CLAT 2020 Preparation: Intro, Syllabus, Pattern and Tips


The Common Law Admission Test or CLAT is a centralised test for admission into the 21 National Law Schools of the country.

The test enables students to get admission into five-year integrated law undergraduate courses and one year master of laws courses. CLAT 2020 will be held on May 10.

CLAT schedule

i) Issue of Applications 01.01.2020
ii) Last date for submission of applications 31.03.2020
iii) Date of CLAT 2020 Test 10.05.2020
iv) Uploading of answer keys on Consortium of NLUs website 11.05.2020
v) Inviting objections 12.05.2020 to 15.05.2020
vi) Notification of final answer key 18.05.2020
vii) Declaration of the final results 24.05.2020

CLAT pattern and number of questions

  • Legal Reasoning: 35-40
  • English Language: 28-32
  • Logical Reasoning: 28-32
  • Quantitative Techniques: 13-17
  • Current Affairs with GK: 35-39

CLAT preparation tips: Overall

This year’s preparation for CLAT can be equated with the preparation done by students for CLAT 2008. The big reason for this comparison is that both the batches were going in blind into the examination.

clat preparation tip

They did not have a previous year question paper to support their preparation, neither do the aspirants of CLAT 2020. However, the first CLAT paper was largely based on the question pattern of NLS and other law school entrance examinations which used to take place independently before CLAT.

This year, the pattern is completely new and therefore is unpredictable.

However, there are a few universal preparation guidelines which apply to every examination and therefore apply to CLAT 2020 preparation as well.

The aspirants generally have the following questions for CLAT 2020

How to prepare for CLAT without coaching

How to prepare for CLAT 2020

Where to find CLAT preparation material

What is the CLAT preparation syllabus

We have tried to answer all these questions in the tips below.

CLAT Preparation tip 1: Analyze the paper

This is the cardinal rule of any exam preparation. The CLAT aspirants are expected to look at the examination pattern and anticipate the types of questions that might appear.

Since this year there are no precedents, aspirants are expected to look at the sample paper given by CLAT.

The biggest give away is the comprehensive nature of the exam. The paper will have passages for every question, even the current affairs will be based on passages. This has been made clear by the Consortium as well as by the youtube video of Prof. Faizan Mustafa.

So, the message is, work on your reading speed and accuracy.

This paper will be a race against time. Although the number of questions has been reduced, the number of passages in the paper has been increased. According to the sample paper, we can easily deduce that for every five questions there will be a passage/graph.

CLAT Preparation tip 2 Practice Practice Practice

It cannot be stressed enough that the only way to succeed in an examination like CLAT is to practice the questions time and again.

The number of mocks and papers solved will decide whether the aspirant will make it to a top tier NLU or not.

There are many platforms including CLATalogue and CLATapult which provide either free or paid mocks and practice papers. Our suggestion is to subscribe to a good paid mock series and solve as many free papers as you can.

Subjects like Quantitative Techniques and Legal Reasoning are new to this examination. No amount of theoretical knowledge is sufficient to ace these subjects.

To understand these new subjects and the new pattern of old subjects, take a look at our periodically updated practice papers.

CLAT Preparation Tip 3: Read about the updates

The CLAT Consortium has released updates about the examination at every juncture for the aspirants to be aware of the changes.

CLATalogue has tracked and posted about all these updates on its website. 

It is advised to follow these updates and critically analyze the message that is sent to the aspirants.

Whether it is the updated time table or the change in pattern/syllabus, CLAT has released all the notices and CLATalogue brings it to you at one stop.

Check this article out which we posted right after the updates came.

CLAT Preparation Tip 4: Read as much as you can

Knowledge never goes to waste, especially when the exam’s syllabus is not exhaustive. The CLAT paper does give an indicative list of topics but it is not ironclad.

While the paper demanded critical reading abilities before the change in pattern happened, now the whole game is based on how fast and accurately a candidate can process information.

