CAT 2021: Updates, Application, Dates, Eligibility, Fees, Syllabus & More

Have you completed Bachelor’s Degree education? Do you want to crack CAT and secure an IIM seat? If yes, this post will be of help to you. Here, I’ve covered all the important details about CAT 2021 exam. In this post, readers will find the following details – important dates, eligibility criteria, fees, application process, cutoff, results and more.

CAT 2021

The CAT or the Common Admission Test is said to be one of the examination conducted for selecting the eligible candidates for admission into the prestigious post-graduate management programmes taught under the IIMS in the country. Throughout India, there are approx 20 IMs for imparting quality education to the students holding a bachelor degree and aspiring to pursue the elite management course from one of the reputed colleges.


The institutes in Ahmedabad,  Rohtak, Bangalore, Bodh Gaya, Amritsar, Calcutta, Indore, Kozhikode, Jammu, Sambalpur, Kashipur, Lucknow, Raipur, Vishakapatnam, Nagpur, Shillong, Sirmaur, Udaipur, Tiruchirapalli, and Ranchi releases the mandate for the candidates to appear for the test in 2 phases. The first phase is comprised of the written examination and will be conducted in December in 2021. The second phase intimation is sent to the candidates as per the preference of IIM institutes selected by them. The students are selected on the bases of the management criteria of different IIMs serving as a stakeholder of the test.


CAT 2021 Examination Dates

The examination for CAT 2021 is expected to be held on December 2021. The candidate is allowed to download the admit card in October 2021 to appear in the examination at the allotted centers. The examination center is allocated first come first basis and candidates are allowed to choose from one of the four test centers from the mentioned choices for the registration procedure. These choices ought to be unique and different. Every candidate is allotted the test center he has given in any of the cities. Although there can be cases when the candidates are not allotted any of the options he has mentioned in his form and in such situation the student is assigned the nearest city chosen by him.

  • Online application form starting date for submission: August 2021
  • Last date for submission of online application form: September 3rd week 2021
  • Availability of online admit card: October 2021 last week
  • Tentative exam date of CAT 2021: End of November 2021
  • Declaration of the result: January 2022


Application form for CAT 2021

The advertisement seeking admission of students is expected to be released by the end of July month 2021. The registration starts from the second week of the next month, i.e. August 2021. Registration for CAT continues until the last week of September 2021. The candidates must register with the correct communication and personal details for enrollment for examination. The recruitment happens through online medium only, and there is no other mode for applying for the CAT.


The CAT official website will showcase various vital dates for CAT once they have shot the advertisement. The candidate is strictly advised to read all the documents needed to be uploaded for registration, scoring, disclaimers and eligibility selection about CAT from their official platform, to avoid any confusion proceeding through. The candidate can take a mock test to know the pattern and difficulty level of the examination.


Do make quick notes of the below details as they will help you start preparing for the admission process:

  • The exam is held once in a year and admission form is filled in large numbers throughout the country for people looking forward to pursuing MBA courses.
  • The CAT application form can be accessed from the second week of August 2021.
  • The candidates can fill the form till last week of September 2021.
  • To start with the CAT application form the aspirants should check the link of the website.
  • Every data needs to be filled as per the specifications mentioned in the application form. Once finished with the filling of the form the aspirants are provided with an ID and password to be created on their page.
  • The candidate is allowed to attach only valid information regarding their details, educational qualification, etc.
  • Scanned image of the aspirant and Passport size photograph need to be attached with the other commendable details.
  • Now the candidate can submit their examination fee online and can take the print out of CAT application form with them.


Application Fee

  • The application fee differs as per the different category of the society like for NC-OBC and General caste it is 1700.
  • The Scheduled caste or tribe, i.e. the reserved aspirants require Rs 850 to be submitted to the authorities.
  • Payment of fees through the online process may include the options of payment through debit card, net banking, and credit card.


Application Correction

The institution although requires to apply well in a single go but if you want to correct something that you should look forward with the corrections as mentioned below. We have indicated below the type of correction you can make post submission of your application form:

  • The applicants can submit for revision in the fourth week of September 2021 via online mode.
  • Do remember the authorities allows you to correct limited sections only.
  • Last year the corrections were allowed in personal details like category, city preference, center and slot preference, center exam preference, work experience, etc.
  • If any candidates make any mistakes in entering his data, downloaded documents, communications address, so they must look forward to registering again with the help of new email identifier.
  • The respective candidate can correct with their user id and password.


CAT Registration 2021

Before registration the candidate must be prepared with the scanned copies of his personal and caste information certificates produced in proper formats with visible masters, bachelors and legal attestation and provisional licenses if required. Scanned signatures and picture is needed in desired forms as mentioned in the instructions. Do remember the photograph should be having a white background and should not be older than six months. While paying for the exam through the online medium-small processing fees can be levied on the candidate.


