All about IBSAT

The dates for IBSAT 2024 will soon be announced on the official website. It is held by the ICFAI Foundation for Higher Education (IFHE).
Every year, numerous students take the IBS Aptitude Test (IBSAT), aiming to secure admission at prestigious associated institutes. This article contains all the vital information about the upcoming IBSAT exam. Discover key details and important updates about the IBSAT test here.
What is IBSAT?
IBSAT is a national-level entrance test conducted annually for admissions in MBA/PGPM/Ph.D. Programs offered at the nine campuses of ICFAI. It is facilitated across 80+ exam centers across India. Since 2020, the exam is also being held in online-proctored mode.
IBSAT is conducted by The ICFAI Foundation For Higher Education (Declared as a Deemed-to-be university under Section 3 of the UGC Act 1956) counts among the reputed institutes of India and provides globally-accepted programs and valuable opportunities for students. It is one of the biggest multidisciplinary educational institutions in India.
What is the structure of IBSAT?
IBSAT is an objective test, composed of four major areas, which essentially evaluate the aptitude skills of the candidates. The exam pattern and marking scheme of IBSAT has remained the same over the years. It is a two-hour test, consisting of 140 questions. The following table illustrates the section-wise division of IBSAT 2024:
Number of Questions
Marks Allotted
Verbal Ability
Reading Comprehension
Quantitative Ability
Data Interpretation & Data Sufficiency
More Things to Know:
  • The order of IBSAT sections is not fixed. The inter-sectional and intra-sectional navigation is allowed.
  • As shown in the above table, verbal ability carries the highest weightage of all sections.
  • There are no individual sectional time limits in IBSAT.
  • Each question carries one mark.
  • There is no penalty for incorrectly answered or unanswered questions.
Syllabus for IBSAT 2024
The syllabus for IBS aptitude test is similar to that of other MBA entrance tests. But the weightage of different areas varies as explained before. Here is a brief about the important topics for different sections of IBSAT 2024:
  • Verbal Ability:
Unlike most other entrance tests, IBSAT has separate sections for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension passages. In the case of verbal ability, the intent is to check your vocabulary and grammatical knowledge.
  • Reading Comprehension:
There are 3-4 RC passages in IBSAT, based on the latest events, abstract themes, and general topics. The average length of passages is 500-600 words each. Every RC has 6-8 questions and most of them are easy to understand.
Overall, we can say that the English Language part (Verbal Ability + RC)takes up the major portion of the exam, making upto57% of the total marks.
  • Quantitative Ability:
Quant section of IBSAT features questions from arithmetic, algebra, modern maths, geometry, and analytical geometry. It evaluates your ability to tackle numerical data and problems.
  • Data Interpretation & Data Sufficiency:
This section checks your capability to study the given data and arrive at the right conclusion. The data is in form of graphs, charts, numbers, text, etc.
The last two sections are greatly dependent on the speed and accuracy of the calculations.
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When is IBSAT conducted?
IBSAT is set to be conducted on 23rd & 24th of December. It is scheduled for two days and the candidate can choose the preferred day and exam centre during registration. This year the IBSAT application process started from 1st July to the 3rd week of December. You can register for the exam online as well as offline modes.
IBSAT bulletin is available on the official website IBSAT bulletin is available on the official website. You can also get it from one of its marketing offices.
IBSAT Results are out in the first week of January and the selection process takes place in the February/ March .
Programs offered
IBSAT offers various postgraduate and doctoral programs like MBA, PGPM. The admission process for these courses starts after selection through IBSAT. The students can seek admission into the following courses-
 2-year full-time MBA program at IBS Hyderabad, IBS Dehradun and IBS Jaipur and IBS Bangalore (IFHE Off campus).
 4-year Ph. D program (Full Time/Part Time) at IBS Hyderabad and IBS Bangalore (IFHE Off campus).
 2-year full-time PGPM (Postgraduate Program in Management) at 5 IBS campuses - Ahmedabad, Gurgaon, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune
Alternatively, scores from 2021 onwards of GMATTM / CAT / NMAT by GMACTM / XAT are accepted in place of IBSAT 2024. For PhD Program: IBS Alumni, M.Phil Degree holders and UGC NET qualified candidates are exempted from IBSAT 2024.
Who can appear for IBSAT?
