How To Work the VARC in CAT
Today, we’ll be looking at how you as a CAT aspirant can tackle the Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension section of the CAT exam. As you all know, you get around 40 minutes to solve the VARC section which has a total of 24 questions, where you get 16 questions for 4 passages of reading comprehension, a few questions on Para-formations, and you can either get Summary or Pick the Odd Sentence Out. And in this blog, we’ll figure out how you can make the most of those 40 minutes and that you solve them with a clear conscience and a confident mind.
Let’s look at some KEY things to REMEMBER!
- The Start - The choice of your start has to be very logical, practical and not at all idealistic. Whenever you’re planning a strategy for an exam like CAT, you must ensure that your assumptions are realistic!
eg) NEVER assume that you won’t have any stress on the day of your Exam! It’s not possible. ALWAYS remember that you’ll have stress at the day of the exam but it’s how you handle the stress at that time that matters. Here, you need to give about the first 5-7 minutes for the first Non RC MCQ.
- The RC - The reading comprehension part needs a proper and dedicated 28 minutes as it needs to be attempted with a clear mind and your undivided attention.
- The Para-formation - This part of the VARC section should be given 7 minutes of your sectional 40 minutes.
NOTE : Always remember to solve Para-formations at the end, as it might have 3-4 questions based on it and you’ll need at least 1.5 minutes to solve 1 question.
Following the above said method will definitely help you and ensure that you’re utilising the whole 40 minutes to get a high score.
Now, there are certain key things you must remember while attempting the Reading Comprehension.
- Prioritise: We recommend you NOT to start solving the questions from the first RC passage blindly. From the 28 minutes that we’ve strategised for RC above, you can spend about 1-2 minutes in deciding. You cannot drop any RC passage if you’re aiming for a 99 percentile in the VARC section of the CAT exam.
- Order: Now, after prioritising, you need to select the order in which you’re planning to solve them. And we suggest you go from Easy to Tough. Do not, we repeat, DO NOT be a Hero by challenging yourself with the tough one first. No! Please be careful and go from the easy passage to the tough ones.
Question: How to understand whether the passage is easy or difficult?
Pro Tip: Read the middle 2-3 sentences of the passage and you’ll know how to rank it and whether you should go for it or not.
Let us tell you, it’s completely another story if you’re finding all of the passages tough
- RTPF Rule: Always remember to Read The Passage First! You have to complete the passage in one flow and there shouldn’t be any regressions.
- Handling: Handling the MCQs can be a task, we understand. You might have confusion about which option to choose from. Let’s say you have 2 options which you think might be the right answers to the questions. Most students go back to the passage to verify. NO! That’s not the right thing to do. Because it’s possible that you’d go to the passage after every question. If you’re confused between 2 options. We’d suggest you read the question again! What is it that they’re asking? You might’ve missed the small point/detail that helps you know the right answer. If this doesn’t help, then leave the question. STOP wasting your precious time. Remember! The first word of the passage and the last word of the passage has to be linear. And may so happen that you wouldn’t need to go back to the passage to solve the next 3 questions after skipping the 1st.
- Don’t Change Your Answer: Once you’ve marked an option from the MCQ, do not change the option thinking it might be wrong. At first, we think it’s option C, but then after overthinking, we start having doubts and change our answer to option D. I mean, what if, right? And then later while analysing the passage, you get a hard feeling that the previous answer C was in fact the right answer. FML. Do not change your answers, especially at the last minute. Follow your gut and instincts and never doubt yourself throughout the exam!
So these were some of the tips and tricks to handle or tackle the VARC section of your MBA-CAT exam like a Pro! These tips and tricks have been performed under the strict supervision and guidance of our very own experienced EduCrack faculty Mr. T Rammohan and we wish all the best for the examination and that you all come out of the hall with flying colours. If you want you can check out a visual representation of the VARC section here : https://youtu.be/7kGLST7f2kQ
And if you think you're confident enough to tackle the VARC section, then you can check out EduCrack's Test Series that'll prepare you for the best or the worst situations in the exam : https://educrack.com/mba-entrance