What is the use of the CAT Exam

If you’re considering appearing for your MBA, you’ve probably heard of a number of different admission tests, including the MAT, CMAT, XAT, JMET, SNAP, IIFT and more. Well, if you’re wondering, which exam is considered the most prestigious; it’s none other than the CAT. So it’s no surprise to learn that it’s conducted by the leading management institutes in the country: the IIM’s. Apart from being the premier admissions exam, it is also the most competitive for obvious reasons. Admission into any one of the IIM’s almost always guarantees a high earning placement owing to strong ties that they have with the leading business in the country as well as a few overseas.


To give you an idea of just how competitive the exam really is; last year alone close to 2 lakh applicants gave the exam to compete for a meagre 1500 seats. This statistic and its long history of selectivity has made the CAT the most competitive exam in the country.

Here is a short list of the top colleges that accept the CAT admission test:

  1. IIM (Institute of Management)
  2. S.P Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR)
  3. Management Development Institute (Gurgoan)
  4. International Management Institute (IMI)
  5. Institute of Management Technology (IMT)
  6. Jamanlal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies (JBIMS)
  7. Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
  8. Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi

How to give the CAT?

The exam is conducted once a year by different IIM’s in the country. Each year a different IIM has the honour of conducting the exam. On an average, dates for the exam are usually declared in August.



  • The candidate must have secured at least 50% in their bachelors or 45% if they belong to SCT’s or SC’s and persons with disability.
  • Their degree should be awarded by a university that is recognised as such by the government or by the parliament.
  • Other eligibility requirements may exist or may be brought into existence by the IIM’s whenever they deem it fit. Details about new criteria can be learnt about at the official IIM website: www.iimcat.ac.in.

Exam Format

Quantitative Ability – 34
Verbal ability and Reading Comprehension – 34
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning -32

The above is the revised CAT format from previous years. Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning is an entirely new addition to the format. The allotted duration of the exam has also been extended from 170 minutes to 180 minutes. Another new addition is a written answer section in addition to the MCQ (multiple choice Questions) format of the exam.



  • The CAT is an extremely challenging exam that demands sufficient preparation.
  • Candidates should start preparing months in advance. Even before the dates are released.
  • Given the heavy focus on comprehension ability, applicants should spend time reading every day.
  • Candidates should talk to people who have already given the exam and start giving sample tests from the very beginning to be well prepared.
  • Time management is another valuable skill that goes along way in determining success in the CAT, given the high volume of questions in a short amount of time.
  • By allocating time every day for study and preparation, students will prepare well and be confident when the time comes to give the exam. Good preparation helps to calm the nerves and keep the mind calm.

Know more : Types of Engineering courses in India.

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