IIM Entrance Exam CAT: 2024 Guide For You



22 June, 2024

IIM Entrance Exam CAT: 2024 Guide For You

November is the month that has now become synonymous with the most prestigious entrance exam of the country, the Common Admission Test or CAT. The exam is conducted all over India in approximately more than 150 cities. However, where did it all begin? Before diving deep into the ins and outs of the IIM entrance exams let us have a sneak peek at how CAT exams came into existence in the country. The applicants for admission to IIMs faced several inconveniences back in the 1970s, as they had to appear for each of the then top three management institutes (IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore, and IIM Calcutta) separately. A Directors’ committee of the three institutes then meticulously planned the possibility of conducting a common entrance examination for the convenience of the applicants. And it was almost about 47 years ago on 2nd January, 1977 the first CAT exam was conducted in almost 14 cities in the country.  In the year 2023, a record 3.3 lakh candidates applied for the exam which was a 30% surge in the rate of application from the year 2022. IIM entrance exams are conducted by CAT . At this point in your academic career, you stand at a crossroads with a future full of unmatched prospects and esteemed recognition. You’ve probably heard stories of the sacred corridors of the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), where dreams come true and leaders are born. You can practically feel the clean, fresh campus air and see the vibrant, busy energy of some of the nation’s best minds.

The question that keeps coming to your mind as you consider your options is how to get into these prestigious schools. A succession of demanding and highly competitive entrance tests hold the key, each serving as a stepping stone toward your ultimate objective. These IIM entrance exams are more than just knowledge assessments; they provide doors to an enlightening educational journey that can redefine your future.

The CAT 2024 registration dates are out. So do you want to study at one of the renowned Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs)? If you wish to pursue an MBA or a BBA, the IIM admission examinations are your path to a top-notch management education. Everything you need to know about the various IIM entrance tests, their syllabi, and what to expect will be covered in this blog.

Understanding IIM Entrance Exams

The purpose of the IIM entrance tests is to evaluate your analytical abilities, aptitude, and general preparedness for a demanding management programme. The main admission examinations that you should be aware of are broken down as follows:

  • Common Admission Test (CAT):
    The most popularly recognized IIM admission exam for MBA schools is the Common Admission Test (CAT). It is the starting point for MBA programmes at the country’s most prestigious institutions like IIM Bangalore, IIM Calcutta, IIM Ahmedabad, and other prestigious IIMs. It is held every once a year.

  • Integrated Programme in Management Aptitude Test (IPMAT):
    The IPMAT, or IIM Integrated Programme in Management Aptitude Test, is essential if you want to pursue an integrated course. This test is only for the IIM Indore and IIM Rohtak five-year integrated BBA+MBA programme.

IIM Eligibility Criteria 2024

The IIM MBA programme’s eligibility requirements are identical to those of the CAT, meaning that candidates must have earned at least 50% of their graduation marks. Admission to the IIMs is available to those who meet the requirements to take the CAT. They must, however, fulfil a few additional prerequisites to be chosen. Check out the following IIM qualifying requirements:

  • The fundamental requirements for admission to IIMs are graduation with at least 50% of total credits or an equivalent CGPA (45% for SC, ST, and PWD/DA categories).

  • Applicants awaiting their results or in their last year of a bachelor’s degree or equivalent qualification exam may also apply.

  • To be selected for an IIM interview, candidates must meet the requirements for the IIM qualifying cutoff.

  • For candidates to be eligible for an interview call and to participate in WAT/GD-PI, they need to meet the minimum IIM call cut-off.

Understanding CAT Exam

The CAT Exam 2024 registration start dates are out.  The CAT is an IIM MBA entrance exam required for admission to the 20 IIMS, one of the best B-business schools. The CAT exam is conducted every year. There are 66 questions in all, and 198 total marks. It is divided into three sections: Quantitative Aptitude (QA), Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR), and Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC). The CAT exam’s projected cut-off is adjusted yearly based on prior results. The entire cost of applying for the CAT exam is Rs. 1,200 for PwD and SC/ST applicants, and Rs. 2,400 for other applicants.

