CAT 2018 - The last date to complete CAT registration 2018 has been extended to September 26, 2018, as per the latest announcement by IIM Calcutta. The conducting body has also declared that registered candidates who had uploaded blur or improper photographs can re-upload them between September 27 (10 AM) to September 30, (5 PM). The online application form of CAT 2018 was released on August 8. CAT 2018 will be conducted on Sunday, November 25 in two sessions across 147 exam cities. The exam pattern of CAT 2018 will remain the same as last year.
The exam will be held for a duration of 180 minutes with three timed sections, namely VARC (Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension), DILR (Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning), and QA (Quantitative Ability) carrying a total of 300 marks. This article of Careers360 brings to you the detailed information on CAT 2018 regarding the notification, important dates, eligibility criteria, registration process, application form, exam pattern, result, cutoff, selection process etc.
The Common Admission Test or CAT is the most competitive MBA entrance exam of India taken by around 2 lakh candidates every year. IIMs conduct CAT on a rotational basis every year for admission to 20 IIMs and over 100 B-schools across India. Around 4,000 seats are offered through the 20 IIMs for PG management programmes. Prof. Sumanta Basu of IIM Calcutta will be the CAT convener for this year. Candidates must have a Bachelor's degree of minimum 4 years to appear for CAT 2018.
Latest: CAT Registration 2018 extended till September 26.
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What's New in CAT 2018
7 new exam cities have been added to the list of CAT 2018 exam cities. The exam will be conducted in 147 cities this year (2 new states added - Mizoram and Nagaland).
The application fee of CAT has also been increased to Rs. 1900 for General/ NC-OBC candidates and Rs. 950 for SC, ST & PWD candidates. Earlier the CAT registration fee was Rs. 1800 and Rs. 900 respectively.
- Addition in Modes of Payment- The new CAT 2018 payment partners are BillDesk, PayU and Paytm.
- From this year onwards, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, will also accept the CAT score for admission to its MBA programme offered by the School of Management and Entrepreneurship.
Overview of CAT 2018
Name of test
Common Admission Test (CAT)
Purpose of test
Qualifying test for admission to post-graduate management programs
Once in a year
Score or Grade Validity
Annual Number of Test Takers
1,99,632 in 2017
Pattern of Test
MCQs and Non-MCQs
Number of Questions
+3 for every correct answer
-1 for each wrong answer in MCQs
No negative marking for Non-MCQs or TITA
Questions from VARC, QA and DI & LR
Mode of Conduct
CAT 2018 Convener
Prof. Sumanta Basu
Reservation of seats in IIMs and B-schools
As per the Government of India regulations
CAT 2018 Official Website
CAT 2018 Helpdesk contact details
Email: [email protected]
CAT centre office contact details
Email: [email protected]
Score or Grade Used by
IIMs and various B-schools in India
IIM Calcutta has released the important dates of CAT 2018. Take a look at the important dates in the below table-
CAT 2018 Important Dates
CAT 2018 Notification Released
July 29, 2018
August 8, 2018 (started)
Last date to apply
September 26, 2018 (till 5 PM)
Re-upload of blur/improper photograph in CAT Application form
September 27 (10 AM) to September 30 (5 PM)
Admit Card Release
October 24, 2018
CAT 2018 Tutorial/Mock Test
October 17, 2018
CAT 2018 Exam
November 25, 2018 (Sunday)
Releasing of Answer Key
Second week of December 2018
Announcement of CAT 2018 Result
Second week of January 2019
The online application form of CAT 2018 was released on August 8 and can be filled before September 26, 2018. CAT 2018 registration process is completely online and the process can be done at the official website. Visit the official website and click on the Registration tab. After filling up the registration form with basic details such as name, email address and mobile number, they would receive the CAT 2018 credentials- User ID and password through email and SMS respectively. Candidates must keep their digital photograph and signature ready for uploading along with the application form. The last date to fill CAT application form is September 19, 2018.
