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CAT Exam Duration Over Years, Exam Pattern And Marking Scheme [Updated]

Author : Lalita Vishwakarma

Updated On : June 25, 2024

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Overview: The CAT exam 2024 will take place on November 24 and last 120 minutes. There will be 66 MCQs that need to be answered in the given time. Read on to know about the CAT exam duration, pattern, and marking scheme!

Common Admission Test is a national-level MBA entrance exam conducted annually by one of the IIMs in India. It is a computer-based exam that is conducted online.

CAT 2024 has three major sections: VARC, DILR, and QA, each with a 40-minute sectional time.

To ace the CAT 2024 exam, get the complete details about the CAT exam duration, exam pattern, syllabus, and section-wise marking scheme.


Also Read: How Many Times CAT Exam is Conducted in a Year

How Long Is CAT Exam Conducted? 

Confused about the CAT exam duration for the year 2024? Well, the CAT exam time duration is the same as that of the CAT 2023 exam. 

CAT, or the Common Admission Test, is conducted with a standard time limit of 120 minutes or 2 hours with sectional timings, where each section has a time limit of 40 minutes. This allows individuals to develop effective test-taking strategies.

The paper typically consists of 66 questions divided into three sections: Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Quantitative Ability (QA), and Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR). 

Also Read: Category wise Reservation Policy in CAT Exam 2024 

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Key Highlights 

To get a better understanding, have a look at the key highlights of the CAT exam 2024:

Particulars Details
CAT Full Form Common Admission Test (CAT)
Conducting Institute Indian Institute of Management (IIMs)
Exam Level National
Exam Frequency Once a year
CAT Exam Date 2024 Sunday, November 24, 2024 (tentatively)
CAT Exam Timings To be notified
Registration Fees SC/ST/PwD - INR-1200 GEN - INR 2400 
Eligibility Criteria Graduation with 50% aggregate (45% for SC/ST students)
Number of Applications in the CAT exam 3.28 lakh (in 2023)
Exam Purpose Admission in IIMs, SPJIMR, FMS, MDI, IMT and over 1,200 B-Schools in India
Courses Offered Through CAT Exam MBA/ PGDM
CAT Entrance Exam Sections Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR), Quantitative Ability (QA)
Mode Online Computer Based Test (CBT) with MCQs and non-MCQs
No. of test cities for the CAT Exam 150
Website https://iimcat.ac.in/

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: CAT Exam Eligibility Criteria

CAT Exam Duration Analysis Over the Years [Updated]

The CAT exam has undergone several changes in the past decade, including alterations to its structure, duration, and section combinations. Previously, Data Interpretation (DI) was combined with Quantitative Aptitude (QA), but it was later grouped with Logical Reasoning (LR), making QA an independent section. 

Until 2019, the exam was 3 hours long and held in 2 shifts. However, starting in 2020, it was conducted over 3 shifts and reduced to a 2-hour duration. 

The upcoming exam is scheduled for November 24th. Please refer to the table below for a comprehensive overview of the CAT exam pattern changes since 2014.

Year Time (mins) Sections (Abbreviation) Questions per Section Total Questions
2024 (expected) 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2023 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2022 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2021 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2020 120 VARC, DILR, QA 26, 24, 26 76
2019 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2018 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2017 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2016 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2015 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2014 170 QA & DI, VA & LR 50, 50 100
2013 140 VALR, QADI 30, 30 60
2012 140 QA, DI, VARC 21, 9, 30 60
2011 140 VALR, QADI 30, 30 60

**Note: Here are the full forms for better understanding

  1. VARC: Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension
  2. DILR: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
  3. QA: Quantitative Ability
  4. VALR: Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning
  5. QADI: Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: SNAP vs CAT: Is SNAP easier than CAT?

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Exam Pattern [Expected]

Familiarising yourself with the CAT 2024 exam duration and pattern is essential before registering for it. Understanding the CAT 2024 exam pattern will help you prepare effectively for the MBA entrance test. 