IBS specifies different criteria for its two-year management programmes(MBA/PGPM) and Ph.D. (part-time/ full-time) course. Explained below are the eligibility requirements for both:
Eligibility Criteria for MBA/PGPM:
  • Graduation (any discipline) with 50% and above marks with medium of instruction as English.
  • All applicants should have completed a minimum of 15 years of education (on 10+2+3 or 10+2+4 basis).
  • Candidates not meeting the eligibility criteria of English medium in graduation have to submit the TOEFL/ NELT/ IELTS score by May 2025 .
  • Applicants in their final year bachelor’s degree course are also eligible to apply, provided they complete their graduation requirements (including practical examinations/viva/assignments) before May 2025 . The admission will remain provisional until they produce marks sheets and degree certificates establishing their eligibility. The last date for submission of proof of graduation is November 2025 .
  • Eligibility criteria will be checked from August' 25 onwards . Hence, the onus of ensuring that they satisfy the eligibility criteria rests solely with the candidates
Eligibility Criteria for Ph.D. in Management (Part-time/ Full-time):
  • Graduation (any discipline) with 50% and above marks with medium of instruction as English and
  • Post Graduation in Management (full time with specialization in Marketing/ Finance/ Human Resource Management/ Operations from a UGC approved University) with 55% and above marks or
  • Post-graduation (full-time) in Economics, Commerce, Psychology, Sociology, Public Administration, Statistics, and Mathematics or in an allied discipline from a UGC-recognized University in India or abroad with 55% and above marks. Candidates who are offered admission are required to undertake the first-year MBA courses as a prerequisite to continue in the PhD Program or
  • A Professional qualification like CFA/ CA/ CWA/ CS with 55% and above marks.
Eligibility Criteria for Ph.D. Program in Economics (Full-time):
  • The applicant must be a graduate in any field with at least 50% marks and a post-graduate in economics or an allied discipline with at least 55% marks.
  • The applicant must have completed a minimum of 17 years of formal education (as per 10+2+3+2 or 10+2+4+2 structure).
Candidates not meeting the eligibility criteria of English medium in graduation and/ or Post Graduation have to submit the TOEFL/ NELT/ IELTS score by May 2025.
Eligibility criteria will be checked from August onwards. Hence, the onus of ensuring that they satisfy the eligibility criteria rests solely with the candidates.
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Which colleges/institutes accept IBSAT scores?
Established in 1995, IBS follows the best of academic delivery methods and learning techniques. Its 100% case-based learning methodology is a unique factor, that instils leadership and management skills in students. Here is a brief overview of its nine campuses:
IBS Hyderabad, an important constituent of IFHE, is a deemed-to-be-University. It offers a two-year full-time MBA and a PhD program.
IBS Bangalore is an off-campus centre of IFHE, that offers an MBA program.
IBS Dehradun and IBS Jaipur offer MBA programs, and are a constituent of the ICFAI University, Dehradun and the ICFAI University, Jaipur respectively.
IBS Ahmedabad, IBS Kolkata, IBS Gurgaon, IBS Pune, and IBS Mumbai extend offer two-year, full-time PGPM (Post Graduate Program in Management). These campuses are independent professional institutions and do not have affiliations with any university.
Admission Process
All the campuses of IBS accept IBSAT scores for admission to MBA/PGPM/Ph.D. programs. From 2020, it also accepts the scores of CAT, GMAT, XAT, and NMAT for MBA/PGPM. So, if you have taken CAT/GMAT/XAT/NMAT, you do not need to appear for IBSAT for seeking admission to post-graduate programs of the institute.
On the basis of the entrance test scores, the candidates are invited for the further selection process, which generally includes a Group Discussion and a Personal Interview. The final selection is determined by the candidate’s past academic records and performance in GD and PI.
ROI of MBA programmes offered at IBS
MBA is one of the most expensive programmes both in India and abroad. However, when taking into account the return on investment (ROI) that the course provides in terms of job opportunities and substantial placement packages, it justifies the expense. Yet, it is important that you learn about the placement records and reputation of the B-schools you wish to take admission into.
