How to prepare for PGDBA examination
The PGDBA program is a highly sought-after and fast growing program that is helmed by 3 illustrious institutions: IIM Calcutta, IIT Kharagpur and ISI Kolkata. It is a program that targets the fast growing field of data science and analytics. The program has been designed to give a holistic idea of the field of business analytics and data science along with industry experience in the form of the 6 month long internship. The course design is one of the reasons that the program has grown to the extent that it has.
To prepare for PGDBA written test, it is very important to look at the syllabus and previous year question papers in detail because syllabus is little different than CAT in Quantitative Aptitude and for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension and Logical Reasoning Data Interpretation the depth is neither like CAT nor the level of difficulty matches with the CAT. This is a go to article for you if you are willing to appear for this exam. Let’s start!
PGDBA Examination Pattern
|Section||Total No. of Questions||Marking Scheme|
|Data Interpretation & Data Visualisation||5||+3/-1|
|Reading Comprehension & Verbal Ability||15||+3/-1|
In short, PGDBA Exam pattern comprises of the following components
- It’s a three-hour online Computer-Based Test.
- All the questions are MCQ type questions having four answer choices per question.
- The test comprises a total of 50 questions carrying 150 marks.
- There is no negative marking for unattempted questions.
- Each incorrect attempt will draw a penalty of 1 mark.
|Quantitative Ability||Data interpretation & visualisation||Logical Reasoning||Reading Comprehension & Verbal Ability|
|Venn Diagram based sets, Line/bar charts, multiple graphs and other standard DI templates||Arrangement puzzles, sequencing puzzles, Math Puzzles, puzzles based on blood relation etc||Reading Comprehension|
If you investigate the official syllabus of the QA section, it covers almost all the topics of 11 and 12th std mathematics. The difference between CAT and PGDBA is that CAT tests your ability based on 8-10th std mathematical concepts whereas PGDBA focuses on +2 level maths. Syllabus of PGDBA is short and the exam level is easy.
The pattern of PGDBA will help you understand how to cover the portion of Quantitative Ability first and then move on to the other segments. Now, let’s see important topics that one must have command on to clear this exam.
|Calculus||Set theory, Relation, and Domain – Range of a function|
Limit – give more emphasis on L’Hospital rule
Learn the concept of continuity and differentiability well, and practice a lot of questions from these topics
Differentiation of single variable and application of derivative
Definite integral and definite integral using property
Application of integration – give more emphasis finding area encolsed by the curve using definite integral
|Linear Algebra||Basic properties, Determinants, transpose of matrices, rank of a matrices|
|Number System||Syllabus of CAT|
|Combinatorics||Syllabus of CAT – give more emphasis on permutation and combination, and basic counting. From Probability don’t forget to practice questions from Bayes’ Theorem.|
|Arithmetic||Syllabus of CAT|
|Geometry||Syllabus of CAT|
|Trigonometry||Syllabus of CAT – Learn Height and Distance well, practice questions from 3D problems|
|Algebra||Syllabus of CAT – Also have an idea about Complex number, nth root and cube root of unity|
|Co-ordinate geometry||Syllabus of CAT – Also practice questions from the Conic section|
Books that can help you with topics like Calculus and Linear Algebra
- NCERT class XI and XII Mathematics text books
- Test of Mathematics at the 10+2 level by Indian Statistical Institute
- Calculus by Michael Spivak
- Introduction to Linear Algebra by Gilbert Strang
Data interpretation and Logical reasoning
Both the Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning section of PGDBA are quite like the CAT Data Interpretation and logical reasoning section. If you’re someone who is preparing CAT, in that case you don’t have to do anything separately. Solve past years papers of IIFT, XAT and CAT, that’s all.
Reading Comprehension and Verbal Ability
The syllabus for the Verbal Ability section in the PGDBA Exam is like the CAT Exam. In terms of the difficulty of the section, it can vary across the years. In past The PGDBA Exam had a moderate Verbal Ability section with the Reading Comprehension questions being slightly difficult while the other questions were moderate. Reading Comprehension should be the second most important point of focus of the candidate, after QA. RC passages are always based on a centralized idea. The centralized idea has three components, namely, i) Topic – what is the passage about, ii) Scope – what aspect of the topic does the passage focus on, iii) Purpose – why did the author write the passage. As you begin to read the passage, determine the centralized idea. That would help you answer the big purpose of the author behind writing this passage. Recognizing these three components is very crucial for answers.
Tips – Solve previous years question papers of CAT, and read 2-3 articles from Bharath’s curated reading list everyday.
Mock tests are the final and the most critical step. It is sporadic for any candidate to perform up to their potential in the Entrance Exams because the time limit ensures that they must solve the problem in a reasonable amount of time. Due to this reason, the PGDBA Preparation must include timed Mock practices as well. The best mock tests available for PGDBA exam are the actual previous years question papers of PGDBA Examination. So earmarking 1 mocks per week will give you an idea about the entire test-giving experience.
I will end this blog with a quote from Rajesh Sir – ” Prepare for the exam like everything depend on it, but write the exam as nothing depends on it.” Don’t take too much pressure for this exam. Just relax. Give your best and forget the rest. Best wishes 😀
Abhishek Mukherjee works for 2IIM. Apart from solving interesting math questions he likes to eat biriyani and watch movies.