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Time Management for CLAT: The D-Day

CLAT 2021: A Lesson in Time Management for CLAT 2022

The importance of time management has been stressed upon through centuries bygone. Everybody and their uncle’s sister’s son have been told this and have probably forgotten about it the very next second. Every aspirant, preparing for CLAT and the various other law entrances, has had this advice shoved down their throat, and UG CLAT 2021 proved its importance.

CLAT is a 120-minute paper, with 150 objective-type questions, encompassing five sections, almost all of which are passage-based. This is especially true after the pattern change that happened before CLAT 2020. This pattern change made the CLAT question paper reading and comprehension intensive, and hence, time-consuming.

Thus, it becomes imperative that students preparing for this exam don’t enter the exam centre without proper strategies decided and tested beforehand. 120 minutes and 150 questions give the test-taker less than a minute to solve one question, but on the bright side, 5 questions each relate to the same passage. So, if a person has read and understood the passage properly, he/she should be able to solve the questions well within the time limit.

CLAT 2021 was, according to many students, quite lengthy and as a result, they were not able to attempt all the questions, even the easy ones! This is precisely where good time management skills swoop in to save the day.


To avoid repeating the mistakes that many aspirants committed in CLAT 2021, here’s what you should do.

  1. Create Sectional Time Limits:

In the mocks that you give in the last few months of your preparation, experiment and decide upon sectional time limits. Examine your strengths and weaknesses and fix limits that suit you. Here’s an example that could act as your framework but don’t forget to increase or decrease the minutes according to your needs. Give less time to sections you’re proficient in and more to sections you’re not very confident about.

So, a time frame that could work is- 25 minutes for Reading Comprehension, 40 minutes for Legal Reasoning, 10 minutes for Current Affairs, 15 minutes for Quantitative Techniques, and 20 minutes for Logical Reasoning. This is a reasonable time frame that leaves you with 10 minutes of buffer time, which you can utilize towards any section or questions that you’re left with. Do this at the very end of the paper.

Throughout the exam, follow the time limits you’ve decided meticulously and don’t stray from it. If the time runs out for a particular section, leave it for those buffer 10 minutes. Practice these limits beforehand. Do not enter the exam hall confused. Do not change these limits last minute.

2. Finalize The Sequence of Sections:

Don’t leave things for the end, or for when you have the question paper in your hand. Decide a sequence of sections that you’re comfortable with beforehand. Try out different styles in mocks and sample tests, and then choose the one that saves you the maximum amount of time and fetches you maximum marks. Don’t put two heavy reading sections together as it could tire you out faster. Also, don’t leave Legal Reasoning for the end as this section acts as the tiebreaker in case two or more students get the same marks.

This year, there were as many as 10 to 15 people with the same score, with legal reasoning being the reason behind better ranks. One sequence that could work is- Reading Comprehension, Quantitative Techniques, Legal Reasoning, Current Affairs followed by Logical Reasoning. Keep this example as a structure and if needed, swap alternate sections like RC and Legal Reasoning.

Don’t make very radical changes, unless and until you’re sure it works for you. Don’t leave this decision until you’ve seen the question paper, as deciding the order then would eat up your time. Have this ready a day before your exam. This will help you in better time management for CLAT.

3. Practice As Many Mocks As You Can:

The golden rule of exams: Practice. Start giving mocks now, if you haven’t already. Don’t plan on giving mocks after you’ve completed the syllabus, because there is no end to the syllabus for competitive exams like CLAT. Give mocks right now, even if you feel that your score won’t be good. Mock scores are not an indicator of your scores in the real exam. These sample tests are just for practice, for you to get acquainted with the way of writing exams, and for polishing your time management skills.

Try to use OMR sheets while giving these mocks. Practice filling the bubbles like you would in the real exam, find out which pen works for you, the method of filling bubbles that gets the work done the fastest. This will certainly help you the day you’re giving the exam as you would be familiar with the way you should proceed.

Keep these tips in mind for time management for CLAT and devise your own strategies over the next few months as you proceed with your preparation. All the best!


Appearing for CLAT 2022? Read more advisory pieces here. 

Attempt our FREE mock tests for CLAT 2022 here. 


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