|I had my CAT exam on Dec 1st in the 10 AM slot at JNTUH College of Engineering, Hyderabad. I am dividing my experience into various sections so that it makes for a better read.|
Before the exam
The night before the CAT I slept early, at about 10.45 PM to ensure a good night's sleep. I had put the alarm for 6.30 in the morning but was awake by 6 itself (totally unlike me). Anyway, though I was up, I had nothing to do (didnt feel like studying or revising stuff). Hence, I started listening to one of my favourite songs, 'Yehi lakshya hai tera' song from the movie Lakshya. This one really pumps me up, and I hoped that it would do the same for me on this important day.
Left my place at about 7.20 and reached the center in about 20 mins. As I walked inside the gate, I realised that this was a university and was super huge, thought ki lo bhai, exam se pehle hi chala chala ke thaka denge. Anyway, had to walk for almost 1.5 km inside to reach my classroom. As soon as I reached, I saw a guy wearing the tag of NIIT (the IIMs have tied up with them too this time), just asked him a few questions about the exam, the center and blah blah. Contrary to my expectations, he was really friendly and helpful. At around, 8.30 the verification of docs started and simultaneously, another guy started collecting the other important things from everyone like keys, phones etc(They didnt force anyone to give anything, it was purely voluntary. People at my center gave the exam with watches tied on their wrists and wallets in their pockets).
Inside the exam hall
After we were taken inside, there was a guy at the entrance taking our pics with a webcam. Then they took the fingerprints of the index fingers of both our hands. Everything went smooth and at a fast pace. By 8.50 almost everybody was done and we were sitting at our allotted workstations. They announced that people could go to the washrooms and have water-breaks till 9.30. After that, nobody would be allowed to get up, they said.
During this time, they also distributed 4 A4 size sheets, a pencil and an eraser to every candidate. To this, I raised my hand and politely asked for another pencil. They too obliged. I was feeling smart ki waah!! mere paas toh do do pencil hain when my eye fell upon my neighbour. The bugger too had 2 and had sharpened them from the both the ends as well. Obviously, I felt a little stupid.
10 AM - The Exam begins
At 10 AM sharp, one of the guys called up someone at another center to announce the starting of the exam. Then all the invigilators started entering the various details (Login ID, password) on the screens of the candidates. The Proctors were very helpful, they helped each and every candidate to logon and had the patience to repeat theemselves over and over again. I was mighty impressed, all this was quite the opposite to what I had heard till now. Anyway, I went through the tutorial first and then went ahead with the paper. There werent any major surprises there and well, I'll say it went off okay.
Things to keep in mind
1. Reach the center at least 2 hrs before the scheduled start time of the test. Get used to the environment, have a look at where you are going to sit, prepare yourself mentally.
2. Do not forget to go the washroom. Drink minimum amount of water, in case you are in habit of going to the washroom every 2 hrs.
3. There are 5 buttons at the bottom of the test-taking page in the following order,
As many of you, would already be aware, dont press the Quit button, it will confirm once and in a hurry if you say 'Yes' would end the exam then and there. Same goes for the 'End Review' button on the Review page.
4. Everything at my center went off smoothly, no glitches, no hang-ups nothin. My point here is that these are things beyond your control, so dont worry about them. Just do your part, God will make sure the rest falls in place.
5. Lastly, believe in yourself and your abilities, hold your nerve and you'll do well. Time and again it has been proved in CAT, that the candidate who remains calm and composed has better a chance of doing well over others who get bogged down by the pressure and the sheer weight of their own expectations.
Haa !! Finally, am done although I would just like to thank everyone who has spared the time to go through my post and would end with one of my favourite quotes, 'The man who wins is the one who thinks he can.'