I hope this article finds you safe and in the best of health.
Coronavirus is drastically affecting daily lives, with restrictions on travel, educational institutions closed and social contact limited. Employees have started to work from home. Colleges and coaching institutes are shut.
These are difficult times but the best contribution that we as citizens can make is to stay indoors and the best utilization of this isolation that students can make is to give all the time to study.
Here are 7 important points I want every CAT aspirant to go through:
1) Take care
Wash your hand frequently with soap or hand wash for at least 20 seconds (keep the tap closed for these 20 seconds to save water). You can also use hand sanitizers with at least 60 percent isopropyl alcohol content (NO, vodka which is recommended by WhatsApp university will not work). Wash hands thoroughly before eating or whenever you come from outside. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Maintain self-isolation and social distancing, that’s the only solution.
2) Start reading
A wise person will make use of this totally uninterrupted time as much as possible. It is the best time to stuff some cotton in your ears (literally and figuratively) and start reading. Literally, because there might be chances that you won’t get enough private space due to the whole family being at home during isolation and figuratively because you need to avoid all the distractions from social media (avoid checking out the infected toll and the coronavirus memes). As I have also mentioned in the ‘toppers schedule to score more than 99 percentile’ post, you should start with reading books and then move on to reading long articles.
If you are totally new to reading, then you can start with authors such as Chetan Bhagat and Durjoy Datta. After a month or so, you can switch to authors such as Paulo Coelho, Jeffrey Archer, Sidney Sheldon, and Amish Tripathi. And when you have gained sufficient confidence, you can move on to authors like Dan Brown, Salman Rushdie, and Khaled Hosseini.
I know there is no substitute for good old paperback books but it might be difficult to get hold of these during self-isolation. You can get some good ones from https://www.gutenberg.org/. It might be difficult to develop interest reading on the computer but something is better than nothing. Avoid borrowing books from neighbors or friends for obvious reasons of virus spread. Also, if you cannot get good books, you can give more time to reading articles online from sources such as The Hindu, Aldaily, NYtimes, Aeon.co, theGuardian.com, Economist.com, etc. We provide a curated list of articles to read every day on our WhatsApp broadcast list.
3) How to prepare
If you have already joined an offline coaching institute, you can do self-study from its material till your classes resume. If you are looking for some complementary material, ‘Quantum CAT’ by Sarvesh Verma for Quantitative Aptitude and ‘Face to Face with CAT’ for solved previous year DILR questions will be a good way to kickstart your preparation. Even though you will be given an on-screen calculator in the exam, doing calculations on your own will make you comfortable with numbers. Afterall, DI is all about reading numbers, interpreting graphs, calculating growth rates and comparing ratios. To even begin with any of these, you need to be through with the basic building blocks of mathematics i.e.
- tables from 1 to 20
- squares from 1 to 30
- cubes from 1 to 15
- square roots from 1 to 10
- conversion tables
- percentage fraction equivalence
- approximation techniques
- ratio comparison techniques
- basic direct formulas (for topics such as algebraic identities, APGP, etc.)
Also, make a habit of solving sudoku. It will help you in developing logic. You can get some good ones from https://sudoku.com/. They also have apps for android and iOS. There are a number of puzzle apps as well, which you can search for on these platforms.
You can look at this article to learn about strategies to make a tight schedule that can boost your preparation amongst this chaos.
4) Get online judiciously
It might look like a shameless plug but looking for an online course would be a very logical step right now. You can look for an online course that will provide you with all the knowledge required to excel in the CAT exam. You can look at the best course to prepare for CAT here.
