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CAT 2017 Syllabus

CAT Syllabus- CAT 2017 is expected to be conducted on December 03, 2017 for which it is very important to know about the complete CAT Syllabus. Even though the syllabus may be similar to the other management entrance examinations, however, CAT is different in the way as it is full of surprises. Candidates can check CAT Practice Papers to get an idea of marking scheme and the pattern of CAT Exam.

  • CAT is conducted for admission to MBA/PGDM courses in IIMs and Top B-Schools of India.
  • It is a national level entrance exam held in online mode.
  • There are 100 questions in the CAT exam which must be solved in a duration of 180 minutes. Though it is not fixed, every year, CAT undergo some changes.
  • There are 3 sections in the exam-Quantitative Ability, Verbal & Reading Comprehension and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning with 34, 34 and 24 questions respectively. But this year, it is expected that weightage of English Section may increase.
  • CAT Paper has 2- types of questions- MCQs and Non-MCQs.
  • For MCQs, candidates have to choose the most appropriate answer from among the 4 choices.
  • CAT 2017 can only be given in the English Language.

Check Here CAT Exam Pattern

In this article, we will explain the detailed syllabus for each section individually.

Highlights of CAT 2017

Mode of ExamOnline
Sections3 (QA, DA & LR and VRC)
Total Number of Questions100 (QA-34, DA & LR-32 & VRC-34)
Sectional Duration1 hour for each section
Calculator UsageVirtual Calculator will be provided
Time Allotted180 minutes
Question TypesMCQs and Non-MCQs
Marking Scheme

Non-MCQs (+3, No negative marking)

MCQs (+3, -1)

Preparation Tips for Working Prefessionals for CAT

Latest MBA Application Forms Available

ITM University, Navi Mumbai MBA Admission 2017    
Suresh Gyan Vihar University MBA Admission 2017   
Adamas University, Kolkata MBA Admission 2017     
Presidency College, Bangalore​ MBA Admission 2017  
S.A. Engineering College MBA Admission 2017     
Hyderabad Business School MBA Admission 2017   

What is the syllabus of CAT?

  • It is imperative to know the complete syllabus for CAT and to decide the best strategy for preparation.
  • There is no official syllabus released by the IIMs and neither does it remain fixed.
  • Hence, the candidates must study the trends of the questions asked in the previous years and have a complete idea of the range of the syllabus.
  • CAT Syllabus is divided into 3 sections- Quantitative Ability (QA), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) and Verbal & Reading Comprehension (VRC).
  • It is often witnessed that students do not have any idea of the complete syllabus for CAT exam and hence are unable to attempt all the questions.
  • In order to aid you in preparation for the CAT 2017 examination, we have compiled the complete syllabus for CAT 2017.

CAT Syllabus for Quantitative Aptitude (QA)

Quantitative Ability is considered to be a scoring section, but to get a good score, an aspirant must know the complete syllabus for Quant section.

  • Quantitative Aptitude mostly has questions from Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry, Mensuration, Calculus etc.
  • The questions in this section are designed to test a candidate’s ability to apply mathematical principles to solve real time problems.
  • The questions are of 10+2 difficulty level.

Each topic in Quant syllabus has many sub-topics and are important in their own right. A candidate appearing for CAT 2017 must go through all these sub-topics in order to attempt maximum number of questions in CAT 2017 and score a good percentile.

Important Formuale for CAT 2017 Click Here

The sub-topics for each chapter included in CAT 2017 syllabus is given below.

Main TopicsSub-Topics
ArithmeticNumber System, HCF, LCM, Ratio & Proportion, Simplification, Percentage, Average, Age Calculation, Time & Work, Distances, etc.
AlgebraTheory of Equations, Quadratic Equation, Permutation & Combination, Sequence & Series etc.
GeometryAngles, Lines, Triangles, Circles, etc.
MensurationAreas and Volumes – Rectangles, Squares, Triangles, Circles, Cubes, Cones, Spheres, Pipes and Cistern, etc.
CalculusMaxima and Minima, Function
TrigonometryTrigonometric Ratios, Heights and Distances, etc.

Crack Quantitative Ability Like A Pro Read More

CAT Syllabus for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR)

  • In this section, a candidate’s ability to derive information from a given set of data, which can be in any form, i.e., pie chart or line graph etc, is tested.
  • There are various types of charts and graphs which are used to frame Data Interpretation questions.
  • An aspirant for CAT 2017 must practice all these questions.

The different types of charts and graphs are listed below:

  1. Bar Graph
  2. Line Graph
  3. Pie Chart
  4. Tables
  5. Case lets
  6. Combination of Graphs
  7. Data Sufficiency
  8. Venn Diagram

Before CAT 2017, Logical Reasoning and Language Comprehension comprised one section of the test paper. However, in 2015, Logical Reasoning was clubbed with Data Interpretation to make for a separate third section in the question paper.

Logical Reasoning can prove to be a scoring section, if prepared carefully. Though the syllabus for Logical Reasoning can be endless, there are certain crucial topics which are repeated in CAT exam papers.

