Anisha has done MBA in Marketing from NMIMS And Executive Management(PMNO) from Harvard Business School. She has been instrumental in growing CATKing Digital with her experience with Marico and Henkel in the past.
How to prepare for CAT Verbal Section:One section dreaded by most MBA Aspirants, especially engineers or those from a technical background, is the Verbal section. Students find it hard to score in this section even after a lot of practice and cannot comprehend why that happens. I have come across soo many students who ace DILR and Quants, but just can't wrap their heads around VARC! That's why we are bringing your this article, to get you started with VARC with the right approach. Let’s get started with how to prepare for CAT verbal section. We shall go through each type of question asked in this section and see how to prepare for each of them. Click here to prepare for CAT through this course created by IIM Alumni
You might want to start by watching this video on how to Crack CAT Verbal Ability
PART A - Verbal Skill Development: ReadingOne huge problem area for students id the Reading Comprehension (RCs). Most of them are not able to read the passages quickly and even comprehend them. This is primarily because you don't have a habit of reading, and importantly, reading the right way. Let's start with what you should be reading to enhance your reading ability.
The first reading choice you have: NewspapersAsk your coaching center trainer the same question and most would reply that you should be reading the editorial of ‘The Hindu’ every day. The advice is pretty genuine but not quite up to mark. ‘The Hindu’ is just one of the things that you should be reading. Better still, in this digital world, you should generally consume all your reading material online itself and expose yourself to the best authors. The problem with ‘The Hindu’, as with other papers, is that the editorial page is not written keeping in mind a CAT aspirant. So just sticking to one option is not ideal. What is the solution? I have two possible solutions for you: Option 1 Pick-up articles (selectively) from The Hindu, Economic Times or The Times of India on a daily basis. The Sunday editions are always the best as they offer a quick re-cap of the week as well as interesting analysis. So, you can give yourself extra time to read these. Option 2 Follow individual authors and read them online. The list of authors you could begin with include:
- Bachi Karkaria (Times of India): Wit, humor and awesome vocabulary b. Jug Suraiya (Times of India): For the same reasons as Bachi Karkaria c. SA Aiyar (Times of India/ET): Rigorous Economic Analysis d. Hasan Suroor (The Hindu): International Flavor e. P Sainath (The Hindu): In-depth exploration of India’s rural landscape.
The second reading choice you have: BooksReading books for CAT is a religious activity, and trust me, treat it as one if you want to do well on the exam. The question again that you are faced with is what should you begin with? Well, a simple list of 15 books for you to browse through (arranged approximately in the order of difficulty, though subjective evaluation applies here):
- Five Point Someone by Chetan Bhagat
- Mediocre but Arrogant by Abhijit Bhaduri
- Tin Fish by Sudeep Chakravarti
- Love Story by Erich Segal
- Oliver’s Story by Erish Segal
- Bridges of Madison Country by Robert James Waller
- To Sir with Love by ER Braithwaite
- Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
- The Diary of Anne Frank by Anne Frank
- Animal Farm by George Orwell
- Time Machine by HG Wells
- The War of the Worlds by HG Wells
- The Prophet by Khalil Gibran
- Anthem by Ayn Rand
- We the Living by Ayn Rand
Watch this video on the strategy to crack RCs for CAT
Part B of Verbal Skill Development: VocabularyThe second part of how to prepare for the CAT Verbal ability section is Vocabulary. Any language development revolves around improving your vocabulary skills. How do you do that? In part, by reading more and more. When you read more, you discover more words, the more words you discover, the more words you learn. As simple as that. But beyond the discovery of words, you should also look at making sure these words are embedded in your memory. What could you do for that?
Option 1: Use booksRefer to book such as ‘Word Power Made Easy’ and ‘Six weeks to words of power’. Both of these books are pretty effective and are highly recommended. You can browse a sample of Word-Power’s method here, in our Word Power Blogs.
Option 2: Use Online ToolsThere are many reading tools and apps available which could help in the preparation of vocabulary and also there are some sites which especially host articles that are nicely collected from newspapers and various other sources. Also read: How to improve your vocabulary Tip 1: Maintain a Notebook: TRy to build a practice of maintaining a small flipbook with the words you learn every day. You can try to learn at least 5 words and write them in this book for easy reference. get into the habit of going through these every day so that you don't forget the older words. You can also carry these around when you travel and refer back to them when you have any free time at hand. Believe me, this hack will save you time and energy when it comes to vocab.
Watch this video to understand how to effectively study words from Norman Lewis
Part C of Verbal Skill Development: GrammarIf you are looking for Grammar books, you can refer to Wren and Martin, which is the holy grail for grammar. Understand that grammar is the base of it all, whether you want to solve para jumbles or understand the tone of the passage, all of these require that you have a stronghold on grammar. This is why if you aren't that strong on your grammatical skills, start with the basics, learn the basic rules, and incorporate them in your life. This is often neglected by most students when they prepare for CAT Verbal ability section. Here are some basic tips which can help you to learn and improve your English grammar.
Understand the logic
Read, read, read
Keep a grammar book with you
Keep your basics strong
Try to communicate more in English