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Preparation tips for Other Management Entrance Tests

Preparation tips for Other Management Entrance Tests
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The key reasons why a candidate should write other exams besides CAT are as followsAwareness and adequate preparation for these exams is essential, as ...

CAT is undoubtedly the most sought after MBA entrance exam in India. However, there are several 'Other Management Entrance Tests' (OMETs) besides CAT that a student can and must write. These exams are important because not all the B-schools use CAT as the sole criteria for selecting candidates.

The key reasons why a candidate should write other exams besides CAT are as followsAwareness and adequate preparation for these exams is essential, as these tests have patterns which are slightly different from CAT. Let us look at the major OMETs which would be conducted this year along with the additional areas that one has to look at preparing for, over and above the preparation for CAT.

Let us look at each of these areas and discuss what needs to be done to get better in them.Decision making : Over and above the preparation for CAT, XAT aspirants would need to focus of Decision making. With respect to preparation of 'Decision Making', one should understand that a lot of commonsense and its application comes into play and once can only get better on these by practice. One should therefore, build their base in the regular logical reasoning based questions and then look to extend the insights into the decision making area.

Critical reasoning, is not an entirely additional area that one needs to look at, as Decision making is. It is an integral part of VA and CAT aspirants are very familiar with this area. However, exams like XAT/IIFT/SNAP etc focus on this questions types a lot more than CAT does. Students should practice identifying argument structure and argument elements, and expose themselves to inference based questions. Students should also focus on Figures of Speech as there have been questions on identifying metaphors,oxymorons,personification etc.

For Essays, XAT seems to have moved away from the complicated topics that it used to give earlier, to topics that are more amenable to creative writing .This is both an advantage and a disadvantage, depending on how good one is with language. The word limit was 200 words. You may support or oppose the statement,but your stand has to be justified with relevant examples. Topics that seem easy will fill the student with a plethora of ideas.The challenge lies in the discretion in choice of thoughts and their logical flow in presentation.

Students will appreciate that such topics require clear thinking, effective argument construction / analysis, and effective writing. It is advised that students keep essay writing in mind when they do their reading comprehension exercises,focusing on expression of central idea, the idea flow, and the tools employed for effectively putting across ideas. A thorough awareness of social and political changes of the times will be an add on to present your case, in case XAT goes back to subject oriented essay topics.While preparing for this section, it would be advisable for students to focus more on issues related to business, economics and politics related to business environment.

Logical Reasoning: The OMETs tend to have some additional questions types, that are normally not seen in CAT. Number and Letter Series, Verbal Analogies, Coding and Decoding, Strengthening & weakening arguments, non-verbal reasoning are some of the major ones. One needs to go about preparing for these question types the same way they have prepared for the LR section of CAT. The positive aspect here is that in most cases, the questions from these areas in the OMETs tend to be not so complicated. Students need to understand the basic approach towards these questions and expose themselves to a decent level for practice and this should do the trick for this area.

The writer is Course Director CAT Exam, T.I.M.E. Hyderabad

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