CAT Entrance Exam

CAT Entrance Exam

CAT (Comman Admission Test)

What is CAT (Common Admission Test)?

CAT is the entrance exam conduct jointly by IIMs across India to accept admission in Post Graduation programmes in all IIM colleges.

Participating Colleges in CAT are IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Banglore, IIM Calcutta, IIM Lucknow, IIM Indore, IIM Kashipur, IIM Ranchi, IIM Kozhikode, IIM Raipur, IIM Rohtak, RGIIM Shilong, IIM Udaipur and IIT Tiruchirappalli. Some colleges other than IIMs also accept CAT Score. See List of Colleges that accepts CAT Score for admission.

Related: CAT Sample Paper 1

CAT Eligibility:

The candidate applying for CAT must have a Bachelor’s Degree from a UGC recognized university/college, with minimum 50% marks or equivalent CGPA. For SC, ST and Persons with Disability (PWD or DA) minimum required percentage or CGPA is  45%.

Candidates with result awaiting and who are in final year can also apply. IIMs may verify eligibility at various stages of the CAT selection process.

Applying Candidates must have a valid and unique email account and a phone number throughout the selection process.

CAT Exam Pattern:

CAT Exam is fully online exam and each candidate will be seated at a desk with a computer terminal. The CAT exam paper is divided into two sections, the first section is Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and the second section is Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning.  The total Exam duration will be two hours and thirty five minutes including 15-minute tutorial provided before the start of the test.

Related: CAT Sample Paper 2

Section Total Time Total Questions Total Marks
Section I: Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation 70 mins or 1 hr 10 min



Section II: Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning 70 mins or 1 hr 10 min



For each correct answer candidate will be awarded three (3) points and for each incorrect answer one (1) point will be deducted. There will be neither positive nor negative points for unanswered questions.

CAT Notification:

CAT Voucher (Application form) can be obtained from major branches of Axis bank..

  • If a candidate have registered for Session 1 (morning session), he/she must arrive at the test centre by 8:30 AM for security checks, identity verification and checking in. Testing will begin at 10 AM. If he/she have registered for Session 2 (afternoon session), tnen he/she must arrive at the test centre by 1:45 PM. Testing will begin at 3:15 PM.
  • Candidates will not be permitted to take the test if valid photo identification or Admit Card is not presented.
  • Valid Identification cards are: Driver’s license, Passport, PAN Card, Voter ID, College ID (this must be supported with a valid ATM/Debit/Credit Card with your name), Employee identification card, UID card or a notarised Affidavit (in English) with Photo, Signature, Date of Birth and Residential Address.
  • SC/ST & DA (or PWD) candidates will also need to bring along a valid document as proof of SC/ST eligibility or DA eligibility.
  • Candidate will be provided with a scratch paper for calculations (after test candidate will leave that paper at the desk).
  • No breaks will be given during the test.
  • Once the time ends for the first section, candidate will move to the second section and will no longer be able to go back.

CAT Seats Reservation:

15% of total seats are reserved for Sc candidates and 7.5% seats are reserved for ST candidates. 27% seats are reserved for OBC candidates belonging to the “non-creamy” layer.

CAT Syllabus:

Quantitative Ability Syllabus:

Number Systems LCM and HCF Percentages Profit and Loss
Speed, Time and Distance Time and Work Averages Ratio and Proportion
Quadratic Equations Complex Numbers Logarithm
Interest (Simple and Compound) Progressions Binomial Theorem Surds and Indices
Linear Equations Inequalities Permutation and Combination Probability
Mixtures and Alligations Functions Set Theory Co-ordinate Geometry
Geometry Trigonometry Mensuration Tables based questions
Column graphs based questions Bar Graphs based questions Line charts based questions Pie Chart based questions
Venn Diagrams based questions

Logical Reasoning Syllabus:

Number and Letter Series Calendars Clocks Cubes
Venn Diagrams Binary Logic Seating Arrangement Logical Sequence
Logical Connectives Logical Matching Syllogism Blood Relations

Verbal Ability Syllabus:

Vocabulary Based (Synonyms Antonyms) English Usage or Grammar Sentence Correction
Fill in the blanks Cloze Passage Analogies or Reverse Analogies
Jumbled Paragraph Meaning-Usage Match Summary Questions
Verbal Reasoning Facts / Inferences / Judgements Reading Comprehension

CAT Sample Papers:

CAT Practice paper 1

CAT Practice Paper 2

CAT Practice Paper 3

CAT Practice Paper 4

CAT Test Centres:

There will be total 36 CAT test centres (sites) across country. See list of CAT Exam centres with Full Address.

CAT Admission Process:

Second stage of selection process may include Written Ability Test (WAT), Group Discussions (GD) and Personal Interviews (PI). IIMs may also use previous academic performance of the candidates, relevant work experience and other similar inputs in short listing and ranking of candidates at various stages of the admission process. The processes, academic cut-offs and the weights allocated to the evaluation parameters may vary across IIMs.

If a candidate is short-listed for interviews by any IIM, he/she has to comply with the following eligibility verification:

  • Mark sheets and Degree Certificate: original degree certificate and mark sheets of all semesters/years along with their attested copies must be submitted for verification at the time of joining the programme.
  • Reservation Category Requirements: SC, ST, NC-OBC, and DA candidates must show the original caste / class / disability certificate and submit a photocopy at the time of interview.
  • Candidates in the Final Year of Graduation: these candidates need to submit certificate latest by June 30, from the Principal/Registrar of his/her College/Institute stating that the candidate has completed all the requirements for obtaining the bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification on the date of the issue of the certificate.

IIM CAT Result:

CAT result announced on the CAT website.

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Jaspreet Singh

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