Watch video on How to fill CAT 2018 Application Form
How to fill CAT Application Form 2018
In order to fill up the application form, applicants have to login through their user ID and password and fill up the application form by entering the correct information. The application form of CAT 2018 is divided into following categories or sections:
Selecting IIMs to apply for
Selecting Test Centres and Interview Cities
After filling up information on each page, candidates have to click on Save & Next tab. Applicants have to upload their photograph and signature in the given dimension. The last step is to pay the application fee through Credit/Debit Card or Net Banking.
CAT 2018 Application Fee
Credit/Debit Card or Net Banking,BillDesk, PayU and Paytm
CAT Application Trends
No. of Registration
No. of Test Takers
CAT Application Form Status
After submitting CAT 2018 online Application Form, a pop-up message will appear on the screen with information related to the success status of the application. An SMS on the registered mobile number and an email to the registered email ID will also be sent informing the same.
Once the application form is successfully submitted, the application status appears as “Successfully Submitted.” In case there has been an error it will appear as “Application Rejected.”
CAT 2018 Application Form Correction
IIM Calcutta has announced that registered candidates who had uploaded improper or blur photographs can upload their new photograph between September 27, 2018 (10 AM) to September 30, 2018 (5 PM).
During the form-filling process, it might occur that candidates enter incorrect details due to lack of information or some other reason. After the submission of the CAT online application form 2018, the authorities may allow also a limited window to correct the application form. Candidates will be allowed to make corrections only in certain fields like percentage of marks, work experience and programmes selected. Information like personal details, academic details, exam city preference etc. cannot be edited. The correction window might be open in the fourth week of September 2018 by IIM Calcutta.
As per the eligibility criteria of CAT 2018, candidates should fulfil the following parameters:
Candidates should have a Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline from a recognised University or Institute
General and OBC-NC category candidates should obtain at least 50 per cent marks in aggregate or equivalent CGPA. For reserved category candidates, the minimum percentage to secure is 45
The duration of the graduation programme should be minimum 3 years
Final year graduation students are also eligible to apply for CAT 2018 provided they complete their programme within the stipulated schedule
Age Limit - There is no age limit for applying or appearing in CAT 2018 exam
The examination of CAT is one of the toughest entrance tests to crack. So “How should one go about preparing for the exam?” is the most fundamental question CAT aspirants have. What you need is a lot of hard work accompanied by smart planning. In order to ensure a higher rate of success in the test, Careers360 brings you some tips and tricks for CAT 2018 preparation:
Candidates must carefully go through the syllabus of the respective CAT paper they are appearing in.
Prepare a day-to-day timetable for yourself.
Have specific dedicated study hours.
Practise Previous Years Question Papers and Sample Papers
The practice of sample papers/model papers helps to know your strengths and weakness. After knowing the weak areas, you can plan how to work and improve in those areas.
Take more and more Mock Tests which will give you the real taste and feel of the actual exam.
Refer to the important CAT Books that cover the entire syllabus.
Apart from every strategy and planning, the most important aspect of CAT 2018 preparation includes taking good care of your health.
Watch video on How to Prepare for CAT 2018
According to the exam pattern of CAT 2018, it's a computer-based test of 3 hours duration carrying 100 objective type multiple choice and non-multiple choice type questions. The areas or sections from which the questions are asked include Quantitative Ability (QA), Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR).
Watch Video on When and how to start CAT 2018 preparation
The table below brings the CAT 2018 exam pattern or structure of the exam-
CAT 2018 Exam Pattern
No. of MCQs
No. of Non-MCQs
Questions from each section
Time allotted to each section (minutes)
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR)
Quantitative Ability (QA)
Marking Scheme – Each question carries 3 marks. For each wrong answer, there is negative marking of one mark. There is no negative marking scheme for non-MCQs or TITA (Type In The Answer) questions.
There is no specific syllabus for CAT 2018. The experts have laid out the CAT syllabus 2018 based on the previous years’ exam analysis and the topics covered. While there might be a few topics which will be added to the syllabus and some topics might get omitted, the overall syllabus is likely to remain the same.
CAT 2018 Syllabus
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR)
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)
Quantitative Ability (QA)
Aspirants can download the CAT Sample Papers from the Careers360 Sample Paper Store for free. By solving the sample papers, test takers will be able to test their preparation status, as well as be familiar with the test-taking process.
