Common Admission Test – CAT

CAT is the most popular test among prospective management students because it is accepted by the best institutes – Indian Institute of Management(s).The test is conducted every year by one of the Indian Institute of Managements (IIMs). Cracking CAT examination is one of the biggest dreams of MBA aspirants and to make it true one has to do a lot of efforts. CAT entrance exam is used as a criteria to shortlist applicants for admissions to the thirteen IIMs:

  1. IIM Ahmedabad,
  2. IIM Bangalore,
  3. IIMCalcutta,
  4. IIM Indore,
  5. IIM Kozhikode,
  6. IIM Kashipur,
  7. IIM Rohtak,
  8. IM Ranchi,
  9. IIM Raipur,
  10. IIM Lucknow,
  11. IIM Shillong,
  12. IIM Tiruchirappalli and
  13. IIM Udaipur.

CAT or Common Admission Test is one of the largest MBA entrance exam conducted in India, annually. The CAT score is also accepted by more than 100 non-IIM institutes across India, some of which are as reputed as the IIMs. The CAT is one of the world’s most demanding entrance examinations for any graduate institute.

Official Website

Pattern of Examination

Indian Institute of Management (IIMs), the premier business-schools of the country (and counted among the best in the world) conduct this test for selecting potential students for the next round of admission process (comprising of a personal interview and a group discussion) for their MBA and Fellowship programmes. Some People feel that Common Admission Test (CAT) is more of a rejection procedure than a selection process. It rejects those who can’t make their minds work at break neck speed for two and a half hours non-stop. Paper Pattern – The question paper will be separated in 2 sections.

  1. Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation
  2. Verbal Ability & Logical reasoning

The Time Duration for the exam: 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Test Duration

to take the Test – Tutorial


Ability & Data Interpretation


hr. 10 mins (70 mins)

Ability & Logical Reasoning


hr. 10 mins (70 mins)



hrs. 35 mins

Exam Format

CAT is a computer based test, conducted in multiple cities during a window of 3-4 weeks. A candidate can select his / her test date and slot as per choice and availability.

  • The candidate cannot choose a section to attempt first. The Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation section is presented first, followed by Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning.
  • Each section is timed separately. Once a section ends, candidate can no longer go back to it.
  • On-screen timer is made available for both the sections each counting down 1 hour and 10 minutes (i.e. 70 minutes). When the time is up, the first section ends and the candidate can no longer go back to it. The second section then begins with the on-screen timer counting down from 1 hour 10 minutes again. Once the second section ends, the test will end.
  • The candidate cannot end the first section before 70 minutes are up. However, he/she can end the second section before 70 minutes are up.
  • At the test venue, each candidate will be seated at a desk with a computer terminal and he/she will be provided with a scratch paper for calculations. After the test, candidate must leave the scratch paper at the desk. Rough work cannot be done on any other paper/sheet, as nothing will be allowed inside the testing room. No breaks will be given during the test.

Eligibility and Reservation


Eligibility for the postgraduate programmes in management at all IIMs and to appear for IIM-CAT is at least a three-year bachelor’s degree in any discipline from a recognised university with 50% Marks in graduation. Those appearing in the final year examination of graduation are also eligible to appear in Common Admission Test.
There is no age restriction for appearing in CAT.


  • 15.00% : Scheduled Caste (SC)
  • 7.50% : Scheduled Tribe (ST)
  • 27.00% : Other Backward Classes (OBC) candidates belonging to the “non-creamy” layer
  • 3.00% : Differently Abled (DA)

How to prepare for CAT exam

Be focussed on Exam Pattern: As the test will consist of two sections – (a) Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation (b) Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning, the candidates must focus on these two sections only. Aspirants must not go beyond these sections while preparing for CAT examination.
Set a Time Table: The first step to start the preparation must be setting a time table as it will help the candidates to devote proper time in the daily routine jobs along with the study. Not only setting a time table will help but the aspirants must follow the same to get some fine results.
Systematic and meticulous study: Candidates must ensure that they are very systematic in their approach as it will help them to wind up their topics according to their time table. The best way to furnish this is to choose a topic first and decide the required number of days for concluding that topic. Try to resolve all your confusions regarding various concepts, formulae and reasoning on that topic within the stipulated time period decided by you.
Know your strength and weaknesses: Candidate must thoroughly study the syllabus of the examination and do smart work rather than hard work. In CAT examination, the candidates are judged on conceptualized knowledge, analytical skills and decision making capabilities. So, try to know your weaknesses and work hard on that and brush up your strengths to excel in examination.
Practise Mock test papers to develop speed and accuracy: As there will be 30 questions in each section and time allotted to each section will be 1 hour and 10 minutes (that is 70 minutes), so the candidates must practise mock test papers to develop speed and accuracy. It will also help them to know their pitfalls and mistakes by the time to overcome that. For this purpose has given lots of mock and solved paper.
Healthy Diet and Proper Sleep: Just study, study and study will not lead a student to crack the exam but the healthy diet and right amount of sleep along with the study will show the good results. Both are very necessary to keep the mind fresh and to improve concentration power.
Revise before the big Day: On the Examination day, aspirants should remain calm. Revision of the studied topics is very necessary. One should not start studying new topics on the examination day.

