Reading comprehension could sound like an easy section, but believe it or not, it is the most challenging section of the CAT exam. The passages given in the test will not be simple and easy, but slightly complicated and hard to comprehend. Those who read books regularly will find themselves a little comfortable with the section as they can skim the contents of the passages quickly and efficiently. Those who are not used to reading novels or magazines are obviously at a disadvantage, so they could start preparation early and read magazines and books regularly for pleasure, which in turn will help them in the examination also. The reading comprehension questions usually contain topics like Science, History, Arts, Society, Literature, etc. So, reading science journals, social magazines, newspapers and business magazines. To tackle the RC section with ease, one can always follow the four steps:
- Read the first two lines of each paragraph.
- Note down the summary of it in 2-3 words. For example, the first paragraph of a passage on ‘Chronic illnesses’ could be noted as Introduction, What is a chronic illness, etc.
- Make a list of summaries, so when you read a question, you will know which paragraph will contain the answer.
- Use these summaries to form the title or inference of the passage.
On the Day of the Exam:
On one day before the test, never take any sample tests, as it might ruin your confidence. Just stay calm and revise what you have already prepared, like quant formulae or reasoning type questions. Prepare yourself mentally for the exam, by sleeping early and meditating for at least 15 minutes. Avoid any kind of panic and reach the test center some 30 minutes before the exam to avoid getting stuck in the traffic, which leads to worry and anxiety just before the test. Prepare to take your admit card and any other proof of identity (Just in case). Do not forget these, as you will not be permitted to write the exam without these in your hands. Also take pencils, pens and necessary stationery articles for working out answers. Do not assume that the test center will provide these; they may or may not. Always wear comfortable clothes so there will not be any inconveniences during the test. Talk to the hall supervisor and find out about all that you need to know, as asking questions in the middle of the exam will not be entertained by some people. And having doubts during the exam is not good, as you will lose concentration and get distracted. Also do check all the questions you’ve answered thoroughly, as you will not be able to change these answers once the timing of the section is completed. The mantra for success is very simple, early and efficient preparation and calm and composure during the test.