Be sure to review the updated CAT entrance exam pattern thoroughly to kickstart your MBA exam preparations.

Mode of CAT entrance exam Computer Based Test
CAT 2024 exam Date Duration 120 minutes (40 minutes per section)
Number of questions 66
CAT total marks 198
Language of question paper English
Number of answer choices 4
Question Type MCQ and non-MCQ
Total Sections 3
Mode of Paper Online Only
Question Types MCQs and Non-MCQs (TITA)
Section Names 1. Quantitative Aptitude 2. Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension 3. Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: Know the Differences Between CAT and CET Syllabus

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Section Wise Questions 

It's important to understand the CAT exam structure and the CAT exam time duration for each section. The CAT exam consists of three sections: verbal ability and reading comprehension (VARC), data interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR), and quantitative ability. 

Each section is allotted 40 minutes, and the sequence for attempting the sections is VARC, DILR, and then QA. It's not possible to switch between sections during the exam. 

Here's a table that provides the number of questions in each section, categorised as multiple-choice questions (MCQ) and non-MCQ.

Section Number of MCQs Number of Non-MCQs Total Questions
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC) 21 3 24
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning 14 6 20
Quantitative Ability 14 8 22
Total 49 17 66

Also Read: CAT Exam 2024 Shift Timings

CAT Exam Duration: Marking Scheme 

When discussing the CAT exam time duration, it's important to understand the marking scheme. This includes allocating marks for correct answers and deducting marks for incorrect ones.

To perform well, it's crucial to be thoroughly prepared with the CAT exam syllabus. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and non-MCQ-type questions. Here's a detailed breakdown of the CAT exam marking scheme:

Type of Questions CAT Marking Scheme CAT Negative Marking Scheme
MCQ +3 marks will be provided for every correct answer -1 is deducted for every incorrect answer
Non-MCQ (TITA- Type in the answer) +3 marks will be provided for every correct answer There is no negative marking for TITA questions 

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: CAT Exam Preparation Books 2024 

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Preparation Tips To Crack It On Time

Preparing for the Common Admission Test (CAT) can be challenging due to its 120-minute duration and 66 questions across verbal ability and reading comprehension (VARC), data interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR), and quantitative ability (QA) sections. 

It's crucial to have a solid strategy, access to quality study materials, and guidance from experienced mentors to crack CAT 2024 on your first attempt, Here are some effective CAT exam preparation strategies:

  • Understand the CAT exam pattern, including question types, marking schemes, and timing.
  • Identify your strengths and weaknesses to allocate study time effectively.
  • Set daily targets for each study session, focusing on specific exam sections.
  • Create a daily study plan covering all syllabus topics, focusing on weak areas.
  • Take regular mock tests to practice and improve time management and accuracy.
  • Revise topics regularly to reinforce understanding.
  • Consider joining CAT coaching classes if needed to enhance preparation.

Conclusion 

In conclusion, comprehending the CAT exam time duration and familiarizing oneself with the CAT exam duration and pattern are pivotal steps in the preparation journey. By mastering these aspects, aspirants can optimize their performance and increase their chances of success in the CAT exam. An effective preparation strategy is built upon these foundational elements, ensuring that candidates can approach the exam with confidence and achieve their desired outcomes.

As you gear up for the CAT exam, remember that the duration is 120 minutes, with 40 minutes per section. Understanding this pattern is key to success. So, get ready to conquer the CAT exam with confidence and skill!

Also read: CAT Exam VARC Syllabus

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the CAT exam for?

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What are the total marks of CAT exam?

Expand Faq Icon

Who will conduct the CAT exam in 2024?

Expand Faq Icon

Is there any sectional timing in the CAT exam?

Expand Faq Icon

How many sections will be there in CAT 2024?

