 questions, with 1 mark being awarded for every correct answer and 0.25 deducted for an incorrect response. While the marks of the GK section are not considered while calculating the MAT percentile, however, a number of MAT institutions consider candidate’s GK score in the second round. Further, a few B-Schools accepting MAT scores have sectional cutoffs for GK. Thus, you will do well not to take this section lightly.
Why is GK Important?
Better Accuracy: GK-based questions, due to their inherent nature, provide you better accuracy. This is because, if you know the answer to a GK question, there is no scope for confusion! However, this is only applicable if you do not indulge in blind guesswork.
Better Time Management: The GK section is highly time efficient, as there is no calculation-work and analysis involved. You can use this to your advantage in tests like MAT, which do not have sectional time limits. Thus, you can allocate more time to the more time consuming sections of the MAT.
MAT GK – Past Year Paper Analysis
|Exam||Dec 2015||Dec 2014||May 2014|
|Static||40 (100%)||40 (100%)||36 (90%)|
|Current||0 (0%)||0 (0%)||4 (10%)|
Table 1 gives you an analysis of past year MAT GK sections. As you can see, MAT concentrates almost exclusively on Current GK based questions. Hence, it is imperative for you to read the newspaper on a regular basis. Further, you can prepare the current affairs for the last 12 months from any respected competition specific magazine.
|Sub-Area||May 2014||Dec 2014||Dec 2015|
|Govt. Policy and Schemes||3||2||2|
|Business and Corporate||5||3||11|
Table 2 above gives you an idea of the major areas from which questions were asked in the previous year MAT GK section. As you can see from the table, few areas appear to be favorites of MAT examiners, like, Business and Corporate GK, Sports, International news etc. Hence, it is advisable that you diligently follow news from these areas. However, you must adopt a balanced approach towards MAT GK preparation and prepare all areas thoroughly.
MAT 2015 GK Analysis
Let us take a look at a few easy level questions from the MAT 2015 GK section, to check your current level of preparations:
Q.1. 'Antrix', which has recently been slapped with a fine of Rs. 4,435 crores by the International Tribunal in damages to Bangalore based Devas Multimedia, is a commercial arm of:
|(1) DRDO||(2) BSNL|
|(3) ISRO||(4) BEL|
Q.2. Which telecom company is accused of violating tax norms in India by the Income Tax Deptt?
|(1) Nokia||(2) Vodafone|
|(3) Samsung||(4) AT&T Inc.|
Now, in order for you to get a flavor of different types of questions in terms of level of difficulty, try and answer the following relatively tougher questions asked in the MAT 2015 (Dec):
Q.3. Which India-American environmental engineer was named as 2015 MacArthur fellow and given a 'genius grant' of $625,000?
|1. Kartik Chandran||2. Vanya Shivashankar|
|3. Gokul Venkatachalam||4. None of these|
Q.4. The 28th FIBA Asia Basketball Chanpionship was played in Sept-Oct 2015 in:
|1. India||2. Iran|
|3. China||4. Japan|
As you know, Static GK consists of areas that do not change over time. You may expect questions from the following sub-topics in Static GK:
- Geography Economy
- Companies and Brands
- Indian Political System & Constitution
- Science & Technology
- Miscellaneous – This section includes questions on various awards and honors, important international dates, books and authors etc.
How to Prepare Static GK
While the syllabus for the Static GK section seems to be very vast, it can be done effectively if we choose authentic and reliable sources to study from. "India 2015", which is popularly known as "India Year Book" (by Publication Division, Government of India) is one such source. This book can be downloaded for free as well. Further, you may also refer to the following websites: www.india.gov.in
In Current GK, you may expect questions from these broad areas:
- Business & Corporate News
- Indian Polity
- New Developments in Science & Technology
- People in News
Questions from Current GK will focus on the important national and international events in the past 12 months in the areas mentioned above.
How to Prepare Current GK
The best source to prepare current GK is the newspaper. How to read the newspaper for MBA entrance examinations has been covered in a separate article. Besides newspapers, you may prepare current affairs of the last 12 months from any reputed competition specific magazine like Competition Success Review, Pratiyogita Darpan etc.
Attempting the MAT GK section
Ideally, you should not spend more than 10-12 minutes on the MAT GK section. This will allow you to allocate more time for other time-consuming sections. Further, we advice you to follow a 2-cycle method of attempting this section:
- Identify the very easy questions and mark their answers
- Identify the questions, which you think you can attempt i.e. you feel that if you spend more time on such questions, you may be able to guess the correct answer.
- Identify the questions, which you think you CANNOT attempt i.e. questions about which you have no idea. These questions are best left untouched.
In the second cycle, mark the answers of maximum possible questions that you have identified in Step (2) of Cycle 1 through intelligent guessing using option elimination. For instance, if you are confidently able to eliminate 2 options out of 4, we suggest you go ahead and attempt the question.
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