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XAT 2017: Synchronize Your CAT Preparation with XAT Exam

Last Updated - October 04, 2016

XAT which is prominently known as Xaviers Aptitude Test is scheduled to take place on January 08, 2017, right after CAT, which is scheduled to take place on December 4, 2016. XAT Exam is the second largest national level management entrance test after CAT. Management aspirants striving to get admission in top B schools can target XAT to get admission in XLRI and other top 140 B-schools. Since, both the exams have a gap of just one month, management aspirants are suggested to prepare for both in a synchronization. This will not only help the candidate to improve his/her CAT Score, but will also improve your XAT Results

XAT is a national level examination, which will be conducted by XLRI Jamshedpur. It is a traditional paper-pencil based test. XAT examination offers admission to the selected candidates in the post-graduation courses of management studies.

Comparative Analysis of CAT 2016 and XAT 2017

This year for CAT Registration, the number went up to around 1.5 Lakh which is assumed to be followed by XAT Registration to be around 1 Lakh. If we compare both exam, XAT 2017 have an upper hand, as XAT has more to offer against CAT, this year. XAT Exam Pattern will have a time duration of three and a half hours with lesser amount of questions to solve whereas CAT Exam Pattern will be of three hours duration with more number of questions to be attempted by the candidates. Recently, XAT has introduced more candidate friendly changes in the traditional paper pen based exam and some changes were also introduced in its exam content, to make XAT Exam Pattern, more student friendly. Also, there are more number of B-schools accepting XAT Scores than the number of B-schools accepting CAT Scores.

There are various top management schools which accept both CAT and XAT scores. B-schools like SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB, BIMTECHare few of them which accept scores of both exams. However, candidates who are willing to get admission in top B schools are preparing for both exams so that they do not skip the chance to get high score in either of the exams. 

XAT Syllabus

The candidate must know the XAT Syllabus before attempting XAT Exam. The entrance exam consists of two papers. Also the exam is held in one session for which the duration is 3.5 hours. XAT will consist 5 sections in two papers. Below is the bifurcation of both papers, which a candidate can consider:

Paper 1: XAT Paper 1 constitutes objective type questions based on English Language, Logical Reasoning, Quantitative Ability and Decision Making. Paper 1 of XAT is allotted 3 hours for attempting these multiple choice questions.

Paper 2: XAT Paper 2 consists of general awareness questions. Unlike Paper 1, Paper 2 is a subjective paper. There will be a total of 30 questions with half an hour of time allotted to this paper. This paper generally includes of two sections namely General Awareness and Essay writing. There is no negative marking in this section.

Read More About XAT Previous Year Exam Analysis

Common Preparation Topics for CAT and XAT

In the hustle bustle of getting admission in top management schools, candidates often tend to forget that while preparing for CAT, they can simultaneously prepare for XAT exam too. And, believe us, you don't have to get out of your way to prepare for XAT as preparation topics for CAT and XAT are almost same. The planned preparation strategy to attempt CAT Exam will certainly boost up your morale to take XAT 2017. In accordance to experts’ remark, if a candidate analyze the expected performance in CAT and then appear for the mock tests of XAT, the candidate can ensure good score in XAT Practice Papers.

What a candidate is required to do is judicially utilize the opportunity and keep in sync the stock of preparation. This will increase the candidate's preparation by scoring well in both exams.

Also Check XAT 2016 General Awareness Preparation Tips

Topics like Quant, Verbal, Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning are common to both exams. Preparing for these topics, strategically can do wonders and will help you score maximum in both the exams. You should be handy with these preparation topics as only these can help you to increase you performance level for both exams. If a candidate analyses himself to get 70 on a scale of 100 in CAT exam, then a candidate can surely score 100 in XAT, considering the changed XAT Exam Pattern. The right approach and proper amount of preparation is the key. Recently, after the introduction of Non-MCQ's in CAT, which will not be a part of XAT exam pattern can also ensure a high percentile in XAT 2017.

But, the additional sections which are certainly not a part of CAT exam and demands your extra attention for XAT exam are Decision Making and Essay writing sections. The scores in section, namely, verbal and Logical Ability, Decision Making & Analytical Reasoning and Quantitative Ability; will be used to prepare the merit list for shortlisting the candidates at XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB, TAPMI, XIME, Great Lakes, LIBA among other highly ranked B-schools. All the questions in these sections will be in MCQ format.


The similar type of questions in all the above sections mentioned, which a candidate will attempt in XAT can also be attempted in CAT, by providing an edge to management aspirants who are planning to attempt both the exams.

Though, we told you about the sections which are similar in both XAT and CAT exams, now we will give you some tips on attempting sections which are not in sync with CAT exam. XAT exam has two additional sections namely, Decision making and Essay writing, which a candidate needs to ponder on while preparing for XAT exam. Below are the tips and tricks to crack both sections, wisely

Decision Making Section

Tips for Preparing Decision Making Section

Decision making section includes different categories, namely:

  • Algebra and Functions
  • Number System
  • Geometry
  • Co-ordinate Geometry
  • Arithmetic Sequence
  • Mixtures
  • Probability

How you can attemptDecision Making Section:

For decision making section, aspirants are advised to practice their decision making skills extensively. Fickle minded nature of yours, may land you in a problem. So, a clear and dynamic approach is essential. The section will include an amalgamation of different questions based on Tables, Caselets, Probability, Linear arrangements, Blocks, Puzzles and sequential arrangements. Candidate can score well in this section by using common sense. This is the easiest section out of all the sections. 

Essay Writing Section

Tips for Preparing Essay Writing Section

Essay writing is something which we have learnt and been practicing from our school times. If you are a pro at writing, then you don’t need to worry about this section as this section will give you brownie points only, but if you are not that good at writing, we will help you with some guidelines which will certainly give you edge over other to clear XAT 2017.

How you can attempt Essay Writing Section:

The topic for this section are basically abstract or are based on a common phrase or an idiom. For further helping, the applicant is provided with an implied philosophical hint, which serves as base for building your essay. No proper guidelines can help you to crack this section, but a candidate can work on his/her thought process by writing them down on paper. This will surely help the candidate to attempt essay writing section in a proper manner. 



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