CAT 2017: 5 changes make it best ever CAT exam for Non-Engineers to get IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta

MBAUniverse.com News Desk |
July 19, 2017
Non-Engineers, Arts, commerce, humanities graduates are to see CAT 2017 as best ever opportunity to get into one of the top IIMs in 2018 with the revised and relaxed admission criteria, higher bonus weightage to academic diversity and above all the expected further modified CAT 2017 exam
CAT exam for Non-Engineers
CAT 2017 could prove to be the best ever exam crafted by IIMs to attract more non-engineers in their class rooms

Non-Engineers and graduates in Arts, Commerce, Humanities are destined to see CAT 2017 as best ever opportunity to get into one of the top IIMs in 2018 with the revised and relaxed admission criteria, higher bonus weightage to academic diversity and above all the expected further modified CAT 2017 exam that could minimise the skewness towards engineers.

Thus, CAT 2017 could prove to be the best ever exam crafted by IIMs to attract more non-engineers in their class rooms. Accordingly, it is now time for Non-Engineers to prepare and get into IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, Lucknow, Kozhikode, Indore and other new and newest IIMs.

There are not only relaxed admission criteria offered by IIMs for non-engineers but the CAT  exam pattern which was totally overhauled by IIM Ahmedabad in 2015 to allure more students from non-engineering back ground, is expected to go under further changes attract more non-engineers in IIM class rooms.

It is one of the key facts that an Arts student with 89+ percentile in CAT 2016 has got admission in IIM Ahmedabad in 2017 while an engineering student with 100 percentile could not get through.

Important links related to CAT 2017 changes

CAT exam: Favourable changes for Non-Engineers
Since 2015 CAT has introduced 30% No-penalty questions in each of the 3 sections. The impact of this change is that if the candidates from Non-engineering back ground are unable to solve sufficient number of questions from their weak areas like Quant and Data Interpretation, they have the opportunity to attempt the Non-MCQs more. If the answers go wrong they need not worry as nothing will be deducted out of their marks already secured by way of attempting MCQs.

Accordingly, if you are good at fundamentals, you can score high in other sections and compensate to a large extent the loss of marks. A key benefit is that the non-engineer would no more be a loser on score in CAT 2017.

It is expected that more changes to improve academic diversity may be brought in CAT 2017 exam.

32% Non engineers at IIM A: IIM B, C follow
Ratio of Non-engineers in IIM Ahmedabad has risen much higher than other 2 IIMs this year and is the highest in last 15 years. With even higher target for PGP 2018-20, IIM Ahmedabad class room may find 40 to 50 percent non-engineers next year as the admission norms for non-engineers may be relaxed further.

Ratio of Non-Engineers IIM Ahmedabad IIM Bangalore IIM Calcutta
PGP 2015-17 batch  9% 13.77% 5.1%
PGP 2016-18 batch 20% 11.41% 8.6%
PGP 2017-19 batch 32% 11.36 9%

Non-Engineers: Weightage is more
IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Calcutta propose to increase the academic diversity in their class rooms. As such at the 1st stage shortlisting they have increased the award of weightage to the candidates coming from non-engineering back ground. For example if a candidate with en gineering back ground is awarded full weightage at 80% and above marks in class 12 or graduation, a candidate with arts/humanities will get the same weightage at 70 or 75% marks in his academics.

With these changes in admission criteria, more non-engineers have been able to get into IIM Ahmedabad this year.

The rise in academic diversity has come on the back of certain changes done in the admission process without compromising on merit of the students, assert the IIMs.

Weightage for academic diversity Non-Engineers IIM Ahmedabad IIM Bangalore IIM Calcutta
PGP 2017-19 batch Higher weight for commerce, Arts, humanities Graduation marks awarded 20% weight and adjusted in their respective discipline 4% weight to non-engineers

CAT scores: Weightage reduced
During the last 3 years, IIMs have been reducing the weightage to CAT exam scores and are awarding more weight to academic profile, academic diversity, Writing Ability Tests and personal interview sessions. This has helped the non-engineers to get an edge over their peers in 1st stage shortlisting and in Personal Interview round also. This year all the IIMs reduced the weightage to CAT exam scores.

Weightage for CAT 2016 scores IIM Ahmedabad IIM Bangalore IIM Calcutta
PGP 2017-19 batch

 70%

40% 56%

Apart from this IIM Ahmedabad has a unique shortlisting criteria for selection of 5% exceptional performers across different disciplines. The final score is arrived at after including all AR scores

Required Cut-off in CAT score reduced
Anticipating that most candidates with non-engineering back ground may not qualify all the CAT exam sections with high scores, IIMs reduced the overall and sectional percentile requirement in CAT 2016 exam.

Since IIMs require the candidates to qualify in all sections of CAT exam with a minimum predefined score, sometimes the candidates with non-engineering back ground find it difficult to qualify the Quant and Data Interpretation section with minimum required score. The situation got aggravated further when CAT exam was divided in 3 sections.

Accordingly, IIMs have reduced their minimum qualifying required CAT percentile so that more candidates from non-engineering back ground can be shortlisted.

Minimum CAT 2016 sectional & overall percentile IIM Ahmedabad IIM Bangalore IIM Calcutta
Overall

80

90 90
Sectional 70 VARC-85
QA, DILR-80
80

The reduced CAT score requirement enabled many candidates with non-engineering back ground to get shortlisted and convert the call to IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta and Lucknow.

Non-engineers stand better chance: IIMs say…
In CAT 2017 you should expect more favourable changes in the exam pattern, marking scheme and weightage that would attract candidates from non-engineering back ground. It is the right time to begin your preparation for CAT 2017 exam in accordance with CAT syllabus and hit it with high sectional score so as to get a call from IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta and other top IIMs and B-schools.

According to Prof Preetam Basu, chairperson admissions at IIM Calcutta, “Our objective is to have more diversity in classroom in any form. We, hence, made minor modification in our policy for the pre-interview phase of shortlisting candidates as well as the merit list prepared on the basis of the interview."

IIMs need more non-engineers in their class rooms. Emphasising this need, Professor Apratim Guha, Chairperson, Admissions, IIM Ahmedabad, explains the scenario “Our admissions policy is to invite for interviews candidates from different academic disciplines based on their academic performances, subject to their clearing certain CAT cut-offs. This approach increases the discipline diversity of our incoming class. This is part of a conscious effort to improve the in-class learning experience of students, who we believe would benefit from being in class with people from diverse background.”

With so many relaxations and weightage being awarded to non-engineers by IIMs, it is the right time that you start your CAT 2017 preparation without any further delay and crack CAT 2017 with fairly high score.

You need to prepare as per CAT 2017 exam pattern, follow the CAT syllabus and above all, as the CAT toppers advise take as many CAT sectional mocks and full length mock tests to assess your performance level and improvement periodically.

Stay tuned to MBAUniverse.com for more updates on CAT 2017

Related links:

Take CAT 2017 Mock Full LengthTo assess your preparation in revised CAT 2017 exam pattern with 100 questions.
Section 1:
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension
Quiz 1: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes;  Level of difficulty: Moderate Quiz 2: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes;  Level of difficulty: Moderate to difficult
Section 2:
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning
Quiz 1: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes; Level of Difficulty: Moderate Quiz 2: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes; Level of difficulty: Moderate
Section 3:
Quantitative Ability
Quiz-1: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes; Level of Difficulty: Moderate Quiz-2: Time limit to solve: 15 minutes; Level of difficulty: Moderate to difficult