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What is the CAT Exam Structure?


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The CAT exam design has been altered multiple times in recent years by the IIMs that administer it. Since 2015, the pattern has been consistent in terms of total marks, duration, and total questions. It is critical for hopefuls to understand the paper format because it aids in the development of customised test-taking methods. The Exam Pattern 2022 may alter from the pattern 2021. The exam Pattern provided below will assist aspirants in becoming acquainted with the most recent pattern and preparing accordingly.

If an official statement is issued, any modifications to the exam pattern will be updated.

The Common Admission Test is one of the most competitive exams offered each year in India. Graduates from practically all fields are eligible to take the CAT. The exam attracts a high level of competition from all MBA candidates attempting admission to the IIMs or other renowned B-schools in the country.


CAT Exam Structure 

The CAT exam is one of the most difficult in the country because there is no pre-defined syllabus or exam structure. As a result, candidates usually become perplexed because the pattern varies frequently.

The examiners made significant changes to the 2015 exam pattern, including the addition of sectional time and TITA (Style In The Answer) type problems. This Exam pattern was replicated in 2016 and stayed unchanged in 2017 and 18.


The pattern of CAT Quantitative Aptitude

The quantitative aptitude section is a separate section that only includes numerical-based questions from various math disciplines. This section has a total of 26 questions for this year. The quantitative aptitude section's detailed pattern is provided below.

The entire quantitative part is divided into five sections, which are as follows:


  • Arithmetic Fundamentals
  • Algebra
  • System of Numbers
  • Mensuration and Geometry
  • Modern Mathematics

Arithmetic is one of the most essential exam topics, and 10-14 Arithmetic questions are repeated in the exam each year. This section contains approximately 6-8 TITA questions (non-MCQs) for which candidates must type their answers. Overall, the quantitative aptitude part ranges from easy to fairly tough and may be easily answered with appropriate practise of the syllabus themes.


Patterns of CAT Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension

The VARC portion is designed to assess candidates' English language skills, as well as their ability to comprehend paragraphs and understand the core themes. This year's exam will include 26 questions from the VA-RC segment.

This year, the Verbal Ability portion will comprise 8 questions. The following are the primary areas of the Verbal Ability section where questions will be asked:


  • Puzzles
  • Correction and Completion of Sentences
  • Based on a summary

Some questions are from the part on verbal ability, while others are from the reading comprehension passages. There are numerous types of questions in reading comprehension, including as vocabulary-based, title-based, and so on.


Pattern of CAT Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation

The logical thinking and data interpretation portion assesses candidates' abilities to comprehend data and understand logical assumptions. A total of 22-24 questions will be covered in this section.

This year's logical reasoning portion will comprise 18-20 questions. The problems range from inequalities to symbol operations to a direction sense test, among other things. Because the questions in this area are simple to answer, it is a high-scoring segment.

The data interpretation section, on the other hand, is tough and time-consuming. This part has several perplexing data cases, and candidates must thoroughly grasp the data sets in order to answer the whole question set. The data interpretation segment should be approached with caution, as a single error can cause candidates to answer wrong all of the questions in a given set.


Other essential 2021 test pattern points:


  • The exam will be administered in three 2-hour sessions on a single day, with 40 minutes given for each section.
  • The examination will be computer-based.
  • The exam will be worth 192-228 points, and students will not be able to transfer between portions.
  • There is a non-scientific and onscreen calculator available, and no other electronic devices are permitted within the room.
  • On the computer screen, there is an on-screen timer that displays the remaining time for each section.
  • There is a one-point deduction for each wrong answer.

As one of the most difficult exams in the country, the exam demands applicants to be very prepared and well-versed in all curriculum topics in order to ace the exam. As a result, it is critical to understand the right exam syllabus and structure in order to prepare for the competition.

The CAT exam is typically held in November of each year, with registration beginning in August. The Notification will be made available on the official website, and Registration will begin in the first week of August 2022. Stay tuned to BYJU'S for additional exam information, effective preparation suggestions, the most recent notices, and previous year question papers.


How to Prepare for the CAT Exam

There are numerous factors to consider when you prepare for the exam, and you may be unclear where to begin. Check out these expert hints as you begin your preparation.


  • Time management is a crucial consideration that should be made right from the start of your CAT preparation. You have a 40-minute sectional time limit. Keep track of the time it takes you to answer each question during your preparation. Improve your speed and accuracy as you continue.
  • Using quick approaches to solve problems saves a lot of time. Remember the shortcut tricks that your mentors teach you, and make a point of writing them down and reviewing them on a regular basis.
  • Practising previous year question papers and mock examinations allows you to determine your strong points and weak points.
  • The selection of questions is one of the most crucial aspects of CAT success. Before attempting a question, thoroughly examine it and proceed only if you are confident in your ability to solve it.
  • Read books, editorials, newspapers, and journals to increase your vocabulary and reading skills.

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