National entrance tests such as the CAT and the XAT are increasingly competitive. Many colleges and universities administer their own written eligibility admission tests, which are followed by a Group Discussion and an Interview. The CAT Exam is the most prominent entry requirement for enrollment to IIMs and other prestigious business schools. The scores of one of India’s most competitive management admission tests are strongly influenced by sincere commitment and persistent practice. The CAT Exam registration period will begin in the first week of August. Candidates can register for the exam until the third week of September, when the registration window closes.
To ease the exam tension for candidates, the administration releases the mock test on the official website of the CAT, where candidates can take the test to familiarise themselves with the exam’s format and identify areas where they need improvement. Aspirants should practise prior years’ question papers, which will help them comprehend how things have changed over the years. As they practise the past years’ questions, their pace improves, which greatly aids time management. Not only does practising papers help, but they should also cross-check their results with the CAT Answer key for that year. This will allow them to assess their readiness for the exam and identify areas where they need to improve. The exam’s difficulty level fluctuates from year to year. Every year in November, the online exam is held, and the CAT 2022 exam will most likely be held on 27 November.
Changes in the CAT Exam Pattern Over the years
The CAT Exam pattern has evolved dramatically in recent years; the changes in the CAT Exam in recent years are listed below.
- Until 2009, the CAT Exam was conducted in paper-pen mode. It has been administered in the Computer Based Test (CBT) since then. Candidates must choose their response on the computer screen in this mode.
- The CAT Exam was shortened from 3 to 2 segments in 2011. Prior to 2011, there were three segments: quantitative ability, logical reasoning, and verbal ability. Quantitative ability and data interpretation, logical reasoning, and verbal ability were clubbed together. Later, in 2015, the sections were again increased to 3.
- For the first time in the history of the CAT Exam, on-screen calculators were introduced in 2015. TITA questions were also included in CAT 2015. Unlike multiple-choice questions, where candidates can choose their response from the given options for TITA questions, candidates were able to type in their answers in the space given on the screen.
- For general/NC-OBC categories, the exam registration fee was raised by Rs.100, from Rs.1,800 to Rs.1,900. It was also raised from Rs.900 to Rs.950 for SC/ST/PWD categories. The CAT registration fee was further increased to Rs.2,200 for general categories and Rs.1,100 for reserved categories in 2021
CAT 2020 & CAT 2021
Despite the alarming effects of the pandemic, IIM Indore seamlessly conducted CAT 2020. CAT 2020 paper pattern saw some major changes of all times. Owing to the pandemic, there was an increase in the number of slots. The test slots were increased to three instead of two. Aspirants can check the CAT Exam Slot 1 Analysis to get a better understanding of the exam structure. The total questions were reduced to 76 from 100. Previously, the CAT Exam duration was 180 minutes with a sectional time duration of 60 minutes for each slot. For CAT 2020, the time duration was decreased to 120 minutes, and each section was timed for 40 minutes. IIM Ahmedabad administered CAT 2021. In CAT 2021, the total number of questions was reduced to 66 from 76. It is believed that a similar pattern will be followed for CAT 2022.