Expand Faq Icon

CAT Exam Duration Over Years, Exam Pattern And Marking Scheme [Updated]

Author : Lalita Vishwakarma

June 25, 2024

SHARE

Overview: The CAT exam 2024 will take place on November 24 and last 120 minutes. There will be 66 MCQs that need to be answered in the given time. Read on to know about the CAT exam duration, pattern, and marking scheme!

Common Admission Test is a national-level MBA entrance exam conducted annually by one of the IIMs in India. It is a computer-based exam that is conducted online.

CAT 2024 has three major sections: VARC, DILR, and QA, each with a 40-minute sectional time.

To ace the CAT 2024 exam, get the complete details about the CAT exam duration, exam pattern, syllabus, and section-wise marking scheme.


Also Read: How Many Times CAT Exam is Conducted in a Year

How Long Is CAT Exam Conducted? 

Confused about the CAT exam duration for the year 2024? Well, the CAT exam time duration is the same as that of the CAT 2023 exam. 

CAT, or the Common Admission Test, is conducted with a standard time limit of 120 minutes or 2 hours with sectional timings, where each section has a time limit of 40 minutes. This allows individuals to develop effective test-taking strategies.

The paper typically consists of 66 questions divided into three sections: Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Quantitative Ability (QA), and Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR). 

Also Read: Category wise Reservation Policy in CAT Exam 2024 

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Key Highlights 

To get a better understanding, have a look at the key highlights of the CAT exam 2024:

Particulars Details
CAT Full Form Common Admission Test (CAT)
Conducting Institute Indian Institute of Management (IIMs)
Exam Level National
Exam Frequency Once a year
CAT Exam Date 2024 Sunday, November 24, 2024 (tentatively)
CAT Exam Timings To be notified
Registration Fees SC/ST/PwD - INR-1200 GEN - INR 2400 
Eligibility Criteria Graduation with 50% aggregate (45% for SC/ST students)
Number of Applications in the CAT exam 3.28 lakh (in 2023)
Exam Purpose Admission in IIMs, SPJIMR, FMS, MDI, IMT and over 1,200 B-Schools in India
Courses Offered Through CAT Exam MBA/ PGDM
CAT Entrance Exam Sections Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR), Quantitative Ability (QA)
Mode Online Computer Based Test (CBT) with MCQs and non-MCQs
No. of test cities for the CAT Exam 150
Website https://iimcat.ac.in/

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: CAT Exam Eligibility Criteria

CAT Exam Duration Analysis Over the Years [Updated]

The CAT exam has undergone several changes in the past decade, including alterations to its structure, duration, and section combinations. Previously, Data Interpretation (DI) was combined with Quantitative Aptitude (QA), but it was later grouped with Logical Reasoning (LR), making QA an independent section. 

Until 2019, the exam was 3 hours long and held in 2 shifts. However, starting in 2020, it was conducted over 3 shifts and reduced to a 2-hour duration. 

The upcoming exam is scheduled for November 24th. Please refer to the table below for a comprehensive overview of the CAT exam pattern changes since 2014.

Year Time (mins) Sections (Abbreviation) Questions per Section Total Questions
2024 (expected) 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2023 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2022 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2021 120 VARC, DILR, QA 24, 20, 22 66
2020 120 VARC, DILR, QA 26, 24, 26 76
2019 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2018 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2017 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2016 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2015 180 VARC, DILR, QA 34, 32, 34 100
2014 170 QA & DI, VA & LR 50, 50 100
2013 140 VALR, QADI 30, 30 60
2012 140 QA, DI, VARC 21, 9, 30 60
2011 140 VALR, QADI 30, 30 60

**Note: Here are the full forms for better understanding

  1. VARC: Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension
  2. DILR: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
  3. QA: Quantitative Ability
  4. VALR: Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning
  5. QADI: Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: SNAP vs CAT: Is SNAP easier than CAT?

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Exam Pattern [Expected]

Familiarising yourself with the CAT 2024 exam duration and pattern is essential before registering for it. Understanding the CAT 2024 exam pattern will help you prepare effectively for the MBA entrance test. 