List of Non-IIM Colleges Accepting CAT Scores

1. Accurate Institute Of Management And Technology Greater Noida
2. AICAR Business School Raigad
3. Algol School Of Technology Gurgaon
4. Alliance Business Academy Bangalore
5. Amrita School Of Business Coimbatore
6. Apeejay School Of Management New Delhi
7. Aravali Institute Of Management Jodhpur
8. Army Institute Of Management Kolkata
9. Army Institute Of Management And Technology Greater Noida
10. Asian School Of Business Management Bhubaneswar
11. Asia Pacific Institute Of Management New Delhi
12. Balaji Institute Of International Business Pune
13. Balaji Institute Of Modern Management Pune
14. Bharathidasan Institute Of Management Tiruchirappalli
15. Birla Institute Of Management Technology Greater Noida (NCR)
16. BLS Institute Of Management Ghaziabad
17. Calcutta Business School Kolkata
18. Centre For Management Training And Research CMTR Campus Mohali
19. Chandragupt Institute Of Management Patna
20. College Of Agribusiness Management Pantnagar
21. Cosmic Business School New Delhi
22. Delhi School Of Professional Studies And Research Delhi
23. Department Of Business Management ,University Of Calcutta Kolkata
24. Department Of Business Management ,Punjab Agricultural University Ludhiana
25. Department Of Commerce,University Of Calcutta Kolkata
26. Department Of Management Studies,Indian School of Mines University Dhanbad
27. Department Of Management Studies,Pondicherry University Puducherry
28. Dr.Gaur Hari Singhania Institute Of Management And Research Kanpur
29. EMPI Business School New Delhi
30. EMPI’s Ajit Haksar Institute of Advertising Communication and Marketing New Delhi
31. Enterpreneurship Development Institute Of India Gandhinagar
32. Faculty Of Manangement Studies,Banaras Hindu University Varanasi
33. FORE School Of Management New Delhi
34. Fortune Institute Of International Business New Delhi
35. Galgotias Business School Greater Noida
36. List of Non-IIM Colleges Accepting CAT ScoresGitam Institute Of International Business Visakhapatnam
37. Globsyn Business School Kolkata
38. Graduate School Of Business And Administration Greater Noida (NCR)
39. Haryana School Of Business Hisar
40. Heritage Institute Of Technology Kolkata
41. IEC Business School Greater Noida
42. IFIM Business School Bangalore
43. IILM Graduate School of Management Greater Noida
44. IILM Institute for Higher Education Gurgaon
45. IMRT Business School Lucknow
46. Indian Business Academy Bangalore www.ibainternational .org
47. Indian Institute of Finance Delhi
48. Indian Institute of Forest Management Bhopal
49. Indian Institute of Information Technology Allahabad
50. Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management Kolkata
51. Institute for Financial Management and Research (IFMR) Chennai
52. Institute of Agri Business Management Bikaner
53. Institute of Engineering & Management Calcutta
54. Institute of Management, Nirma University of Science & Technology Ahmedabad
55. Institute of Management Development & Research Pune
56. Institute of Management Education Ghaziabad
57. Institute of Management Sciences Lucknow
58. Institute of Management Technology Ghaziabad
59. Institute of Management Technology – Nagpur Nagpur
60. Institute of Marketing & Management New Delhi
61. Institute of Petroleum Management, Gandhinagar Gandhinagar
62. Institute of Public Enterprise Hyderabad
63. INTECH Institute of Business Management Bangalore
64. Integrated Academy of Management and Technology Ghaziabad
65. International Institute for Special Education Lucknow
66. International Management Institute New Delhi
67. International School of Business & Research,( ISBR Business School) Bangalore
68. International School of Management Excellence Bangalore
69. Invertis Institute of Management Studies Bareilly
70. ITM Business School Navi Mumbai
71. Jagan Institute of Management Studies Delhi
72. Jaipuria Institute of Management Lucknow
73. Jaipuria Institute of Management Noida
74. Jaipuria Institute of Management Jaipur
75. JK Padampat Singhania Institute of Management &Technology Gurgaon
76. K J Somaiya Institute of Management Studies & Research Mumbai
77. K R Mangalam Global Institute of Management New Delhi
78. Kirloskar Institute of Advanced Management Studies Harihar
79. Kohinoor Business School & Centre for Management and Research
80. Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management New Delhi
81. Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management & Technology Bareilly
82. Lotus Institute of Management Bareilly
83. Lovely Professional University Phagwara
84. Management Development Institute Gurgaon
85. Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology Bhopal
86. Nanyang Business School Singapore
87. National Institute of Bank Management Pune
88. National Institute of Technology Thiruchirappalli
89. National Institute of Technology Calicut Calicut
90. National Insurance Academy Pune
91. National Power Training Institute Faridabad
92. New Delhi Institute of Management New Delhi
93. NIILM Centre for Management Studies New Delhi
94. Pearl School of Business Gurgaon
95. Proton Business School Indore
96. S D M Institute for Management Development Mysore
97. S. P. Jain Institute o f Management & Research Mumbai
98. School of Management Sciences Varanasi
99. School of Management Studies Hyderabad
100. Sherwood Business School Barabanki
101. Shobhit University Meerut
102. Shri Ramswaroop Memorial College of Engineering and Management Lucknow
103. Sri Mata Vaishno Devi University Katra (J&K)
104. Suryadatta Group of Institutes Pune
105. T. A. Pai Management Institute Manipal
106. The Business School Jammu
107. Thiagarajar School of Management Madurai
108. University Business School Chandigarh
109. University of Petroleum & Energy Studies Gurgaon
110. University School of Management Kurukshetra
111. Vignana Jyothi Instititute of Management Hyderabad
112. VIT Business School Vellore

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