CAT 2019- Syllabus

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CAT Exam Pattern 2019
Section No.of MCQs No.of Non-MCQs Total Questions
Verbal and Reading Comprehension 24 10 34
Quantitative Aptitude 24 8 32
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning 24 10 34
Total 72 28 100
  • Total marks will be 300.
  • Total time for the exam will be 180 minutes (60 minutes for each section).
  • The questions will be asked in English language only.
  • Candidates will be awarded 3 marks for each right answer while 1 mark will be deducted for each wrong answer.

CAT 2019 Marking Scheme
CAT paper will have two types of question MCQs and Non-MCQs. Both types of questions will carry equal marks. There will be a total of 100 questions.
The table given below provides a brief of the marking scheme, expected to be followed for CAT 2019.

Type of Questions Correct Answer Incorrect Answer  Un-attempted Question
MCQ +3 -1 0
Non-MCQ +3 0 0

CAT 2019 Exam Syllabus

1.Verbal and Reading Comprehension
  • This section will have questions from the English language and grammar. It tests a candidate’s language and comprehension skills. A total of 34 questions will be asked from this section, which will be further divided into 24 MCQ and 10 Non-MCQs.
  • The comprehension questions will test the ability to comprehend the meaning from a given passage.
  • Questions about language usage and their rules are also expected to appear in the exam. Testing the understanding of basic grammar is also part of the exam.
  • Candidates reading and verbal ability will be examined in this section.
  • Candidates will have to complete this section in 60 minutes.
Important Topics for Verbal and Reading Comprehension

Sentence Correction Word usage
Fill in the blanks Para Jumble
Para completion Fact Inference Judgement
Analogies Idioms
Expected Topic-wise Weightage for VA section in CAT 2019

The section will have around 34 Questions and RC will have Heavy weightage and is the most important top.

Topic Expected Weightage Expected Weightage
Reading Comprehension 24Q (4 to 5 RC’s with 3-6 Questions for each RC
Para jumbles 4Q
Para Summary 3Q
Odd one out 3Q

2. Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
  • This section will focus on two aspects-Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning.
  • Subjects from Data Interpretation (DI) focus on a candidate’s ability to derive conclusions from a given set of data.
  • There will be a total of 32 questions from this section. They will be further divided into 24 MCQ & 8 Non-MCQs.

Important Topics in Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning 
Bar Graph Caselet Statements
Line Graph Combination of Graphs Sets
Pie Chart Data Sufficiency Venn Diagram
Tables Venn Diagram Data Arrangement
Seating Arrangement Blood Relations Assumptions
Syllogism Puzzles Clocks and Calendars
Propositions - -

Expected Topic-wise Weightage for DI-LR section in CAT 2019

Topic Expected weightage
Data Interpretation 16Q
Logical reasoning 16Q

4.Quantitative Aptitude
  • This section focuses on numerical problems and will test a candidate’s mathematical knowledge.
  • It is a test of speed, accuracy, and precision.
  • There is a total of 34 questions in this section.
  • They will be further divided into 24 MCQ and 10 Non-MCQs. Candidates will have to complete this section in 60 minutes.

Important Topics in Quantitative Aptitude 

Variation Time and Work Time, Speed and Distance
Linear and Quadratics Equations Surds and Indices Inequalities
Logarithms Mensuration and Geometry Tables and Case lets
Probability/ Profit or Loss Critical Path Averages and Partnerships
Allegations and Mixtures Algebra Percentage
Expected Topic-wise Weightage for QA (Quant) section in CAT 2019

Divisibility, Remainder Theorems LCM-HCF 0-2 Q
Number Systems and related questions 1-3 Q
Linear Equations 0-2 Q
Quadratic Equations 0-2 Q.
Polynomial Equations 0-2 Q
Inequalities 0-2 Q
Profit, Loss and Interest 3-5 Q.
Ratio, Proportions and Mixtures 2-5 Q...
Time, Speed, Distance and Work 3-6 Q.
Geometry 6-8 Q.
Venn diagrams 1-3 Q
Functions and Graphs 1-3 Q
Probability and Combinatorics 1-3 Q
Progressions and Series 3-5 Q.
Data Sufficiency 0-2 Q
Logarithms 0-1 Q
CAT Exam Analysis: Slot 1 Analysis and Slot 2 Analysis

CAT 2018 Slot 1 & Slot 2: Exam Composition
Both the slots in CAT 2018 had a similar number of questions divided into MCQs with 1/3 negative marking and Non-MCQs without Negative marking:

Section No.  Questions No. of non-MCQ questions
Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension 34 7
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning 32 8
Quantitative Ability 34 12
Total 100  27
CAT 2018 Slot 1 Analysis

Slot 1 of CAT 2018 didn't throw surprises but there were some changes, across sections.
  • Number of lengthy questions in QA have gone up
  • Order of the questions and the order of the options for various questions were different for different students
  • QA proved to be much tougher than expected compared to CAT 2017 due to the lengthy and involved nature of the questions.
  • VARC remained more or less at the same level and DILR a bit easier as compared to CAT 2017.
  • The cutoffs this year are expected to move marginally upwards, compared to CAT 2017.

