The humongous tasks of successfully conducting CAT 15 for 2 lakh takers in a day was taken up by TCS and they have done full justice to the daunting task.
The cosmetic build-up observations in both the slots:
- There was no demo or practice screen given before the test (First time since CAT moved online).
- The actual in both slots of CAT had 5 subsections:
- Verbal Ability had 2 subsections – Verbal Ability (10 questions) & Reading Comprehension (24 questions)
- Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning had 2 subsections – Data Interpretation (16 questions) & Logical Reasoning (16 questions)
- Quantitative Ability had just one section with 34 questions
The Sectional Analysis:
The paper was in the prescribed order – Verbal Ability first, DI & AR second, QA third.
1. VARC section:
- Easy but path-breaking. Vocabulary and Grammar missing in both slots. Logical Continuation and Critical Reasoning were also surprisingly missing.
- RCs had an unprecedented weightage in this year’s CAT. In both slots, RCs spanned out to 24 out of 34 questions. RCs were 5 in number – 3 RCs with 6 questions each & 2 RCs with 3 questions each.
However, this subsection can’t be called difficult. 3 out of the 4 RCs (6 + 6 + 6) were dominated by direct questions whereas the 2 RCs with 3 questions each had some indirect, implied idea questions. The number of words in these RCs spanned from 300 words to 600 words.
- Verbal Ability section was consistent in both slots. It had 3 types of questions: Logical Discontinuity / Out of Context question (3 in number), Summary of the passage (3 in number) & Parajumbles (4 in number). All the questions in this subsection were of the “key-in” or “non-MCQ” variety.
However, a cheeky CAT taker will take the shots because these fall under the “non-negative marking” category. Summary and Out of Context were non-MCQ variety but this can be called “pseudo non-MCQ” because it was more like keying-in a number instead of marking an option.
- The shockers were that there was not a single question on Grammar (neither Sentence Correction nor Error Detection) in both slots and there wasn’t a single question based on Vocabulary (neither Fill in the blanks nor analogies / word usages / phrasal verbs etc.).
- All in all, the section was Easy to Moderate to navigate.
- 27-28 attempts with 90% accuracy can be classified as a good score in this section.
2. LRDI section:
- Challenging section – Could be the final Decider.
- The paper had 8 sets of 4 questions each. Total of 32 questions.
- The easy, moderate and difficult sets were well distributed and well placed.
- At least two sets in both the sub sections and in both the slots were difficult and time consuming. They were not worth investing time and energy especially on the day of CAT.
- All in all, for the fact that verbal as well as quant was on the easy to moderate side, LRDI section can be safely called the decider.
- 20 attempts with 85% accuracy can be classified as a good score in this section.
3. QA Section:
- The quant section in both the slots was nearly the same. It was standard and clinical.
- Nearly every chapter had a representative there. Percentages, Profit & Loss, Linear Equations, Quadratic Equations, Functions, Inequalities, Surds & Indices, Averages & Partnership, Numbers, Time & Word, Time & Distance, Alligations & Mixtures, Permutation & Combination, Triangles, Polygons, Circles, Area & Volume, Heights & Distances, Coordinate Geometry and the list goes on.
- Such a paper has advantages as well as disadvantages – you should have been prepared with everything and just in case you have left just a chapter or two, the damage isn’t astounding. Hence, a cheer-worthy paper for a prepared test taker.
- 27 attempts with 90% accuracy can be classified as a good score in this section.
The softer aspect is that, in case the LRDI section broke the back of a well prepared student, his performance in the 3rd section would get affected.
All in all, 60 genuine attempts (genuine word has been used because nothing can discount the presence of those cheeky calculative aspirants who will take a shot at all key-in variety questions just because it doesn’t have a negative marking in it) with 85% accuracy can be classified as a good score. Good score for us would mean crossing 98 percentile.