IIM Entrance Exam for MBA

The name that comes to mind when considering the IIM Entrance Exam for an MBA is CAT. This extremely competitive test evaluates your reading comprehension, logical reasoning, quantitative, verbal, and reading comprehension skills. You must have calculated approach to prepare for the CAT exam, which includes thorough practice and familiarity with the test’s format.

IIM Entrance Exam for BBA

The IPMAT, the IIM entrance exam for BBA, is crucial for undergraduate candidates. This examination includes both objective and subjective questions to gauge your proficiency in maths and English. To be admitted into the integrated BBA+MBA programme, applicants must receive a minimum IPMAT score.

A Detailed Look at the Specific IIM Entrance Exams

Various IIMs rely on the CAT as a one and only IIM entrance exam.

IIM Bangalore Entrance Exam:

  • Admission to IIM Bangalore is exclusively determined by CAT exam results.

  • There is no separate IIM Bangalore entrance exam.

  • In the area of management, the institute provides PG, PhD, certificate, and MBA programmes in addition to the Executive MBA programme.

  • Depending on the subject they have chosen, applicants to IIM Bangalore must take entrance tests at the college or national level.

  • A valid CAT exam score is required for admission to the flagship programme, the IIM Bangalore MBA.

  • A Personal Interview (PI) and Written Ability Test (WAT) round follow. Seek advice on how to ace IIM interviews.

IIM Ahmedabad Entrance Exam:

  • Admission to IIM Ahmedabad in 2024 is mostly determined via entrance test.

  • There is no separate IIM Ahmedabad entrance exam.

  • This school is well-known for its flagship PGP (also known as MBA) programme, which is a two-year, full-time, residential programme that admits students with a valid CAT score.

  • The previous year’s CAT percentile for IIM Ahmedabad was as high as 99.6, indicating how difficult it is for a student to be admitted to this university.

  • The PGP admission cycle for IIM-A begins with CAT registrations in a year.

  • IIM A provides further postgraduate and doctorate programmes in management in addition to PGP.

  • Based on results from entrance tests related to the degree, candidates are narrowed down for these programmes.

  • The next step in the shortlisting process usually consists of a Personal Interview (PI) round.

IIM Entrance Exam Syllabus

There are 3 different sections in the IIM entrance exam (CAT): Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR), and Quantitative Aptitude (QA).

Section Topics Covered
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) • Reading Comprehension.
• Vocabulary: Synonyms, Antonyms, Analogies
• Grammar: Sentence Correction, Error Spotting, Para Jumbles, Fill in the Blanks.
Quantitative Aptitude • Arithmetic: Percentages, Profit and Loss, Ratio and Proportion, Time and Work, Time, Speed and Distance
• Algebra: Equations, Inequalities, Functions. Geometry: Triangles, Circles, Quadrilaterals
• Mensuration: Areas, Volumes, Number Systems: LCM and HCF, Integers, Surds and Indices.
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR) • Data Interpretation: Tables, Graphs, Charts, Caselets. Logical
• Reasoning: Seating Arrangements, Blood Relations, Coding-Decoding, Syllogisms, Puzzles.

List of Top 10 IIM Colleges in India

There are a total of 21 IIMs in India.  Check out the top 10 list of IIM colleges in India below in the table.

Name of IIM Established Year NIRF Ranking 2023
IIM Ahmedabad 1961 1
IIM Bangalore 1973 2
IIM Kozhikode 1996 3
IIM Calcutta 1961 4
IIM Lucknow 1984 6
IIM Indore 1996 8
IIM Udaipur 2011 16
IIM Trichy 2011 22
IIM Raipur 2010 11
IIM Rohtak 2010 12

Tips for Cracking the IIM Entrance Exams

  • Recognise the Exam Pattern: Become acquainted with the sections, scoring system, and time allotted for every segment of the exam.

