CAT 2014 – Know the changes to adapt in next 3 months
Sreetama Datta, 16 Nov 2014, #CAT
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So the CAT is out of the bag and it has brought along many changes which you have to get used to before going for the test, or even before you fill up the CAT 2014 application form. Just when you think that you have figured out everything about CAT and there can be no more change, IIMs throw snowball of surprises at you. As we were saying, the CAT 2014 notification on Sunday, July 27, 2014 has brought with it several changes in order to make the test more aspirant friendly. With Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) roping in as the new online testing partner, changes were not entirely unexpected too. This article of Careers360 gives you the list of changes which you must keep in mind if you have decided to take CAT 2014.


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The following table will give you the changes in nutshell.


CAT 2014 Vs CAT 2013:


CAT 2014

CAT 2013

Number of Questions Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation



Number of Questions Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning



Test Duration

170 minutes

140 minutes

Number of Test cities



Registration Mode


Online & Offline


Admit Card

Downloadable from website from October 16

Emailed to candidates after completion of registration

Result date

Third week of December 2014

Second week of January 2014

For complete preparation guidance in CAT 2014, click here.


For any doubt and queries on CAT 2014, call the CAT Helpline Number 011-40-360-360.


More questions to answer but no more sectional boundaries


In 2011 when the CAT exam pattern was last changed, it was announced that there would be 2 sections instead of 4 and they would be time bound so that the test takers can devote the entire duration in solving a particular section. Most of the candidates did not like it as they wanted freedom to choose which section to start with and to move between sections. Well, good news is that the sections are no more time bound. Candidates can start with either of the section and move to and fro within them. The bad news is, if you have started preparing accordingly, your strategy needs to change now. CAT 2014 would more be an exam to test your focus and concentration than your Quant and Verbal skills.


Moreover, the number of questions has been increased from 60 to 100. Each section will carry 50 questions. The duration of the test has also increased by half an hour. Instead of 140 minutes, you now have 170 minutes to attempt the paper. So approximately you get 1.5 minutes to solve a question. Time would be a constraint here. Though you would not be attempting all the questions anyway, you must pay heed in choosing the right questions in order to not waste time over wrongly chosen questions. Also, since there would be no sectional time limit, the threat of skewed performance also comes into question.


The following table will help you understand better.


In the next few months, prepare a fool proof strategy and adapt yourself to cope with these challenges.


Common Admission Test? Just a matter of 2 days!


Since 2009, when CAT became computer based from the traditional paper pencil format, the test was conducted over a window of 20 days starting in October and ending in November. According to the CAT 2014 notification, the exam is scheduled for 2 days within a week, which are Sunday, November 16, 2014 and Saturday, November 22, 2014. However, the number of slots has increased from 2 to 4 in a day. Instead of day wise reports of CAT 2014, you would probably look for slot by slot report. Though you won’t be able to choose your own exam date, you are definitely rescued for the anxiety you would have face after each CAT exam day for an entire month! Hopefully a shorter test duration would reduce the chances of glitches and discrepancies as well.


Confused about choosing the date? Leave it on the exam authorities


If you have taken CAT earlier, you must have faced the dilemma about which date to choose for taking CAT. Whether to choose an early date and get over with it or choose the later date and get more time to prepare were the main questions every CAT applicant had in mind in the ‘Schedule your test’ option. From now on, you just have to choose 3 preferred test locations and the date and slot will be assigned to you by the exam authorities. While you are saved from the dilemma, your liberty to choose the test venue, date and slot as per your convenience is also marred now.


CAT 2014 Application – No more waiting in queue


Though the online sale of CAT Voucher was introduced last year only, the option to buy it from the select Axis Bank branches existed too. This year onwards, the application process for CAT 2014 is completely online. The CAT voucher has to be bought from the official website of CAT 2014 through Credit Card, Debit Card or Net Banking. The application fee is same as last year, Rs. 1600 for General and NC-OBC category candidates and Rs. 800 for SC, ST and PWD (DA) candidates. The application process will be conducted for 56 days, From Wednesday, August 6, 2014 to Tuesday, September 30, 2014.