Some of the main topics for Logical Reasoning syllabus for CAT 2017 are given below:

  • Seating Arrangement
  • Blood Relations
  • Syllogism
  • Venn Diagram
  • Propositions
  • Data Arrangement
  • Puzzles
  • Assumptions
  • Statements
  • Clocks and Calendars
  • Sets

How To Prepare Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning? Read More

CAT Syllabus for Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC)

  • Since CAT 2015, Verbal and Reading Comprehension has been made into a separate section.
  • In CAT 2016, 34 questions were asked in this section. But it is expected, by this year, the weightage of questions is likely to be increased.
  • It is a scoring paper but due to the introduction of non-MCQ type questions, it could be a little time-taking.
  • In order to score good percentile in this section, a candidate must practice all topics.
  • Verbal and Reading Comprehension basically contains questions from Reading Comprehension, English Grammar, Passage, Vocabulary and Language Usage.
  • 70% of questions come from Reading Comprehension.

The types of questions in this section are listed below:

  • Sentence Correction
  • Word usage
  • Fill in the blanks
  • Para Jumble
  • Para completion
  • Fact Inference Judgement
  • Analogies
  • Idioms

Tips to Crack Verbal and Reading Comprehension

Best Books for CAT

CAT is the exclusive choice of most graduates that can head start their career by a massive amount. Acting as a gateway to the illustrious IIMs and other Institutions with state of the Art Study Programme and global exposure.

And with days passing by and the CAT 2017 Dates getting closer, candidates are advised to plan their study schedule well with standard books for CAT.

Preparation Books for Verbal and Reading Comprehension

Here we have prepared a list of some highly recommended books which are excellent for preparation of Verbal and Reading Comprehension section.

  1. Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension by Ajay Singh, Publisher – Arihant.
  2. 30 Days to More Powerful Vocabulary by Wilfred Funk & Norman Lewis, Publisher- Simon & Schuster.
  3. Wren and Martin English Grammar
  4. Business English and Communication by Clark Zimmer, Publisher- Mcgraw Hill Ryerson

Preparation Books for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning

Below we have curated a list of preparation books for Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning section based on user reviews:

  1. Pearson Guide to Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning for CAT by Nishit Sinha, Publisher- Pearson.
  2. How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for the CAT by Arun Sharma, Publisher- Tata Mcgraw Hill.
  3. How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for the CAT by Arun Sharma, Publisher- Tata Mcgraw Hill.

Preparation books for Quantitative Ability section

Preparing with the right resources in hand can prove to be an asset for those appearing in the CAT 2017. Here we have listed a few books which are vouched for by CAT exam toppers.

  1. How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Arun Sharma, Publisher- Tata Mcgraw Hill.
  2. Pearson Guide to Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation for CAT by Nishit Sinha, Publisher- Pearson.
  3. Quantum CAT: Quantitative Aptitude Common Admission Test for Admission into IIMs by Sarvesh K Verma, Publisher- Arihant
  4. Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examination Tips, Techniques, and Short-cut Methods by Abhijit Guha.
  5. NCERT Mathematics books for class 8th, 9th, 10th and 10+2.

What makes CAT a different exam as compared to other management entrance exams?

CAT is known for its surprises every year. The level of questions asked in CAT is very high as compared to others. English section is highly dependent on Reading Comprehension (RC) and it is marked that over 70% of the questions are based on RC.

CAT Exam Pattern is unpredicted; every year it changes and it is not notified before the exam. Candidates get surprise while taking the exam.

Trend Analysis of pattern of questions in CAT is represented in the following tables-

In 2015, there was no particular change in the number of questions in CAT. The distribution of questions is depicted in the table given below-

Number of Questions343234

In 2016, As CAT is full of surprises, in Quantitative Ability section, the change in distribution of questions can be easily seen.

Number of Questions343234

Usually, there are 8 sets of 4 questions each in Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DI & LR) but in 2016, it was difficult to figure out the type of questions as no graph was provided. Questions on DI & LR are tricky while in other management entrance exams, questions are direct and are in-depth calculative.  

Due to technical glitches (symbolic issues) in Quantitative Ability (QA) section, the sectional cut off dropped. An aspirant should attempt 27-28 questions with 90% accuracy in order to secure 99 percentiles in quant section. Normally, questions are formulae based but they are tricky too.

Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC) Section- In 2015, 24 questions were based on Reading Comprehension (RC) and 10 were on Verbal Ability (VA). The separate sub section was defined in 2015 but in 2016, there was no separate sub section. All the questions were merged, which increased the stress level of candidates.

CAT is an online entrance test while other management entrance exams such as XAT, IIFT and SNAP are held in offline mode. There is no provision of choosing the particular section, they will be auto generated while taking the exam.

Over the years, change in level of difficulty of the sections has been observed. The same is predicted in the following table:

SectionLevel of Difficulty
Quantitative AbilityDecreased
Verbal and Reading ComprehensionIncreased
Data Interpretation and Logical ReasoningHighly Increased

CAT Practice Papers

In 2016, around 6,32,434 candidates applied for CAT which is one of the highest in last 7 years. Huge number of candidates applying for the exam, increases the competency level of getting selected.

Mock Papers Released by IIM B’lore

Keeping in mind the competition factor, it is prudent to prepare for the CAT exam at least 3-months prior the exam. Preparation and regular practice not just helps in learning the topics, but also helps in increasing the accuracy and speed of attempting questions.

Preparation for CAT 2017, cannot be completed without the right preparation material and practice papers. There are pantheon of materials and books available in market and on internet.

Click Here CAT Practice Papers


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1 Comment

Provide me information for cat information

06 Mar, 2017 11:58

Hi Shivmona, to catch full details such as important dates, syllabus and preparation tips on CAT exam, please fins the link

11 May, 2017 11:29

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