Eligibility Criteria for CAT 2021

The candidate needs to follow some mandatory requirements of qualification in Bachelors like attaining of 50% aggregate marks or own equivalent CGPA score. Taking about the reserved category, the aggregate was reduced to about 45% and the candidates who are appearing in the final year of the graduation and are still waiting for their results are also eligible to register for the exam. You may also check – MBA entrance exams in India.


The students who have scheduled their final exams can get even it for the upcoming CAT exams. The candidates who have completed their post-graduation or masters can apply for the examination with their relevant work experiences. The candidates are coming under reservations as per the caste and others acquiring PWD certificate according to the terms dictated by the central provision act and government list. Any candidate will be required to register for the exam with necessary scanned copies of his caste certificate which is recognized in any legal format as depicted in performance and certificate sections in the official websites of the exam.


A candidate is required to apply with necessarily scanned copies of caste certificate recognized in a prescribed format as mentioned in the certificates and performance section in the official website of the CAT.


CAT Exam 2021 Reservations:

According to the Indian Government policies for CAT they have split the same over four categories, and they are as follow:

  • The scheduled caste has the total number of seats reserved in the exam for 15%
  • The backward classes, i.e. NC, OBC, has about 27% of the reserved seats
  • The scheduled tribe amounts to 7.5% of the total seats in the exam.
  • The PWD or differently abled candidates have their percentage at 3% in the exam.


Syllabus for CAT 2021

CAT is one of the computer-based tests that requires every candidate to answer every question by clicking on a single option. The format should not be confused with any other internet-based mock test. The particular test is available only one various computer terminals that are allotted to every candidate in the examination center. The candidate can use the onscreen calculator but is not allowed to carry a calculator with him to his examination hall. This is one of the reasons why the candidates are allowed to practice mock test before attending the examinations.


The paper is said to be divided into three sections for the candidates and will have the own question in the form of MCQs and non-MCQs to be answered by the candidate. The candidates before starting the paper should know that the MCQ questions do carry negative marking with them. For every correct answer the student is awarded three marks, and for a negative response, one marks are deducted from his total marks. All MCQs are consist of equal marks while there is no negative marking with the non-MCQ type questions.


Many students have a query regarding the decision of syllabus so do know that the same is not decided or described by the IIMS. Although people sitting for CAT do know the exam will be consisting of Data Interpretation, Quantitative Ability,  Verbal Ability, and Logical Reasoning.


Mathematics or Quantitative Ability: The mathematical section of the question paper will include various topics like profit and loss, geometry, mensuration, average, trigonometry, number system, linear equation, etc.


Data Interpretation: The section requires deep and innovative thinking from the candidates and the section represents pictorial graphics in the form of tables, charts, Venn diagram and analysis based on data or text, etc.


Logical Reasoning: The reasoning questions allow the candidates to think in a manner that is desired and also take responsive moves from their part, the problems can be like clocks, seating arrangement, blood relations. Logical sequence, etc.


CAT 2021 Exam Pattern

  • The CAT exam is divided into various sections like Data Interpretation, Quantitative Ability, and Logical Reasoning.
  • The duration of the exam is about 170 minutes, and each section is consist of 50 questions to be answered by every candidate.


CAT 2021 Admit Card

  • The candidate must apply through online mode to avail his admit card. He or she should visit the official website and look forward to the collection of his admit card. The admit card is required to be carried to the examination center and is comprised of his examination center, DateTime, address and his details.
  • The CAT admit card needs to be produced by online mode and from the official website of the CAT only.
  • The admit card is only sourced to the students who have successfully registered with the website.
  • The admit card should have a aspirants signature similar to the one provided at the time of registration. Do know no student is allowed to attend the exam without the admit card so do carry with you while you leave for the day.
  • The admit card of the candidate includes his details of roll number, examination date, Name, PWD status, and other personal information.
  • The Answer key is produced after the exam and do bear the correct answers asked in the respective examination.
  • The answer key allows the candidate to have an estimation of the marks he or she can obtain in the examination.


CAT Answer Keys 2021

  • For the CAT examination, the correct examination key and question document are published by the first week of December 2021. The applicants are said to receive the code for CAT response code via online medium through the official website.


CAT 2021 Result

  • The CAT result will be declared and made known to the aspirants by the second week of January 2022.
  • With the help of candidates roll number and birth details, the CAT scorecard can be downloaded.
  • The candidate can find the link on the website and can load they admit card through the same.
  • Once the result is declared the merit list is released and made available for the candidates who are built on the rank and scores secured by the candidate.
  • The candidate needs to bring his copy of the result to the counseling center for further action.
  • The result is comprised of the individual as well as total marks obtained by the candidate.
  • The cut off for CAT is allowed to generate once the result is announced.
  • The cut off for cat is dependent upon many factors like number of seat questions difficulty level, number of places, etc.


