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Why do people fail in CAT?
April 21 2024

Why do people fail in CAT?

CAT is an exam that does not have a concept of a pass or fails. You will either get a high percentile through which you can easily get a call from IIM or from your preferred colleges or a low percentile through which you will not be able to get a call for the further admission process. So ideally, no student who is preparing for CAT fails in the exam, it is only the percentile which decides whether he is getting a call from the college which he is preferring  This article will highlight a few of the common mistakes which students commit during his CAT preparation. These mistakes when rectified will definitely help you to succeed in the CAT Exam.

For Preparation with Experts Join our courses Also Refer: CAT Exam Details

Too much of importance given only to a particular section during CAT preparation

Students who are preparing for CAT give importance to only one or two sections and completely ignore the other section during their CAT preparation. For instance, a student gives too much emphasis on Quants and Verbal ability section and he completely ignores the DI and LR section. All the three sections in the main exam carry equal weight and ignoring one section will bring down your percentile. Students most of the time ignore one section because they are scared of it or they are not confident in that particular section. There is the most common misconception among students that the CAT exam is full of quants and English sections and hence we should concentrate on these two. DI and LR sections can be prepared only by giving mock tests. This is completely wrong because equal importance should be given to DI and LR section also, as per the recent trends of the past CAT question papers DI and LR section were the toughest out of the three sections. A student cannot expect to do well in the CAT exam if he or she neglects half the CAT syllabus. Equal importance should be given to all the sections and topics of the CAT syllabus during your CAT Preparation.

How many questions should I target to score 90+ percentile?

This is blunder done by students who are preparing for CAT and are planning to give the CAT exam. Most of the students ask the question to mentors that how many questions we should attempt to score 90+ percentile. How many questions I should attempt with an educated guess. It is one of the reasons why people fail in CAT. If a student comes to know through someone that one needs to attempt 20 questions to score 99+ percentile in that particular section, then the student who has solved 15 questions will try to solve the other 5 questions through educated guesses. This is the biggest risk that the student is taking and will badly impact his accuracy level, this accuracy level will bring down his score and percentile of that section. So never stick to the point that you should attempt these many questions to score 90+ percentile. The student should have a strategy to attempt the paper but that is based on the time that the student wants to allocate to various sectors and not based on the number of questions that the student should attempt. Also read: CAT 2019

Giving too many mocks without preparation

This trend of giving too many mocks has developed recently, the students who are preparing for CAT read the success stories of the students who excel and try to imitate their strategy. The toppers who have excelled know what is their strengths and weaknesses and accordingly, to that, they give mocks CAT before the exam. These students are through with their concepts and they just need mocks to maximize their score. Ideally, a student gives 10 to 20 mocks, these mocks should be given only after preparing all the concepts and topics. Just giving mocks with completing the syllabus will simply waste your time and low score will demotivate you. Hence to avoid this mistake, the student should figure out what is his preparation status and should decide on the number of mocks CAT to give. The learning from the mock should be used to improve your weak areas.

Also Refer: Mock Tests


Overconfidence is the biggest killer which leads to terrible performance and low percentile. Most of the students think that they are way better than others and think that the exam will be a cakewalk to him or her. It is one of the reasons why people fail in CAT. A student should not have this attitude during preparation and while attempting the CAT exam. A student should attempt his exam confidently and without any stress to excel in it. Finally, don’t waste your time on the things that do not matter. Instead, concentrate on your CAT preparation, analyze your strengths and weaknesses, and overcome your weaknesses. Analyze yourself on a regular basis and study in a planned manner and don’t take stress during the exams or during preparation.

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CAT preparation
100 percentile
Anisha Mukhija

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