Targeting CAT 2022: How Should I Start With Topics From QA

By Aditi Joshi|Updated : July 2nd, 2022

Common Admission Test or CAT is the most popular and sought-after MBA entrance exam and is considered comparatively tougher than other MBA entrance exams. To crack CAT, one must possess SPEED and ACCURACY in solving questions from all three sections of the exam. By saying speed, we mean how quickly can you solve the questions asked in the exam. At such national-level exams, finding the solution of the answer in a step-by-step process can never be fruitful. Instead, one has to build a tendency to solve questions by merely looking at the options available to choose.

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Table of Content

CAT Exam Overview

To know how and when to start preparing for the QA section of the CAT exam the candidate should be aware of the CAT exam pattern. The below table consists of the CAT exam overview:

ParticularsCAT 2021CAT 2020CAT 2019
Exam Duration2 hours2 hours3 hour 
Sectional Duration40 minutes every section40 minutes each section60 minutes each section
Number of Questions in VARC242634
Number of Qs in QA222634
Number of Qs in DILR202432
CAT Registration FeeUnreserved-2200
Unreserved - Rs.2000
Reserved - Rs.1000
Unreserved - Rs.1900
Reserved - Rs.950
CAT Conducting bodyIIM AhmedabadIIM IndoreIIM Kozhikode
Medium of ExamOnline

Quantitative Ability Year-Wise Comparison

Quantitative Aptitude is one of the important sections of the CAT exam. Earlier the sectional duration of this exam was of 60 minutes but from 2020 onwards the sectional duration has been changed to 40 minutes. In the table below the year-wise comparison of the Quantitative Section of the CAT exam has been discussed:

ParticularsCAT 2019CAT 2020CAT 2021
Time (in minutes)606040
No. of Questions342622
MCQ Questions232014
Non-MCQ Questions1168

Note: Although the total number of questions has been reduced the number of Non-MCQ questions has been increased. Therefore, the overall difficulty level of the CAT 2021 exam was Moderate-Difficult.

Topic-Wise Breakup

Usually, it has been seen that this section is dominated by Arithmetic followed by Algebra. In CAT 2021 also this trend was followed. Below in the table the topic-wise breakup has been discussed:

TopicsCAT 2019CAT 2020CAT 2021
Arithmetic 141011
Number System2-33-51-2
Modern Mathematics0-10-21
Total 342622

Note: As seen in the table above though the total number of questions has been reduced there is one extra question in Arithmetic in CAT 2021 as compared to CAT 2020. Almost 50% of the total number of questions have been asked from Arithmetic. 

Important Tips To Prepare For The QA Section

Though the questions asked in the CAT exam are of the 10th standard, solving each question step-by-step might result in your failure to attempt maximum questions. Thus, applying short-cuts and short tricks to get to the solution of the question is very essential in such exams. To start preparing for the Quantitative Ability (QA) Section of the CAT exam, one must keep the following things in mind:

  • Strong Basics – Having a stronghold of the basics is very important to learn the tips and tricks to solve questions with speed and accuracy. Every one of us has studied the basic concepts in school, however, we tend to forget those. When you are starting to prepare for the QA section, it is very important to revise and memorize the basic concepts that you have already studied in school and then go ahead with learning the short-cut, tricks to solve those questions quickly.
  • Identify Your Weaknesses – It is very important to attempt all types of questions so that you have a fair idea of the type of questions you are comfortable with and the type of questions you feel are tough for you. Working on your weak areas is another trick that will help to solve more questions to attempt thus helping you with a chance to score more.
  • Work on the Short-Cut Tricks to Solve Questions – Once you are well-versed with the basic concepts of the topics from QA, you must shift your focus towards the short-cut methods and various tricks to solve those questions in less time with accuracy. For having a better understanding and knowledge about tricks to solve such difficult questions, we suggest you follow the faculties from BYJU'S Exam Prep who have years of experience in mentoring candidates for CAT.

Therefore, if you are planning to prepare for the CAT 2022 exam, This is the right time to kick off your preparations with BYJU'S Exam Prep. 




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  • As per the latest exam pattern of CAT 2021, 22 questions are asked from this section.

  • 40 minutes are provided for each section in the CAT exam.

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