To Download CAT 2018 Sample Paper – Click here
IIMs will release the CAT mock test 2018 on October 17, to help the candidates to understand the exam pattern/structure. The mock test will enable the test takers to practice and get familiar with the online test format and navigation process of the test.
Candidates can also check the usage of the online calculator and timer. However, aspirants must note that the mock test of CAT 2018 is meant for practice purpose only and the questions should not be treated as sample questions as there is hardly and qualitative similarity in the questions.
The admit card of CAT 2018 will be released on October 24. The procedure to download the CAT 2018 admit card is completely online. IIMs would not send the admit card by post, hence candidates must ensure that they download the admit card before the exam date, by logging in with their credentials.
CAT admit card 2018 is one of the most important documents which must be carried on the exam date and preserved till the admission process is over.
How to Download CAT 2018 Admit Card?
Visit the CAT 2018 official website
Logging in through your CAT login ID and Password
- Click on the tab ‘Admit Card’
The admit card of CAT 2018 will appear on the screen
Download the admit card and keep a soft copy for future use
How to correct errors in CAT Admit Card 2018?
In case any discrepancy is found in the CAT 2018 Admit Card, candidates must contact the exam authority immediately to get it corrected. Contact the CAT Helpdesk at the following details for any corrections that must be made in the hall ticket:
CAT Toll-Free Number: 1800-266-3549; Call on the Toll-free number, Monday to Saturday 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM (excluding National holidays).
CAT Helpdesk email address: [email protected]
The exam centres of CAT 2018 will be located in around 147 cities and 28 states across India. Two new exam states have been added to the list this year - Mizoram and Nagaland.
While filling the CAT 2018 registration form, candidates have to select four exam centres city in the order of preference. The exam centre will be allotted by IIMs and the final centre can be seen on the CAT admit card.
CAT 2018 exam centres
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Tirupati, Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam, Chittoor, Kurnool, Nellore, Kakinada, Guntur, Chirala, Rajahmundry, Vizianagaram
Guwahati, Dibrugarh, Jorhat, Silchar, Tezpur
Muzaffarpur, Patna, Purnea, Aurangabad, Gaya, Darbhanga
Bhillai, Raipur, Bilaspur
Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara, Ahmedabad, Anand, Gandhinagar, Mehsana
Panipath, Rohtak, Hisar, Ambala, Kurukshetra, Karnal
Jammu and Kashmir
Bokaro, Ranchi, Jamshedpur, Dhanbad, Hazaribagh
Belagavi(Belgaum), Bengaluru, Dharwad, Hubballi(Hubli), Kalaburagi(Gulbarga),Mangaluru(Mangalore), Mysuru(Mysore), Shivamogga(Shimoga), Udupi
Kannur, Ernakulam, Kollam, Kottayam, Kozhikode, Thrissur, Trivandrum
Bhopal, Gwalior, Indore, Jabalpur, Sagar, Satna, Ujjain
Amravati, Ahmednagar, Aurangabad-Maharashtra, Jalgaon, Kolhapur, Mumbai, Nagpur, Nanded, Nashik, Pune, Raigad, Satara, Solapur, Ulhasnagar
Balasore, Berhampur, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Dhenkanal, Rourkela, Sambalpur
Amritsar, Bhatinda, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Mohali, Pathankot, Patiala, Sangrur
Ajmer, Alwar, Bikaner, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Kota, Sikar, Udaipur
Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, Salem, Tirunelveli, Trichy
Karim Nagar, Warangal, Hyderabad
Agra, Aligarh, Allahabad, Bareilly, Gorakhpur, Jhansi, Kanpur, Lucknow, Meerut, Moradabad, Muzaffarnagar, Varanasi
Roorkee, Dehradun, Haldwani
Asansol, Bankura, Burdwan, Durgapur, Hooghly, Kalyani, Kolkata, Siliguri
In a first, IIMs had released the official CAT question paper for 2017. It is expected that the question paper for 2018 will also be declared by IIMs in the first week of December. Candidates aspiring to appear for CAT 2018 must download the question paper in order to know the types of questions and topics to expect. To Download CAT 2017 question paper - Click here
Along with the question paper, IIMs also released CAT answer key last year. Hence, following the last year’s trend, it is expected that the CAT 2018 answer key will also be released by the conducting IIM. With the help of the answer key, candidates can check the correct answer and calculate their estimated scores.