The art of deduction is based on how skillfully one can read and understand the premise of the question. In the new pattern, for every five sets of questions, the premise will be based on a passage of 400-500 words.

Therefore reading habit will take you a long way in the race for a seat at a top tier NLU.

Start reading articles online based on new legal changes, this will enable you to tackle two things at once. Current affairs as well as reading comprehension.

Also, keep an eye out for articles based on economics, politics, science, and art. This will be helpful in almost every subject of the paper except for quantitative aptitude.

CLAT Preparation tip 5: Disciplined study

This is a universal rule. Without a disciplined study routine one cannot crack a competitive exam. Even for those gifted with extraordinary memory and aptitude, a disciplined study routine is empirical.

Yes, it is true that one can only truly concentrate if the student is in the mood to study. However, the idea is to train the mind into concentrating whenever the need arises. Consider this, our troops in the forces are trained to act on will. Whether it is waking up in the morning or walking 30 miles.

They do not wait for their mind to give them the push, their will power has been trained to pop every time the need arises. Train yourself so that you are able to concentrate on will.

Try to think about it, it must have happened that sometimes even reading a whole chapter and understanding it is a piece of cake for you but sometimes reading a page is tough. It is this habit that you need to fight.

Sometimes you don’t want to study and it is okay but if that is happening everyday, you can’t wait any longer for the mood to kick in. The exam is in less than 4 months.

Therefore teach yourself on how to sit and study with concentration. Then build a study routine around it. CLAT requires you to have a strict 4-6 hours of study a day in the last few months starting January.

If you can go past that, then you are in the game otherwise the top tier NLUs are getting far with each passing second.

CLAT Preparation Tip 6: Strong Vocabulary

I know what you are thinking about. The changed pattern gives a passage and therefore there is no need to learn those idioms and maxims.

You cannot be farther from the truth.

Imagine this, you are on a question in legal reasoning and it has a word that you have never heard of. If you get to know the meaning, you can score that question but you missed because you didn’t know that word.

In an exam that tests your ability to understand and interpret language, this scenario is not rare. Therefore to avoid throwing marks because of a weak vocabulary, read and remember words and idioms while you prepare.

If you have a weak vocab and it has been established, invest half-hour daily to help you come out of that plateau.

CLAT Preparation tip 7: CLAT preparation books

Considering the nature of sample paper, as we have stressed before, a lot of it will depend on practice. The most number of questions solved correctly in the least amount of time is the goal.

How will this happen?

Solve as many questions as you can on every topic available. However, with the changed syllabus, the choices are limited. It is tough to find relevant questions at one place, so where to find them?

One such place is CLATalogue, there are practice papers on all topics separately as well as mock tests.

Another resource where the questions can be found are books. The books on every subject will be different.

In order to learn more about words and make the vocabulary stronger, so as to solve vocab questions separately as well as understand the paper as a whole, word power made easy by Norman Lewis is a great choice.

A popular choice to practice all sorts of reasoning questions is Logical Reasoning by S.Chand.

Quantitative Techniques can be found in the guide books of GMAT and CAT.

A Penguin yearbook combined with a monthly magazine (eg: Outlook) should suffice for the Current Affairs section.

CLAT Preparation tip 8 : CLAT preparation app

Popular learning apps like Unacademy have courses designed especially for CLAT. A simple google search can give you a teacher in your study room, who teaches at your pace as well as repeats every topic for you at affordable prices.

CLAT Preparation tip 9 : CLAT preparation online

This does not mean that your whole preparation should depend on it. However, to get the necessary support in terms of practice papers, theory for understanding and sometimes interviews/articles for advice and motivation, this is necessary.

CLATalogue is one such website which brings you support on subjects, practice papers, mock papers, news, updates, and interviews of toppers. Follow us and write to us if you think you need something more. A simple comment will do the trick.


Write to with your queries and suggestions.

All the best for the CLAT preparation and if you ever doubt yourself then reaffirm yourself by saying Yes, I can.

Got doubts about CLAT 2020? Find all your answers and much more here.

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