menu

Common Admission Test [ CAT ]

Author
By Srushti Pargat Last Updated: November 23rd, 2020

About CAT 2020

CAT or Common Admission Test (CAT) is a national level entrance test, conducted once every year by one of the 20 IIMs on a rolling basis to provide admission for the MBA/PGDM course offered by 20 IIMs and more than 1,200 B-schools in India.

Over the years, the prestigious Common Admission Test (CAT) has been the gateway to several IIMs and business schools across India. Every business school aspirant dream of one day cracking this national level exam and getting into their dream IIM/business school. Being the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 has proven to be a struggle for many aspirants. Still, their preparation and efforts for this examination persist despite the hurdles, such as the prevailing pandemic.

Getting into one of the 20 IIMs or one of the 1200 business schools in India does not come easy with this examination. College students, working professionals, and even people looking to start a new venture work day and night in order to get through this high ranking exam and one day follow their passion.

Previous Year Statistics

Approximately two lakh aspirants appear for the CAT examination annually. This year the official website of CAT 2020 posted all the information regarding the application procedure and examination methods online on July 29th, and about 2.3 Lakh applications were received. The applications' count was lesser than the applications received in 2019, which was 2.4 lakh applications.

CAT Exam 2020: Key Element

Name CAT
CAT Full Form Common Admission Test
Conducting Authority One of the 20 IIMs on a rolling basis
Exam level National Level
Exam Frequency Once a year
Exam Mode Online
Course Offered MBA/PGDM
Exam Purpose Admission into IIMs, SPJIMR, FMS, MDI, IMT, and over 1200 Business Schools in India
No. of Exam Centers 156 cities across India
CAT Registration Fee 2,000 INR (General category)
1,000 INR (Reserved category)
Number of Applications (2020) 2.30 lakh
Language English
Exam Website https://iimcat.ac.in/
Exam Helpdesk No 1-800-209-0830

CAT 2020 Important Dates

Important dates of CAT 2020 of the exam such as application form, admit card, exam, and result are listed below. Candidates must go through the dates related to the CAT exam by mentioned below table:

PARTICULAR DATE
CAT 2020 Notification Release July 29, 2020, Wednesday
Registration Begins August 5, 2020, Wednesday
Registration Closes September 23, 2020, Wednesday
CAT Form Correction September 27, 2020 to September 29, 2020
Admit Card October 28, 2020, Wednesday
CAT 2020 Exam November 29, 2020, Sunday
CAT Answer Key December 08, 2020, Tuesday
CAT Result 2020 January 02, 2021, Saturday

CAT 2020 Registration

CAT Exam 2020 registration process commences on August 5, 2020 (Wednesday), till September 23, 2020 (Wednesday). Candidates who want to participate in the exam have to apply for the exam by filling the application form through the official website of the CAT. It is an online process that involves the following steps:

Step 1: Registration

  • Visit the official website of CAT – Click Here
  • Generate login ID using email ID and phone number
  • Verify your email id

Step 2: Application Form

  • Re-login using unique CAT ID
  • Fill in all the required details
  • Upload scanned photograph and signature (Check the Dimension)

Step 3: Make Payment

  • Pay the CAT 2020 exam Fee

Step 4: Submit

  • Submit your application form

Slots and city allotment of conducting the CAT examination

After the application process completes, the applicants receive their required hall tickets and wait for the day they have been preparing for so hard. As discussed earlier, the CAT 2020 will get conducted by IIM Indore. It will be in CBT mode in 156 cities across India. It is scheduled to be conducted in three slots- morning, afternoon, and evening on November 29th, 2020. It is one of the changes brought in this year as there are now three sessions instead of the usual two sessions.

Slot Name Reporting Time Time Final Reporting Time
1st Morning Slot 7:00 AM 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM 8:15 AM
2nd Afternoon Slot 11:00 AM 12:30 PM – 2:30 PM 12:15 PM
3rd Evening Slot 3:00 PM 4:30 PM – 6:30 PM 4:15 PM

Points to Remember

Once the application gets completed, the applicants will wait for the day they have been preparing for so long and go through the final tips and tricks of writing the CAT examination. Applicants can utilize the last few months to revise their strong topics, solve previous year CAT papers with a self-timer, increase their speed of solving questions, and give mock exams.

