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How to Improve Vocabulary for CAT Exam?

Author : Aparna

Updated On : May 18, 2023


Summary: This article covers techniques for studying and memorising new words, as well as helpful resources to improve vocabulary. Here’s how to improve vocabulary for CAT exam?

If you are planning to take the Common Admission Test (CAT) exam, it is essential to have a good vocabulary and clear the VARC section.

Having a strong vocabulary will help you to understand the questions and answer them accurately. 

Improving your vocabulary can help you to achieve good scores in VARC, thus adding up to your final scores.

This article will provide you with tips and strategies to help you improve vocabulary for CAT exam.

How to Improve Vocabulary for CAT Exam?

Here’s everything you need to know about vocabulary for CAT Exam

VARC Exam Pattern

Sections Total No. of Questions MCQs Non-MCQs Marks Duration
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) 24 21 3 72 40 min

Check: Participating institutes of IIM

Important Topics for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension 

Here are the important topics for the CAT exam English syllabus

  • English Usage or Grammar
  • Vocabulary-Based (Synonyms/ Antonyms)
  • Fill in the blanks
  • Sentence Correction
  • Cloze Passage
  • Jumbled Paragraph
  • Meaning-Usage Match
  • Analogies or Reverse Analogies
  • Summary Questions
  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Facts-Inferences-Judgments
  • Reading Comprehension

Check: CAT Exam Marking Scheme

Steps on How to improve vocabulary for CAT exam?

  • Read: Reading is a great way to increase your vocabulary. Read books, newspapers, magazines, and any other source of information that can help you discover new words. The more you read, the more words you will learn.
  • Take vocabulary tests/ mocks: Take online vocabulary tests to assess your current knowledge and track your progress. This will help you identify your weak areas so that you can focus on those specific words.
  • Play word games: Word games such as crossword puzzles, anagrams, and Scrabble can be great fun and an effective way to improve your vocabulary.
  • Use a dictionary: Make sure to use a good dictionary to look up the meanings of unfamiliar words. This is also a great way to track your progress and get a better understanding of the words that you are learning.
  • Use mnemonics: Mnemonics are memory techniques that help you remember words and meanings more easily. 
  • Learn word roots: Word roots are the base words from which other words are derived. Learning these roots can help you better understand the meaning of words and remember them more easily.
  • Learn 5 new words every day: To improve your vocabulary, make a list of 5 new words with their meanings every day. 
  • Communicate in English: This can help you learn new words and also crack the interview process for CAT admission.
  • VARC syllabus: Go through the syllabus and weitage of each topic and prepare accordingly. 
  • Previous year's papers: Look at the type of questions asked in the previous year's exam and take the mock test to ace the preparations for VARC. 

Check: CAT Exam Preparation 2023

Vocabulary Books for CAT exam

You can refer to the following books for CAT exam: 

  • How to Build A Better Vocabulary by Maxwell Nurnberg & Morris Rosenblum
  • Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis
  • The Students' Companion by Wilfred D Best
  • Newspapers

Check: CAT Exam Cut Off 2023


You can improve your chances of success by improving your vocabulary for the CAT exam. Utilizing resources such as flashcards, online vocabulary games, and books can help you quickly learn and remember new words. Reading extensively in different subject areas can also help expand your vocabulary and strengthen your comprehension skills. Finally, practice makes perfect – the more you practice, the better you will use the words you’ve learned. You can improve your vocabulary and succeed in the CAT exam with hard work and dedication.

Frequently Asked Questions

To improve your vocabulary for the CAT exam, you should read extensively, learn new words, practice using those words in sentences, and use various online resources such as flashcards and word games.

You should read materials that are at a level that is slightly challenging for you. This will help you grow your vocabulary and better understand the words in context.
There are many online resources available that can help you improve your vocabularies, such as flashcards, online dictionaries, and word games.
It is important to review your vocabulary words regularly to ensure that you remember them and can use them correctly. It is recommended to review your words at least once a week.
Besides reading and using online resources, you should also practice using the words in context by writing sentences or short stories, and discuss the words with friends or family members.


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