The SNAP 2014 exam was similar to earlier SNAP tests in terms of paper pattern but went a notch higher as far as difficulty was concerned. This was due to a combination of some tough and some ambiguous/incorrect questions. GK was the toughest section of the lot with extensive focus on static GK and trivia. The overall structure and marking scheme of the exam was as expected i.e. 150 questions for 180 marks in 120 minutes. As usual, the Logical Reasoning section had the least questions but the maximum marks allotted to it.
Summary

Number of Sections

4

Options per Question

4

Negative Marking

1/4th of
Marks for the Question

Marks per Question

2/question
for LR, 1/question for remaining sections

Expected Overall Cutoffs

75+ for
SIBMP, 70+ for SCMHRD

1. Logical Reasoning – 30 questions:
Like every year, the LR section had 30 questions, with 2 marks allotted per question. The reasoning concepts covered in this section were linear, circular and complex arrangements, coded relationships, family tree, Venn diagrams, letter series, knights and knaves, clocks, syllogisms etc. Unlike last year, critical reasoning questions made a big comeback with seven questions being from this area. The questiontype level breakup of this section is as given below:
Question Type

No. of Questions

Relationships  Coded

1

Relationships – Family Tree

1

Linear Arrangements

2

Circular Arrangements

5

Complex Arrangements

5

Number Series

1

Clocks

1

Venn Diagrams

4

Syllogisms

1

Knights and Knaves

2

Implicit Assumptions

2

Verbal Analogies

2

Critical Reasoning – Support Argument

2

Critical Reasoning  Conclusion

1

In general, the difficulty level of the section was higher than last year, but question selection and the order in which you attempted questions was critical. The sets on Venn Diagrams, knights and knaves and the single question on complex arrangement were extremely simple and should have been attempted first. The set of four questions on six students in different Bschools was easy but slightly time consuming. This along with the questions on syllogisms, number series and linear arrangements could have been attempted next. Surprisingly, the critical reasoning questions (assumptions, supporting the argument) were easy and so were the analogy questions. The set on circular arrangements involved a pair of circular seating arrangements along with some aspects of critical path and networks. This was not only tricky but also time consuming. This could have been avoided or done at the end. Approximately 1920 questions in 40 minutes would be a good attempt.
2. Verbal Ability – 40 questions:
This year’s SNAP differed from last year in the sense that the importance given to fill in the blanks and vocabulary was totally reversed. The number of fill in the blank questions shot up to 18 (from 8 last year) and the number of vocabulary questions came down to 9 from 15. The overall breakup of this section was:
Question Type

Number of Questions

Reading Comprehension

9

Vocabulary – Synonyms, antonyms, spellings, compound
words

9

Fill in the blanks

18

Faulty Construction

1

Correctincorrect sentences

3

The vocabulary based questions tested knowledge of synonyms, antonyms, spellings and compound words (hardnosed v/s bottleneck v/s minestrone etc). Fill in the blanks tested sentence construction, prepositions and other parts of speech as well as use of idioms and phrases. There were 3 questions on identifying the grammatically correct sentence (of which one had no correct options).
The test also comprised two RCs – a long passage with six questions and a very short one with three questions. The longer passage (approximately 500 words) was based on considerations that companies need to keep in mind for importexports. Though the passage was long, it was straightforward and all the questions were factual and directly available from the passage. The shorter passage was based on books and the purpose of reading. It used archaic English in parts. The questions were again factual, one being vocabulary based. Both passages should have been attempted and some of the trickier fill in the blanks and vocabulary questions skipped to increase accuracy.
Around 25 attempts with 80% accuracy in 2025 minutes would be a good attempt.
3. General Knowledge and Current Affairs – 40 questions:
As mentioned earlier, GK was the toughest section as it was dominated by static GK and trivia. Hence, a lot of questions were binary in nature i.e. you either knew the answer to the question or didn’t know it at all. Also, close answer options made guessing a risky proposition. Questions were asked from diverse areas like geography, literature, sports, history, personalities, science and technology, organisations etc. There were hardly any questions on current affairs. A wellread student could have attempted 1011 questions.
4. Quantitative Ability + Data Interpretation + Data Sufficiency – 40 questions:
The Quantitative Ability section was tougher this year with new concepts being tested, along with some questions that were ambiguous or completely incorrect. Even though the section name had Data Sufficiency in it, there was no DS question. The major set with errors in it was the DI set (on piecharts) with the angles adding up to 420 degrees instead of 360 (inspite of the question explicitly mentioning that there was NO overlap). However, if the questions were solved using 360 degrees as the base value for the piechart, they were easy to solve.
The overall topiclevel breakup of this section is as given below:
Topic

Number of Questions

Averages

1

Percentages

3

Interest and Growth Rates

1

Profit, Loss and Discount

2

Ratio and Proportion

1

Time and Distance

2

Time and Work

1

Clocks

2

Number Theory

3

Logarithms

2

Linear Equations

1

Quadratic & Higher Order Equations

3

Circles

1

Quadrilaterals and other Polygons

1

Mensuration

2

Trigonometry

1

Coordinate Geometry

1

Functions

1

Permutations & Combinations

1

Probability

3

Number Series

1

Odd Man Out

1

Pie Charts

5

Arithmetic and Algebra constituted 22 of the 35 QA questions. Within Arithmetic, nearly every concept (except Mixtures and Alligation) was covered while Algebra focused on number theory, logarithms and linear and quadratic equations. There were 6 and 5 questions each from Geometry and Modern Maths along with one question each on number series and odd man out. Apart from the DI set with wrong values, the question on cultivating sunflowers and the question on logarithms with a negative base were clearly incorrect. The questions on finding the domain of a function, finding the digits of a number using logs, reversal of hands of a clock and use of trigonometric identities involved use of concepts typically not associated with a SNAP test. Some of the questions like the one on successive discounts and one question from probability involved slightly tedious percentage calculations. On the whole, solving 2325 questions with even 85% accuracy in 3540 minutes would be a good attempt.
Overall, 80 attempts and a score of 75 or above should be good for students applying to SIBM (Pune). For students applying to SCMHRD, 70 or above should be a safe score. The cutoffs should be drastically lower for the remaining Symbiosis institutes.
