The Types of Entrance Test You’ll Come Across For Your MBA

Are you an MBA aspirant and planning for admission? If yes, the first step for you is to know about the must take Top MBA entrance exams. Once you know all about the exam such as its eligibility, exam pattern, and all exam related dates, you will be able to proceed towards preparations. The preparation you need to take is for tests which are an important part to achieve your dream of getting admitted to the B-School you have always desired. A brilliant score in the test that you choose to give is of utter importance. For that, you need discipline and proper preparation. Without preparing for the tests you may sit for the tests, but the chances of getting an excellent score are very much rare and hardly possible.


Management Aptitude Test or MAT, as it is popularly known is conducted 4 times a year (in February, May, September & December) by the Centre for Management Services (CMS) division of All India Management Association (AIMA).

Eligibility: Any student who has completed Bachelor’s Degree from a recognized university can apply and sit for the exam. A final year student of Bachelor’s Degree can also sit for the exam.

Format of the test: MAT is divided into two formats suitable for both students who prefer computer test and at the same time other students who opt for an offline test. The test has five papers in total –

  1. Language Comprehension
  2. Mathematical Skill
  3. Data Analysis
  4. Intelligence & Critical Reasoning
  5. Indian & Global Environment Section

There are total 200 questions. For each paper 40 questions, one needs to solve. The total duration of time given for the entire test is 2 ½ hours.

How to prepare for the test: MAT is not like XAT or CAT. It has no percentile score, rather the students would be judge by a composite score they will get in their MAT exam. One needs to prepare thoroughly for MAT. If you are MAT aspirant, you need to prepare for at least 2 hours a day every day for cracking the exam.


ATMA has been approved by the Ministry of HRD of the Government of India for admission on All India basis to the MBA/PGDM and other postgraduate programs like MCA. Around 100 MBA institutes accept ATMA scores for admission to various management programs.

Eligibility: Candidates must have completed their graduation from a recognized and authorized university.

Format of the test: ATMA test contains 180 Questions spread over six sections comprising Analytical, Verbal and Logical Reasoning.  Each section is timed separately. Total time of the test is 3 hours. A candidate has to undergo the selection process of the institute to qualify for the admission to the PG programs of the institute after the declaration of result of ATMA.

How to prepare for the test: ATMA aims to evaluate a candidate’s verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, analyzing and synthesizing ability. It is a three-hour exam. The test consists of multiple-choice objective-type questions.



Common Admission Test is one of the most preferred tests for Indian Students. If you crack this and can get brilliant score the top most B-Schools like IIMs will shortlist you and send you a letter for further interview and group discussion.

Eligibility: To be able to appear for CAT examination, the applicant must have a score of 50 CGPA in his/her graduation.

Format of the test: CAT is a computer based test taken all over India and the duration of the test is 2 hours 50 minutes. CAT has multiple choice questions in specifically two broad sections – Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning. Each section should be given equal importance to score well in CAT. For every right answer 3 marks is provided and for every wrong answer ¼th mark will be deducted from the score.

How to prepare for the test: If you are a CAT aspirant all you need to do is to prepare yourself thoroughly in all the sections and practice the sums and verbal comprehensions every day. The top scorers who have score above 99 percentile in CAT mentioned that 4 hours of study every day for a year or so would be enough to crack CAT.


XAT is one of the reputed tests taken in India for MBA aspirants. More than 60 years of reputation makes it the second most preferred test for MBA in India. If you are planning to give XAT, you can take admission in more than 70 institutes all over India.

Eligibility: For sitting for XAT you don’t need to have any percentage of score. Anyone who has completed Bachelor’s Degree (10+2+3) in any discipline from a recognized university can sit for XAT.

Format of the test: XAT has four sections in the test – Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning (VA), Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation (QA), Analytical Reasoning & Decision Making Ability (AR) and General Awareness & Essay Writing. XAT exam now has become 3 hours long exam where 2 hours and 20 minutes are given for first three sections and last 40 minutes are provided for General Awareness & Essay Writing.

How to prepare for the test: XAT is not an easy exam. So you need to prepare thoroughly. There are certain differences in XAT exam from CAT, in format, in question pattern. Thus, if you are preparing for CAT, that would not be enough for XAT. You need to put some extra hours every day to understand the questions that come in XAT and then practice for honing your ability.


CMAT is conducted by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) in all over India. CMAT is usually an easier test compared to other Management Entrance Exams.

Eligibility: Any student who has completed Bachelor’s Degree with 50% score can apply for CMAT. All final year students also can appear for this examination.

Format of the test: CMAT is a 3-hour duration test, and it has 4 sections – Quantitative technique, Logical Reasoning, Language Comprehension, and General Awareness. Each section has 25 questions to attempt.

How to prepare for the test: If one prepares for CAT and XAT, one doesn’t need to do much preparation for CMAT. But if you are only planning to sit for CMAT, then you need to provide 1 hour every day for at least 3-4 months for through preparation.

The above are the list of top most MBA entrance exams conducted all over the world and India. Other than these tests, there are also MBA entrance exams which students can sit for. But if one prepares for these 8 tests thoroughly, one would be eligible to apply anywhere in foreign universities and in Indian universities and by doing so they can enroll themselves in top most institutes of the world and in India as well.


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