Common Admission Test (CAT) : Admissions and Details

It is a computer-based test that serves as a screening process for admission into prestigious Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and various other management institutes across the country.

Welcome, future business leaders! As the next stepping stone on your education journey looms, you may be feeling a mix of excitement and trepidation. The Common Admission Test (CAT) is undoubtedly a challenging hurdle to cross, but with the right preparation and a strategic approach, you’ll find yourself ready to tackle it head-on. In this detailed guide, we will help you understand the CAT more intimately, so you can focus your efforts on the right areas and prepare more effectively.

Common Admission Test (CAT) : Admissions and Details

What is the Common Admission Test (CAT)?

Before sloughing headfirst into the world of CAT preparation, let’s take a step back and understand what it is exactly.

The Common Admission Test (CAT) is a prerequisite aptitude test for admission into the prestigious Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and other top business schools in India. It gauges your abilities through sections like Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, Quantitative Ability, and Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation. This test is the gateway to your dream MBA program.

There are a total of 20 Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) in India. They are:

1. IIM Ahmedabad
2. IIM Bangalore
3. IIM Calcutta
4. IIM Lucknow
5. IIM Indore
6. IIM Kozhikode
7. IIM Shillong
8. IIM Rohtak
9. IIM Ranchi
10. IIM Raipur
11. IIM Tiruchirappalli
12. IIM Udaipur
13. IIM Kashipur
14. IIM Nagpur
15. IIM Visakhapatnam
16. IIM Bodhgaya
17. IIM Amritsar
18. IIM Sambalpur
19. IIM Sirmaur
20. IIM Jammu

The Structure of the Common Admission Test (CAT)

  • Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC): 34 Questions
  • Quantitative Ability (QA): 34 Questions
  • Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation (LRDI): 32 Questions

Essential CAT Preparation Strategies

Now that we understand the structure of the CAT, let’s look at some strategies that will aid your preparation process.

Establish a Routine

Consistency is key when you’re preparing for a test as comprehensive as the CAT. Establish a routine that covers all aspects of the test and stick to it. Practice is paramount in mastering the necessary skills to excel in this exam.

“The key to success in the CAT lies in consistent and focused preparation.”

Acquaint Yourself with the CAT Pattern

Familiarize yourself with the pattern and difficulty levels of the CAT previous years’ papers. Regular practice will build your confidence and help you gauge the time you take to solve various kinds of questions.

Review and Analyze Your Performance

Keep a progress tracker to review your performance in practice tests regularly. This strategy allows you to understand your strengths and weaknesses better and tweak your preparation accordingly.

Resources for CAT Preparation

Successful CAT preparation requires a complete arsenal of resources. Let’s explore some of the most recommended ones.


  • Arun Sharma’s ‘How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT’: For mastering Quantitative Ability
  • Nishit Sinha’s ‘The Pearson Guide to Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning’: A good resource for VARC and LRDI topics
  • RS Aggarwal’s ‘Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning’: Comprehensive material for Verbal, Logical and Analytical Reasoning

Online Resources and Apps

  • BYJU’S for CAT: A comprehensive platform for CAT prep with video lectures, practice tests, and more
  • 2IIM’s CAT question bank: A plethora of well-curated and diverse practice questions
  • MBA Rendezvous: For all latest updates about CAT and other MBA entrance exams

Final Thoughts on Common Admission Test Preparation

Preparing for the CAT is a challenging yet rewarding journey. It’s an opportunity to hone your skills, enhance your aptitude and storytelling abilities, and, most importantly, refine your aspirations for business and leadership.

Remember to stay motivated, maintain discipline, and keep the end goal in mind. By taking concrete steps every day, you will gradually but surely be ready to ace the test. Embrace the challenge – the journey, after all, is as crucial as the destination.

Inspiring stories of past achievers, backed with strategic preparation and a determined mindset, make the path to conquering the CAT less daunting. Take a step further today, future business leader, towards carving your own path to success. Are you ready to conquer the CAT and chart your unique trajectory in the world of business?

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