"Success occurs when opportunity meets preparation." ~Zig Ziglar
This article is dedicated to arming you with the best tips and strategies so as to take your XAT preparation to a spectacular level.
XAT (Xavier Aptitude Test) is a national-level entrance examination conducted by XLRI every year for selecting the most appropriate students for management education. XAT scores
are primarily accepted by 11 member institutes of XAMI and 150+ associate institutes. Additionally, hundreds of other B-schools in India admit on the basis of XAT. It is one of the most competitive entrance tests and taken by students of various backgrounds with a hope to get into a top-ranking management programme. XAT 2024 will be held in January 2024. Aspirants should start their XAT preparation at least six months prior to the exam date.
XAT Preparation Strategy 2024
XAT is a computer-based test of 210 minutes. The paper is set in the following three ways: concept-driven, practice-intensive and environment-sensitive. In terms of sections, Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and select areas of Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning are concept-driven; Decision Making is a purely practice-intensive section, and General Knowledge and Essay-writing are environment-sensitive.
The exam is markedly different from the other MBA entrance exams as it features entirely separate sections on Decision Making and Essay Writing. Decision-Making section checks your management aptitude by presenting different situations and cases, and asks you to identify the correct recourse or solution. Since most of the B-schools require you to clear a sectional cut-off in XAT
, you must have a section-specific strategy to attain a high percentile.
XAT Preparation 2024: Verbal Ability & Logical Ability
This section is devised to evaluate your reasoning and logical thinking skills. As per the different topics that appear in the section, you must keep the following things in mind:
- Critical Reasoning & Reading Comprehension areas have historically dominated this section. This section requires a very fine balance between quick reading and comprehension skills.
- Vocabulary questions are often asked in the section, therefore students should have a strong vocabulary base. These questions are mostly in form of Cloze test, Synonym-Antonym, etc.
- Questions are also asked on Para Jumbles/completion. So, you must be clear with different grammatical rules and conventions.
XAT Preparation 2024: Decision Making
This is the most unique part of the XAT exam. Here, you are expected to pick the appropriate solution for a given scenario. Go through the following points to learn how to tackle the section:
- Decision-making section consists of different business and everyday situations. In these, you are meant to establish what the various stakeholders should do in the situation given.
- In general, the situations given in these questions set up interesting dilemmas for the parties involved, and most of the choices involve an analysis of the possible gains and losses with each course of action adopted.
- The given scenarios mostly relate to common ethical dilemmas, financial issues involving company sales, revenues etc., employee management issues, and other management problems.
- The correct answers in this section are usually the ones where the decisions taken are unbiased, ethical, balanced and involve the perspective of all the concerned stakeholders. in other words, you must not lose your objectivity in the entire process or let your own biases cloud your judgment.
XAT Preparation 2024: Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation
This section is the test of both your speed and accuracy. Given below are the most significant topics of the section along with tips to remember:
- Majority of the questions featured in this area have come from Geometry, Number Systems, Algebra, Modern Math, and DI sets based on Tables, bar graphs, and pie charts.
- Strong conceptual base is a must in the above topics, so make it a point to gain clarity of each area well.
- As this section entails heavy calculations, you need to spend sufficient time in practice.
- Use the shortcut techniques, formulae, and approximations to enhance your accuracy and speed in this section.
XAT Preparation 2024: General Knowledge
GK section is not counted in the final score of XAT, yet plays a role in your admission at B-schools. In this section, questions are asked from a vast range of areas covering both static and current GK. Remember the following things while preparing for GK section:
- Put greater emphasis on economics and business related facts.
- Preparing current events for the last 6 months is essential.
- In static GK part, focus on awards, books & authors and geography.
- It is recommended that students read newspapers to remain aware of current news.
XAT Preparation 2024: Essay Writing
In order to write a good essay, you must pay attention to organizing it structurally as well as logically. Keep the following things in mind while preparing and practising Essay Writing:
- Reading on regular basis will enrich your knowledge and language skills. You can go through newspapers and books to learn ways of arranging ideas in different paragraphs.
- While writing the essay, stick to the standard pattern: Introduction-Body-Conclusion.
- If you state your opinion in the essay, make it a point to support it with facts and examples.
- Avoid any kind of bias or prejudice based on your personal opinions.
- Lastly, remember to check your essay for grammatical errors. It's not the heavy vocab that makes your essay better, but the coherently organized ideas that fetch you marks.
Overall, Concept strengthening should be followed by consolidation of application orientation and thereafter by an adequate number of practice tests. At the same time, make it a point to divide into XAT preparation plan into stages, to follow up in a disciplined way. Also, do study the previous year XAT papers
to get a better understanding of the exam pattern, question types, and difficulty level. While attempting the paper, fine-tune your time management and prioritization strategy, and strike the right balance between your speed and accuracy!