CAT Eligibility Criteria 2020

To apply for the CAT exam, there is a set eligibility criterion that has to be met by the applicant.

  • The applicant must possess a Bachelor’s Degree from a recognized university or institute he or she must be on the verge of completing the final year of bachelor's degree or equivalent qualification.
  • The candidate must have attained a minimum aggregate of 50% or CGPA equivalent.
  • The candidate should have a professional degree in ICWA/CA/CS along with the minimum required percentage.

CAT Exam Pattern 2020

CAT is revered as a high-difficulty exam that consists of 3 parts, i.e., Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR), and Quantitative Ability (QA). These subjects get distributed among 100 MCQ (with four answer choices) and non-MCQ type questions, which are to be solved and answered in 2 hours, unlike the usual 3 hours. There will also be a sectional time limit of 40 minutes. It has a negative marking scheme, which ends up being quite heavy on several applicants.

Examination Pattern, Time Scheme, and Marking Scheme

  • CAT exam 2020 entrance will going to be computer-based mode.
  • The paper consists of MCQ and Non-MCQ questions.
  • Total of 100 questions.
  • The question paper is supposed to be of 300 marks.
  • For each correct response, the applicant will get awarded 3 marks.
  • For each incorrect answer, there shall be a deduction of (-1) 1/3 mark.
  • There is no negative marking scheme for any of the subjective questions.
SECTION QUESTIONS TIME
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC) 34 40
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) 32 40
Quantitative Ability (QA) 34 40
TOTAL 100 120

CAT Syllabus 2020

CAT is the foremost entrance exam conducted by every year by one of the 20 IIMs on a rolling basis for providing admission in different MBA/PGDM courses offered by 20 IIMs and more than 1,200 B-schools in India. The CAT exam consists of 3 sections, i.e., Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning, and Quantitative Aptitude. Tabulated below is the important topics covered by different sections in the syllabus of the CAT exam 2020:

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension Syllabus
Fill in the blanks Verbal Reasoning Sentence completion
Grammar Syllogisms Jumbled paragraphs
Para Completion and inference Contextual usage Foreign language words used in English
Reading Comprehension Analogies Sentence correction
Verbal Logic Different usage of same word Idioms
Para jumbles Antonyms One word substitution

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning Syllabus
Blood Relations Series Proposition
Direction Sense Coding-Decoding Assumptions
Puzzles Clocks and Calendars Statements
Data Arrangement Family Tree Binary Logic
Seating Arrangement Sets & Caselets Syllogism
Venn Diagram Data Structures Tables& Pie Charts
Data Sufficiency Bars & Line Graphs

Quantitative Aptitude

Quantitative Aptitude Syllabus
Geometry Trigonometry Algebra
Mensuration Partnership (Accounts) Profit & Loss
Ratios and Proportion In-equations Quadratic and linear equations Surds and Indices
Time-Speed-Distance Number System Geometric Progression
Inequalities Work and Time Percentages
Logarithms

Rules and Regulations of CAT 2020

  • Candidates have been informed not to bring in any items that could lead to malpractice, such as watches, mobile phones, bags, electronic gadgets, wallets, or stationery items.
  • Candidates should also refrain from wearing or carrying any jewelry, shoes, and jackets.
  • There will be arrangements made for the candidates to leave their belongings before entering the examination rooms.
  • The candidate is supposed to arrive before the gates close and bring his CAT 2020 Admit Card and an acceptable government ID proof to enter the exam hall. Ensure that the candidate's photo and signature are printed clearly. Otherwise, the admit card will not be considered valid if the candidate's photograph or signature is not visible clearly.
  • An invigilator will assist the candidate once he/she has entered the examination room. Examination authorities provide the candidate with the required stationery for solving the examination problems. Return the given stationary to the hall invigilator after the completion of the exam.
  • It goes without saying, the students expect to be as cooperative as possible with the staff during frisking and other applicants inside the examination hall.

