Krupa Bathia has scored 99.95 percentile in CAT 2017 and converted call to IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Calcutta. She finally decided in favour of IIM Ahmedabad. After completing her B.E in Electronic and Communication from Dharamsinh Desai University she worked for 3 years with Nokia Siemens and then did M.Tech in Microelectronics from IIT Bombay.
She has worked as a Research Engineer at Conduent Labs (Erstwhile Xerox Research Center) for two years after completion of her M.Tech at IIT Bombay.
Q. What was your overall preparation strategy for CAT?
A: I had enrolled in coaching, but I had taken weekday classes, so that I get weekends free to do self-study. The classes were from 7-9 am, after which I solved the questions for the topic that was taught that day for 1.5 hours. Weekends were for test taking and self-assessments. I took a mock every weekend and to prepare for that, I analyzed the previous mock, cleared the concepts were I had made mistakes and took sectional tests for those topics.
Q. Please share your sectional preparation strategy for CAT? How did you prepare for
- VARC: I have had a reading habit since quite some years now. So, I did not prepare much for this. The major learning came from the analysis of mock tests. From that I realized that I was weak in parajumbles and I solved a lot of questions for parajumbles and odd man out.
- Quant: Here the strategy was to take a topic, get extremely thorough in that and make sure to attempt all the questions of that topic in the mocks. I used to prepare One or more additional topics every week and make sure to attempt all the questions from the topics done till now. In case I couldn’t solve any question, I used to go back to that topic and revise my concepts.
- DILR: To ace in DILR, more than the number of sets, it is important to do variety of sets. So, I took all easy, medium and difficult sectional tests of the T.i.m.e test series and I also solved most of the questions of the DILR book of TIME
Q: Was there any particular section/area that you were weak at? How did you overcome this challenge?
A: I had a problem with leaving questions unsolved in quant. This would result in me spending more time on a particular question and hence my number of attempts in mocks used to be around 15. I then applied the strategy of going through the paper multiple times. At first go, I will solve all the questions that can be solved in around 30 secs. If any question took more time, I would leave that and come back and finish it. This ensured that I didn’t lose out on easy questions. Then I did round two and attempted all the questions that I knew and would take less than a min and then finally try to attempt the remaining ones.
Q: What role did Mocks play in your success? How many mocks did you attempt before the exam?
A: Role Mocks were extremely crucial for my success. I used those to decide the direction that my preparation should take. I attempted around 24 mocks.
Q: Did you self-prepare or attend a coaching centre and why?
A: I attended a coaching center, because I thought it made my preparation more systematic and also because the teachers there would be able to guide me better after seeing the mistakes I made.
Q: Please share your strategy for the CAT Day. What was your last-minute preparation? How did you plan your CAT test taking?
A: Sleep before 4-5 CAT day is of utmost importance. I slept well for 3-4 days before the CAT exam. I also took mocks during the time of actual CAT till 2 days before CAT. 1 day before CAT I did not give any mock, I just went through my notes of concept and slept properly. For test taking I followed the strategy that I had followed during Mocks.
Q: Your final message and tips for candidates preparing for CAT 2018.
A: Continuous assessment of strong and weak areas and improving on the weak areas
Q. Did you face any weak moment when you self-doubted your preparation and scared failure? Please narrate it, if so.
A. During mocks, the number of quant questions that I was able to attempt was very low and that was a big worry factor for me. Less accuracy is a lesser problem than being stuck at one question and not attempting itself. I had to slowly learn to move on to the next question and not get stuck at difficult questions.
Q. What kind of personal struggles/challenges you had to face while preparing for these exams?
A. Convincing my parents for an MBA after a M.Tech degree was very difficult because of the age factor and a considerably good job with a decent pay and an excellent work life balance, but because I wanted to do it so much, they finally agreed