CAT 2021 Counselling

  • The counseling session for CAT said to be published on their official website.
  • Every college accepting the score of IIMs follows a different admission procedure for the intake of students.
  • Every IIMs generates a cut off for its students for taking admissions in the colleges.
  • The students seeking admission to IIMs need to go through several rounds of personal interview, written ability test, and group discussions.
  • The candidate students are allowed to go through various rounds about the written test and personal interviews.
  • The students are said to be invited for admission after the declaration of the results. The students need to be present along with the necessary certificates and documents for the scrutinizing purpose through.
  • The students are asked for submitting the counseling fee and were allotted a selection letter.
  • While distributing the seats they were given a particular place for the course selected by the in the college.
  • The people who are not present for counseling are not considered for admission and the seats owned for them are given to another student.


Admission Procedure for CAT 2021

  • Talking about the admission procedure for CAT, allows the student to check out the admission procedure of every college as they have a different kind of process to follow:
  • Every management school has its admission and eligibility criteria for taking admission in various management courses.
  • All IIMs send letters to the various shortlisted candidates, and the selection criteria for students varies from IIM to IIM.
  • After attending the CAT exam, the series of the process starts with the written exam and goes forward as per the institute you were aspiring to take admission.
  • The final admission depends upon the applicant’s work experience, academic performance, and their pre-selection.


Books that can help you in preparing for CAT 2021


Quantitative Ability:

  • “The complete CAT digest,” written by Arun Sharma and published with Tata McGraw Hill.
  • “How to prepare for the Quantitative ability for CAT,” written by Arun Sharma and published by Tata McGraw Hill.
  • “How to prepare for the Common Admissions Test” written by Muhammad Muneer and published by Om Books.
  • “Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examination” written by Abhijit Guha and published by Tata McGraw-Hill.
  • “Quantitative Aptitude for CAT and various other MBA Entrance Exams written by Trishna Knowledge Systems and published by Pearson.


For Reading Comprehension and Verbal ability:

  • “How to prepare verbal ability and reading comprehension for the CAT” written by Meenakshi Upadhyay and Arun Sharma and published by Tata Mc-Graw Hill.
  • “Word Power Made Easy” written by Norman Lewis.
  • Barron Pocket Guide to Vocabulary.


Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation:

  • Trishna’s verbal ability and Logical Reasoning for CAT and other MBA examination created by TIME and published by Pearson.
  • “How to Prepare for Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning for CAT” written by Arun Sharma and published by McGraw-Hill.


Preparation for CAT 2021

Being an aspirant if you are an aspirant for CAT you must be severe too for the examination. Perseverance and hard work are necessary to come forward and cross any task. Starting early is the main trigger for CAT and once you think in your mind for cracking CAT online.


Below are the few tips for helping you out in setting you right for CAT:

  • Look forward to an online coaching material and can subscribe for the mock series or study books. Always look for the reputed institute for the assistance and can check online reviews for the same too.
  • To study Quantitative Analysis, you should keep a small book for formulas and update the same on a regular basis. Revising the mathematical methods regularly will help you with the best results, and you can study them once every two weeks to know them genuinely.
  • After giving your best attempt for every mock test try to note down the percentage attempts, and can decide for the percentage accuracy as (number of questions attempted by you/ total number of questions*100).
  • While practicing for CAT, never use your calculator as the exam is a speedy monitoring platform. To achieve good speed in calculations do try to do mental calculations all day. As if you start early by the end of the preparation you will be the master.
  • Verbal Ability can be conquered if you have solved hundreds of reading comprehensions already. Development of reading habit can help you a lot but majorly practicing on a regular basis can get you good results.
  • Never over clutter your visions. Try getting good and knowledge books for you, build a strategy, try to stick as much as possible and adapt as required. But you can avoid listening to anyone and can work anything or everything too. Some students try using flash cards, whatnots and note charts. As they prove to be quite helpful but the way is only when you know what you are doing. Start with simple things and try to be focused.
  • Utilize your time: You already have a lot of time until your examinations arrive. If CAT is your goal try avoiding distractions as much as possible, and focus on your things now.
  • The students can expect changes in the pattern for CAT. But these petty issues should not bother you as the preparations remained the same.
  • Remain Motivated: The time at times can be severe and can be easy too, so try to maintain mental motivation to not to lose your wits at times.
  • Practice, Practice, and practice.


CAT is one of the exams which offers a gate pass to the premium management courses of the top institutions in India. Being a graduate if you are looking forward to making your career in the domain then this course can serve you well.

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