Reading Comprehension for CAT: Important Topics, Question Types, Books to Prepare CAT Reading Comprehension

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 13th, 2023

Reading Comprehension for CAT is a part of the VARC Section in the CAT. In CAT Reading Comprehension, the aspirants are given a passage and then asked questions based on the information mentioned in the passage. You may find several challenges in preparing Reading comprehension for CAT as this part can not be prepared by memorizing the formulas and shortcut techniques.

The candidates who are preparing for the upcoming exam must practice Reading Comprehension for CAT very well to score well in the VARC section. Usually, the CAT RC section is of moderate difficulty level; therefore, proper preparation can help you score well. In this article, BYJU’S Exam Prep Experts have listed some strategic Reading comprehension for CAT tips along with details on how to improve reading speed and accuracy in solving the questions.

CAT Reading Comprehension: Types of Questions

The baseline of the Reading Comprehension for CAT Exam remains the same with the chances of idioms, phrases, and vocabulary. However, the central idea of the passage may vary with the recent updates of news and current events.

Note the table below to understand the types of questions you may face in solving Reading Comprehension for CAT. The types of RC Questions in CAT mentioned below are as per the previous year’s analysis.

Reading Comprehension for CAT Question Types

Key Features

Reasoning-based Questions

It includes Statement, Assumption, True-False, Inference, and Judgement

Vocabulary Questions

Find out the similar meaning of the word or the phrase used in the RC passage

Opposite Meaning questions

Pick out the answer option with the opposite meaning of the word/phrase as used in the passage.

Thought based

Summarised the central idea of the passage in your own words

Fact Verification

Choose the answer that agrees or disagrees with the idea expressed by the author.

How to Improve Reading Comprehension for CAT?

The aspirants must follow a strategic CAT Preparation plan to grasp this section well. Our experts have listed some guiding points on how to improve Reading Comprehension for CAT.

  • The aspirants must be prepared as per the latest trends of CAT Reading Comprehension questions. Get updated with CAT RC preparation study notes from BYJU’S Exam Prep CAT Online Classes.
  • Read the best books to practice Reading Comprehension for CAT.
  • While attempting CAT Reading Comprehension questions, balance your time in reading the question and the passage. Do not invest too much time in reading the passage.
  • One of the best Reading comprehension for CAT tips, as per experts, is to choose which RC to attempt while giving the exam. It is important to judge whether you wish to attempt or leave the question.

Below are some well-curated books for Reading comprehension for CAT practice.

CAT Reading Comprehension Practice Books

Author’s Name

How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT

Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay/Arihant

How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT

Sharma and Upadhyay

Reading Comprehension for CAT Tips

The aspirants need to practice repeatedly to prepare for CAT RC Questions. Practising is very important to build a good grip on English vocabulary skills. Additionally, if you practice regularly, you will understand what type of passages you will get in the CAT and how to extract information from them to answer the questions. Try to solve 2-3 Reading Comprehension for CAT each day for practice.

When it comes to reading comprehension, the aspirants should aim to acquire new words, synonyms, antonyms, meaning, error correction, and answering strategies for Reading Comprehension for CAT. Here, BYJU’S Exam Prep experts have highlighted quick tips and tricks and tips on how to improve RC for CAT.

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Be Focused on the Core Idea of the CAT Reading Comprehension

The aspirants must focus on the core ideas of the passage given in the Reading Comprehension for CAT question. It is very important to understand the meaning of the passage to solve the questions accurately.

If you read the CAT RC passages carefully, you can analyze the passage and its meaning. It will help you to fix your confusion so that you can easily conclude the entire passage.

Improve Your Reading Habits

The aspirants must enhance their reading habits by reading novels, storybooks, fiction and non-fiction magazines, and newspapers like TOI, Economist, and The Hindu. You must first give preferences to your reading skills to solve Reading Comprehension for CAT. The aspirants can also read magazines and online articles from their areas of interest. It is good to be updated with the latest information because CAT Reading Comprehension passages often come from current events.

