'Low CAT/XAT scores no hurdle to my dream of doing MBA' 1st person account of MBA aspirant with 76 percentile

| 17 Feb 2017 1110 IST

With a score of only 76.3 percentile, I can get good MBA college and should not run only after IIMs, XLRI or FMS
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Number of candidates despite scoring an overall 97-98 and above percentile in CAT 2016 have not been shortlisted by any of the 20 IIMs and are searching for good MBA options which they can still get

I scored only 76.3 percentile in CAT 2016 but I am now not running only after IIMs as other good MBA options are still available. In fact, it is time for me to introspect and take a quick decision to choose the best MBA college with my CAT 2016; XAT 2017 and CMAT 2017 scores. Going by the past trends and expected cut offs in many B-schools, I understand that I can pursue my dream of doing MBA from a good B-school without running only after the IIMs.

With the score cards of CAT 2016; XAT 2017; CMAT 2017 and MAT February 2017 in hand, I am  standing at the cross roads where to head for in order to pursue my dream of doing MBA. I have not been shortlisted by IIMs, XLRI, FMS, SPJIMR, MDI or IMI to which I had applied for, what other good options could be there for me to pursue MBA in 2017 became a big question before me considering the fact that despite appearing in all the above exams for consecutive 2 years, I have so far remained only an aspirant and not an MBA student.

Will do MBA in 2017: Score not a hurdle
It is a fact that I wish to pursue MBA and wouldn’t like to delay it further for another one year, preparing again for CAT/XAT or any other exam.

The irony is that I neither scored a very high over all percentile nor sectional percentile that could have enabled me to get a call from the top MBA colleges like IIMs, FMS, MDI or others. The performance in XAT was also not much better. On the top of it, I did not care to apply in many good B-schools where I could be shortlisted for PI round. However, one thing is certain that I would like to begin my MBA programme in 2017 and therefore need to see if I could get a call from the MBA colleges where I have applied and simultaneously search for other good MBA options where I can still apply.

Good MBA choice is available
I may choose the most preferred B-school from where I wish to pursue MBA 2017-19 out of 3500 B-schools offering AICTE approved management programmes in India. But the  point is whether I fulfill the requisite parameters to get admission in it, is more important to know. Else I would be living in a fool’s paradise and on one fine day will come to know that I am not selected for admission by the B-school.

For example, if I am keen to pursue my MBA/PGDM 2017-19 from IIM-A,B,C or L; or from FMS, MDI, IMI, IMT, BIMTECH, IIFT, JBIMS, SPJIMR and so on, I have to do some introspection and that is – have I scored high sectional and over all percentile in CAT 2016 or XAT 2017 as required by the dream B-schools? Do I have excellent academic profile so as to outshine my peers? On the top of it, did I apply to these B-schools in time? These are only a few of the many factors that I have to take into account if I plan to get into one of these highly ranked B-schools where admission process for MBA/PGDM 2017-19 has already closed.

The WAT and Personal Interview round in IIMs, SPJIMR, MDI, XLRI and other top rated B schools who accept CAT and XAT scores is going to be over shortly, many B-schools like FMS Delhi and others are yet to begin their PI round. Although I already applied to these B-schools but even those who have scored a high over all percentile in CAT 2016 as high as 98-99 but the dip in their sectional percentile wouldn’t allow any admission opportunity in MBA 2017-19 in these B-schools.

Have already applied to…
Apart from IIMs and other top MBA colleges, I have already applied to MDI, Gurgaon; IMI, New Delhi; IMT Ghaziabad; FORE School of Management, New Delhi;Great Lakes, Chennai; IFMR Chennai; GIM Goa; I think I will get the call from a few of these B-schools for admission.

Good MBA Options still available: Need to apply promptly
Good MBA options in colleges who accept all exam scores are also available for admission and I can apply to them. A few of these MBA colleges are BIMTECH, Greater Noida; College of Management & Economics Studies (CoMES) UPES University Dehradun; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Jaipuria Group, Noida; FLAME University Pune; Birla Global University, Bhubaneswar; KSOM Bhubaneswar; SDMIMD Mysore among others.

All these MBA colleges offer good learning experience and high placements. I need to decide quickly as the application process to these B-schools is to be closed shortly.

Many with 98 percentile in the same boat
Number of candidates despite scoring an overall 97-98 and above percentile in CAT 2016 have not been shortlisted by any of the 20 IIMs and are searching for good MBA options which they can still get. The basic reason due to which they have not been shortlisted by IIMs is that they could not score balanced and good sectional percentile in the exam. Their chances to get shortlisted by IIMs are thrown overboard.

They also did not apply to many other good B-schools like IMI, IMT, MDI, BIMTECH, TAPMI, FMS among others. Now they stand with all those who scored average percentile in CAT/XAT/CMAT or MAT and are searching for good admission options to pursue MBA in 2017.

After spending much of my time in going for introspection whether I need to prepare for one more year for CAT 2017 to get into top IIM, I have arrived at the firm decision that there is no use to run after the IIMs when good B-schools offering high RoI MBA programmes are there and are ready to accept my scores. There may also not be any substantial improvement in the scores next year as 2 years have also passed preparing for and appearing in the exam.

Besides, even if I improve on overall percentile, any dip in sectional percentile may drag me back and I will have to begin from the point zero again. Another situation that I can visualize is that both CAT and XAT have come out with structural and content changes in the exam. On the top of it they announce these innovative changes at the nick of the time when you are more than halfway through your preparation. I find it difficult to suddenly switch over to absolutely different study pattern.

Any change in the name of CAT convening IIM, also brings with it the change in test pattern. The fact will be visible in CAT 2017 also as IIM Bangalore may not convene CAT 2017. This may further aggravate the situation.

What I understand is that not all IIMs are equally good. Out of 20 IIMs only a few top ones are well established and recognized by the corporate and industry. So when I have the better opportunity with my scores to get into an institute that has legacy with large alumni base, offers a good learning experience with optimum student-faculty ratio; has been going with rising and good placements year after year; the alumni appreciating the infrastructure, I do not find a point to cry for brand IIM.

Stay tuned to MBAUniverse.com for more updates on MBA 2017 admission 

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