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CAT 2023 Exam: Eligibility Criteria, Pattern, Syllabus & Expected Cut-Offs

IIM Lucknow has released the CAT exam 2023 notification. Find out all you need to know about the announcement and how you can ace the exam

Mon Jul 31 2023

The Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Lucknow has released the CAT 2023 notification, revealing details about the CAT exam date, the reservation policy, the CAT 2023 registration dates, and the eligibility criteria. 

The Common Admission Test (CAT 2023) is scheduled for November 26th, 2023, and candidates can start registering for CAT 2023 from August 2nd onwards. Registrants must complete the application process by September 13th, 2023, before 5pm. 

Admit cards for the CAT 2023 Exam will be accessible to download on the official website between October 25th to November 26th. The exam will be held in the CBT (Computer Based Test) mode in centers in 155 cities across the country.

CAT is a national-level MBA entrance examination held annually for admission to MBA/ PGP courses at the prestigious IIM b-schools and many other institutions across India. 

Around 1,200 MBA colleges accept CAT scores for admission to their PG management programs. Alongside IIMs, some of the prominent institutions that accept CAT scores are the Institute of Management Technology (IMT) and SP Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR). 

CAT exam eligibility:

Educational Qualification: Candidates must hold a bachelor's degree with a minimum duration of three years in any discipline from a recognized university or institute.

Minimum Marks: For general category candidates, a minimum of 50% aggregate marks in the bachelor's degree is required. For reserved category candidates, those from disadvantaged backgrounds, (Scheduled Castes/Schedule Tribes/Persons With Disabilities), the minimum required marks are 45%.

Final-Year Students: Candidates who are in the final year of their bachelor's degree program or awaiting their results are also eligible to apply for the CAT Exam.

There is no age limit on the CAT Exam.

CAT 2023 structure

Exam Sections: The CAT exam consists of three sections:

1. VARC (Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension)

2. DILR (Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning)

3. QA (Quantitative Ability)

Duration: The total duration of the CAT exam is 120 minutes. Each section has a 40 minute time limit.

Number of Questions: 66

- VARC: 24 questions

- DILR: 20 questions

- QA: 22 questions

Total Marks: 198 marks.

Language of Question Paper: English.

Number of Answer Choices: For each question, there are four answer choices.

Type of Questions:  Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) and Non-Multiple Choice Questions, also known as Type In The Answer questions.

Marking Scheme:

- Correct Response: 3 marks.

- Incorrect Response (MCQs): -1 (a third of the marks allotted to the question).

- No Negative Marking (Non-MCQs): There is no negative marking for wrong answers in Non-MCQs.

NOTE: Be cautious answering MCQs as incorrect responses lead to negative markings. However, there is no negative marking for Non-MCQs, so always answer the type in answer questions.

Overview of CAT syllabus:

Aspirants preparing for CAT 2023 should focus on the following topics for each of the three main sections (VARC, DILR, and QA) :

CAT verbal ability and reading comprehension syllabus:

- English Grammar: Focus on grammar rules, sentence correction, and usage of different parts of speech.

- Reading Comprehension: Practice reading and understanding passages from various topics and answer questions based on them.

- Verbal Ability: Improve vocabulary, antonyms, synonyms, sentence completion, and para-jumbles.

CAT Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning syllabus:

- Logical Reasoning: Work on analytical and critical thinking skills, solving puzzles, and logical games.

- Data Interpretation: Practice interpreting data from tables, graphs, and charts to answer questions.

CAT quantitative ability syllabus:

- Arithmetic: Revise topics like percentage, ratio, proportion, time and work, time and distance, profit and loss, etc.

- Geometry: Brush up on concepts of lines, angles, triangles, circles, and other geometric figures.

- Number Systems: Understand properties of integers, fractions, decimals, and factors.

- Algebra: Practice solving linear and quadratic equations, inequalities, and basic algebraic manipulations.

How to fill out the CAT 2023 application form

- Visit the official website of the CAT at iimcat.ac.in.

- On the homepage, find and click on the "New Candidate Registration" or "Register" button to start the application process.

- If you are a new user, you will need to register yourself on the portal. Provide the required details such as the candidate's name, date of birth, email id, and mobile number.

- Create a unique password for your account.

- After successful registration, log in to the CAT 2023 application portal again using the system-generated User ID and password.

- Complete the CAT 2023 Application Form by providing accurate and correct details. You will be asked to enter personal information, address, academic qualifications, and other relevant details.

- Upload the scanned copies of required documents, which may include your passport-sized photograph, signature, and any other necessary documents.

- Pay the application fee through the available payment options. The fee amount may vary depending on the category you belong to.

- Before final submission, review all the information provided in the application form to ensure its accuracy. Once you are satisfied, submit the CAT 2023 application form.

- After successful submission, take a printout of the application form for future reference.

Estimated CAT cut-offs for IIM admissions 2023:

Please note that the following are estimated cut-offs and the actual CAT cut-offs may vary when the results are declared. These cut-off percentiles indicate the minimum score required to be eligible for admission to various IIMs for the academic year 2023:

IIM Ahmedabad: 99-100

IIM Bangalore: 99-100

IIM Calcutta: 99 

IIM Lucknow: 97-98

IIM Indore: 97-98

IIM Kozhikode: 97-98 

IIM Amritsar: 95-96

IIM Nagpur: 95-96

IIM Sambalpur: 95-96 

IIM Trichy: 94-95

IIM Raipur: 94-95

IIM Ranchi: 94-95

IIM Kashipur: 94-95 

IIM Vizag: 92-94 

IIM Rohtak: 92-94 

IIM Udaipur: 92-94 

IIM Bodhgaya: 92-94 

IIM Shillong: 90 

IIM Sirmaur: 90 

IIM Jammu: 90

Estimated cut-offs for other top B-Schools in India

Faculty of Management Studies, Delhi: 98-99

SP Jain Institute of Management Research, Mumbai: 95-99

Institute of Management Technology, Ghaziabad: 95-97

Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai: 96

Management Development Institute, Gurgaon: 97-99

International Management Institute, New Delhi: 90

Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneswar: 91

Goa Institute of Management: 85

K.J. Somaiya, Mumbai: 86

T.A. Pai Management Institute, Manipal: 80

FORE, New Delhi: 85

Institute for Financial Management Research, Chennai: 80

Institute of Rural Management, Anand: 80

Mundra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad: 80

Loyola Institute of Business Administration, Chennai: 70

Xavier Institute of Management & Entrepreneurship, Bangalore: 70