The CAT syllabus 2023 is designed to test the aptitude, analytical and quantitative skills of the candidates. It is essential for the candidates to have a thorough understanding of the syllabus in order to prepare for the exam effectively.
The Syllabus of the CAT exam is broadly divided into three sections: Quantitative Ability, Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning. Aspiring candidates should try to get a good hold of all these sections to clear the exams with flying colours.
It is a computer-based test conducted by the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) to select eligible candidates for admission into the various IIMs. In this article, we are going to provide the latest CAT Syllabus 2023-24 along with all the components.
CAT Syllabus 2023 Overview
|Name of the exam||Common Admission Test (CAT)|
|Number of Questions||66 questions|
|Number of Sections||3|
|Time allotted per section||40 minutes for each section|
|Medium of examination||English|
CAT Exam Pattern 2023
There are three sections in the CAT exam. You will find both MCQ and non-MCQ types of questions, and incorrect answers to MCQs carry penalties. You need to be familiar with the CAT 2023 exam pattern before diving into the important topics:
|Sections||Number of questions||Time Limit|
|Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC)||24||40 Minutes|
|Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)||20||40 Minutes|
|Quantitative Ability (QA)||22||40 Minutes|
|Total||66 Questions||120 Minutes|
Each Question will carry 3 marks.
CAT Exam Syllabus 2023 – 2024
|Quantitative Aptitude Syllabus||Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning Syllabus||Verbal Reasoning Syllabus|
|Number Systems||Caselets||English Usage or Grammar|
|LCM and HCF||Tables||Fill in the blanks|
|Percentages||Bar Graphs||Vocabulary-based (Synonyms/ Antonyms)|
|Ratio and Proportion||Column Graphs||Cloze Passage|
|Quadratic Equations & Linear Equations||Line Graphs||Sentence Correction|
|Simple and Compound Interest||Venn Diagrams||Jumbled Paragraph|
|Sequences and Series||Basic Reasoning Questions||Summary Questions|
|Inequalities||Pie Chart||Analogies or Reverse Analogies|
|Mensuration||Number and Letter Series||Meaning-Usage Match|
|Coordinate Geometry||Blood Relations||Reading Comprehension|
|Mixtures and Alligations||Syllogism|
|Permutation and Combination||Logical Sequence|
|Set theory and function||Logical Matching|
|Surds and Indices||Binary Logic|
|Profit, Loss, and Discount||Cubes|
|Speed, Time and Distance|
|Time and Work|
Section-Wise Detailed Syllabus
Quantitative Aptitude Syllabus
There are a few topics in the Quantitative Aptitude section that are extremely important and are covered again and again on the CAT exam each year. There are 22 questions in this section, 14 of which are non-MCQ questions. The following are some of the most significant topics on the CAT 2023 syllabus, along with their respective weightage.
|Main Topic||Sub-Topic||Number of Questions in CAT|
|Arithmetic||Percentages, TSD (Time, Speed, and Distance), Averages, Time and Work, Ratio and Proportion, Profit and Loss, Simple and Compound Interest, Mixtures and Alligations.||9 to 11 questions|
|Number System||Factorization, Unit Digit, Divisibility, Binomial Theorem, Surds and Indices||2 to 4 questions|
|Algebra||Linear Equations, Quadratic Equations, Inequalities, Functions, Logarithm, Complex Numbers||5 to 6 questions|
|Geometry & Mensuration||Lines and Angles, Triangles, Polygons, Circles, Solids (3D Geometry), Coordinate Geometry, Trigonometry||3 to 4 questions|
|Modern Maths||Set Theory, Permutation, and Combination, Probability, etc.||1 to 2 questions|
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning Syllabus
There are nearly equally as many questions in the DILR section related to data interpretation and logical reasoning, with some of them based on a combination of the two. Typically, this section consumes the most time.
The subtopics in this section keep on changing every year. Up until the 2017 CAT, the section was evenly divided into two sections, each with 16 questions for DI and LR. However, CAT 2018 and CAT 2019 included 20 questions from Logical Reasoning and 12 questions for Data Interpretation.
In CAT 2020, students were surprised by the section’s 16 questions on data interpretation and 8 questions on logical reasoning. In the DILR section of CAT 2021, there were 20 questions, 15 of which were Non-MCQ questions. Candidates should have a solid understanding of the data sets in order to accurately attempt the entire set of questions in the DI section, which consists of three to four sets of questions. Given below are sub-topics of the DILR section as per the previous CAT exam.
|1st Exam Slot|
|Topic||Number of questions|
|Arranging People into Countries & Categories||6|
|Bar Graph – Percentages||4|
|Table – 3 Girls making a smoothie||6|
|Table – Relation (Acquaintance, Friend & Stranger)||4|
|2nd Exam Slot|
|Topic||Number of questions|
|Games & Tournament||4|
|Bar Graph – Stacked Horizontal||4|
|Number-Based Reasoning (Envy Set)||6|
|3rd Exam Slot|
|Topic||Number of questions|
|Games and Tournaments (Javelin)||6|
Verbal Reasoning Syllabus
There are 24 questions in the Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension section, 19 of which are Non-MCQ questions. The majority of the questions are in Reading Comprehension. The following is a list of some important syllabus topics for the CAT VARC section.
|Name of the topic||Expected Number of Questions|
|Questions based on Reading Comprehension Passage||16|
|Para-Summary||3 to 4|
|Para-Jumbles||3 to 4|
|Odd Sentences||1 to 2|
|Others (Fill in the blanks, Sentence Completion or Correction, Vocabulary based, etc.)||0 to 1|
Books to Prepare for CAT Examination
There is a wide range of books for CAT preparation available in the market. Candidates must take due care in selecting the right books to study. Here are some books recommended for CAT exam preparation.
For Quantitative Aptitude (QA)
- NCERT Mathematics Books (Class 9 to 10) – NCERT
- Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examinations – Abhijit Guha
- How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT – Arun Sharma
- Quantitative Aptitude Quantum CAT – Sarvesh Sharma
- Quantitative Aptitude for CAT – Nishit Sinha
For Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)
- How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT – Sharma and Upadhyay
- 30 Days to a More Powerful Vocabulary Mass Market Paperback – Wilfred Funk & Norman Lewis/ Simon & Schuster
- How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT – Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay/ Arihant
- High School English Grammar & Composition – Wren & Martin
Books for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)
- Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT – Nishit K Sinha
- Data Interpretation & Data Sufficiency – Ananta Ashisha
- How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT – Arun Sharma
- CAT Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning – Gautam Puri
Frequently Asked Questions
No, most of the syllabus remains the same every year.
Yes, 1 mark will be deducted in case of an incorrect answer.
Yes, CAT is a computer-based online exam.
It is not possible to name one coaching centre. There are hundreds of good coaching centres. You may choose as per your location.
Answer: It is not possible to name one coaching centre. There are hundreds of good coaching centres. You may choose as per your location.