☛ See Also: Algebra CAT Questions

Focus on Vocabulary Skills

Reading Comprehension for CAT relies on a combination of context, vocabulary, and the interaction of words. So, you must understand the meaning, importance, and application of each before starting your preparation.

The aspirants can also follow the dictionary to look up the meaning and application of the words they need to familiarize themselves with. It is beneficial to enhance the work stocks with their synonyms, antonyms, and usage in the sentences.

Maintain a Diary to Make Important Notes to Improve RC for CAT

The aspirants must maintain a diary to note down every uncommon word with its meaning and uses in the sentences. It is helpful to make time-to-time revisions. Additionally, if you make notes, you can quickly revise before the exam dates.

Maintaining a diary will also boost your memory. If you prepare anything with writing practice, you can easily recall them during the exam. Additionally, it keeps your preparation on track.

Use Your Freetime

The aspirants must use their free time by revising the study materials they have followed while practising the Reading Comprehension for CAT. If they ignore revising, they will forget what they have studied. So, you must revise your notebooks in your free time to gain more confidence to solve the CAT RC passages.

You can also utilize your free time by reading good novels, as it is very helpful to enhance your English vocabulary. The Reading Comprehension for CAT questions are very standard; therefore, reading habit for good novels is required.

Solve Previous Year CAT RC Questions

The aspirants must solve CAT Question Papers to get an idea about CAT RC passages. It will help them to understand the types and difficulty levels of reading comprehension and be prepared accordingly. You can also attempt BYJU’S Exam Prep CAT Mock Test for practising Reading Comprehension for CAT. It will help you to analyze your preparation level.

The CAT Reading Comprehension questions are a little time-consuming, as this is the only section that does not follow any formulas and shortcut tricks to solve the questions. Thereby, you must practice this section well and try to follow strategic preparation tactics to score well in this section.

How to Practice Reading Comprehension for CAT?

Everybody knows that reading books is the best way to capture interest in comprehension passages, as it improves our focus and accuracy. The CAT Reading Comprehension passages are generally extracted from the below areas:

  • Business and Economics
  • Humanities
  • Social Sciences
  • Natural Sciences
  • Current Events

Thereby, try to give priority to reading Reading Comprehension for CAT to understand the subject and core information. Note the table below to get an idea about what type of topics you will face during the CAT.

CAT RC Topics 2021

Slot 1

Slot 2

Slot 3

Utopia Dystopia


(Ghar Bahar)


T Trade


(Truth and Power)


Experiments on CuttleFish

Languages (Weish)


What Mayans Considered a Person


(Detach Yourself)

Time and Clock

☛ See Also: Best Coaching Institute for CAT in India

Best Books to Prepare CAT Reading Comprehension

The aspirants must remember that there is no definite syllabus for preparing for Reading Comprehension for CAT. Our experts have listed down some books by analysing the previous years’ questions, which you can follow while preparing for CAT RC passages.

You must download the question papers and solve multiple mock tests for CAT Reading comprehension practice.



Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

Stephen Covey

A Brief History of Time

Stephen Hawking


Carl Sagan

An Illustrated Retelling of Mahabharata – Jaya

Devdutt Patnaik

India in Slow Motions

Mark Tully

Capitalism & Freedom

Milton Friedman

Maximum City

Suketu Mehta

Long Walk to Freedom

Nelson Mandela

Wings of Fire

APJ Abdul Kalam


David Gregory Roberts

Around the world in Eighty Days

Jules Verne

The Time Machine

HG Wells

Caves of Steel

Isaac Asimov

The Hunger Games

Suzanne Collins

Three Men in a Boat

Jerome K Jerome

Something Fresh

P G Wodehouse

Where Eagles Dare

Alistair McLean

Besides the above-listed books, the aspirants can also follow newspapers and journal articles to read for Reading Comprehension for CAT.

News and Journals

The Hindu

Times of India

The Stateman

Business Week

The Economist


The National Geography


Business World

The Telegraph

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