Changes in the CAT 2020 as compared to previous years

  • Previously, the examination was 180 minutes in total, with a sectional limit of 60 minutes. But, this has now been revised to 120 minutes with a sectional limit of 40 minutes.
  • This year also, there will be three sessions, as mentioned above. Previously there were three sessions, but this has now changed due to the current circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Previously, applicants could have chosen four preferences for the cities they would like their examination center to be in. The preference list has been extended to six cities where the candidate would prefer to write the examination.
  • The general category's application fees were changed from 1900 INR to 2000 INR for General category students and from 950 INR to 1000 INR for SC/ST/PWD candidates.

CAT Exam Centers 2020

CAT Exam 2020 is going to be held at 120 Exam Centres in 28 cities in India. Tabulated below is the list of exam centers with codes.

States Exam Centers
Andaman & Nicobar Islands Port Blair
Andhra Pradesh Guntur
Kakinada
Kurnool
Nellore
Rajahmundry
Tirupathi
Vijayawada
Visakhapatnam
Arunachal Pradesh Itanagar
Assam Dibrugarh
Guwahati
Silchar
Bihar Aurangabad
Muzaffarpur
Patna
Purnea
Chandigarh Chandigarh
Chhattisgarh Bhilai
Raipur
Delhi Delhi
New Delhi
Goa Madgaon
Panaji
Gujarat Ahmedabad
Anand
Gandhinagar
Rajkot
Surat
Vadodara
Haryana Ambala
Bahadurgarh
Faridabad
Gurgaon
Hisar
Palwal
Panipat
Rohtak
Sonipat
Himachal Pradesh Simla
Waknaghat
Jammu & Kashmir Jammu
Samba
Jharkhand Bokaro
Dhanbad
Jamshedpur
Ranchi
Karnataka Banglore
Belagavi (Belgaum)
Dharwad
Gulbarga
Hubli
Mangalore
Mysore
Udupi
Kerala Ernakulam
Kasaragod
Kollam
Kozhikode
Malappuram
Thrissur
Trivandrum
Madhya Pradesh Bhopal
Gwalior
Indore
Jabalpur
Sagar
Maharashtra Ahmednagar
Amravati
Aurangabad
Jalgaon
Kolhapur
Mumbai
Navi
Mumbai
Nagpur
Nanded
Nashik
Pune
Raigad
Satara
Solapur
Thane
Ulhasnagar
Meghalaya Shillong
Odisha Balasore
Berhampur
Bhubaneswar
Cuttack
Dhenkanal
Sambalpur
Rourkela
Puducherry Puducherry
Punjab Bhatinda
Chandigarh
Fatehgarh
Sahib
Jalandhar
Ludhiana
Mohali
Pathankot
Patiala
Ropar
Sangrur
Rajasthan Ajmer
Alwar
Jaipur
Jodhpur
Kota
Sikar
Udaipur
Tamil Nadu Chennai
Coimbatore
Madurai
Namakkal
Thanjavur
Tiruchirappalli
Tirunelveli
Telangana Hyderabad
Karim
Nagar
Warangal
Uttar Pradesh Agra
Allahabad
Barabanki
Bareilly
Ghaziabad
Gorakhpur
Greater
Noida
Kanpur
Lucknow
Mathura
Meerut
Muzaffarnagar
Noida
Varanasi
Uttarakhand Dehradun
Roorkee
West Bengal Asansol
Bankura
Burdwan
Durgapur
Hooghly
Howrah
Kalyani
Kolkata
Siliguri

Cut-off Percentiles for the Top IIMs in India through CAT in 2019

Cut-off percentiles for General Category, as usual, is highest and is lower for the minority categories such as SC/ST/PWD. Cut-off percentiles and sectional cut-offs for the examination in 2019 can be seen below:

Institute VARC DILR QA Overall
IIM Ahmedabad 70 70 70 80
IIM Calcutta 75 80 80 85
IIM Bangalore 80 75 75 85
IIM Lucknow 85 85 85 90
IIM Indore 80 80 80 90

Preparation for CAT 2020

Experts say that one requires a minimum prep of 6 to 12-months for anyone who wants to secure a 99+ percentile in the CAT exam. However, it also depends on their ability and skills. Applicants should aim to complete the entire core syllabus by August and avoid stretching it ahead as the exam is at the end of November. Applicants will certainly need time to revise their subjects and work on other aspects required for the exam, such as speed-building and accuracy building.

