What is Quantitative Aptitude?

Quantitative Aptitude is a section that tests the candidate’s mathematical ability and analytical aptitude. The questions of Quantitative Aptitude in MBA entrance exams are usually based on elementary Mathematics. To crack Quantitative Aptitude, one has to have conceptual clarity of Maths topics such as Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry and Mensuration.

In top MBA entrance exams such as CAT, IIFT, MAT, ATMA and MAH-CET, the Quantitative Aptitude section appears as a separate section, while in XAT, CMAT and SNAP, it is clubbed together with Data Interpretation.

Quantitative Aptitude Syllabus for MBA Preparation

The Quantitative Aptitude syllabus of all the MBA entrance exams covers the following topics. Candidates from non-mathematics backgrounds should start Quantitative Aptitude preparation with basic, for which they can refer to school-level NCERT Mathematics books.

QA Topics

Chapters

Arithmetic

Numbers, Percentage, Profit & Loss, Simple and Compound Interest, Ratio, Proportionality, Time-Distance, Time-Work, Mixtures, Averages, Partnership

Algebra

Basic Algebraic Formulae, Linear Equations, Quadratic Equations, Roots, Maxima & Minima, Inequalities, Logarithm, Functions, Modifications of Graphs, Problems on Ages, Number of Integer Solutions, The Smallest Value in a Maximum Function, etc.

Advance Mathematics

Permutation and Combinations, Probability, Set Theory, Progression and Series

Geometry

Line, Angles, Triangles, Quadrilaterals, Polygon, Circles, Ares, Volume, Height and Distance, Co-ordinate Geometry, Basic Trigonometry

How to Ace Quantitative Aptitude

Acing Quantitative Aptitude is not easy for this section is calculation-intensive and one has to remember numerous formulae accurately. What makes it even more difficult to crack QA is that one has to be an expert at applying the formula to derive the right answer within seconds as you get limited time in the exam.

So, divide your Quantitative Aptitude preparation for MBA entrance exams into three phases.

Phase I: Master the basics

Treat each Quantitative Aptitude individually and start with understanding the basic concept. List out the formulae and properties attached to each one of them. It may not be possible to memorize all the formulae at once, so focus on understanding the fundamentals and application.

Break down the steps and simplify the process to understand a question. Use lateral thinking to simplify concepts. Take help from video tutorials.

For each Quantitative Aptitude topic, practice 50-60 sample questions to gain a grip over them.

Phase II: Revise the formulas

Make a file for Quantitative Aptitude formulae. Take out time twice a week to go through the formulae. Don’t over-exert yourself on memorizing each and every formula by heart in one go. Just keep revising at the same pace, and soon you’ll remember most of the formulae.

If some rough edges are still there, devote time to practice sample questions. Use different methods of memorizing formulas and develop mental calculation skills. Remember, Quants is all about theory and application. You’ve got to master both.

Phase III: Master speed with accuracy

The third and final phase of Quantitative Aptitude preparation is mastering what you’ve learnt in phase I and II. In this phase, you need to learn how to solve higher difficulty level Quantitative Aptitude questions and with maximum speed and accuracy. Yes, this is the time to practice Mock Tests.

For a full proof Quant preparation, go for mock tests which have the variety of questions – from easy to tough, simple to tricky – and analyse each of your performance. Mock test is basically a dry run of the actual exam. It prepares you to solve 30-40 questions within a limited period with maximum accuracy.