Download the CAT 2014 Admit Card, don’t expect it in your mailbox


After the completion of the application process, there would be no notification as ‘You’ve Got Mail’ with your CAT Admit Card. You will have to wait till Thursday, October 16, 2014 to download your Admit Card from the exam website and know your test center, date and slot. The CAT 2014 Admit Card will not be sent to you in either hard or soft copy. You would have to download it before your test date.


More test centers to accommodate the exam over 2 days


While last year the CAT 2013 was conducted in 40 cities across India in 75 test centers, CAT 2014 test centers would be more than double. According to IIM Indore, the test will be held across 99 cities in India consisting of 354 test centers. Candidates are likely to get a convenient test location so that they get more time to focus on the test than plan the travel arrangement for reaching the test venue.


CAT 2014 result – Earlier than you had expected


As per the past years’ trend, the CAT result is declared in next year January. The notification has specified that CAT 2014 result for this year’s CAT would be declared by the third week of December 2014. Hence, it is expected that the admission process at IIMs and other top B-schools would be earlier than the usual schedule.


The official CAT 2014 website will be functional from Friday, August 1, 2014.


Also Read:


CAT 2014 may follow 2013 timeline; IIM Indore to notify exam ‘soon’

100 Days to CAT 2014 - Preparation tips and strategy


Stay tuned to for more news and updates on CAT 2014.

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Questions related to CAT

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can someone apply for NIFT without appearing CAT and GAT?

Sonali Sahu Student Expert 13th Oct, 2019


NIFT has nothing to do with CAT or GAT. Those are the exams for MBA. NIFT is for admission in fashion courses.

The eligibilitiy is just marks of your 10th and intermediate. The main point is the candidate must have qualified both from a recognised board and must be having PCM as the compulsory subject.

The exam has an age limit to be 23 and there is 5 years relaxation for category reserved candidates.

For more information please check the article:-

Hope it helps!


Where i get CAT study material?

Priyaanka Sarkar Student Expert 13th Oct, 2019
CAT Books For Quantitative Ability:
1.NCERT mathematics books (from 6th to 10th class) ::
These books are a good way to start if one needs to clear their basics and concepts. NCERT books are best to start your CAT Preparation with only if you have a lot of time before your exam date and need to brush up on concepts before solving advanced problems.

2.How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT (by Arun Sharma)
(publisher: Tata McGraw Hill)
This is a very popular book among CAT aspirants and really easy and simple to understand. This book also focuses on the basics first and has different levels of difficulties step by step.

3.Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examinations (by Abhijit Guha)
This book is quite comprehensive for various competitive exams, for both MBA aspirants and for those seeking jobs who need to prepare for the aptitude tests.
4.Quantitative Aptitude Quantum CAT by Sarvesh Verma
It is an extensive book for students aspiring to go to IIMs. It has a very simple, lucid and tailor made content revolving around CAT.

5.Quantitative Aptitude for CAT (by Nishit Sinha)
This book by Pearson focuses on in depth understanding of core topics for basic and advanced applications.

Verbal Ability Books For CAT:

1.How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT( by Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay)
This book is good to brush up your verbal and reading comprehension skills. It covers three important topics: reading comprehension, verbal ability and verbal reasoning. It provides sufficient practice and mock papers for self-assessment.

2.Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension For The CAT( by Nishit Sinha)
This book by Pearson provides not only an exhaustive resource for verbal ability. It also includes numerous tests as well as integral problem solving techniques and approaches.

3.Word Power Made Easy (by Norman Lewis)
This is the go-to book to improve your vocabulary. It is not a book to be read but a book to work with daily to enrich your vocabulary.

4.High School Grammar and Composition( by Wren and Martin)
It is a very good book for people who want to improve their grammar skills. It helps to understand and conceptualise different aspects of grammar and it is a must have book for anyone with poor grasp on verbal ability or who wants to make up with the basics of english.

