CAT 2018 took place today. This year saw around 2.41 registrations by students with around 10, 000 students re-appearing for the exam this year. This figure is the highest recorded in the past eight years. We bring you to a detailed CAT 2018 Analysis, Exam Pattern, Expected Percentile and IIM and Non-IIM Cut-offs.

But first, to those who do not know what the CAT Exam is, let us help you out here.

CAT 2018: What is CAT Exam?

The CAT Exam, also known as the Common Admission Test, is one of the most competitive exams in the country. Each year, the Indian Institute of Management (IIMs) conduct this examination for students willing to go for a Post-graduate programme. CAT is a Computer-based test which analyzes the candidate’s quantitative, verbal, data interpretation and logical reasoning abilities.

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What is CAT Cut-off?

The cut-off for CAT 2018 refers to the minimum percentage of marks that a candidate needs to secure in order to move on to the next round of selections. Most of the IIMs have already released the cut-off marks, while others are scheduled to release it on November 25, 2018. Usually, the CAT cutoff depends on a number of factors, such as the total number of candidates taking the test, the seats available and so on. Every year, one IIM of the country conducts the CAT Exam for Admissions to top 100 Business schools in the country.

CAT 2018: Determining Factors of CAT Cut-off

As mentioned above, there are many factors which determine the CAT cut-off marks. Some of them are mentioned below:

  • The difficulty level of the exam
  • Number of candidates taking the exam
  • Number of candidates that will be allowed to qualify for the next round
  • Number of seats available on the institute
  • The ranking and reputation of the institute.
  • The cutoff for the previous year

Usually, the CAT cutoff for the top business schools in the country is 99 percentile. The new IIMs such as IIM Ranchi require candidates to secure 90 percentile in the exam. Other business schools with a grade two to four ranking require a 50 to 80 percentile.

CAT 2018 Exam Pattern

As suggested in the CAT guide that was released earlier in August, this year’s question paper will have three sections- Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DI & LR) and Quantitative Ability (QA) with 34, 32 and 34 questions in each section respectively. Candidates will be allowed a time limit of 60 minutes for each section.

CAT 2018 Analysis

CAT 2018 Analysis
CAT 2018 Analysis

Here is a detailed analysis of what candidates can expect in their CAT 2018 Question Paper this year, based on the question trends of last year.

  • Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension

Last year, this section has 24 questions in RCs and 10 questions in verbal. The RCs were relatively easy in terms of language and subject. The ease of reading the passages was compensated by the increasing level of difficulty of the choices. Majority of the questions required good critical reasoning skills. The entire section was quite time-consuming.

  • Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning

This section had the most difficult questions in the history of CAT Exams. Experts say that the entire section had DI-based reasoning sets and Quant- based reasoning sets, which made it impossible for students to differentiate one from the other.

The Data questions looked easy last year, but later turned out to be time-consuming and problematic.

  • Quantitative Ability

The Quantitative Ability Section in Slot 1 was the easiest in the paper. Majority of the questions only used basic arithmetic techniques which were absolutely perfect for students. Experts said that they estimated that one hour would be enough for the candidates to complete the section.

Earlier, the IIMs across India had released the Mock Test Navigation Guide for the CAT 2018. This is the first time that the mock guide has been released even before the admit card. This guide is the most authentic source with which you can prepare yourself for the upcoming exam.

CAT 2018: A Timeline of Events

Timeline Important Dates
CAT 2018 Exam 25 November
CAT 2018 Answer Key First week of December
CAT 2018 Results Second week of January
CAT 2018 IIM Shortlisting Fourth week of January
CAT 2018 IIM Selection Procedure February-March 2018

Overall, experts suggest that candidates should apprehend a tough question paper in both slots of the examination. However, it can be assumed that with an increased level of difficulty, the cutoff marks will be lessened for this year’s CAT 2018 Exam.

What is CAT Percentile?

The percentile refers to the percentage of candidates who have scored marks less than the candidate in question. Thus, if 100 students attempted the exam and you have a percentile of 90, it means 90 students have scored marks less than the marks obtained by you.

Percentile Min. Marks in VARC Min. Marks in DILR Min. Marks in QA Composite Marks
99.9 79-82 56-58 84-86 200-202
99 78-80 53-55 83-85 179-181
95 49-51 40-42 57-59 139-141
90 46-48 31-33 50-52 110-120
85 34-36 26-28 43-45 94-107
80 32-34 20-22 35-37 90-92
70 29-31 16-18 29-31 74-76

CAT 2018: Expected Cutoff

CAT cutoffs really depend on parameters like the number of candidates appearing for the exam, the difficulty level of the paper, number of seats etc., nonetheless, there is a certain Cut-off range to be met in order to get into the B-School or your choice, IIMs or otherwise. Given below is a table providing you the expected cut-off for both IIMs and Non- IIMs.

Name of IIMs Expected Percentile
IIM Kozhikode 90
IIM Tiruchirappalli 90
IIM Raipur 90
IIM Udaipur 90
IIM Rohtak 85
IIM Kashipur 85
IIM Ranchi 90
IIM Bodhgaya 90
IIM Visakhapatnam 90
IIM Amritsar 90
IIM Jammu 80
IIM Sirmaur 80
IIM Nagpur 90

CAT 2018 Cut-offs for Non-IIMs

Name of the Institute CAT 2018 Score Required
Faculty of Management Studies, University of Delhi 99+ percentile
DMS IIT Delhi 96+ Percentile
SJMSOM, IIT Bombay 98+ Percentile
Department of Management Studies, IIT Madras 95+ Percentile
Management Development Institute (MDI) Gurgaon 94+ Percentile
SP Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR) Mumbai 85+ Percentile
Xavier Institute of Management Bhubaneswar (XIMB) 94+ Percentile
Institute of Management Technology (IMT) Ghaziabad 90+ Percentile
National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE) Mumbai 97+ Percentile
T A Pai Management Institute (TAPMI) Manipal 85+ Percentile
Loyola Institute of Business Administration (LIBA) Chennai 77+ Percentile
Institute for Financial Management & Research (IFMR) Chennai 80+ Percentile

The CAT 2018 Exam scores would be sealing the fate of many. Besides, the aforementioned CAT 2018 Analysis, we all also be posting the Slot-2 and Slot-2 Analysis as soon as the slots are over, so students would be able to get a fair idea of their own performance in the exam today and how close they would be to the desired cut-offs.