The Telegraph
Thursday , September 20 , 2012
 
WEEKLY FEATURES
CITIES AND REGIONS
ARCHIVES
Since 1st March, 1999
 
THE TELEGRAPH
 
 
Bell the CAT
Web Watch

With the Common Admission Test (CAT) less than a month away, the clock is ticking for management aspirants. It’s time to take mock tests, revise quantitative abilities and polish verbal skills. Amidst the hectic preparation here is a website that will aid in making that MBA dream a reality. On www.catsyllabus.com, readers will find information about important admission tests, exam patterns, syllabi and modules to help prepare for CAT.

The website projects a clean and well-defined design, making it extremely easy to navigate. This aspect is an added bonus because time is precious for students who are surfing test preparation sites and would appreciate not being distracted by an excess of links and unwarranted ads. So, on catsyllabus.com you will effortlessly head straight to the icons on top of the home page. These include “admission tests”, “syllabus for CAT”, “CAT 2012 prepare”, “resources”, “download free stuff” and “books store online”.

For test takers, the most useful section on the website is “download free stuff”. There is no plethora of links to choose from as one would expect from a management studies website. Nevertheless, take your pick from a series of subject specific links. Download previous years’ papers and analysis (CAT, XAT, MAT, JMET, FMS, SNAP, IIFT and MICAT), study materials for quantitative ability, verbal ability, logical reasoning, data interpretation or the GMAT e-book. You only need to register on the website to be able to download these papers and study material.

If you are unclear about CAT and other exams or if you are still thinking about attempting a management entrance exam, the first two sections on catsyllabus.com can help you get initiated into the process. While the first topic “admission tests” gives a brief overview of the various management exams in the country, the next section “syllabus for CAT” lists the subjects that you need to study to crack these tests. The admission tests function as a guide to aspirants, providing basic details not only about CAT, MAT, XAT but also about a few lesser-known tests such as Karnataka Management Admission Test (KMAT) and Integrated Common Entrance Test (Andhra Pradesh).

The third section “CAT 2012 prepare” goes a step further and explains the important topics of CAT, including quantitative ability, grammar, vocabulary, logical reasoning, data interpretation, group discussion and interview. Each of these sub-sections has a list of topics with a brief explanation about the concepts. In quantitative ability, you can read about number systems, trigonometry, basic formulae of algebra, percentages, divisibility rules, speed, time and distance, ratio and proportion among several other fundamentals. Likewise, under group discussion (GD), read what is a GD, types of GDs, GD topics, dos and don’ts, essay topics, what an interviewer expects and most commonly asked questions. Read about B-school rankings, institute contact details and analysis of various MBA entrance exams in the resources section on the homepage. The info zone here has a series of interesting articles that give an insight into the test taking process. Watch videos on CAT registration and scheduling as well as on test day procedures. Some good reads include CAT duration pattern and online tips and how to select MBA preparation institute.

In the realm of management websites, catsyllabus.com lacks on several parameters. Students usually head to such websites for practice tests, mock CATs, expert advice and a peer discussion forum to resolve their study hurdles. CATsyllabus lacks all these important quotients to keep readers coming back. The content appears not well-researched and way too little in several sections. The explanations in the CAT prepare segment, for instance, are concise but come without examples to explain them to readers. The site makers badly need the assistance of a proof reader or should use the spell check at least. And what is with the promotion of books on the site? On every topic there seems to be a corresponding advert for a book purchase, making it a complete eye sore.

Go to CATsyllabus for a basic overview of the entrance tests, to familiarise yourself with general concepts asked in these exams, for the videos and free downloads.

Tessy Koshy
tessy_koshy@yahoo.com