Common Admission Test

The Common Admission Test (CAT) is a Computer Based Test in Quantitative Ability, Data Interpretation, Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning. The Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) use the test as an important component in selecting students for the business administration programs. The test is conducted every year by one of the IIM’s based on a policy of rotation. In August 2011 it was announced that Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) would use CAT, instead of JMET, as part of the student selection process of their MBA and Masters in Management programmes from the academic year 2012-14


The Common Admission Test (CAT) is conducted by the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) as a pre-requisite for admission to various management programmes of IIMs, IITs, FMS and IISc. There are non-IIM institutions that have registered to avail the CAT scores to be used in their admission process. CAT score use is restricted only for admission to IIMs and non-IIM member institutions.
CAT is normally conducted every year during a 20 day testing window in the months of October and November. A candidate can appear for CAT 2011 only once during the 20-day testing window. The test score is valid for admission to the forthcoming academic year only.

Test Duration and Pattern

There will be two separately timed sections in the test. Once a section ends, candidates can no longer go back to it. The sections are (a) Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation (b) Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning. Each of the sections will have 30 questions with duration of 1 hour and 10 minutes. Including a 15-minute tutorial before the start of the test which candidates are advised to go through, the total duration of the test will be 2 hours and 35 minutes. The pattern and duration of the test has seen considerable variations over the years.

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