CAT Syllabus

CAT Syllabus: A Comprehensive Guide to Exam Success

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Mastering CAT Syllabus, Section by Section, for a Top-Percentile Score


When it comes to acing the CAT (Common Admission Test), understanding the CAT syllabus is your first step towards success. In this comprehensive article, we will delve into every aspect of the CAT syllabus. From section-wise breakdowns to strategies for preparation, we’ve got you covered.

Understanding the CAT Syllabus

The CAT exam is known for its dynamic and challenging syllabus. It comprises three major sections:

1. Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)

  1. Reading Comprehension (RC):
  • CAT passages are typically from diverse fields such as humanities, sciences, and social sciences.
  • Questions test your comprehension, inference, and the ability to draw conclusions.
  1. Verbal Ability (VA):
  • Focuses on grammar, vocabulary, and critical reasoning.
  • Topics include sentence correction, word usage, and para-jumbles.

2. Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR)

  1. Data Interpretation (DI):
  • Involves interpreting data from tables, charts, graphs, and caselets.
  • Questions test your analytical and calculation skills.
  1. Logical Reasoning (LR):
  • Focuses on logical puzzles, seating arrangements, and critical reasoning.
  • Requires problem-solving and decision-making abilities.

3. Quantitative Ability (QA)

  1. Arithmetic:
  • Topics include percentages, profit and loss, ratios, and averages.
  • Requires strong calculation skills.
  1. Algebra and Geometry:
  • Involves equations, quadratic equations, and geometry concepts.
  • Tests your problem-solving abilities.
  1. Number System:
  • Focuses on prime numbers, factors, and divisibility rules.
  • Requires conceptual understanding.
  1. Modern Math:
  • Includes topics like permutations and combinations, probability, and set theory.
  • Challenges your mathematical reasoning.

Acing Each Section

1. Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)

  • Read Regularly: Cultivate a reading habit to improve comprehension skills.
  • Vocabulary Enhancement: Learn new words daily and practice their usage.
  • Practice RCs: Solve a variety of reading comprehension passages to enhance your speed and comprehension.

2. Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR)

  • Practice Regularly: Solve puzzles and practice data interpretation questions.
  • Learn Shortcuts: Memorize shortcuts for calculations to save time.
  • Analyze Previous Papers: Understand the types of questions frequently asked in this section.

3. Quantitative Ability (QA)

  • Concept Clarity: Focus on building a strong foundation in math concepts.
  • Time Management: Allocate time effectively to different topics based on your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Mock Tests: Take regular mock tests to simulate exam conditions and improve your speed.

Preparing in the Last 3 Months

The final three months leading up to the CAT exam are crucial. Here’s a step-by-step approach to maximize your preparation:

Month 1: Strengthen Basics

  • Focus on building a strong foundation in each section.
  • Dedicate time to revising concepts and formulas.
  • Take diagnostic tests to identify weak areas.

Month 2: Sectional Proficiency

  • Dive deeper into each section, practicing questions of varying difficulty levels.
  • Work on improving your accuracy and speed.
  • Take sectional tests to assess your progress.

Month 3: Full-Length Mocks

  • Take full-length CAT mock tests regularly.
  • Simulate exam conditions, including time limits and a quiet environment.
  • Analyze your mock test performance, focusing on areas that need improvement.

CAT Preparation Strategy:

Preparing for the CAT (Common Admission Test) necessitates a multifaceted approach, drawing from various sources to ensure comprehensive coverage of the syllabus. Here are some essential sources for CAT preparation, including a mention of Hitbullseye:

  • Official CAT Website:

      • The official CAT website ( is your primary source of information, providing details about the exam, including the syllabus, exam pattern, and previous year’s question papers.
  • CAT Preparation Books:

      • Reputed authors and publishers have crafted essential CAT preparation books, including:
        • “How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT” by Arun Sharma
        • “Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT” by Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay
        • “Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for CAT” by Nishit K. Sinha
  • Online Learning Platforms:

      • Online educational platforms like BYJU’S, Unacademy, and Khan Academy offer CAT preparation courses, video lessons, and practice materials to cover various topics.
  • Coaching Institutes:

      • Renowned coaching institutes provide specialized CAT preparation programs. These institutes offer structured classroom coaching, study materials, mock tests, and expert guidance. Notably, Hitbullseye is a respected coaching institute with a strong track record of helping CAT aspirants succeed.
  • CAT Preparation Apps:

      • Mobile applications such as “CAT MBA Exam Prep by Career Launcher” and “CAT Exam Preparation – Edurev” offer convenience and access to CAT preparation materials on the go.
  • Online Forums and Communities:

      • Platforms like Hitbullseye MBA and InsideIIM host CAT discussion forums where candidates can share tips, strategies, and insights. These communities provide a space for peer learning and discussion.
  • Mock Test Series:

      • Enroll in mock test series provided by coaching institutes, online platforms, or Hitbullseye. Regularly practicing with mock tests helps improve time management and assess your readiness for the actual CAT exam.
  • Educational YouTube Channels:

      • YouTube channels like Handa Ka Funda, 2IIM – CAT Preparation, and Hitbullseye’s own channel offer video lessons, tips, and tricks for CAT preparation.
  • Current Affairs Sources:

    • Stay updated with current affairs through newspapers, magazines, and online news portals. A well-informed candidate performs better in the General Awareness section of CAT.
  • Self-Study and Revision:
    • Don’t underestimate the power of self-study. Make use of textbooks, online resources, and study groups to reinforce your understanding of CAT topics.



Mastering the CAT syllabus is a crucial step towards achieving a top-percentile score in this highly competitive exam. Understanding the syllabus, section by section, and adopting a strategic approach to preparation can make a significant difference in your CAT journey.

Remember, consistency and practice are key. Regularly solving questions, taking mock tests, and analyzing your performance will help you fine-tune your skills and build confidence.

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