I am sure that your Mock experiences made you realize the importance of solving and practicing RC (Reading Comprehension) passages. And as discussed by GB in his article titled “CAT 2019- Reading Comprehension for CAT” this is an important topic for CAT and you cannot expect to get a good score in CAT without cracking Reading Comprehension. So, I thought of going a step further and share with you the secrets of solving RC passages and also getting a good score in Reading Comprehension in CAT and other MBA entrance exams.

Towards the end of the article, you will find a video presentation which captures all that I want to share about solving RC passages. This is a video presentation wherein I have tried to give insights into:

  1. the art of solving reading comprehension passages
  2. how to solve tough passages

But first, let’s understand the VARC section and how much should be the ideal attempt for 99%ile to an 80%ile. This would be followed by a Reading Comprehension for CAT preparation plan.

For the past 4 years- CAT pattern has remained the same. CAT 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 pattern can be summarized as follows:

Sections Marks Questions Non-MCQ Time
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC) 102 34 7 1 hour
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) 96 32 8 1 hour
Quantitative Ability (QA) 102 34 11 1 hour

CAT 2018 Section -1:  VARC Percentile vs. Raw Score

Here is the percentile vs. raw score for the Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension section in CAT 2018. This will give you a good idea of what does it take to get a great percentile in the Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension section. As I have mentioned already, it will take you regular practice of RC passages, preferably online, so that you are able to reach a situation where you can solve these many questions correctly.

Percentile Score Questions
99.0 75 25
98.0 70 23
95.0 62 21
90.0 52 17
85.0 47 16
80.0 42 14

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) Section – Overview

Let’s have a look at the types of questions asked in VARC section in CAT:

  1. Reading Comprehension:
    This is the usual break up in the RCs, however, there could be sets with a different number of questions in them within the 24 questions of RCs.
  • Reading Comprehension: 4 passages x 5 question each= 20 questions
  • Reading Comprehension 1 passage x 4 questions each= 4 questions


  1. Verbal Ability:
  • Para Jumbles: 4 (non-MCQs)
  • Odd Sentences: 3 (non- MCQs)
  • Para Summary: 3


Reading Comprehension for CAT – Plan of Action

AIM: For RC you must target 18+ correct attempts out of 24 RC questions.

18 Questions with 100% accuracy are only possible when you attempt all the 24 Questions with around 75-80% accuracy, which is what you can expect your accuracy to be in VARC. And this takes months of practice which involves:

  1. Reading a passage at a great speed without regressing
  2. Reading the passage both literary and critically
  3. Building vocabulary which eventually improves your understanding of the passage
  4. Identifying and eliminating the incorrect answer options and
  5. Identifying the correct one

Start reading passages/articles from the various sources that CAT uses to pick its Reading Comprehensions. Use your online aspiration account to solve Reading Comprehension exercises with answers and explanations, hop on to websites that provide free Reading Comprehensions for CAT with answers and explanations such as FreeZone.

Now coming over to the video, firstly, I used five short RC passages to help you understand the art of reading and skill of solving. Then, I used 2 long passages to see how those principles can be applied. Lastly, I used two really tough passages to see how we can handle/solve really tough RC passages. These two RC passages are probably the toughest ones that I have yet encountered,

Watch Gejo teach you how to solve RCs!

The VARC section in CAT is all about the RCs. Students trust Gejo for RCs because of his unique teaching methods. Learn from this 1-hour long video on RCs by Gejo 


It is an hour-long presentation and I do hope that you will find it beneficial. Do share your views or queries – happy to help.