Be sure to review the updated CAT entrance exam pattern thoroughly to kickstart your MBA exam preparations.

Mode of CAT entrance exam Computer Based Test
CAT 2024 exam Date Duration 120 minutes (40 minutes per section)
Number of questions 66
CAT total marks 198
Language of question paper English
Number of answer choices 4
Question Type MCQ and non-MCQ
Total Sections 3
Mode of Paper Online Only
Question Types MCQs and Non-MCQs (TITA)
Section Names 1. Quantitative Aptitude 2. Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension 3. Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: Know the Differences Between CAT and CET Syllabus

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Section Wise Questions 

It's important to understand the CAT exam structure and the CAT exam time duration for each section. The CAT exam consists of three sections: verbal ability and reading comprehension (VARC), data interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR), and quantitative ability. 

Each section is allotted 40 minutes, and the sequence for attempting the sections is VARC, DILR, and then QA. It's not possible to switch between sections during the exam. 

Here's a table that provides the number of questions in each section, categorised as multiple-choice questions (MCQ) and non-MCQ.

Section Number of MCQs Number of Non-MCQs Total Questions
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC) 21 3 24
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning 14 6 20
Quantitative Ability 14 8 22
Total 49 17 66

Also Read: CAT Exam 2024 Shift Timings

CAT Exam Duration: Marking Scheme 

When discussing the CAT exam time duration, it's important to understand the marking scheme. This includes allocating marks for correct answers and deducting marks for incorrect ones.

To perform well, it's crucial to be thoroughly prepared with the CAT exam syllabus. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and non-MCQ-type questions. Here's a detailed breakdown of the CAT exam marking scheme:

Type of Questions CAT Marking Scheme CAT Negative Marking Scheme
MCQ +3 marks will be provided for every correct answer -1 is deducted for every incorrect answer
Non-MCQ (TITA- Type in the answer) +3 marks will be provided for every correct answer There is no negative marking for TITA questions 

 CAT Online Coaching

 CAT Online Coaching

Also Read: CAT Exam Preparation Books 2024 

CAT Exam Duration 2024: Preparation Tips To Crack It On Time

Preparing for the Common Admission Test (CAT) can be challenging due to its 120-minute duration and 66 questions across verbal ability and reading comprehension (VARC), data interpretation and logical reasoning (DILR), and quantitative ability (QA) sections. 

It's crucial to have a solid strategy, access to quality study materials, and guidance from experienced mentors to crack CAT 2024 on your first attempt, Here are some effective CAT exam preparation strategies:

  • Understand the CAT exam pattern, including question types, marking schemes, and timing.
  • Identify your strengths and weaknesses to allocate study time effectively.
  • Set daily targets for each study session, focusing on specific exam sections.
  • Create a daily study plan covering all syllabus topics, focusing on weak areas.
  • Take regular mock tests to practice and improve time management and accuracy.
  • Revise topics regularly to reinforce understanding.
  • Consider joining CAT coaching classes if needed to enhance preparation.

Conclusion 

In conclusion, comprehending the CAT exam time duration and familiarizing oneself with the CAT exam duration and pattern are pivotal steps in the preparation journey. By mastering these aspects, aspirants can optimize their performance and increase their chances of success in the CAT exam. An effective preparation strategy is built upon these foundational elements, ensuring that candidates can approach the exam with confidence and achieve their desired outcomes.

As you gear up for the CAT exam, remember that the duration is 120 minutes, with 40 minutes per section. Understanding this pattern is key to success. So, get ready to conquer the CAT exam with confidence and skill!

Also read: CAT Exam VARC Syllabus

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the CAT exam for?

Expand Faq Icon

What are the total marks of CAT exam?

Expand Faq Icon

Who will conduct the CAT exam in 2024?

Expand Faq Icon

Is there any sectional timing in the CAT exam?

Expand Faq Icon

How many sections will be there in CAT 2024?

Expand Faq Icon

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