Common Admission Test (CAT) is held annually for admissions in elite business colleges like the IIMs. A seat in these institutions promiseshigh pay-packages and a rewarding career in the corporate world. CAT is one of the most competitive examinations and attracts graduates from all streams. CAT is known to be an unpredictable paper and the exam pattern is changed almost every year to surprise the students. Remaining true to their unpredictable nature, CAT examiners had introduced several structural changes in CAT-2015 test pattern. In this article, we look at the expected CAT 2016 exam pattern and understand the nuances of the exam pattern.
Although no official notification has been made about the same, the pattern for CAT-2016 is expected to be along the same lines as the CAT-2015 one.
|CAT 2016 Exam Pattern|
|Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)||34 |
VA - 10
RC - 24
|Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)||32|
LR - 16
DI - 16
|Quantitative Aptitude (QA)||34|
|Total No. of Questions||100|
While CAT-2014 had only 2 sections: 'Quantitative Aptitude (QA) and Data Interpretation' and 'Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC) and Logical Reasoning (LR)', CAT- 2015 reverted back to the practice of three sections: 'Quantitative Aptitude (QA)', 'Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)' and 'Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC)'. We expect something similar this year.
The other essential details for the examination are as follows:
|Time allotted||180 Minutes|
|Total no. of questions||100|
|Marking Scheme||Correct Answer: +3|
|Number of choices||4|
|Negative Marking||Wrong Answer: -1 Mark|
No negative marking in Non MCQ questions
As we mentioned above, the major changes introduced in CAT-2015 were:
1. Sectional Timing: After a break of few years, there was sectional time limit in CAT. The first section was verbal ability, followed by DI and LR and then Quantitative Ability. The Sectional time limit was one hour for each section.
2. One-Day Exam: CAT 2015 was held on a single day i.e. 29th November 2015, in two sessions: morning (9am to 12 noon) and evening (2pm to 5pm), as against CAT-2014, which was held over a period of 20 days.
3. Introduction to 'TITA' Questions: In CAT-2015, there were questions called 'Type in the Answer' type questions. In these questions candidates were required to type in the answers, instead of choosing one from multiple-options. There were 10 such questions in the verbal section and around 15 each in the rest of the sections. These questions had no negative marking. These questions are expected to continue this year.
4. On screen Calculator: For the first time in the history of the exam, use of basic on-screen calculators was permitted in CAT-2015.
CAT 2015 will now be held on a single day i.e. 29th November 2015, in two sessions, as against CAT-2014, which was held over a period of 20 days. Past experience suggests that, due to this, the difficulty level of this years' exam may be significantly higher than previous years'. Thus, 10-14 correct answers in each section will be enough to secure a good score. However, it entirely depends on the actual paper, which still remains as fickle as ever!
As per CAT 2016 notification, the important details for the CAT-2016 Exam Pattern of CAT 2016 are:
On the face of it, it might seem that the changes introduced in CAT-2015will continue in 2016. However, these changes, although important, should not be difficult to adjust to. The basics of preparation for CAT continue to remain the same. Knowledge of fundamental concepts, practice, time management, and accuracy are still critical for belling the CAT!