Read books from different genres
The ultimate key to improve your verbal ability is to read extensively and to read books from different genres. This ensures that when the time for reading comprehension comes you are well acquainted with different writing styles and topics. Reading extensively also improves your reading speeding over a period of time. There are no shortcuts here.

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning Books For CAT:

1.A Modern Approach to Logical Reasoning( by R.S. Agarwal)
This CAT book by R.S. Agarwal is to start with the most basic reasoning problem as it is quite simple to understand. It is segregated into different sections such as logic, statements, inferences and arguments, assumptions, conclusions, course of actions, logical puzzles, etc.

2.How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for CAT book (by Arun Sharma)
This book by Tata McGraw Hill contains all topics to be considered under Logical Reasoning for CAT as well as other entrance exams. Each topic is explained with solved examples followed by a series of problems with varied difficulty levels to solve which gives an individual enough practice for this section.

3.How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT book (by Arun Sharma)
This book focuses on all areas of Data Interpretation and Data Sufficiency. It provides and emphasizes on developing our calculations to get an edge with DI. This book also provides you with previous years questions, Model and Sample test papers.

4.Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT (by Nishit Sinha)
This book covers fundamental and advanced topics under the aforementioned section which are explained with the help of solved examples, case lets and exercises to do. It is useful for various other exams as well.

5.Data Interpretation (by Nishit Sinha)
Practice Book for CAT and Other MBA Entrance Examinations( by Nishit Sinha):
This book provides adequate practice and to sharpen the skills for Data Interpretation. It is also quite useful for other competitive exams like NMAT, GMAT, SNAP, XAT, CMAT, etc.

Another CAT Preparation material or book to be considered is Previous Years Solved CAT Paper:
This ensures that you are familiar with the kind of questions that are asked in CAT providing you an edge. They can be taken as mocks and the analysis of the same can provide you with great insights for your preparation.

It is always better to read newspaper for CURRENT G.K. than trying to grasp all info at once. Some of the newspaper sources which you can use to prepare this section are The Hindu, Financial Express, and The Economist.

In case, you dont like reading newspaper daily, you can go with Manorama Yearbook or Current Affairs Yearly by Arihant for General Knowledge which is published every year.

In order to prepare for STATIC G.K. section, you need to broaden your overall scope in following sections: Sports, Politics, Entertainment, Biographies, etc. So, for this, you can use Static General Knowledge by A.P. Bhardwaj and S. Chands Advanced Objective General Knowledge. These books are okay to start with if you are not someone with a newspaper reading habit from the past.

There are plenty of other books for these topics in the market, but these are by far the most popular as well as helpful books for anyone preparing for entrance exams.

difference between nmat exam and cat exam

Manidipa Kundu Student Expert 12th Oct, 2019

hello aspirant,

NMAT exam organized by GMAC is a National level MBA entrance exam conducts  by Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). NMAT by GMAC exam is the mandatory entrance test for MBA admission to NMIMS Mumbai and its other campuses along with 20 other MBA colleges across India.

CAT stands for common aptitude test is the gate way exam for all reputed IIM's and for almost all colleges in india offers mba admission through cat.

you may apply for both if you want to join mba.


after clearing cat mat ojee .. is the donation fees remaining same or not...???

Manidipa Kundu Student Expert 12th Oct, 2019

hello aspirant,

you need to give donation fees if you get admission through management quota.

unless if you get the college through counselling and interview process there is no fees for donation. hope you may understand.


I have 69 % in 10th, 52 %in 12th and now I am in final yr of BSc. Should I applicable for cat??because After graduation I want to study MBA in finance and I am preparing for cat please say how can I prepare for cat? Which book is best for cat exam?

Manidipa Kundu Student Expert 12th Oct, 2019

hello aspirant,

cat is a all india level exam and most popular exam for mba admission. see as for your marks in 10+2 and 10th you have very less chances to get short listed for iims. however there are many more institute which offers great plavement in mba. you may follow r.s agarwal, arun sharma which are best for cat preparation. also there is some coaching institute who provides distance learning mba preparation course materials. you may purchase this also. some top institution are, IMS learning, T.I.M.E institution delhi, etc.

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