Most of us end up getting cold feet when it comes to Maths, especially in entrance examinations. But is it a justified fear is the question to be asked. Well, when it comes to CLAT- Maths, it certainly isn’t.
The level of maths one is tested on in CLAT is elementary Xth grade Maths (a cakewalk with just a bit of practice) and that too minus most tricky areas (the cherry on the cake).
More importantly, it comprises of 10% of the CLAT exam. This makes many concentrate on the other sections of the exam more. Now, why is bunking Maths prep not a good idea?
Firstly, it comprises of 20 marks, 20 easy-to-score marks. Maths section is the most scoring section for you as it does not require as much number of hours as the rest.
Secondly, unlike other sections, the level of subjectivity involved is not just minimal but non-existent. Thus one can be sure of one’s performance in the section unlike say, critical reasoning where surety is fairly hard to achieve.
There is a simple strategy for this section, know the syllabus, know the basics, and practice the simple questions thoroughly. Finally, polish your understanding by doing a handful of just-one-level-higher questions and you are good to go.
Now, how to go about the first two steps. one can get the syllabus from any basic text for CLAT prep. A brief look into the syllabus will show you 4 broad categories: Number systems and fundamental techniques (including percentages, fractions, averages and mean and ratio/proportion); then, there are topics wherein you apply the techniques and concepts learnt in the previous section (like time and work, time and distance); Commercial Maths (comprising of topics like profit and loss, simple and compound interest) and finally, you have the interesting miscellaneous section(with topics lie clock and calender, permutation and combination, probability and sequence and series).
The past year CLAT question papers will show that the first three categories form the major chunk of the Maths section. An elementary understanding of those topics would suffice. All that one then needs is, regular practice. Regular here, is the key word.
It often happens with CLAT aspirants that they tend to wrap up their Maths section right in the starting and move on to preparing for the rest. This is not really a good idea as speed in any (especially Maths section) is largely dependent on remaining in touch with the subject and thus the need for ‘regular’ practice.
With regards to the Miscellaneous category, though not largely tested in the past on, one must remember there has been little consistency in the areas tested on and thus there is nothing that precludes this section from forming part of CLAT 2013.
This category is often the interesting and often the most dreaded. This fear usually emerges from a wrong approach. An easy way to go about this is to know the logic and basic technique in each of the topics here, before moving on to the practice questions.
For instance, if one know what exactly is the rationale behind the use of factorial (!) used in formula of permutation and combination, there is nothing but pure logic that shall take care of the rest.
Thus, the mantra for acing the Maths section and getting the guaranteed 10% of your marks in your kitty is rather short and simple.
Recommended book: Magical Book on Quicker Maths, M. Tyra
Roopali is a 3rd year law student at NUJS and a faculty at CLATapult’s Kolkata center.
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