CAT 2013 seems to have hit by the slowing economy with registration numbers for the premier MBA entrance test for admission to IIMs and other top B-schools set to take a dip below 2 lakh even as the expected last week rush brought lackluster response before September 24 deadline for CAT voucher sale.
CAT 2013 Convenor Dr Rohit Kapoor told MBAUniverse.com that the registration numbers have reached around 1.90 lakh and is expected to be around 2 lakh by tomorrow when the on-line and off-line CAT voucher sale ends.
“More than 1.10 lakh candidates have bought the CAT voucher online and around 75000-80000 have bought the voucher offline so far,” Dr Rohit Kapoor said, adding, “We hope to reach near last years’ number this year also,”
The number of CAT takers has dipped significantly since the year 2008 and only showed a sign of revival last year when the number grew to 2.14 lakh. In 2010 and 2011 the number of CAT applicants was 2.04 lakh and 2.05 lakh respectively.
Earlier, the CAT Convenor had expected the total numbers this year to reach a record level of 2.5 lakh. Talking to MBAUniverse.com 10 days back, the CAT 2013 Convenor had said that he was hopeful to get more than 2.5 lakh candidates as he expected the CAT vouchers sale to shoot up in the last week.
The last date for CAT 2013 voucher sale is September 24. The on-line registration for CAT, however, is open till September 26. IIM Indore, which is conducting CAT 2013 on behalf of all IIMs, has set up its own team for CAT registrations unlike the past years where external agencies had been involved in different operations.
The online sale of CAT vouchers which has been introduced from this year itself had received a huge response in first half of the registration window.
Talking on the next stage for CAT, Dr Rohit Kapoor said that his focus is now shifting to the smooth conduct of CAT testing scheduled in a 20 days window between October 16 and November 11, 2013.
The IIM Indore is working with Prometric to cross-check technical efficiency at all the test centres to pre-empt any inconvenience to the test-takers. “We are working along our testing partner Prometric to ensure a smooth testing experience for candidates at their respective centres,” he said.
With the number of CAT applicants likely to decrease this year, the competition might get easier for entry to IIMs and other top B-schools. Simultaneously, the IIMs have also increased capacity to accommodate more students from this year. The 13 Indian Institutes of Management have altogether added 115 more seats for admission year 2014. “This year’s CAT Aspirants will have greater opportunity for admission into the IIMs,” Dr Kapoor said, adding, “Across all IIMs, 115 seats have been added for B-School admissions this year, taking the total number of seats in IIMs to 3,335.”
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