Moreover, IIMs also provided the option to challenge answer keys or questions by paying Rs. 1000 per challenge within the stipulated deadline. Based on the validity of the challenge, IIMs would take appropriate action and refund the challenge application fee.
The result of CAT 2018 is expected to be declared in the second week of January 2019. The CAT 2018 result will be declared in the form of scorecard. To download the result, candidates will have to enter with their user ID and password. The result or scorecard of CAT 2018 will carry information like sectional and overall scaled scores and percentiles.
The result will be available only in online mode and IIMs won’t send it to the test takers by post. Candidates must take print out of the CAT 2018 scorecard and preserve it till the admission process is over.
How to Download CAT 2018 Result
Visit the CAT 2018 official website
Login through your CAT user id and password
Click on the ‘Score Card’ tab
Check and download your result of CAT 2018
CAT 2018 is conducted in multiple slots across single day window, it is necessary to normalize the scores of test takers from both slots. IIMs normalize the CAT 2018 scores using a formula similar to that of GATE. At the time of CAT 2018 result, scaled scores for each section along with percentiles will be announced. The practice is followed in order to equate the scores and to ensure that none of the candidates from either slot be in an advantaged or disadvantaged position.
The cutoff of CAT 2018 refers to the minimum percentile to secure in order to get shortlisted by the participating institutes. The CAT 2018 cutoff varies from institute to institute. While the top running B-schools have the higher range of cutoff and vice versa. The cutoff of CAT 2018 generally depends on the factors like difficulty level of the exam, number of test takers, number of seats among others.
IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Lucknow and IIM Calcutta have released the CAT cutoff 2018 for different categories. Other IIMs and top B-schools are expected to release the same very soon.
CAT 2018 cutoff for IIM Ahmedabad
NC-OBC cum Transgender
PWD (General, NC-OBC-cum-transgender, SC)
CAT 2018 cutoff for IIM Lucknow
CAT 2018 cutoff for IIM Calcutta
CAT 2018 cutoff for IIM Indore
CAT 2018 Cutoff for IIM Udaipur
DI & LR
The CAT cutoff for different IIMs will be updated here as soon as released by them.
CAT 2018 Cutoffs for Non-IIMs
The cutoff of CAT 2018 for non-IIMs is expected to be similar to that of last year. Check the expected cutoff figures below:
Expected Cutoff of CAT 2018
According to the selection procedure of CAT 2018, each participating institute conducts its admission process separately. They shortlist candidates based on CAT 2018 cutoff. The shortlisted candidates have to then appear for the selection rounds including Group Discussion (GD) or Writing Ability Test (WAT) or both and Personal Interview (PI) rounds. The new IIMs conduct Common Admission Process (CAP) where the shortlisted candidates from all participating IIMs have to appear for WAT and PI rounds. Followed by the CAT 2018 selection procedure, each IIM release their separate merit list.
The final selection process of B-schools or the CAT selection procedure of participating B-schools is based on multiple criteria such as performance in CAT 2018, GD/WAT & PI rounds and past academic records and/or work experience. The criteria or parameters vary from institute to institute. IIMs release their detailed admission criteria after the CAT notification every year.
CAT 2018 Reservation Criteria
IIMs and other Government institutes follow the reservation criteria of candidates. The following table brings to you the category wise seat reservation percentage.
Category wise seat reservation
PWD (Person with Disability)
ST (Scheduled Tribe)
SC (Scheduled Caste)
OBC-NC (Other Backward Class – Non-Creamy Layer)
CAT 2018 Counselling
CAT authorities do not conduct a common counselling process for the final admission. The participating institutes conduct their selection procedure separately. However, the new IIMs conduct a Common Admission Process (CAP) or a common counselling process for the candidates who have been shortlisted by all the new IIMs.
Candidates shortlisted for the CAT 2018 counselling rounds of new IIMs will have to appear for essay writing (WAT) and Personal Interview (PI) rounds. Apart from the new IIMs, other B-schools do not conduct CAT counselling process.
