GAT Test Preparation Tips and Suggested Books

GAT Test Preparation Tips are given in this article. What is GAT? GAT is an abbreviation itself which stands for Graduate Assessment Test. The responsibility of conducting this test has been entrusted to the National Testing Service by the Higher Education Commission, Pakistan. There are two types of GAT tests: general and subject. The difference between these two tests is the purpose for which they are conducted. Graduate Assessment Test -General is for admissions in MS and M. Phil Programs. In order to obtain admission in any of the MS or M. Phil Program, a graduate student has to clear the General GAT test. Whereas, the Graduate Assessment Test-Subject is for admission in Ph.D. programs. This is held for the recruitment of the graduates. This type of GAT tests helps in evaluating students’ ability to understand, analyze and solve problems.

What is NTS?

NTS is the National Testing Service, Pakistan. This testing service is very similar to the Educational Testing Service in the United States. NTS conducts two types of tests: the National Aptitude Test (NAT) and the General Assessment Test (GAT).

As its name suggests, NTS is a testing system introduced by the Musharraf regime primarily for grants of scholarships to students who intend to get higher education abroad. Now it has also been made responsible for the entry tests as well.

An Insight about GAT

To register for GAT tests, students can visit the official website of NTS. Go to the online registration Portal at “” where the student has to fill-up the NTS GAT registration form.  The instructions on the NTS form must be thoroughly read before filling it as the future depends on this very test. A student can register for the test only once. The student’s eligibility criterion is the completion of sixteen years of education. Students who want to improve their earlier GAT general test results are also eligible to apply for GAT-General. This test is held four times in a year.

To obtain the latest schedule, one can visit the official NTS website. There are four categories of this test, all four focusing on diverse types. The categories are: “GAT A” for engineering and business students, “GAT B” for Art, Humanities and Social Sciences students, “GAT C” for Agricultural, Veterinary, Biological & Related Sciences students and “GAT D” for Religious Studies students. The NTS GAT results are valid for two years’ time. If, due to some reason a student could not apply in a university immediately after the results, he/she does not have to worry as the test results are valid for two years.

GAT Test Preparation

Moving on, let us talk about how one should prepare for the NTS GAT test.

  • To begin with, a student should be well aware of the test pattern. In the total time of two hours, which makes 120 minutes, a student has to attempt hundred multiple-choice questions. Fortunately, there is no concept of negative marking in this test. One correct answer is awarded one mark and the wrong question is marked as zero. There are three sections in a GAT test: English, Analytical, and Mathematics. There are 40 questions in the English sections, 30 in Analytical and 30 questions in the Mathematics’ section.
  • Let’s talk about the English section. As we just discussed above that there are 40 questions, it means that this section holds the maximum weightage. This section comprises of antonyms, synonyms, fill-in-the-blanks and reading comprehension questions.
  • To be well-prepared for this section a student must read a few novels, preferably by British authors. Also, try to read columns and op-ed pages of English dailies. Puzzles like anagrams and crosswords will help the student increase their vocabulary. Solving at least one puzzle a day will help you more than just memorize a long list of words.
  • The next section is the analytical section that contains 30 questions comprising of logical puzzles and some logical reasoning questions.
  • To prepare for this section a student can take help from the GRE Big Book, it has a lot of sample questions for practice. Even solving puzzles like Sudoku or code breaker will help a student enhance his/her analytical ability. Practicing the sample questions will help the student give the students an idea of what to expect from this section.
  • The next and the last section is the Mathematics section which also consists of 30 questions. For the preparation of this section, a student must focus on the elementary mathematics for some time to have a strong base. A student must learn the algebraic and geometric equations and formulae. To know what to expect from this section, a student can refer to latest GAT format in the official NTS book or even take help from the NTS GAT sample papers. This way, the student will know as to what to expect from this section.

Suggested Books

To be well-prepared a student can refer to the resource books such as: GAT General Test Smart Brain Book by Dogar Brothers. A student must remember that preparation books are mere tools. The dedication and the hard work is the key to a well-prepared life and in the NTS GAT test as well. It does not come as a surprise that GAT has no fixed syllabus and the books just serve as a reference.

Tips to Ace the NTS GAT Test

Time Management is the Key to Success:

The foremost point to keep in mind in the test is time management. One who can manage time at such a stressful moment can manage anything, even the GAT. Even if the student knows how to solve all the questions in the test, mismanagement of time will result in an incomplete paper and thus a loss of marks. Practice solving 100 questions in 120 minutes so that at the time of the test you do not panic. If practiced enough, the student will be confident at the time.

Preferable Method of Solving the Test:

If you have your own methods to solve the exam, that’s well and good.

The best method to ace the NTS GAT test is to start with the mathematics section. Solve the questions that are direct which hardly take 45 seconds. The direct questions can be completed in this section in just 20 minutes. Leave the remaining questions and move to the English section. Adopt the same strategy, attempt the questions that you know will be correct without any second thoughts and leave the reading comprehension questions for later. Do this in not more than 30 minutes. Now move onto the analytical section. The strategy that is preferred here is to understand the problem and if possible, draw a table or diagram after thoroughly reading the questions. Try the process of elimination on each option.

At the end, there is only one option and that must be the correct one. This section should take more than 50 minutes, given that there are 30 questions. Now what you have to do is that go back to the math section and try the remaining questions there. Make an educated guess and do not linger on the questions that you are sure you would not be able to solve. Move to the English section and try the same there. At the end, you will be left with 10 to 15 minutes. Re-check the remaining analytical questions and in the last two to three minutes, make guesses about all the questions that are left. Double check your answer sheet. As there is no negative marking you can go with guesses for the questions you were unable to solve.

Mental Availability:

Try to stay mentally available during the test and do not let your mind wander in thoughts as time management is very important. Keep in mind the instructions that you read before the exam and see carefully if you are marking the answer to the right question. Blind memorizing won’t be of any good to you during the exam. You will have to step out and open the closed mental doors. At the time of preparation, learn the art of intelligent guessing and it will come in very handy during the test.

Be Confident:

When you enter the exam room, be confident about your preparation. Enter the exam with the winning state of mind. This test will be no big deal for a student who approaches it with confidence. One benefit of walking into the exam room with confidence is that it will reduce the chances of the student getting confused and stressed during the exam.

These tips will surely prove to be very useful. Keep in mind the preparation tips to be fully prepared. Be confident and be well-prepared surely you will be able to clear the GAT NTS test. More details about the NTS GAT test can be taken from the official website of NTS. Register now and start preparing. Let your fate decide your future.

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