MBA Admission 2018: 5 key exams to get into IIMs, XLRI, IIFT, NMIMS, SIBM; Register now

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Updated on September 14, 2017
Out of the 5 top MBA entrance exams namely CAT 2017, IIFT 2017, NMAT 2017, SNAP 2017, XAT 2018, the important ones leading to IIMs, FMS, MDI, IMI, IIFT are closing their application process in a few days from now and if you are seeking admission to MBA 2018, you should immediately register and apply now.
MBA Admission 2018
Registration for CAT 2017 and IIFT 2017 is to close in a few days, it is better to apply now without waiting for last date to avoid technical issues in form submission

If you are seeking admission to MBA 2018 and wish to pursue it from one of the top B-schools in India, September 2017 is very crucial for you. Out of the 5 top MBA entrance exams, the important ones leading to IIMs, FMS, MDI, IMI, IIFT are closing their application process in a few days from now.

Top MBA exams and Last date to apply
Following 5 National level MBA entrance exams have already released their notifications and their application process is open. Below is shared the key exams, top B-schools accepting their exam scores, their application fee and the links to their registration process. You have to draw your plan which exams you should appear, how to prepare for each of them as every exam is different in one or other way and get shortlisted to succeed in your mission MBA 2018.

Exam Name Last date to apply & Date of Exam Registration & Application fee and process Top MBA colleges
CAT 2017 September 20, 2017;
November 26, 2017
Rs.1800/- pay online 20 IIMs, FMS, SPJIMR, MDI, IMI, IMT, TAPMI, XIMB
IIFT 2017 September 15, 2017;
December 3, 2017
Rs.1550/- pay online or by DD IIFT Delhi & Kolkata; new campus at Kakinada to start operation shortly
NMAT by GMAC 2017 October 3, 2017;
Oct 5 to Dec 18
Rs.1800/- plus taxes-pay online NMIMS, VIT Vellore, XIMB
SNAP 2017 November 24, 2017;
December 17, 2017
Rs.2065/- pay online SIBM Pune, SIBM Bangalore & other 13 Symbiosis colleges
XAT 2018 November 30, 2017;
January 7, 2018
Rs.1650/- pay online XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB, BIMTECH, TAPMI

It should be noted that Registration for CAT 2017 and IIFT 2017 is to close in a few days, it is better to apply now without waiting for last date to avoid technical issues in form submission.

The key fact is that you need to apply online for all the exams. It is therefore, advisable that you should apply much before the last date to avoid any technical snag in the registration process.

Like their peers, all MBA aspirants eye the top B-schools for admission. However to finally convert the call in top rated B schools like IIMs, XLRI, SPJIMR, JBIMS, FMS, MDI, IMT, apart from a good volume of needed preparation, you need excellent academics and a good percentile score in each section of MBA entrance exam to cross the cut offs.

IIFT 2017: Last date to apply – Sep 15
Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT) will close the registration and application process for admission to its MBA (IB) 2018-20 entrance examination on September 15. Accordingly only 2 days are left for IIFT 2017 registration.

Indian Institute of Foreign trade (IIFT) is another very important milestone which  most of the management aspirants would like to achieve.Getting into MBA (IB) 2018-20 batch at Indian Institute of Foreign Trade is probably more important than getting into any other B-school. There are around 60000 aspirants who appear in IIFT entrance exam for 360 MBA seats.

IIFT has two campuses located in Delhi and Kolkata and will shortly launch its 3rd campus at Kakinada (Andhra Pradesh). The IIFT MBA entrance test is scheduled on December 3 in paper based mode. The test will be conducted in a single day across the country.

IIFT entrance test composition
Entrance test to IIFT for MBA 2018-20 programme remains a paper pen based multiple choice question type examination. It consists of 4 sections, although one section might be clubbed to another and can be sub divided in part 1 and part 2.  Number of questions can be from 115 to 130 in all to be solved in 2 hours.  So the time management is another crucial factor as you have approximately one minute per question to answer.

Another feature about IIFT entrance exam is that there is varying number of questions in different years with varying marking system in the range of 0.5 to 1. The aspirants can expect to get through if they score 45 to 50 percent marks in the entrance exam.  One fourth negative marking is also very important factor to keep you on your guard and avoid any wrong or doubtful attempt.

Sectional composition of exam is as follows:

Section-1 – English comprehension & RC passages; Section-2- Quantitative Ability; Section-3- Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation ;  Section-4-General Awareness

CAT 2017 Registration: Last  date – September 20
The most sought after MBA/PGDM entrance examination Common Admission Test (CAT) 2017 for admission to top rated B schools like IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, Lucknow and other 16 IIMs, FMS, MDI, SPJIMR, IMI, IMT, BIMTECH, TAPMI will be held on November 26 in two sessions.