A total of 115 B-schools accepted CAT scores last year out of which 114 are in India and one is in Singapore. In a first, there is an international CAT participating institute. Singapore Management University, joined the list of CAT participating institute last year to become the first ever international B-school to accept the CAT score. It is expected that more than 100 B-schools in India and abroad will register for being the CAT 2018 participating institutes. Out of the total number of participating institutes, 20 are IIMs.
Apart from that, CAT 2018 participating institutes include public and private institutes. Among the former, noted ones are IITs, NITs, FMS Delhi, MANAGE Hyderabad, IISc Bangalore to name a few. The top private participating institutes include MDI Gurgaon, SPJIMR Mumbai, IMT Ghaziabad to name a few. Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has also joined the list of CAT participating institute from this year for admission to its MBA programme.
Check the fee, number of seats and programmes offered by IIMs in the table given below:
IIMs Seats and Fee
Fee INR (Lakh)
Number of Seats
PGP, PGP-FABM, ePGP
PGP, PGPEM, PGPPM
PGP (Indore, Mumbai), EPGP, PGP-HRM
PGP, PGP-ABM, PGP-SM
PGP, EPGP, EPGPX
CAT 2018 FAQs
Q. I have completed my Bachelor’s Degree. Do I need to submit the overall percentage of marks or as per my University standards?
A. As per CAT 2018 eligibility criteria, you must submit the percentage according to your university norms.
Q. I have not completed my Bachelor’s Degree/I am in final year of Bachelor’s degree. What marks do I need to enter in the Application form?
A. You have to provide the Aggregate Percentage up to the last marks statement received from the University.
Q. Is there any age restriction for taking the CAT 2018 exam?
A. No, there is no age restriction for taking the CAT 2018 exam.
Q. Can I use my coaching institute’s or a friend’s email address when registering for CAT 2018?
A. No. You must provide a valid and unique email address. All correspondence pertaining to CAT 2018 and subsequent information during the selection stages of the respective IIMs will be communicated to the registered email address.
Q. I have done 5 years integrated course of B.Tech and MBA. As per my university norms first 3.5 years is considered to be B.Tech and remaining 1.5 years is considered to be MBA. How do I enter my marks?
A. As per your University norms, you will enter the aggregate percentage of first 3.5 years under Bachelor’s Degree and the remaining 1.5 years under Master’s degree.
Q. I have completed 5-year dual degree course (BTech+MTech, BS+MS, BTech+MSc etc.)? How do I enter my marks for the bachelor degree?
A. As per your university norms, you must enter the aggregate of marks that are equivalent to Bachelors’ Degree under the Bachelor’s Degree section and the equivalent Marks for the Masters’ degree under the Master Degree section.
Q. Can I appear for more than one slot for CAT 2018?
A. You cannot appear for more than one slot. It will be deemed as a fraudulent activity if you attempt to appear more than once for CAT 2018. To ensure that candidates have only one attempt, Admit Cards, photo IDs, candidate pictures, and biometric information will be verified. Candidates who attempt to take the test more than once will be eliminated anytime during the selection process.
Q. In case the website does not work and I am unable to complete my application, what should I do?
A. If the registration website is not accessible for any reason, please close the Internet browser (delete browsing history, cache & cookies of the web browser) and try again.
Q. If I do not get my Admit Card, whom should I contact?
A. The Admit Card needs to be directly printed from the CAT 2018 website using your User ID and Password. It will be available for printout from the third week of October. The admit card will not be mailed to your postal address.
If you are unable to view your Admit Card after logging in, contact the CAT 2018 Helpdesk:
Email: [email protected]
Q. I have completed my Bachelor’s degree in May-June 2018 but have backlogs, am I eligible to apply for CAT 2018?
A. Yes, as per the CAT 2018 eligibility norms, candidates who are completing their degree by May 2019 are eligible to appear for CAT. However, the candidate should select Yes to the question “Are you in the final year of Bachelor Degree”.
Q. Can I take the exam from any computer?
A. A candidate must take the exam on a workstation assigned at the exam venue based on the city selected while registering for CAT. The venue details are printed on the Admit Card.
CAT 2018 Information Bulletin
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