CAT (Common Admission Test) is used as a criterion to select students for admissions to the IIMs- IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore, IIM Calcutta, IIM Lucknow, IIM Indore and IIM Kozhikode. Apart from IIMs some other premier management institutes such as S.P. Jain Institute, Management Development Institute, T.A. PAI, Nirma Institute of Management, IMT and few others also select candidates based on the CAT score. This year exam will be conducted over a window period of 27 days starting from Wednesday, October 16, 2013 to Monday, November 11, 2013.

CAT Exam Duration and Pattern

The CAT aptitude test 2013 will have only two sections. The first section is Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation; the second section is CAT Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning. These two sections will be implemented sequentially with separate time limits. CAT entrance exam will be for 140 minutes. Candidates will have 70 minutes to answer 30 questions within each section which will have an on-screen countdown timer. Within the 70 min provided for the section, candidates can review the answers. Once the time ends for the first section, they will move to the second section and will no longer be able to go back.

A 15-minute tutorial will be provided before starting CAT test, and candidates are advised to go through that carefully before starting the main examination. The total duration will be 2 hours and 35 minutes including the tutorial. A CAT practice test to provide candidates with a feel of the timed sections, as well as navigation and functionality of the actual test will be made available in the coming weeks. Candidates are advised to go through the online CAT practice test carefully to familiarize themselves with the screens, layout and navigation.

At the test venue, each candidate will be seated at a desk with a computer terminal and he/she will be provided with a scratch paper for calculations. After the online CAT test, candidate must leave the scratch paper at the desk. Rough work cannot be done on any other paper/sheet, as nothing will be allowed inside the testing room. No breaks will be given during the Common Aptitude Test.

CAT Preparation

Candidates aspiring to crack CAT exam generally start their preparation while they are pursuing their graduation. Various CAT coaching institutes offer a number of CAT courses depending on the need of students. Most of the coaching institutes classify their CAT classes as per the level of students’ preparation. For instance CAT classes offered by most of the coaching centers is generally divided into 2 categories - long term CAT course of duration 12-15 months for freshers and crash courses of 2-3 months, basically meant for the repeaters. The CAT preparation material offered is also customized as per the courses offered.

Leading CAT Coaching Institutes in India

Some of the leading CAT coaching institutes in India include T.I.M.E, IMS Learning Centre and Career Launcher. These coaching’s have branches in almost all major cities such as Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Kochi, Chennai and Hyderabad. However modules may differ from city to city. For instance CAT classes in Mumbai conducted by T.I.M.E may have different modules offered under different names compared to that offered by the same CAT coaching in Delhi. But the topics and CAT exam syllabus remains the same as asked in CAT 2012 exam. Some of the leading CAT coaching institutes in India are as follows:

Career Launcher - Career Launcher (CL) is Asia's leading education service provider led by a team of IIT-IIM alumni, with a passion for education. It was established in 1995 and since then has been progressing steadily. It offers preparatory courses for MBA, GATE, GMAT, SAT, GRE, Civil services, engineering and law exams. The MBA classroom program offered by CL includes MBA Flexi Pro, MBA Gallop and MBA Extended.

IMS Learning Centre - IMS is the leader in management entrance training. The institute has been ranked 4th in the education sector and 44th amongst the Top 50 Most Trusted Service Brands across India (AC-Nielsen & Brand Equity, December 2003). Today, IMS has spread its wings across India with more than 90+ centers and over 50,000 students, successfully making it to some of the most prestigious institutes in India and abroad. It offers various preparatory courses at both graduate and undergraduate level.

TIME - Triumphant Institute of Management Education Pvt. Ltd. (T.I.M.E) is India’s leading test-prep institute with a pan-India presence and is headquartered at Hyderabad. Established in 1992, T.I.M.E today operates out of 200 offices located in 103 towns and cities across the country. Over 40 IIT/IIM graduates form part of the core team at T.I.M.E. Institute offers a wide range of programs not only for national and state-level entrance exams like the CAT, MAT, IIT-JEE and AIEEE but also for international exams like GMAT, GRE, IELTS and TOEFL.

