It’s been over 10 days since I took the CAT on Oct 11. Since then, many of us at CL have taken the exam and they have been sharing their feedback and updates with me. Here’s what it looks like…


The latest update

The latest verdict is that the exam has been on the tough side. Section I, Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation, has been a tough nut to crack in almost all the slots, if we ignore a couple of lucky days where the students found the section doable. Section II, however, got a mixed response with the first few days seeing relatively easier questions. But, the later days have seen passages bordering on abstract. So , for most slots, a good attempt in section -1 will still be 18-20 and for section-2 it will be 20-22. We will advise you to consider the test in your slot on its own merit and not go with any preconceived ideas about the number of attempts that should be made.

CAT update 13th Oct

Quant continued to be difficult in day- 2 of CAT. English, which was of moderate level of difficulty in day – 1 has taken a turn and slot -2 today reported some very tough RC and Para-jumble questions. As in Day -1, all questions of DI and AR were in sets of 3 and were of moderate level of difficulty. Day-2 also did not see any Word Usage questions. These questions have been a consistent part of CAT for past 3 years. Slot -1, Day 2 had at least 2 questions incorrect in section 1.

Overall Analysis of CAT’12

The first round of tests of CAT 2012 is done now and so far all has been along expected lines. As per the announcement made earlier, the paper had two sections – Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning, with 30 questions in each section. The sections were available sequentially, each having a time limit of 70 minutes to answer 30 questions. Thus, it was mandatory to spend the stipulated time on the prescribed section and it was only when the time ended for the first section that it was possible to move to the second section.

The total duration of the test was two hours and thirty five minutes, including a 15-minute tutorial provided to the candidates before the start of the test to familiarize them with the layout, screens and navigation.

The overall structure of the paper was as follows:

Section No. of Questions Time in minutes Difficulty Level Possible Attempts
Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation 30 70 Tough 18-20
Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning 30 70 Moderate 22-24
Total 60 140 40- 45

Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation

There were 21 questions of QA and 9 questions of DI in both the slots. The difficulty level was high and the questions were designed to test the grasp of fundamentals. There were questions from regular topics like Number System, Algebra, Geometry, Modern Math and Geometry. Questions in Data Interpretation area were also not simple and involved convoluted calculations. All the questions in DI came in sets of 3. DS was absent from both the slots

Section Topic No. of Questions
Quantitative Ability Number System  2-3
Algebra  6-7
Arithmetic  3-4
Modern Maths  2-3
Geometry and Mensuration  5-6
Data Interpretation Bar Graphs  0
Pie Charts  0
Table based  2 x 3 = 6
Combinations of Graphs  1 x 3 = 3

Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning

The questions in this section were of moderate difficulty level. The trick here was to aim for high accuracy by correctly identifying the questions that one was confident of solving correctly. RC’s were manageable, not being inordinately lengthy or abstract. At most only one of the three given passages was tough. There was a balanced mix of questions from the various areas of Verbal Ability. All the questions in LR came in sets of 3. Slot-2 saw as many as 3 questions on tone/style of the passage/author. This question type was missing in slot-1.

Section Topic No. of Questions Description
Reading Comprehension Reading Comprehension  10 (4+3+3)  At least one RC in each set was unique and all the passages were of moderate level.
English Usage Sentence Correction  2  4 statements were given – one had to identify the combination of correct/incorrect statements
Para-jumble  2  5 sentence type
Para-completion  3  Moderate – tough , last line missing type
FIB  1  Easy-moderate , 2 blanks type
Word Usage  2  Simple words , use of phrasal verbs
Para-jumble (Odd sentence out)  1  4 statements out of which 3 could be arranged in a sequence
Logical Reasoning Data Arrangement  ( 3+3+3)  All the three sets were arrangement problems
Seating Arrangement
Logic Based


You can watch the CAT ’12 video analysis here.

More updates coming up soon.