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XAT Syllabus

XAT XAT2018 XATExamPattern XATExamPattern2018 XATSyllabus XATSyllabus2018

XAT Syllabus –  The paper contains questions from Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation, Verbal & Logical Ability, Decision Making, General Knowledge and a question on Essay Writing. The exam has 2 papers and the syllabus for XAT (Xavier Aptitude Test) is different for both the papers. Although there is no official XAT Syllabus declared by XLRI, but it is generally based on past years’ pattern. 

XAT 2018 is difficult to crack because of its variable exam pattern. Every year few questions come that make students sweat in the exam hall. But, having a thorough knowledge of XAT Syllabus will make the preparation journey much easier. So, here are some key points about the syllabus that all students must be aware of beforehand:

  • XAT Syllabus for Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation (QA & DI): It includes 15 important topics having a weightage of 29 marks. The difficulty level of this section is always high. An accuracy of 70 percent is good as loss of a single mark to negative marking is making you lose in percentile.
  • XAT Syllabus for Verbal & Logical Ability (VA & LR): There are 7 important topics and the section can have moderate to high difficulty level. Last year, this section had a moderate difficulty level. There can be 26 questions depending on XAT Exam Pattern
  • XAT Syllabus for Decision Making (DM): Generally, 20-23 questions come from this section. The data is provided and answers are to be identified on the basis of the same. The data graphs or pie charts can become difficult to comprehend sometimes.
  • XAT GK syllabus: Questions come from politics, geography, history, economics and recent trends of the market. The section always has moderate difficulty level as questions are designed from recent changes in any field.
  • XAT Essay Syllabus: There is no set syllabus for XAT for the essay writing section. Any topic of examiners interest, which will involve some brainstorming, can come up. The grammatical rules and clarity of thought are most important in essay writing.

XAT Exam Pattern

While XAT Preparation process, it is essential to develop a proper strategy and understand the exam pattern well to maximize scores in XAT 2018.

XAT XAT2018 XATExampattern XATExamPattern2018 XATPaperPattern XATSyllabus XavierAptitudeTest XATsyllabus2018

Listed below are some key points about XAT Exam Pattern:

  • XAT comprises of two papers and both of them are mandatory to clear.
  • The exam is conducted in offline mode i.e. it is a pen-paper based exam.
  • Paper 1 contains 3 section viz. Decision Making, Verbal & Logical Ability and Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation.
  • Paper 2 contains questions from General Knowledge and includes essay writing.
  • There is a total of 72 questions in Paper 1 and 26 questions in Paper 2.
  • As for the marking scheme in Paper 1, 1 mark will be awarded for each correct answer and 0.25 marks will be deducted for an incorrect answer. Also, 0.05 marks will be deducted if more than 12 questions are left unattempted. For Paper 2, there is no negative marking.
  • All questions will be in English only.
  • The duration of Paper 1 is 170 minutes, while the duration for Paper 2 is 35 minutes.
  • GK marks will be used for final selection and not for shortlisting candidates for GD & PI round.

It is advisable to practice as many XAT Sample Papers as possible before appearing for Xavier Aptitude Test. It helps a candidate to understand XAT Exam Pattern and all other components to be done beforehand. Also, XAT Practice Papers helps in managing the time effectively. One will have a fair idea as to how much time is to be devoted to each section.

XAT Syllabus – Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation

  • QA and DI section is counted as part of Paper 1 of XAT exam.
  • XLRI has brought significant changes in this section. Numbers, Geometry and Mensuration questions have become more prominent and around 50% of the Quant questions are based on these areas.
  • Arithmetic, Venn diagrams, functions are other favorite topics on which questions are formed in XAT.
  • Questions on Data Interpretation are based on Bar Charts, Tables, Pie Charts, diagrams and are in sets mostly. 
  • There are 29 questions asked from this section and we suggest you take 2 minutes and 17 seconds to solve each question.
  • All questions carry equal marks.
  • There are 5 answer choices and the correct answer must be darkened in OMR sheet.
  • QA and DI section is considered to be of the highest difficulty level.


  • The section is difficult and the number of questions can change.
  • There is no percentage defined between the numbers of questions asked in QA & DI section.

Marking scheme for QA/ DI

  • 1 mark is awarded for every correct answer.
  • 0.25 marks are deducted for every incorrect answer.
  • 0.05 marks are deducted once the count of 12 unattempted questions has completed.

Important topics for Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation

GeometryMensuration – 2D and 3D
ProbabilityAlgebra Functions
Profit and LossSpeed & Distance
ArithmeticHeights & Distance
Direction Sense & TimeClocks
Data Interpretation – Table, Combination

XAT Preparation Books for QA/ DI

Book namePublisher / Author

Quantitative Aptitude for CAT

Nitish K. Sinha

PSC for VA for CAT

Nitish K. Sinha

Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT

Nitish K. Sinha

CAT 2017 Quantitative Aptitude

Gautam Puri

Wiley's ExamXpert XAT (Xavier Aptitude Test)

Wiley India (Author)

Jabbing the XAT Mock Tests & Solved Papers

R K Jha

XAT Syllabus – Verbal and Logical Ability

  • VA and LR section is part of XAT Paper 1.
  • There are 7 important topics in Verbal ability section.
  • 26 questions of objective type are expected to come from this section.
  • Approximately 56. 6 minutes are required to complete this section.
  • Every question will have 5 answer options.
  • All questions will carry equal marks.
  • The section can have moderate to high difficulty level questions.

