Detailed Analysis of CAT

The Data Interpretation (DI) section looked deceptively simple. Unlike last year CAT, DI was relatively tougher this year. There were 25 questions in DI just like the previous two years. Surprisingly, questions based on logical reasoning were back after a gap of five years. Students would have been delighted to see the questions based on logical reasoning which were very simple; however there were only three questions from the set. The set based on six teams playing in two stages was also very easy and hence another four questions from this set could have been solved easily.
Quantitative Aptitude, on the other hand was relatively simpler than data interpretation. There were 25 questions again in this section. For the first time, some questions looked familiar and there was a sense of déjà vu . The question on the last two digits of seven raised to 2008 was a sitter.
There were two questions based on data sufficiency, which were time consuming. There was a direct question from time, speed and distance. The question on five horses participating in a race was tricky and there was high risk of missing out some cases while solving. There were at least 10 easy questions in this section which could have been easily solved.
Test takers comfortable with math would have found this section easy and scoring. The section this time covered almost all topics from maths like arithmetic, algebra, geometry and modern maths unlike last year where there were hardly any questions from geometry and arithmetic. Those who were pining to score from DI would have been disappointed as the quantitative section was relatively easier than DI.
Expected cut offs for both the sections could range between 32-35.
Verbal Ability had a good representation of usage/ verbal reasoning and reading/ comprehension questions. The time allocation for this section, despite the increased number, need not have veered away from the normal one-third, i.e approximately 50 minutes. This was because the reading, comprehension passages were of a much simpler level than those of CAT 2006 and CAT 2007. The topics ranged from a personal narrative to humanities to art. Questions were mainly direct and were a fair bet by virtue of their unambiguous structure. The passage on the ice cream cone was eminently doable and safe attempts would have been three out of five. Similarly, the passage on language had short, crisp answer choices. All that was required was an understanding of the view of the author.
The highlighted words that first made their appearance in CAT 2007 were back. At least two questions could have been safely attempted with a reasonable knowledge of usage. The question type ‘Identify the incorrect sentence’ was slippery territory as it required the test taker to know spelling and punctuation in addition to logical consistency. ‘Double Fill in the blanks’ made a comeback after a couple of years in hibernation. One had to know what ‘disingenuous’ meant and that ‘victims’ and ‘perpetrators’ were at opposite ends of the spectrum and not ‘exploiters’ and ‘perpetrators’.
Fair attempts in this section would range between 18-20 and the cut offs in the range of 46-49.
In the final analysis, test takers employ their strategies based on their areas of strength and weaknesses. The emphasis is still on good old reasoning and cool headedness. CAT 2008 has lived up to its promise of a demand from the test taker of a heady combination of subject matter proficiency, a calm and collected approach and deployment of reasoning.


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Vocab Power Updated Daily

  • COBBLED - Repair or mend
  • ABHORRENCE - Hate coupled with disgust
  • INCUMBENCY - The term during which some position is held
  • MITIGATE -Lessen or to try to lessen the seriousness or extent of
  • dubious - Open to doubt or suspicion
  • FOSTERING - Encouragement; aiding the development of something
  • ELICIT- Call forth (emotions, feelings, and responses)
  • PLAUSIBLE - Apparently reasonable and valid, and truthful
  • FORGE - Move ahead steadily
  • BOLSTER (V)-Support and strengthen
  • ECCENTRIC- A person with an unusual or odd personality
  • PATRONAGE - The act of providing approval and support
  • IMPERVIOUS - Not admitting of passage or capable of being affected

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