IITian bags IIM Lucknow without coaching: They say the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. Truly, we should continue our pursuit of happiness and be persistent in asking the world for what we deserve, no matter how tough the situation at hand feels like. I am Mayank Gupta, an IIT Kharagpur alumnus who converted IIM Lucknow without offline or Online CAT Coaching. Too difficult to believe? Read on to find out how I converted IIM Lucknow by taking only CAT Mock Series and Online LRDI Coaching.

IITian bags IIM Lucknow without coaching

My academic profile is as follows:

  • Xth: 94%
  • XIIth:93%
  • IIT Kharagpur, Mechanical Engineering: 6.97 GPA

I was offered a placement during the placement season during my college, however, I missed out on it due to both a personal serious ailment and family issues. This was a rather depressing time in my life as I was directionless and hadn’t really thought of going for any kind of higher studies post engineering. However, the only way out of rock bottom is out, therefore, I thought of giving the CAT exam a shot.

When I familiarised myself with the CAT Exam Pattern and Syllabus, I quickly realised that out of the three sections of the exam viz; Verbal Ability, Quantitative Aptitude, Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation (LRDI), I was rather weak in the third section, which has been viewed as the trickiest section of the exam and known to dip the overall CAT scores of several students in the past. I also took a bold decision to not enroll in any coaching, offline or online, as something in me told me that I would sail through the sea as a sole sailor. However, I did resort to a good CAT Mock Series and Online LRDI Coaching since the former is indispensable to CAT preparation and the latter is where I need a little hand-holding.

Tips to waltz through the LRDI section like a pro!

LRDI can be both a deal breaker or a top scoring section for you, depending upon your preparation of the same. Besides tons of practice, the three key aspects to take care while solving any LRDI set are as follows:

  • Choice of set
  • Cracking the base logic early on
  • Leaving a question and moving on, if it requires a lot of time

The best part about the LRDI section is that everyone starts off from scratch as it is one section which does not require command in any area. Therefore, everyone has to play and work with the same limited amount of information and so, it all boils down to how you make sense of the given information faster.

Kickstart your LRDI Preparation

  • Solve 1 LR and 1 DI set every day: The more you would practice this section offline, the better you will get eventually. It is better to set small goals at the beginning of every day and achieve them rather than pushing yourself in the last few days, or piling it all on yourself together which makes you nauseous even before you get down to preparing for the LRDI section. To ace this section, you may refer to any of the books available in the market or material provided by your coaching institute.
  • Mock Tests: In every mock, irrespective of how difficult the paper is, you must focus on aiming at 50% of the total number of questions. A higher level of accuracy is always better, especially if your attempts are under 20/32.
  • Devising an approach for a variety of questions: There is a limit to the sets that can be made. Solid exposure to variety, traps, and fixed approaches to problems will help you do well in the section. Also, focus on your thought process. After seeing a set, if by the end of your first reading, you can figure out what you are supposed to do, you’re already ahead of a lot of people.

LRDI D-Day Plan for CAT 2019

The day of the CAT 2019 exam is the day you get to execute your preparation and this is THE day which can make or break your career. The aforementioned advice would aid you to prepare LRDI before the main exam day, the following one is the do’s and don’ts to take care of during the day.

  • Understand whether you need to solve 4 sets – 4 questions or 5 sets with 3 questions: This is where a lot of people go wrong. It is not mandatory that you solve every question under a set. In case you have got three correct, and fourth requires you to write multiple cases, you might as well move to the next set.
  • Don’t give up irrespective of the level of difficulty: Since LRDI is the second section in the paper and not performing well can have an impact on your performance in the subsequent section -Quant. Avoid getting tensed and frustrated. If it is difficult, it is difficult for all and in such cases, even 16–20 attempts will result in a good score.
  • Limited risks: There will be times when you will need to take small risks which can be compensated by a good set. If you have solved 20 correct questions and have 5 minutes to spare, try solving one more set even if you know that it is not possible to solve the whole thing. Take risks by guessing what the answer could be. You might get unimaginable rewards.

The CAT 2019 exam is an aptitude test which has always surprised students. So, it may happen that outr assumption of the level of difficulty is proved false in the upcoming CAT 2019. We never know. But, the preparation remains more or less the same. Understanding and adjusting to the level of difficulty, maintaining composure, and keeping attempt accuracy balance can be mastered over a period of time through practice. So practice, practice and more deliberate practice can get you to ace at LRDI section!

The LRDI section has established its reputation as a deal breaker for two years. Not because the section is too difficult to crack, but because of what it does to the morale of most students during the test. For LRDI, you need to spend a considerable amount of time during your early days to comprehend the “systematic approach” of solving. The more questions you solve the better you will get at it.

Personally, I would suggest Online CAT Coaching combined with Arun Sharma/N K Sinha should be fine. However, you must solve previous years’ CAT papers. Most students make this mistake of solving very difficult questions or sets ignoring super difficult questions. Pair Mock Tests with these by solving questions under a timer and under pressure and you are good to go!

In CAT 2015 and 2016, solving nearly 4-5 sets out of 8 with a near 100% accuracy would fetch you a decent score. However, be assured that you have done really well for yourself if you have hit over 24 attempts. Also, doing well in this differentiation section can push your score exponentially.

In a nutshell, I can summarise by saying that let us not underestimate this section for this is a difficult one. However, timing yourself for every set you solve and keeping it at a maximum of 10 minutes would do the job. Also, selecting the right set, leaving sets which are not in line with your expertise and taking a set to its conclusion are some of the things which should be worked on.

In life, we all need to play the hand we are dealt with. Therefore, this story of IITian bags IIM Lucknow without coaching is not a miracle but is actually true! I have told you everything about how to prepare the LRDI section well by taking heed to the above-mentioned advice and you will surely excel. Good Luck!