Common Admission Test (CAT) | Entrance Exam 2024

Common Admission Test (CAT) | Entrance Exam 2024

What is CAT Exam ?

The Common Admission Test (CAT) is India’s most prestigious national-level entrance examination, which permits aspirants to get into top management institutes. There is no doubt that it is the biggest MBA entrance test in the country. The IIMs (Indian Institute of Management) conduct this Common Admission Test annually on a rotational basis. IIM Bangalore was the conducting body for CAT 2022. For CAT 2023 IIM Lucknow will be the conducting body . The CAT exam is divided into three sections, namely Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR), and Quantitative Ability (QA). Each section is timed for 40 minutes, making for a total exam duration of 2 hours.

CAT Exam 2024 Highlights:

As per previous year trends, the CAT Exam 2023 will be held in three sessions on 26th November 2023. Candidates aiming for the CAT 2023 exam can check the highlights given below:

CAT Exam 2023 Highlights
Name of the ExamCommon Admission Test (CAT)
CAT Official Website
Conducting BodyIIM Lucknow
Exam Duration2 hours
CAT Exam Fees (2023)INR 1200 (Reserved categories)INR 2400 (Other categories)
CAT 2023 Exam Date26th November 2023
Medium of ExamEnglish
Mode of ExamComputer Based Test (CBT)
CAT Exam Question TypeMCQ and Non-MCQ questions
SyllabusQuantitative Ability Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension
EligibilityBachelor’s Degree with 50% aggregate(45% aggregate or equivalent for reserved categories)

CAT 2024 exam will be held on November 24, 2024 for admission to 20 IIMs and other to MBA colleges in India. The exam is conducted by one of the top six IIMs. CAT 2024 is most likely to be conducted by IIM Calcutta. The CAT 2024 registration process will begin in the first week of August 2024 and go on till the third week of September 2023. The official notification for the same will be released on July 30, 2024.

The CAT is a moderate to high difficulty level exam thus it is important to start preparing early. Aspirants should start CAT 2024 preparation at least nine months in advance. If you are planning to appear for the CAT 2024 exam, read this article for key details.

CAT 2024 Exam Dates

The CAT 2024 convening IIM will announce the dates on July 30, 2024. Check here tentative CAT 2024 exam dates and events.

CAT Exam EventsCAT Exam Date 2024
CAT 2024 notification release30-July-2024
CAT exam 2024 registration dates03-Aug-2024 (10:00 AM) to  15-Sep-2024 (5:00 PM)
CAT form correctionLast week of September 2024
CAT admit card 202425-Oct-2024
CAT exam 2024 date24-Nov-2024
CAT answer key releaseFirst week of December 2024
Answer key challenge processFirst week of December 2024
Declaration of CAT 2024 resultLast week of December 2024 or First week of January 2025

CAT Eligibility 2024

  • Candidate must have completed bachelor’s degree with minimum 50 per cent aggregate or equivalent CGPA (45 per centaggre gate for SC, ST and PWD/DA category) from a recognised university.
  • Candidates in the final year of bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification or awaiting result can also appear for CAT 2024 exam.
  • Candidates having a professional degree (CA/CS/ICWA/FCAI) with the required percentage are also eligible.

CAT Exam Marking Scheme:

  • For each correct answer, candidates will receive 3 marks.
  • Candidates will receive a negative marking of 1 mark for every incorrect answer for the objective questions.
  • For non-MCQ-type questions, there is no negative marking.

The table below will give you an outline of the MCQ and Non-MCQ questions in the CAT exam based on 2022 :

SectionNumber of MCQ and Non-MCQsIn each Section
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)MCQ -21Non-MCQ – 3
Data Interpretation & Logical ReasoningMCQ – 14Non-MCQ – 6
Quantitative AbilityMCQ – 14Non-MCQ – 8
Total no of Questions66

CAT Cut Offs 2024

Check the tabl below for qualifying CAT cut off percentiles of IIMs. The final CAT cut offs for PI shortlist will be higher.

IIMQualifying CAT cut offs
IIM Ahmedabad85
IIM Bangalore85
IIM Calcutta85
IIM Lucknow90
IIM Indore90
IIM Kozhikode85
IIM Amritsar90
IIM Nagpur94
IIM Sambalpur94
IIM Trichy94
IIM Raipur94
IIM Ranchi94
IIM Kashipur94
IIM Vizag80
IIM Udaipur94
IIM Bodhgaya94
IIM Shillong75
IIM Sirmaur94
IIM Rohtak95
IIM Nagpur85
IIM Jammu94
IIM Mumbai94

Evolution of CAT Exam Over The Years

The CAT Exam has undergone numerous changes since the time the test switched from paper pen mode to computer-based testing:

YearTime-DurationSectionTotal Number of Questions in each SectionTotal Number of Questions
2023 (Expected)120Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension Data Interpretation and Logical reasoning Quantitative Ability24,
2022120Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension Data Interpretation and Logical reasoning Quantitative Ability24,
2021120Verbal ability and Reading comprehension Data Interpretation and Logical reasoning Quantitative Ability24,
2014170QA & DIVA & LR50,
2013140Verbal Ability & Logical reasoning Quantitative Ability , Data interpretation30

Frequently Asked Questions on the CAT Exam:


What is CAT exam ?

IIMs conduct the Common Admission Test on a rotational basis for admission into management and business courses. CAT is conducted in three sessions every year, on the last Sunday of November.
The CAT Exam consists of 3 sections:

  • Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)
  • Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DII-LR)
  • Quantitative Ability (QA)


What is the CAT eligibility criteria?

In order to qualify for CAT, a candidate must have finished or be appearing for his or her Bachelor’s Degree, final year examination, with at least a 50% aggregate score. The degree should be granted by any university, incorporated or declared to be deemed under Section 3 of the UGC Act 1956, or an equivalent qualification recognized by the Ministry of HRD, Government of India.


When should I start preparing for CAT?

The right time to start preparing for an exam is 12 months in advance. It is recommended that CAT aspirants start their preparation at least 11-12 months before the exam, considering the increased competition and peer pressure. If you have plenty of time on your hands, you can go over the basics again in the last 1-2 months.


How do I get a good percentile in Quants?

Practice is the key to attaining quantitative ability. More practice will help a student score well on the quant section. A detailed understanding of the CAT paper pattern, understanding the weightage of each topic is essential for CAT candidates. Getting a score of 99% on the CAT QA section requires an in-depth understanding of Arithmetic and Algebra.


How do I get a good percentile in DILR?

As for the CAT DILR section, 99%iles are achieved by selecting the correct sets to answer. This takes daily practice, so CAT aspirants must become habitual to solving at least 3-5 sets everyday. This will help aspirants become proficient in choosing the right type of sets, and solving them within the time-frame, without any hassle.


Why CAT Coaching?

The CAT (Common Admission Test) is a national-level computer-based management entrance examination conducted every year by the IIMs. CAT is the premier IIM entrance exam that allows candidates into several Postgraduate Business Management courses. CAT is considered one of the most challenging entrance examinations in India, and you need to obtain a good score to apply to any of the top business schools. CAT 2023 will be conducted by IIM Lucknow on November 26, 2023. Since CAT scores set the benchmark for IIM acceptances, candidates need to equip themselves with the best tips and tricks to crack the CAT Exam in the shortest possible time.

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