IIFT Exam Pattern 2023

IIFT exam pattern and marking scheme has undergone certain changes from time and time. In this article, you will learn about the exam structure and marking criteria of IIFT 2023.

IIFT 2023

One of the most popular entrance tests, IIFT is meant for people who aspire to get into the MBA (IB) programme offered by the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade. NTA conducts it in the month of December every year. Among various MBA entrance exams in India, IIFT has one of the most challenging and interesting exam formats. Some of the stand-out features of the exam include its unique marking scheme accompanied by differential marking, multiple sections divided into sub-sections, and a variable number of total questions in the exam.

The unique nature of the exam also means that it gives a lot of jitters to numerous students. Understanding the IIFT exam pattern is of paramount importance as it will help you formulate a winning strategy to tackle it.

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Overview of IIFT 2023 Exam

The following table displays the essential information about IIFT 2023:

IIFT Conducting Body National Testing Agency (NTA)
IIFT Exam Mode Computer-Based
IIFT Exam Duration 2 hours (120 minutes)
Sectional Time Limit No Sectional Time Limit
Number of Sections Section 1: Quantitative Analysis
Section 2: Reading Comprehension and Verbal Ability
Section 3: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
Section 4: General Awareness
Total Number of Questions Not Fixed (110 Questions in 2020 & 2021, 114 Questions in 2019; 123 Questions in 2018)
Types of Questions Multiple Choice Questions
Negative Marking 1/3 Marks
Marks per Question 3 marks for each right question in Section 1, 2, and 3
1.5 marks for each right answer in Section 4
Total Marks 300
Official Website iift.nta.nic.in
IIFT Exam Pattern 2023
IIFT is an objective test, with a time duration of 120 minutes. There are no sectional time limits, and each section carries a different weightage. Over the years, the total number of questions has varied from 110 to 130. However, in the last two years, these have remained at 110. So, the upcoming exam is expected to follow the same pattern. Given below is the complete section-wise break-up of IIFT paper pattern 2023, along with the marking scheme.
Section Name of Section No. of Questions Marks/ Question Total Marks Negative Marks/ Question
Section - 1 Quantitative Analysis 25 3 75 -1
Section - 2 RC & Verbal Ability 35 3 105 -1
Section - 3 DI & Logical Reasoning 30 3 90 -1
Section - 4 General Awareness 20 1.5 30 - 0.5
  Total 110   300  

This table clearly highlights the fact that differential marking plays an important role in IIFT and you should allocate time as per the weightage of each question.

While IIFT has not specified the syllabus for the exam, generally the areas tested in the exam are: English Usage/Verbal Ability, Reading Comprehension, Quantitative Aptitude, Data Interpretation, Logical Reasoning and General Knowledge.

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Tips for IIFT 2023
Considering the above-mentioned IIFT exam pattern, we have listed the key preparation tips for the aspirants:
  • Candidate should give due importance to all 4 sections, as clearing sectional cut-offs is the gateway to move ahead.
  • Candidate must keep a tab on time management as there is a differential marking scheme in the exam.
  • Overall, the IIFT test can be best managed if you follow a three-pronged approach - ensuring concept familiarity, developing application orientation and sharpening test-taking strategies.
  • For Quantitative Aptitude a decent attempt could be between 11-15. In Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning, students should aim to attempt 12-16 questions and in general awareness section, you should aim to achieve the target of attempting 4-8 questions. In the reading comprehension and verbal ability section, one should try to attempt 23 to 28 questions.
  • The Verbal section is a mix of Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary and Grammar-based questions. The IIFT aspirants have to focus on sharpening their reading skills along with other components on the English language. The verbal ability checks the student's vocabulary and grammar. One should have knowledge of other elements like analogy and idioms also to score well in this section.
  • Generally, GK sections have very low cut-offs, so you need not attempt a large number of questions.
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FAQs about IIFT Exam Pattern 2023
1. Is IIFT exam tougher than CAT?
Both the IIFT exam and CAT are tough to crack. In terms of sectional/ question-wise level, IIFT is generally less difficult than CAT. However, the former still remains competitive due to the limited number of admission seats.
2. What is a good score in IIFT?
In terms of raw marks, you should ideally target getting 120-130 out of 300. The cut-off of IIFT campuses is usually around this range only.
3. Does IIFT have Sectional time?
There are no individual time limits in IIFT.
4. Can an average student get into IIFT?
Yes, even an average student can get into IIFT, with hard work and a smart preparation strategy.
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