Preparing for MBA Entrance Exams — First Steps

There are so many examinations out there to get into an Indian MBA, but you can’t decide let alone choose which exam to take. So, we have curated a guide below to get you started towards your MBA preparation journey.

Masters in Business Administration, or MBA  as it most widely known as, is one of the most prestigious master’s programs in India and consequently, one of the most sought-after. Every year, thousands of students across India attempt the CAT Exam or other MBA entrance exams in hopes of securing a seat in the top management colleges like IIMs, IMTs, SPJIMR, XIMB and as such.

Most students prepare for these examinations while working full-time.  They try to attempt other regional and state management exams to increase the chances of acquiring a seat in a decent management college and avoid the risk of losing a year in vain.

MBA Entrance exams tests a student’s ability on a wide spectrum.

It analyses the following aspects:
  1. Time Management
  2. Logical Reasoning
  3. Analytical Abilities
  4. Verbal and Written Communication
  5. Ability to work under acute pressure

Although it might look like a piece of cake to showcase your abilities in these aspects, it isn’t. Just so you know, there are thousands of students appearing for these examinations every year. Some have prepared on their own like you, while some have opted to study under the guidance of elite coaching institutes with a regimented training program.

Getting a top score requires strict and consistent preparation alongside smart work which helps you cover the topics you’re familiar with quickly.

Most MBA entrance exams like CAT, KMAT, XAT, GMAT, CMAT share similar syllabi with one or two additional sections, or it varies in the difficulty level of questions asked. So, you can prepare for the examinations you choose to appear for accordingly.

General Pattern of an MBA Entrance Exam:

  1. Verbal and Comprehension Section
  2. Quantitative Aptitude Section
  3. Data Analysis and Interpretation Section
  4. General Awareness Section
  5. Critical Reasoning Section

We, at BellCAT, understands the struggle of a student like you because we’ve been there too. Our top alumni recommend the following tips to ensure your preparation is on the right track.

Tips to prepare for MBA Entrance Exams:

1. Choice of College:

Initially, you’ll be overwhelmed with the number of management colleges out there, but depending upon your career objectives, you should narrow down your options. Most of the renowned management colleges have their own entrance exams like XAT, CAT and as such. So, choosing a college is choosing which entrance exams to prepare for.

2. Checking the Official Sites:

After narrowing down your options, you must go and check the exams’ sites to note their exam dates every year and how frequently they conduct the exam in a year. You should also check the syllabus if it is given on their websites and note it down. This will give you the timeline in which you have to cover the topics for a particular MBA entrance exam.

3. Make a Schedule:

Create a realistic schedule. You might be a working professional or a fresh graduate right out of college. So, make a schedule that works for YOU. Depending upon the amount of time you have, you can plan out your study sessions for each day based on the preparation goals you have every week.

For example: For the upcoming week, you are going to complete the fundamentals and shortcuts on Number Systems and Profit and Loss. So, you can plan out your daily sessions in order to meet these goals.

This method also keeps you from flaking on your preparation regardless of how tight your schedule is.

4. Read the Newspaper:

You might think this is some old-fashioned advice but let me tell you that this tactic has been used by numerous CAT toppers in the past years to prepare for their entrance exams.

Reading newspaper everyday helps you stay updated with the current scenario of the world as well as the nation. It also helps you improve your reading speed and increase your comprehension abilities. We recommend reading The HINDU,  The Economic Times, and The Quint.

5. Solve, Solve, Solve:

After you have gotten a firm grasp on the fundamental concepts of each section, solve as many questions as you can every day. Initially, start with easy questions pertaining to a topic.  Then, keep increasing the difficulty of your questions as you get better at solving them. After a couple of weeks of following the same routine, add a timer to solve a particular question or section. This will help you with time management on the D-Day. Here’s a curation of topic-wise question papers with varying difficulty levels.

6. Meditate:

Stress can be a major preparation buster. Students tend to start procrastination due to stress. Meditating every day at a fixed time will keep your mind at ease and help you focus better. Apart from meditating, making sure that you eat and sleep on time is essential to your well-being and keeping your preparation on the right track.

We hope you find this article helpful!

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