What is the CAT exam?

CAT exam is like Ram Sethu for an MBA career, an important exam for MBA aspirants which decides the quality of management studies one can have. It is an initial step to start your MBA journey in top b-schools such as the IIMs (IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, etc.), FMS Delhi, SPJIMR Mumbai, IITs such as IIT Delhi, etc. This exam is conducted annually (in the last week of November) by the top Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs). This year the CAT 2022 exam is likely to be held on November 27th, by the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIMB).

What are the benefits of pursuing an MBA?

As we know, there are many other MBA exams; but why is the CAT exam more popular? Because it is one of the most prestigious entrance exams, which IIMs introduced to assess the students’ logical thinking abilities, aptitude skills, reasoning and reading comprehension skills – which are the crucial abilities required for an MBA student. Some of the major benefits of taking the CAT exam are as follows.

  • Get admission to IIM colleges (Having high placement records)
  • Many eminent Non-IIM colleges across the country accept CAT
  • Career growth
  • Taking the CAT exam will improve logical thinking, aptitude, reasoning, and managerial skills (such as time management etc).

Is the CAT exam challenging?

Every exam is tough if one does not understand the concepts tested in the exam and how to prepare for the exam in the right manner. CAT is not a very tough exam to crack if you prepare for it in the right way. Let us look at the CAT exam pattern (based on the latest CAT); there are three sections in the exam:

Verbal Ability40 minutes24
Data Interpretation and

Logical Reasoning

40 minutes20
Quantitative Ability40 minutes22
Overall120 minutes66

Each correct answer is awarded three marks, and each wrong answer carries a penalty of -1 mark. Some questions are Type-in-the-answer (TITA) questions. The marking scheme for TITA questions is +3 marks for the correct answer and NO negative marks for the wrong answer. And there are No negative marks for unattempted questions.

Each section has a sectional time limit of 40 minutes, and candidates are not allowed to switch between the sections. Candidates are expected to perform well in all the sections, and most of the institutes accepting CAT scores for admission have sectional cut-offs in addition to overall cut-offs.

Many students think the CAT exam is the toughest MBA entrance exam compared to all the entrance exams because some factors influence the students to feel that the CAT exam is challenging. Some of such factors are negative marking of questions, the difficulty level of the paper, high competition, etc. These are some factors that a CAT aspirant should not worry too much about while preparing for the CAT exam.

One can easily crack the CAT exam with perfect preparation and exam-taking strategy. These are the essential elements that a CAT aspirant must consider to ace the CAT exam. A perfect preparation strategy is nothing but a scheduled study plan to prepare for the CAT exam, which covers the complete CAT syllabus by having an ideal balance in all three sections.

There are many sources to prepare for the CAT exam. One can prepare by taking help from the top CAT online coaching centres or by preparing themself by utilizing free resources and online mock tests, and also by referring to the CAT’s previous papers. These excellent resources will help you to understand the level of questions that appear in the examination.

Top MBA Colleges after clearing the CAT exam:

Many top b-schools accept CAT scores, including IIMs. They have excellent placement records. The fees for most b-schools are much higher, but the student can get an education loan for tuition fees, accommodation, etc. The student can repay the loan when he/she gets placed in the final placements of their respective MBA colleges. The student must submit the proof of admission to the bank to get the education loan sanctioned.

Also, many Non-IIM Colleges (such as FMS Delhi) offer admission to MBA with low fees. The top b-schools that accept the CAT exam with the highest placement records, including IIMs and Non-IIMs, are as follows:

  • Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA)
  • Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIMB)
  • Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta (IIMC)
  • Indian Institute Of Management, Lucknow (IIML)
  • Indian Institute Of Management, Kozhikode (IIMK)
  • Indian Institute of Management, Indore (IIM-I)
  • Faculty of Management Studies (FMS), New Delhi
  • P. Jain Institute of Management & Research (SPJIMR), Mumbai
  • Management Development Institute (MDI), Gurgaon
  • Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies (JBIMS), Mumbai
  • Institute Of Management Technology (IMT), Ghaziabad
  • National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Mumbai
  • Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Shillong
  • Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Trichy
  • Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Kashipur
  • Department of management studies (IIT Delhi), New Delhi
  • Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management (IIT Bombay), Mumbai
  • Vinod Gupta School of Management (VGSOM), IIT Kharagpur
  • Xavier Institute of Management (XIM), Bhubaneswar
  • International Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi

One can check out the complete details by visiting the top MBA colleges in India, including their latest placement records, fees details, admission process, MBA programmes they are offering, etc.