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Updated on
April 16, 2024

CAT Syllabus 2024: Check Overall & Section Wise Syllabus; Download Free PDF of CAT Exam Syllabus  

 

Common Admission Test (CAT) is the largest MBA entrance exam for admission in 21 IIMs and majority of other top B-schools. CAT is a computer based test of two hours duration and is divided into three sections: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension; Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning; Quantitative Ability. CAT 2024 Exam date is November 24, 2024 and this year IIM Calcutta is conducting CAT exam in 3 slots of 2 hours duration each like last year. Although no major change is announced in the syllabus for CAT 2024, it is expected that some new types of questions may also be introduced in CAT exam 2024.

 

Read below all about the CAT syllabus 2024 – its overall and sectional composition, syllabus topics, total questions, weightage

CAT Syllabus 2024: Table of Contents

1. Overview of CAT Syllabus 2024

2. CAT Syllabus for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)

3. Type of Questions in CAT VARC Syllabus

4. CAT Exam Syllabus for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)

5. Type of Questions in CAT DILR Syllabus

6. CAT Exam Syllabus for Quantitative Ability (QA)

7. Type of Questions in CAT QA Syllabus

8. How to Download CAT Syllabus Pdf?

9. Best Books to Prepare for CAT Syllabus 

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So, Let’s start with a broad understanding of the CAT Exam Pattern before going deep into CAT 2024 syllabus

 cat syllabus

1. Overview of CAT Pattern 2024 

There are total three sections in the CAT Exam which carry different weight in the CAT question paper. Although the CAT syllabus is divided in 3 sections, the effective number of sections are five as VARC and DILR sections are further sub-divided into 2 sub sections. Read details below.  

CAT Exam Components
No of Questions
(Divided in MCQs & Non MCQs)
Sectional Time Limit
(In Minutes)
Scoring Pattern (Negative Marking is only for MCQs)
Section-1: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)
 
24
40
+3 for Correct;
-1 for Incorrect;
0 for Not Attempted
Section-2: Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)
20
40
+3 for Correct;
-1 for Incorrect;
0 for Not Attempted
Section-3: Quantitative Ability (QA)
22
40
+3 for Correct;
-1 for Incorrect;
0 for Not Attempted
Total
66
120
198
CAT Exam Pattern FAQs
 
Q. In how many days CAT exam 2024 will be conducted?
A. CAT 2024 will be conducted in a single day
 
Q. In how many sessions will CAT 2024 exam be conducted?
A. Like previous years, CAT 2024 will be conducted in three slots of 2 hours duration for each slot
 
Q. What is the Mode of CAT 2024 exam?
A. CAT is a computer based test and is conducted at test centres. Last year CAT 2023 was conducted in more than 160 test cities. 
 
Q. Is CAT a difficult exam?
A. Yes, to some extent CAT is a difficult exam. Last year, CAT 2023 was considered most difficult during previous 5-6 years with Quant & DILR very difficult.
 
Q. Can I attempt any section in CAT within over all time limit?
A. No, while the overall time limit to attempt CAT exam is 2 hours, its each section has individual time limit of 40 minutes.
CAT Exam Pattern: Toppers Tips
 
“Attempt 80% Questions with 80% accuracy. It is much better than 100% attempt with 50% accuracy. Learn and use better methods to solve any particular LRDI Set instead of focusing on all” - Shubham Bajaj; CAT Topper 99.98%, IIM Calcutta MBA 2021-23
 
“VARC is one section which requires existing acumen and little of current preparation. I made a point of attempting every question in this section, unless I can’t understand the meaning of a problem” Nandan Goel, CAT Topper 99.95%, IIM Calcutta MBA 2021-23
 
Sectionwise Downloads

2. CAT Syllabus for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

CAT Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension Syllabus in CAT 2024 carries overall 36% Weightage in CAT exam. Out of total 66 questions in CAT, 24 questions are based on VARC section

cat varc

The syllabus for VARC Section in Common Admission Test (CAT) is divided into 2 parts. The 1st part of syllabus covers topics on Verbal Ability and the 2nd Part of syllabus covers Reading Comprehension passages. There are 8 VA questions and 16 RC based questions. Below is shared the topic wise VARC syllabus with number of questions in the exam and actual CAT questions that appeared recently in the exam to help you familiarise with the type of questions in CAT 