  • Establish Robust Foundations: Since quantitative aptitude, verbal ability, logical reasoning, and data interpretation are the main areas tested, concentrate on developing a strong foundation in these areas.

  • Practice Regularly: To increase your speed and accuracy, set aside a substantial amount of time to work through practice questions from past exams and mock exams.

  • Time Management: Acquire the skill of efficient time management for the exam. To guarantee that you finish the paper on time, set out precise time intervals for each section and adhere to them.

  • Identify Weaknesses and Strengths: Evaluate your performance in practice exams to determine your areas of strength and weakness. While preserving your strengths, invest more time in strengthening your areas of weakness.

  • Keep Up: Since current events, general knowledge, and business news are frequently covered in exams, stay updated on these subjects.

  • Work on Reading Comprehension: To increase your reading comprehension and comprehension of lengthy, complicated materials, practice reading comprehension regularly.

  • Seek Guidance: To receive professional advice and individualised study programmes, think about enrolling in coaching classes or online courses.

  • Remain Calm and Confident: Throughout the exam, have a good outlook and remain composed. Your performance might be greatly impacted by your level of confidence in your talents.

  • Revise Regularly: Don’t forget to revise the concepts and formulas regularly to ensure they stay fresh in your mind until the exam day.

Best Books IIM Entrance Exams Preparation

We have compiled here, for you, a list of some of the best books that you can refer to for preparing for the IIM Entrance exam:

Books for Verbal Ability Author
Mastering the Verbal Ability for CAT Ajay Singh
Word power Made Easy Norman Lewis
How to Prepare for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension Arun Sharma & Meenakshi Upadhyay
Books for Data Interpretation Author
How to Prepare for Data Interpretation Arun Sharma
A Modern Approach to Logical Reasoning R. S. Agarwal
Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation for CAT Nishit Sinha
Books for Quantitative Aptitude Author
How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude Arun Sharma
Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examinations R S Agarwal
Quantitative Aptitude Quantum CAT Sarvesh Verma


You are at a turning point in your academic career as you begin the process of applying to the esteemed Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs). There’s no denying the attraction of these prestigious schools, places where leaders are developed and dreams come true. The route to guaranteeing your seat in these revered hallways is becoming more evident with the introduction of the CAT 2024 registration dates.

The path ahead is not without difficulties; it is lined with difficult entrance exams that are extremely competitive and mark important turning points in your pursuit of greatness. However, these IIM Entrance Exams are more than just tests of knowledge; they are doors to a rewarding educational journey that could completely change your destiny.


Q1. How can I get into IIM?

To get admitted to an Indian Institute of Management (IIM), you usually have to take and pass the Common Admission Test (CAT). You go through additional rounds of selection after passing the CAT, which includes written ability tests, group discussions, and one-on-one interviews.

Q2. What exam is required for IIM?

The IIM entrance exam name is CAT (Common Admission Test ). It is the main exam required for admission to Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs). It is a yearly computer-based exam that is required to be taken in order to be admitted to any of the several management programmes that IIMs and other prestigious business schools in India offer.

Q3. Can I get into IIM without CAT?

IIMs typically require CAT scores, although some also accept results from other management entrance tests, such as XAT, GMAT, and GRE. CAT is still, nevertheless, the most commonly recognized test for IIM admissions.

Q4. Which entrance exam is best for IIM?

The most effective IIM MBA  entrance exam is the CAT (Common Admission Test). It is generally recognised by the majority of IIMs and other prestigious business schools in India and is specially made for management programmes.

Q5. Is IIM tough or IIT?

Renowned Indian universities, Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), each face unique difficulties. IIM specialises in management education, whereas IIT concentrates on engineering and technology. Since both institutions have demanding academic curricula and stringent admissions procedures, it is challenging to directly compare their levels of toughness.

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