IBS, counted among the top 150 B-schools of India, does exhibit a high ROI. Take a look at the following data to know the placement records of the institute for the session 2022:
Average CTC
Highest CTC (Domestic)
Highest CTC (International)
IBS Ahmedabad
IBS Bangalore
IBS Gurgaon
IBS Hyderabad
IBS Kolkata
IBS Mumbai
IBS Pune
IBS Dehradun
IBS Jaipur
More Things to Know:
  • IBS has a Career Management Centre(CMC) that works on improving the professional opportunities available to its graduates. CMC representatives have connections with 4000+ businesses across India.The centre hosts numerous events, such as workshops, pre-placement seminars, and guest lectures for preparing students for the placement rounds.
  • Since years, IBS has been maintaining a placement record of 95-99% for each of its campuses.
  • Its students are placed across various sectors, including BFSI, Technology, Consulting, e-Commerce, Media, etc.
  • Some of its prominent recruiters are: Google, TCS, Oracle, Deloitte, EY, CRISIL, etc.
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How to Prepare for IBSAT 2024?
Once you learn about the exam format of IBSAT, you need to come up with a good preparation strategy and study plan to cover each section. Here are some great tips to integrate into your IBSAT preparation schedule:
  • Place Emphasis on the Key Parts: Since RC and VA sections carry the maximum weightage, you must pay extra attention to gain expertise in them. Besides, these sections are easy to ace, so the path ahead simplifies.
  • Utilise Previous Year Papers: When you examine the questions that have appeared in the past years, it won’t be difficult to determine which topics are most important. Therefore, you can set your priorities accordingly.
  • Practice the Necessary: Quant and DI parts can be essentially mastered with a good amount of practice. So, make sure that you solve tests and sample papers for these regularly. The tests should be followed up with a reflection on the areas that need to be reworked.
  • Review Your Strengths: It is critical that you do not neglect to go through the topics that you are already proficient in. In fact, these areas will serve as your game-changers on exam day. So, you must work on identifying them and building your strategy likewise.
  • Avoid New Topics In the Last Days: It is best to steer clear of going into new topics that you have not previously discussed. Instead, you should go over the topics that you are familiar with and confident about. Attempting to prepare for the IBSAT by learning everything there is to know about each potential subject area is a waste of time because it is impossible to answer all 140 questions in the exam.
  • Practice Complete Mocks: Mock tests prepare you to perform within the time limit. So, it is crucial that you practice mocks and sample papers from time to time. This will not only help you track your progress, but also help in improving your speed and accuracy of attempts.
FAQs Regarding IBSAT 2024
  1. Is IBSAT difficult?
  2. The difficulty level of IBSAT is moderate. It is easier than popular entrance tests like CAT, XAT, etc.
  3. How many times is IBSAT conducted in a year?
  4. IBSAT is conducted once a year, on two consecutive days.
  5. Can I give IBSAT from home?
  6. Yes, definitely! Since the time of the pandemic, IBSAT is being held in remote-proctored online mode. So, you can take the exam from home also.
  7. Is IBS better or Symbiosis?
  8. Both are comparable in terms of education, opportunities, and future prospects. While the institutes associated with Symbiosis University accept only SNAP scores, the campuses of IBS accept IBSAT as well as other entrance test scores. Both SNAP and IBSAT exams are moderate in difficulty and attract a similar level of competition.
  9. Does IBS accept CAT score?
  10. Yes, it does. For admission to its MBA/PGPM courses, IBS accepts the scores of IBSAT, CAT, GMAT, XAT, and NMAT.
  11. What is the validity of IBSAT scores?
  12. IBSAT scores are valid for one year only.
  13. What is the registration fee of IBSAT?
  14. The application fee for IBSAT 2023 is Rs. 1800 for all categories of candidates. It can be paid in online as well as offline modes.
  15. What is a good score in IBSAT?
  16. IBSAT cut-off is usually 70+ for the top campuses of IBS. So, it is recommended to target a score of around 72-75 in order to get an MBA admission seat at one of the reputed IBS campuses.
  17. What is the course fee at IBS?
  18. The course fee is different for the different campuses of IBS. It ranges between Rs. 3 – 8 lakhs per annum, with the highest being of IBS Hyderabad and the lowest being of IBS Dehradun and IBS Jaipur.
  19. How many times can I take the IBSAT exam?
  20. There is no limit on the number of attempts for IBSAT. However, in one year, you can appear for one session only.
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