CAT Syllabus for VARC Topics
Syllabus
No of Questions Appeared in CAT 2023   
Verbal Ability
Para Summary; Jumbled paragraphs; Out of Context Sentence; Error Correction in Sentences; Sequence of sentences; Fill in the blanks; Completion of Last Sentence of Paragraph; Analogies; Critical Reasoning; Sentence Completion
8
Reading Comprehension
RC Passages on Literature, Current Affairs, Social, Economic, Business issues followed by questions based on
Inferences, Statements, Arguments, Main idea in the RC Passage;  Author’s assumption; Synonyms-antonyms; Meaning of the phrase; Vocabulary usage
16

Key areas in RC Syllabus

The English Reading comprehension passages in CAT entrance exam syllabus are taken from a wide area which includes, current affairs, Literature, Business Economy among others as detailed under. Diverse reading of topics in following areas will help you cover the exam syllabus in VARC

 

Current Affairs: Making impact on Social Life, International Affairs, Govt policies and Schemes for example New Education Policy, Triple Talaq, CAA, Covid 19 Pandemic, Clean India Mission, Migration of people from one country to other, Growing intolerance across the Globe,

 

Business & Economics: RC Passages for example Global economic changes, economic development at the cost of environment, Impact of Demonetization in India, Wasteful expenditure by Governments frequently appear in CAT exam

 

English Literature: RC passages from books, articles authored by great philosophers, thinkers, from various speeches of great personalities like passages from Charles Dickens, Aristotle, Martin Luther King, Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi, Churchill among others appear in CAT

 

Passages on Science & Culture: You will find RC passages including the journey to Modern world; Fading culture with the advancement of technology  

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RC Passages on Abstract Topics and Fiction: These are also included in the Reading Comprehension Syllabus. These Passages make the candidates think well before leading to put themselves in the author’s shoes before answering the questions following these passages since they are opinion based.

 

RC Passages on Historical Events: Events leading to social changes for example French Revolution, War of Roses, Social changes in Indian History and thoughts shared by various activists which are very much relevant even today are also the source of RC Passages 

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Mythology: RC Passages from Mythology in CAT try to correlate the Mythological events with the current social structure and answers to the questions on them have to be inferred 

3. Type of Questions in CAT VARC Syllabus

CAT VARC Topic
Type of Questions Appeared in CAT 2023   
Verbal Ability
  • Para Jumbles (2 Qs);
  • Para Summary (2 Qs);
  • Out of Context Sentence from jumbled Paragraph (2 Qs);
  • Completion of Last Sentence of Paragraph (2 Qs)
Reading Comprehension
4 RC Passages followed by 4 Questions on True False Statement, Argument, Inference, Main Idea, Interpretation of Phrase as used in RC; Author’s Thought Process; Passage Title.

Passages were based on Second-hand Shopping and Fast Fashion; Translated Streaming on Netflix in Europe; Why Liberalism Failed (Book Review); What is Historical Fact.

FAQs
 
Q: How many Grammar based questions are there in CAT Verbal Ability syllabus?
A: IIMs have discontinued grammar based questions in CAT syllabus and there are no questions based on error correction, fill in the blanks etc in Verbal Ability
 
Q. How many questions are based on Reading Comprehension in CAT exam?
A. RC based questions in CAT exam are 16-19 out of total 24 questions in VARC section
 
Q. What is the type of RC questions in the CAT exam?
A. Questions based on Reading Comprehension are of MCQ type
 
Q. Are there any non-MCQ or no penalty questions based on RC passages?
A. Usually No! Although there may not be any non-MCQ following the RC passage, there may be one or two MCQ without negative marking. In such case, Verbal part may consist of questions with negative marking 
Topper Tips
 
“My Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) Sectional strategy was mainly focused on reading from diverse sources on a variety of subjects, apart from that I also focused giving sectionals and mocks every day during the last 4 months of my preparation”
  • Kirti Goyal, CAT Topper 99.1%; IIM Kozhikode PGP 2023-25
“I started reading The Economist and New Yorker every day since their English isn't the easiest to understand. I also practiced a lot of philosophy-based RCs because those are the most difficult. I started reading The Mint and The Hindu which not only helped me with my VARC but also kept me updated with current affairs”
  • Shreyasee Sarkar, CAT Topper 99.68%; IIM Calcutta MBA 2023-25