Mistakes to avoid

Along with working towards their strategy for the exam, applicants should also watch out for simple mistakes that could cost them heavily. From carrying the right documents, reaching the examination center on time, to avoiding calculation errors, all these are small things every applicant should keep in mind.

Considering the time limitation in mind, it is advisable that the applicant not spend more than a minute on each question and not rush through the questions as it could cause panic.

Skipping questions that require more time is smarter than playing a guessing game as the examination does have a negative marking scheme.

Advantages of Attempting CAT in the Final Year of Undergraduate

There are several advantages of trying the CAT exam in the last year of your undergraduate degree. Since students don't have a 9 to 5 job, they can utilize their free time to work towards the exam and not lose any income.

A graduate will have to take time aside as a gap year to prepare for the examination, whereas a student doesn't need to do so.

Another key benefit that students get is that they can gain work experience of up to 2-years after being admitted to a particular IIM, as IIMs permit these students to deter their admission before pursuing their PGP course. Approximately 10 percent of seats are kept aside for those students who wish to work before starting their masters.

FAQ Concerning CAT 2020

Q1. Can edits be made on the CAT 2020 application form once the payment is complete?

A1. No changes apart from the modification in photo and signature are allowed on the application form once the application fee is paid.

Q2. Is there an age criterion for CAT 2020?

A2. There is no age bar for writing this particular exam.

Q3. What is the fee structure for CAT 2020?

A3. For General Category applicants should pay Rs.2000 and SC/ST/PWD Category applicants should pay Rs.1000.

Q4. Can I use an alternate email ID, say of a friend, to register for the examination?

A4. Candidates need to mention their own original valid email ID to register.

Q5. Can I choose my exam slot?

A5. According to the candidate's city preference, the exam slot is allotted to the candidate, and he cannot select it as per his will.

Q6. Can I appear for the examination in more than one slot?

A6. No, one candidate can attempt the exam only once in one year. Hence, they cannot attempt more than a single slot.

Q7. What should I do if I do not receive my admit card?

A7. Contact the authorities well before time and look into your application procedure again.

  • email address: cathelpdesk@iimcat.ac.in
  • Toll- free line: 18002663549

Q8. When should the CAT admit card produced?

A8. Candidates need to produce the admit card to appear for the exam and get it printed well before the day of the exam. Candidates should affix their photograph and make sure their signature and photo are clear.

Q9. What password do I use to login to the portal?

A9.The SMS you have received is to be used. If the problem persists, then simply use your user ID, and the "forgot password" button shall be useful in the login process.

Q10. Can a candidate use any computer to give the CAT exam?

A10. One must undertake the examination from the allotted system only. Candidates cannot appear on any other system that has not been allotted to them.

Best wishes to all the aspirants of CAT 2020 from the CollegeMarg team!

Apply for Admission 2021

GNIOT, Greater Noida
SUN, Nashik
VEL TECH University, Chennai
BML, Gurgaon
View all Application Form

Related Courses

MBA (Information Technology Management)
MBA (Information Technology)
Ph.D. (Computer Science & Engineering) (Part Time)
Ph.D. (Computer Science & Engineering)
MBA (Finance & Human Resource)
MBA (Financial Management)
MBA (Insurance and Financial Planning)
Ph.D. (Mechanical Engineering)
MBA (Data Analytics and Data Visualization (Samatrix.io))
MBA ( Marketing & Human Resources)
View all Courses

SUBSCRIBE TO LATEST NEWS AND NOTIFICATION