There are things that should be ignored and there are things that should be addressed. This one is the latter.
I was quite amused when I read this in a website of a test prep company.
“Another important point to note is something we stress upon in every chat session – it is impossible for even the Prometric/IIMs to predict the number of attempts to get a X or a Y percentile. The end result will be a resultant of the difficulty level of the paper and on how the other test takers solved the paper during the slot. It is therefore strongly advised not to get swayed by the predictions that you may find online or may hear from friends.”
I am compelled to write this since there is a direct ‘accusation’ against the efforts that CL is doing, with a tone of condescension, if I can add that.
1. “it is impossible for even the Prometric/IIMs to predict the number of attempts to get a X or a Y percentile.”
Let us first analyse what Promteric says about CAT:
“Unlike less sophisticated test construction techniques that simply randomly assign test questions to each candidate, LOFT is a dynamic forms generation model that utilizes advanced computer algorithms and item characteristics to custom-build each exam. A randomly assembled exam can vary dramatically from one candidate to another, leading to serious concerns about fairness and validity. LOFT, on the other hand, carefully “balances” each candidate’s exam to ensure proper content coverage and overall difficulty, enabling reliable comparisons of performance from one candidate to another”.
(Source : https://www.prometric.com/en-us/news-and-resources/white-papers/Documents/LOFT.pdf)
Perhaps what this prep company failed to understand is this – when questions are created and difficulty level is assessed, the same is based on a prediction – not an astrological prediction but one built with algorithmic precision. So, to say that CAT is just a set of random question with no logic is a non-cogent argument.
2. “It is therefore strongly advised not to get swayed by the predictions that you may find online”
I am not suggesting that one should base one’s decision solely on these predictions. I am also not suggesting changing anything based on one time slot or one student’s experience.
That is no reason to stop predicting. There are enough statistical models and tools available today to make reasonable and highly probable predictions if you have enough data. Well, at CL, we do have considerable number of data points and some real ‘statistical minds’, who can make sense of these data using proven and time-tested models.
The fact is – that the same prep company has been predicting the score after every CAT. Just that they got lost to figure out how to analyse CAT when it became online with multiple time-slots and multiple tests within the same time-slot!
Here’s the bottom line:
CL is willing to stick its neck out and not be a ‘chicken’. We will make plausible predictions based on available statistical model for the benefit of student community. Now, it is for you to figure out how to best use the information.
We made the information available! We will continue to analyse, decipher and decode the CAT – it reflects in the quality of our Mocks, in the comprehensiveness of our course ware and the accuracy of our analysis.