You get more than 350 detailed and engaging videos for each concept along with a dedicated and promptly supported doubt forum, which is seamlessly integrated with each and every section of the course. I believe that the teaching process should have three steps: Learn – Practice – Test. This is what the CAT course at Gofodu is structured around. You start with the tutorial videos on basic to advanced concepts followed by videos on solved examples. Each and every video has a thoughtfully designed quiz with detailed solutions associated with it which helps you practice the concepts learned in the video. There are more than 250 such quizzes with more than 2000 solved examples. Once you have practiced well, you can move on to giving mocks. The course has more than 35 mock tests, designed by CAT toppers. Each test comes with a detailed analysis and solution. You get everything in the comfort of your home. Start with the topic of your choice and play, pause and rewind as many times as you want.
We have seen a surge in registrations on our platform in the past few days. But it is always advised during a crisis- Do not panic buy. Earlier, we, at Gofodu, had a 24-hour refund policy so that you never regret an impulse purchase but this week onwards, we have revised the policy to ‘3 days no questions asked refund’. We do suggest that you make an informed decision after trying the fraction of the course provided to you for free. Also, just so as to give more value to the students, we have increased more sections accessible through a free account. Don’t get lured by stats and figures. 350 through and detailed 10 to 15-minute videos are better than more than 800 two to three-minute videos. Go for quality and not quantity and make a decision after trying the content.
Coming back to panic buy point, unlike other online centers, we have decided not to give a discount code which stands valid only for the next two days. Instead, we have slashed CAT 2020 course prices permanently by INR 1000. The prices are lower than ever, starting at INR 7499 for CAT 2020 course. And mind you, this includes taxes. Big news, right?
5) Resist the entertainment urge
If my honest efforts have somehow made you consider the ‘online CAT 2020 course’, let me tell you some side effects as well. You might face the urge to check out that viral video on YouTube or statuses and memes on Instagram (a shameless plug once again). Well, you need to self-isolate yourself there as well.
Many entertainment and movie streaming platforms might spam you with lucrative offers but your focus should be more on binge-watching is the CAT preparation course. Of course, you need your entertainment on the side but studies should be the priority and what better way to learn if the content itself is so engaging. Check out our content by signing up for FREE.
A full-fledged course that can help you crack CAT gives you great power in your hands, you need to be responsible to make the best use of it (couldn’t resist giving the Spider-Man reference). Any kind of study on social media is more gimmick than study, so stay disciplined and stay motivated.
6) Build your profile from home
There are many companies that offer work from home internships related to coding/testing, content development, digital marketing, etc. If you are in college, look for such internships on Internshala. If you have a job, you can do additional courses from Udemy to build skills in your respective field.
COVID-19 is a humanitarian and societal crisis of unprecedented speed and scale, which seeks to evoke serious economic devastation in its wake. So, once we recover from the pandemic, there is going to be a huge economic slowdown. The only way to handle it is by equipping yourself with enough of the knowledge and skills with books and courses so that you become an invaluable asset.
7) Be a better person
We are in a state of lockdown and this is going to control the crisis to a large extent but it looks like this problem is here to stay for quite some time and we need to make some serious changes in our lifestyle. Desperate times call for desperate measures.
You need to make and follow a time-table which can keep things sorted for you. You do need to include the following things in your time-table:
- A fixed time to sleep and wake up every day. There is no point in changing your sleep cycle to wake up early for studies (if you don’t already do that). You will end up wasting a lot of time.
- Yoga and exercise to keep you fit
- Pranayam to stay energetic and focused throughout the day so that you make maximum out of this time. It hardly takes 20 minutes* to practice Pranayam from the following links:
*you may need to watch a few more videos to learn the technicality
Another important thing that I personally feel is that lockdown is going to increase the household work to a greater extent. I personally like this ad from Ariel very much. I know it is 2020 (times have already changed), but still, I would like to put it out and request you to share the household chores. Be a better version of yourself.
Finally, I would say that points number (2) to (7) mentioned above are useful only if you follow the number (1) point of taking care of yourself. So, stay safe and take the utmost care of yourself and your loved ones. For any help and guidance for your CAT preparation, feel free to reach out to us via mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can directly connect with Anshul Sir at email@example.com.