What is CAT?

Common Admission Test ( CAT ) exam is a common aptitude test which is a gateway to 20 IIMs and over 1200 B-schools in India. CAT is conducted by the IIM in the month of November in online mode in over 156 cities. The exam is held in two slots and the question paper comprises 100 MCQs from Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) and Quantitative Ability (QA). Over 2 lakh candidates appear in CAT exam every year.

The Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) started this exam and use the test for selecting students for their business administration programs (MBA or PGDM). The test is conducted every year by one of the IIMs based on a policy of rotation.

The CAT Exam is held as a Computer Based Test (CBT) with duration of 3 hours. Each section of the CAT exam is allocated one hour and there is no concept of carrying that time forward to other sections.



Number of Questions

Time Allocated

Verbal Ability 34 1 hour
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning 32 1 hour
Quantitative Ability 34 1 hour
CAT Exam Topic


Verbal Ability

Quantitative Ability


Synonyms Antonyms (Vocabulary Based) Number Systems Caselets and Tables
Grammar or English Usage LCM & HCF Bar Graphs and Column Graphs
Correction in Sentence Profit, Loss & Discount Venn Diagrams
Fill in the blanks Percentages Line Charts & Pie Chart
Jumbled Paragraph and Close Passage Speed, Time & Distance Combination of two or more types linked to each other
Analogies and Reverse Analogies Time & Work Number and Letter Series
Meaning/Usage Match Simple & Compound Interest Calendars, Cubes and Clocks
Verbal Reasoning Ratio & Proportion Binary Logic
Summary Questions Averages Seating Arrangement
Reading Comprehension Quadratic & Linear Equations Matching
Facts Inferences Judgments Complex Numbers Logical Sequence
Logarithm Connectives
Binomial Theorem Blood Relations
Sequences & Series
Surds & Indices
Probability, Permutation and Combination
Set Theory
Functions & Geometry
Mixtures & Allegations
Coordinate Geometry & Mensuration

Candidates should have a Bachelor’s Degree, with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA. This criterion is relaxed to 45% in case of candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Persons With Disability (PWD) categories], from recognized institutes or Universities.
Candidates currently appearing for the final year of their Bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification examination or awaiting their final year results can also apply. However, these results are provisional in nature, and are subject to the candidate submitting his/her certificates within the deadline stipulated by the institute.