As per the latest guidelines by IIM- Indore, there is a change in the exam pattern of CAT 2020 wherein now instead of 180 minutes, the CAT exam will be of 120 minutes. The candidates will be allotted exactly 40 minutes for answering questions in each section and they will not be permitted to switch from one section to another. The syllabus, marking scheme and number of options per question remain unchanged. As there is reduction in the time duration, it is expected that the number of questions per section will also be reduced. So by incorporating the requisite changes, the Bull CATs (w.e.f. Bull CAT 21) have been updated with a total of 66 questions divided into 22 questions per section.
On the whole the level of the test was moderate to tough . The test contained many moderate and difficult questions and hence the important factor was selection of right questions. Reasoning section in this paper was comparatively difficult than the Quant section. Verbal section was easy to moderate as regards level of difficulty. Instead of 5 RC passages, there were 4 passages comprising 18 questions and the non- RC questions including TITA questions were 6 in number. The key to getting a good percentile was time management and selection of questions.
The level of this section was moderate and difficult. Overall there were 8 easy, 12 moderate and 4 difficult questions. The first set on Venn diagram was easy and was doable. The next set of reasoning where 4 friends attended a party and they are wearing cap, shirt and pants of different colours was of moderate type. The next set about five friends from different cities and earning the different bonuses was also easy and should have been attempted. The set where 5 brothers were crossing a bridge was of moderate type and one should have gone with that set if he has already done these type of questions earlier. Next set was based on the number of different notes with six friends and that was of moderate type and could have been attempted. The last set where the letters of the word HEART were to be arranged in the matrix was little bit tricky and was avoidable considering the time limit of the paper.
The overall feel of the section was moderate. One could have scored 90+ percentile by attempting around 13-15 questions with 90 % accuracy.
The Quantitative section had 11easy, 8medium and 5 difficult questions. The difficulty level of this section was moderate. The paper was having majority of the questions from algebra and P&C, Probability. There were 6 question of P&C, probability and out of which 4 were easy. There were 7 questions on algebra and 3 -4 were of easy category and should have been attempted. The paper had 4 questions of number system which were of easy to moderate level. There was one question on Venn diagram and that was easy. Two questions were on mixtures and should have been attempted as they were easy. There was one question each on Time and work, geometry and percentage and out of this the questions on time and work and percentage were easy.
A good student could have scored 90+ percentile by attempting14-16questions with approx. 90% accuracy.
In verbal ability section, the first RC passage (Q7-11) was related to ‘vote bank politics is not always bad for democracy’. The passage was easy in terms of understanding and identifying answers to the related questions except Q10 which was moderate. The second RC passage (Q12-15) was based on ‘Survey shows a third of India’s tiger reserves are nearing peak capacity and creative solutions can reduce human-animal conflict.’ The passage was easy in terms of understanding and identifying answers to the questions except Q14 which was difficult. Third RC passage (Q16-19) was about ‘If state agencies fail to follow laws, citizens will follow the suit’. The passage was moderate in terms of understanding and interpreting the answers to the questions except Q16 which was easy. Fourth RC passage (Q20-24) was about ‘gentle medicine could radically help transform medical practice and health care’. The passage was moderate in terms of understanding and interpreting the answers to the questions except Q23 and Q24 which were easy. For non-RC questions, it is advisable not to spend too much time on them. Questions (1,2) were based on finding summary of the given paragraph and were moderate. Questions (5,6) (TITA) were based on sentence rearrangement where four/five sentences from an article were given in jumbled form to be arranged in a coherent manner. The questions were difficult. Questions (3,4) (TITA) were based on finding misfit among the given five sentences. The key is to find the sentence that is lying outside the theme in the remaining sentences. The questions were difficult and moderate respectively.
The overall feel of this section was moderate. To score 90+ percentile one should have attempted 15-17 questions with 75- 80% accuracy.
The overall feel of the paper was moderate to tough, though for the students who knew how to manage the time available to the best i.e. not wasting much time in lengthy and difficult questions, could easily manage an overall good attempt. AR and DI were mostly selective in this paper. As far as Quant is concerned most of the questions were from Algebra, Number system and Geometry. For verbal section, one should have good reading skills as there were 3 RC’s and also a few questions based on paragraph summary. One must focus on contextual vocabulary as well to understand and score well in RC passages. Moreover, questions like sentence rearrangement and misfit require analysis and knowledge of tricks to answer the questions.