Marking scheme for XAT VA/ LR

  • 1 mark is awarded for every correct answer.
  •  0.25 marks are deducted for every wrong answer.
  • 0.05 marks are deducted for every unattempted question after the count of 12 unattempted questions has completed.

Important topics for VA and LR in XAT

GrammarPara Completion
VocabularyPara Jumble
Critical ReasoningReading Comprehension

XAT Preparation Books for VA/ LR

Book namePublisher/ Author

Study Notes Material On XAT Paperback – 2016

Sourav sir's classes

Verbal Ability Comprehension for CAT/ XAT/ IIFT/ CMAT/ MAT/ Bank PO/ SSC 2nd Edition

Bharta Patodi and Aditya Choudhary

XAT Syllabus – Decision Making

  • DM section is part of Paper 1 of XAT.
  • There are 23 questions expected from this section.
  • Set based questions are asked.
  • The difficulty level of DM section is moderate to tough.

Marking scheme for DM 

  • 1 mark for every correct answer.
  • 0.25 marks deducted for every wrong answer.
  • Once the count of 12 unattempted questions has completed, 0.05 marks will be deducted for every unattempted question. 

Important topics in XAT Decision Making (DM)

ArithmeticAnalytical Reasoning
SituationalConditions and Grouping Test
Data Arrangement TestReading Comprehension
Case letsDecision Making in a situation

XAT Preparation Books for DM

XAT XAT2018 XATPreparationBooks XATSyllabusforDecisionMaking XAT2018Syllabus

Book namePublisher

XAT 2016 Decision Making Online Coaching by Ravi Handa (Voucher)

Online book

Target XAT 2017 (Past Papers 2005 - 2016 + 5 Mock Tests)

Disha Experts

XAT Solved Papers 2008-2016 with Full-Length Model Papers Essay Writing & Practice Essays Decision Making

Career Launcher

XAT Syllabus for General Knowledge

  • GK section is included in Paper 2 of XAT 2018.
  • 25 questions will be asked in total.
  • The difficulty level is moderate as no brainstorming is needed.
  • Most questions are on current affairs and some on GK.
  • 60:40 breakup is defined for GK and current affairs.

Marking scheme of GK Section

  • 1 mark is awarded for every correct answer.
  • No negative marking for a wrong answer.
  • You can spend 20 minutes to complete this section. 

Important topics in GK

Important topics for GK in XAT
PoliticsNation and States
SportsAwards and Recognitions
International RelationsSociety
Merger & Acquisitions--

XAT Preparation Books for GK

Book namePublisher

Objective General Knowledge


General knowledge


General Science


XAT Syllabus – Essay Writing

  • There is no set syllabus defined for essay writing section.
  • Topics of general interest, current scenario or past events can be asked to write.
  • Grammar rules must be confirmed while writing an essay.
  • There is no marking scheme defined for essay writing.

XAT Preparation Books for Essay Writing

XAT Essay Writing Books

Book namePublisher/Author

XAT Solved Papers 2008-2016 with Full Length Model Papers Essay Writing & Practice Essays Decision Making

Gautam Puri

XAT Simplified (12 yrs Past Papers + 5 Mock Tests + General Awareness Gist/ Essays

Disha Publications

XAT 2018 Essay Topic

Here are some sample topics from previous years:

  • XAT 2017 essay topic: Globalization and Jingoism always coexist.
  • XAT 2016 essay topic: Technology and Nature are natural enemies.
  • XAT 2015 essay topic: Listening is a dying art. We hardly listen to understand. We only listen to refute or reply.
  • XAT 2014 essay topic: The most beautiful thing can neither be seen nor be touched but can only be felt.
  • XAT 2013 essay topic: Corruption is the root cause of economic slowdown in India

How to Crack XAT 2018?

Xavier Aptitude Test is conducted every year in the first week of January by XLRI. XAT scores are accepted by more than 100 institutes in India. Also, due to its popularity, the difficulty level of the exam is getting higher with time. Also, as XAT Syllabus has no defined boundary, candidates appearing for it are suggested to practice as many sample papers and previous years question papers as possible. Listed below are major takeaways for XAT Preparations:

XAT XAT2018 XATExamPaper XATPracticePapers XATSamplepapers

  • Before starting the preparations, it is advised to go through all the previous years papers to get an idea about all the questions asked in the exam. Doing this will help a candidate to know about the level of questions that are asked from XAT Syllabus.
  • Candidates must make sure to give equal importance to all the sections in order to fetch maximum marks to clear the sectional cut off set by the conducting authority.
  • As the level of exam is difficult, so managing the time in an efficient way will prove to be an asset.
  • For Logical Reasoning and Verbal Section, candidates must make sure to practice as many XAT Sample Paper available as possible.
  •  For GK section, it is important to keep oneself updated with both static and current happenings around the world. As per the trends, knowing about the past 6 months news will be sufficient for XAT preparation for this section.
  • As for the essay writing, one must write 2 essays per day and get it assessed in order to know about the content quality and flow of the same. It is recommended that one should go through the editorial page of national newspapers as it proves to boost the preparation in this section.

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