PT Education - PT was established in July 1993 in Indore. PT's current area of operations encompasses training students for various competitive exams in India for entrance to prestigious careers like MBA, MCA, MMS/MCA, Pre Engineering Tests, GRE/GMAT, Personality Development Programs etc. PT's main focus area is quality education programs for various competitive tests as well as development educational programs.

CAT online coaching institutes

Students who are unable to join coaching institutes due to lack of time or sufficient funds can also prepare through online education providers. Online coaching for CAT is cost effective and time saving. These CAT coaching offer Online CAT preparation material. Students can get detailed guidance on each section and topic online or through distance learning mode. Even they can access various test papers and CAT model papers with solutions online. Some of the online CAT coaching includes Career Forum,, 2IIM.COM, Pathfinder education services Pvt. Ltd., etc.

Career Forum - Career Forum is a leading provider of online education services in following areas:

Post Graduate (MBA): CAT, XAT, SNAP, NMAT, MAT, CET, FMS, IRMA, IIFT, State CETs

Undergraduate (12 plus): AIEEE, AIPMT, MHT-CET, CLAT, BBA CETs, NLSUs.

Education board: GRE, GMAT, SAT, TOEFL

" - Headed by IIT-IIM alumni, the 85+ team TestFunda is the leader in online aptitude test prep. In its 5th season of aptitude test prep, TestFunda has courseware for CAT, XAT, IIFT, SNAP, NMAT, CMAT, UPSC Prelims(CSAT), BANK PO, MAT and Campus Recruitment Training. With 3.5 lac+ user base and 100+ coaching partners including Vajiram and Ravi, VistaMind, ex franchisees of TIME, Career Launcher, IMS, PT, Career Forum etc. aspirants enjoy a whole host of free learning resources along with complete preparatory courseware and integrated unlimited ask-a-doubt facility." -TCY stepped into the world of education in the year 1998. The online coaching institute serves the students through three modes viz classroom training, distance learning through correspondence and online. It started began with a dream to provide quality support to students and teachers ranging from K-12 to MBA, MCA, GRE, GMAT, SAT, NTSE etc. TCY is one of the first Institutions in this sector to acquire an ISO 9001 certification.

2IIM.COM - 2IIM, the CAT Preparation division of Ascent Education is an IIM Alumnus initiative. 2IIM provides classroom preparation courses, comprehensive study material for CAT in the form of correspondence courses and online preparatory aids for CAT (the Common Admission Test to the IIMs). 2IIM focuses on CAT training and offers CAT Classroom courses in the city of Chennai, India. As part of its online and distance education programs for CAT, 2IIM offers comprehensive study material for all sections of CAT. 2IIM also offers 30 full length CAT practice tests. Our online offering includes eBooks for specific hard topics in CAT Math.

Pathfinder Education Services Pvt. Ltd. - Pathfinder Education Services Pvt. Ltd., Bhopalwas started in the year 2001 by Mr. Manish Kane .They have four other ventures in Ujjain, Trichy, Tanjour, & Pune. Students appearing for competitive exams like MBA, law, and other similar exams are given coaching here.

About CAT Courses

The CAT module offered by these coaching institutes is generally divided as per the sections asked in CAT exam such as verbal ability, data interpretation, CAT quant and logical reasoning. Institutes provide CAT study materials and CAT question papers on each of these sections. Extensive problem solving classes are conducted where students are told about short cut methods to save on time. Institutes also conduct various CAT test series and CAT mock tests based on the CAT entrance test to make students familiar with the paper pattern. Classes on time management are also conducted as it is an important aspect to crack CAT entrance exam. These institutes also train students on group discussion and personality development skills. A number of mock GDs and personal interview rounds are conducted to equip students with the required tactics. Students are also told about various GD topics and expected questions which can be asked in interview rounds. Moreover students are also briefed about the answers expected from them for each respective question.

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