Download

Read & Download the CAT Syllabus on Verbal Ability

Read & Download CAT Reading Comprehension Syllabus

4. CAT Exam Syllabus for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)

CAT Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation Syllabus carries 30% weight in CAT exam with 20 questions on DILR out of total 66 questions

 

dilr

The Syllabus for Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR) is divided in 2 parts –  Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning. While Data Interpretation (DI) part can have more number of questions, Logical Reasoning Syllabus has equal or fewer questions. Below is shared the topic wise CAT entrance exam syllabus on which problems are based in this section

Topic
Syllabus
No of Questions Appeared in CAT 2023
Data Interpretation (DI)
Bar charts - Simple, Stacked, Composite Bar charts;
Pie charts; Caselets; Data Analysis; Data comparison from Table; Graphs; Line Graphs; Data Sufficiency. Comparison of Data of various years, ages, classes, Groups; Decoding and finding out the data of missing period, taking clues, interpreting the missing links; Analysis of data and coming to conclusion, making future projections
15
Logical Reasoning (LR)
Direction sense, Team formation, Seating Arrangement, Blood Relation, Clocks, Calendars, Binary logic, Logical Sequence, Assumption, Premise, Conclusion, Linear and matrix arrangement, Input-Output, Series, Syllogism, Cubes, Rows, Set Theory, Venn Diagrams. Seating arrangement, Ranks, different type of team formation, puzzles on words, letters, statements, arguments
5

5. Type of Questions in CAT DILR Syllabus

Topic

Type of Questions Appeared in CAT 2023

Data Interpretation (DI)

3 DI Problem sets of 5 questions on each problem set. Questions in CAT 2023 were based on 5 firms raised funds in consecutive years; Drawing Competition; Nine Boxes puzzle of sudoku type; Two days average of Arrangement score; Company starting/closing years-Table on Missing Values; Grid Based problem set with 3x3 table (Mean, Mode, Median based questions)

Logical Reasoning (LR)

5 Questions on one problem set based on 3 friends visited a park, took many rides.

FAQs

 

Q: Are the DILR syllabus questions in CAT individual questions or set based questions?

A: CAT syllabus for DILR section has set based questions which are in sets of 3-4 questions

Q: What is the split of questions in DI and LR parts in the DILR section?

A: The Data Interpretation part has 10-12 questions and similar number of questions are placed in Logical Reasoning part in CAT syllabus

Topper Tips

“I solved more and more sets. I don’t think there is any other way to crack this other than practice. The more timed sets one does, the more kinds of questions are solved. This helps in making our brain work in that particular direction and also be in a habit of quick calculations”

  • Mehak Rathi, CAT Topper 98.08%; MDI Gurgaon PGDM 2023-25

“For DILR, first of all, it is important to realize that there is no fixed syllabus for this section. No matter how many questions you have seen, you will be definitely getting surprises in the CAT with a whole new problem. However, solving a lot of problems enhance your confidence and that helps you in solving the new problem which appears in the exam”

  • Prateek Kumar Rai, CAT Topper 99.80%; SPJIMR Mumbai PGDM 2023-25

Download

Read & Download CAT Logical Reasoning Syllabus

Read & Download CAT Data Interpretation Syllabus

6. CAT Exam Syllabus for Quantitative Ability (QA)

CAT Quantitative Ability Syllabus carries 33 percent weightage in CAT exam with highest weightage on Arithmetic. Out of 66 questions in CAT exam, 22 questions are based on Quantitative Ability

quant

Quantitative Ability (QA) is the Mathematics section in CAT exam. Although, the syllabus for Quant is very wide, the questions and topics in it are of class 10 & 12 standard. QA syllabus in CAT gives more emphasis on Arithmetic questions. While maximum 10-12 questions are from Arithmetic, the questions on other topics like Algebra, Geometry and others are in the range of 3-8. Below is shared the topic wise QA syllabus

Topic
Syllabus
No of Questions Appeared
Arithmetic
Averages; Ratio & Proportion; Speed, Time and Distance; Time and Work; LCM and HCF; Percentages, Profit and Loss; Interest (Simple and Compound); Number System;
10
Algebra
 