Section -1: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)
VARC Sections Topics Questions Difficulty Level
Reading Comprehension 5 passages 24 Moderate
Verbal Ability Para-Formation 4 Easy-Moderate
Para Odd Man Out 3 Moderate
Summary 3 Moderate-Difficult

Section-2: Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)
  • DILR difficulty level has gone down in CAT 2018 slightly.
  • Some of the DI sets were not difficult in terms of interpretation and the questions too in these sets were not tricky in nature.
Section Topic No. of Questions Difficulty Level
Data Interpretation  Matrix 4 Moderate
ATM Machine 4 Moderate+
Pie-Chart 4 Easy
Satellites 4 Difficult
Logical Reasoning Committee 4 Moderate+
Pipes 4 Moderate
Institutes 4 Difficult
Exam ( diff sections ) 4 Difficult

Section 3: Quantitative Ability (QA) Analysis
  • The number of questions on Geometry was on the higher side and some of them can be considered to be moderately difficult.
  • The difficulty level of this section can be classified as being slightly higher than moderate level
Topics Sub-topics No. of Questions Difficulty level
Geometry & Mensuration Geometry & Mensuration  7 Moderate
Numbers  Numbers 2 Moderate+
Arithmetic AMA, TW, CI, TD, P&L, Ratio, Equations 15 Moderate
Algebra QE, Logs, Inequalities, Progressions, Coord. Geometry, Surds 7 Moderate+
P&C/Venn diagrams   3 Moderate
CAT 2018 Slot 2 Analysis
  • No Surprise in the second slot of CAT 2018
  • Overall, it turned out to be slightly tougher than the morning slot
  • While the VARC section was more or less at the same difficulty level as that of the morning slot, the bump up in the difficulty level is largely on the back of relatively tougher DILR and Quant sections.

Section 1: VARC Analysis
  • VARC section in Slot 2 saw a marginal increase in the difficulty level of the RC section compared to CAT 2017. The RC passages were from topics on Biology, Environment, Sociology, Science.
  • In VA, the Para Formation Questions were simpler compared to those of CAT 2017.
  • Same Question pattern as that of Morning slot was repeated
  • The passages were not too straight forward to read
  • The VA questions, on Para Formation/Para Odd-One-out, were quite simple to crack
  • The Odd-One-Out questions were relatively easy to crack and so were the Para Summary Questions.
Area Topic No. of Qs Difficulty level
Reading Comprehension 5 passages 24 Moderate
Verbal Ability Para-Formation Questions 4 Moderate
Para-Formation Odd Man Out 3 Moderate
Para Summary 3 Moderate

Section 2: DILR
  • The difficulty level of this section was slightly higher than the difficulty level in the morning slot.
  • There were relatively easier sets such as the one with ‘room numbers’ and the one with ‘profitability and market share’ which should have been solved comfortably.
  • Most of the sets were found to be lengthy and time-consuming.
  • Some of them were quite difficult to comprehend, owing to the depth of reasoning involved.
Area Topic No. of Qs Difficulty level
Data Interpretation Square chart 4 Difficult
Profitability and Market share 4 Moderate
Currency conversion 4 Difficult
B-School grading 4 Difficult
Logical Reasoning Coding-Decoding 4 Difficult
Platinum – gold tickets 4 Difficult
Room Numbers and timings 4 Easy
Venn Diagrams 4 Moderate-Difficult

Section 3: Quantitative Ability Analysis
  • The Quant section had 22 MCQs and largest number of 12 questions of non-MCQ type.
  • The low weightage trend for Numbers continued this year in the afternoon slot as well.
  • Arithmetic was heavily favoured. There were a good number of questions from Geometry and Mensuration.
  • The difficulty level of this section can be classified as being moderate to difficult level.
Topic Description No. of Qs Difficulty level
Geometry& Mensuration   6 Moderate+
Numbers   4 Moderate
Arithmetic AMA, TW, CI, TD,P&L, RPV, Equations 14 Moderate+
Algebra QE, Logs, Inequalities,Functions 8 Difficult
Miscellaneous   2 Difficult

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