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 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 easy to moderate. There are 20 questions in this section. Overall there were 13 easy, 4 moderate and 3 difficult questions. There was one set on Tables which was manageable, In such a paper it is important to first attempt easy questions and leave the tough questions.
The set on Tables (The Mint-YouGov Brand Dashboard provides a glimpse into how different brands are perceived in the country.) was doable. The Data reasoning set (Riya needs to buy a new outfit for a party. She intends to buy a skirt, a top, a pair of shoes and a handbag. The store that she visits has each of these items in four different colours – black, blue, red and yellow) was easy set. The set on Analytical reasoning (Atul has fourteen fruit – three apples, three guavas, three pomegranates and five bananas. He wants to distribute these fourteen fruit among Charu, Mandar, Sakshi and Santosh such that each of them gets exactly two, four or six fruit) was again easy set. The set on Data reasoning set (The Learn In India School, not affiliated to any board, was begun with the vision of providing quality education to students from Playgroup to Grade II.) again manageable set.
The overall feel of the section was easy to moderate. One could have scored 90+ percentile by attempting around 13-15 questions with 90 % accuracy
The Quantitative section had 15 easy, 6 medium and 3 difficult questions. This section had most of the questions as moderate and easy. In this paper there were 7 questions from Geometry and all are manageable, 5 from basic numbers in which one is difficult and others are doable, 6 questions from Algebra in which 2 are difficult and others were manageable. There were 3 questions each from Quant miscellaneous which are doable. Permutations, Cubes and Progressions had 1 question each which were doable again.
The difficulty level of this section was moderate. A good student could have scored 90+ percentile by attempting 15-17 questions with approx. 90% accuracy.
In verbal ability section, the first RC passage (Q1-4) was related to ‘the legacy of our first Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru is fundamentally challenged today’. The passage was easy to moderate in terms of understanding and identifying answers to the related questions.
The second RC passage (Q5-9) was based on ‘a strategy to prevent future crises-safely shrink the banking sector.’ The passage was easy in terms of understanding and identifying answers to the questions.
Third RC passage (Q10-13) was about ‘Dr. Bernard Fisher’s breast cancer research left a lasting legacy of improved therapeutic efficacy and survival’. The passage was moderate in terms of understanding and interpreting the answers to the questions except Q12 which was easy.
Fourth RC passage (Q14-18) was about ‘corporate and general agendas generally do not serve democratic goals or achieve democratic outcomes; they serve the goals of those in power’. The passage was easy in terms of understanding and interpreting the answers to the questions except Q18 which was of moderate difficulty.
For non-RC questions, it is advisable not to spend too much time on them. Questions (19,20) (TITA) were based on sentence rearrangement where four sentences from an article were given in jumbled form to be arranged in a coherent manner. The questions were moderate and easy respectively.
Questions (21,22) (TITA) were based on finding misfit among the given four sentences. The key is to find the sentence that is lying outside the theme in the remaining sentences. The questions were easy.
Questions (23,24) were based on finding summary of the given paragraph and were easy.
The overall feel of this section was easy to moderate. To score 90+ percentile one should have attempted 17-19 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 4 RC’s and also two 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.