Linear & Quadratic Equations; Inequalities; Functions; Progressions; Algebraic Expressions to Polynomials; Complex numbers; Sequences and series; Permutations and combinations
8
Geometry/
Mensuration
Triangles, Lines and Angles (Supplementary, Complementary, Obtuse, Acute, and Right), Quadrilaterals, Circles; Theorems (Pythagoras, Midpoint, Apollonius, Basic Proportionality, Internal and External Angular Bisector), Co-ordinate Geometry, Quadrant System, Areas of Hexagonal Polygon, Triangle, and Rectangle. Square, Rhombus, Trapezoid, Volume, Total Surface Area, and Lateral Surface Area of Different Solids like Cubes, Cuboids, Cylinders, Pyramids, Cones, Spheres, Hemispheres, and Frustum
3
Trigonometry
Trigonometric ratios, identities, and heights and distances, Sine, Cosine
0
Modern Math
Sequence and Series, Binomial Theorem, Set Theory, Probability, Permutation & Combination
1

7. Type of Questions in CAT QA Syllabus

Topic
Type of Questions Appeared  in CAT 2023
Arithmetic
  • Time Speed Distance- (2 Qs),
  • Time & Work (1Q);
  • Ratio (1Q);
  • Simple Interest/ Compound Interest (3Qs);
  • Profit & Loss (1Q);
  • Mixture (1Q);
  • Clock (1Q)
Algebra
 
  • Log (1Q);
  • Equations (3 Qs);
  • Surds (1Q);
  • Sequence & Series (2Qs)
Geometry/Mensuration
  • Triangle (1 Q);
  • Quadrilateral (1Q);
  • Circle (1Q)
Modern Math
  • Permutation & Combination (1 Q)
FAQs
 
Q: What is the most important part in CAT Quantitative Ability Syllabus 2024?
A: Arithmetic is the most important part in CAT Quant Syllabus with around 40% questions based on topics like Percentage, Ratio, Interest, Time, Speed and Work and other topics
 
Q: What is the standard of questions in CAT Quant Syllabus?
A: The Quant syllabus in CAT has questions of class 10 and 12 standard for Arithmetic, Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry and other topics.

Topper Tips

“First of all, I brushed up all the topics in initial few months. Then appeared in mock tests. My strategy for this section was to keep myself cool and not to get influenced by the performance in other two sections, as this being the last section”

  • Soumik Banerjee, CAT Topper 99.95%; IIM Calcutta MBA 2023-25

“I spent a considerable amount of time on my QA preparation daily and learned various tips and tricks to solve problems faster. I even learned basic stuff like tables, squares up to 20, and cubes up to 15. These small things really helped me make a large difference in CAT and hence I was able to score 99.90 percentile in the QA section”

  • Prateek Kumar Rai, CAT Topper 99.80%; SPJIMR Mumbai PGDM 2023-25

Download

Read & Download CAT Quantitative Ability Syllabus

8. How to Download CAT Latest Exam Syllabus Pdf 2024 Free

The MBA CAT syllabus can help you boost your CAT preparation as per the current CAT pattern. The CAT latest exam syllabus PDF free download is available with existing and expected topics covered in the CAT syllabus pdf download document alongwith the type of questions expected in the CAT exam.  You can download free the CAT latest syllabus and pattern

Click Here for CAT Syllabus 2024 Pdf Download Free

9. Best Books to Prepare for CAT Syllabus

Following are the recommended books to cover and prepare for CAT exam syllabus

  • How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT’- by Arun Sharma & Meenakshi Upadhyay
  • ‘Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT’ - by Nishit K Sinha
  • Arihant Book on Verbal Ability: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension by Ajay Singh
  • How to prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT by Arun Sharma
  • How to prepare for Logical Reasoning for CAT by Arun Sharma
  • Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinha
  • CAT Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning by Gautam Puri
  • How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT by Arun Sharma
  • Quantitative Aptitude Quantum CAT by Sarvesh K Verma
  • Quantitative Aptitude by R.S. Aggarwal

Read more about the Best CAT Preparation Books

 

Read More: CAT 2024- Exam Date, Registration, Syllabus, Preparation, Books 

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