The last date for CAT 2017 registration is September 20, 2017. The registration will remain open till 5 PM only as stated by IIM Lucknow, the CAT 2017 convening IIM. The admissions on the basis of CAT 2017 scores will be allowed in 2018. CAT 2017 is expected to be taken by more than 2 lakh aspirants.

Almost all the top B schools except NMIMS, Symbiosis and XLRI would accept CAT 2017 scores across the country.

Components of CAT 2017 exam
CAT 2017 is a computer based test. No exam has gone with so many changes and surprises as the CAT has gone in past 3 years.  The test which was conducted in a 16 to 21 days test window with 2 sessions every day till 2013, switched over to 2 days test window in 2014 and to 1 day test window in 2015.  Since 2014, CAT has increased the number of questions from 60 to 1000 and has also increased the number of sections from 2 to 3.

CAT 2017 is proposed to have total time duration of 3 hours with sectional time constraint of 60 minutes for each section. Candidates are not allowed to move between one section to other.

Registration for CAT 2017 is to close on September 20. The exam as disclosed by IIM Lucknow, the CAT 2017 convener will be on the same pattern as that of last year CAT. The division of sections in CAT 2017 is to remain on following pattern:

Section Number of questions Time limit to solve Total sectional marks
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension (VARC) 34 1 hour 102
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) 32 1 hour   96
Quantitative Aptitude (QA) 34 1 hour  102

Students taking CAT 2017 will not be allowed to move to second section before completion of time for first section nor can they move back from 2nd section to first section once the time for first section is over.

3 marks are awarded for every correct answer, while a penalty of 1 mark for each wrong answer will be imposed.  Besides, CAT 2017 will award percentile scores on the basis of equated system. It means even if a person scores marks in negative he will be awarded a percentile score and the person scoring  the maximum minus marks in CAT 2017 would be awarded ‘zero’ percentile and a candidate with lesser marks in minus may have ‘non zero’ percentile. Percentile is awarded section wise as well as overall.

The word of caution is to score high sectional percentile which will automatically improve the overall percentile. The role of sectional percentile score is greater than overall high percentile in CAT exam. This remains the major criterion adopted by all the IIMs to shortlist the candidates for final admission round.

NMAT by GMAC: Last date to apply- Oct 3
NMAT is now NMAT by GMAC after it has been acquired by Graduate Management Council. It is the MBA entrance test for Narsee Monjee Institute Of Management Studies (School Of Business Management) Mumbai and other cities. Around 60000 aspirants take this exam every year. Apart from NMIMS, VIT Vellore, XIMB and many other universities and institutes will also accept NMAT by GMAC scores for admission to MBA/PGDM 2018-209 programme.

NMAT by GMAC is an online test which can be scheduled during a test window of October to December.  Registration for this exam is to close on October 3, without late fee and on October 14, 2017 with late fee.

Composition of NMAT by GMAC
NMAT by GMAC is an objective type multiple choice online computer based exam to be attempted in 2 hours.  The test is divided in 3 sections namely Language skills, Quantitative skills and Logical Reasoning.  All the sections taken together comprise 120 questions.  Number of questions are maximum in Quantitative section followed by Logical reasoning and Language skills. NMAT by GMAC exam is without negative marking.

SNAP 2017: Last date to apply - November 24
SNAP is the mandatory MBA entrance examination for admission to 15 Symbiosis B-schools affiliated to Symbiosis International University (SIU) who will accept SNAP 2017 scores for their respective 2 years full time flagship MBA batch 2018-20.

This is the first time that SNAP will be held as online exam. Till last year SNAP was a paper pen based test. However there are no changes proposed in the SNAP 2017 exam pattern and exam syllabus.

SNAP 2017 Registration is to close on November 24 and the SNAP exam date is December 17. SNAP 2017 exam cities have been increased to 102 from earlier 32.

Composition of SNAP  2017
SNAP 2017 will be online computer based test comprising Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs). SNAP 2017 exam duration is 2 hours. The test comprises 150 questions divided in 4 sections of Verbal Ability and Reading comprehension; General Knowledge and Current Affairs; Quantitative Ability and data interpretation; Analytical and Logical Ability. Maximum marks are 150 and there is a provision of 25% negative marking for wrong answers.

Although candidates are allowed to attempt any section in any order, sectional cut off is also there. One has to score at least a minimum cut off score in each of the four sections.

XAT 2018 Registration last date: November 30
Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) 2018 to be held on January 17 in online mode, is a national level aptitude test conducted in India by XLRI, Jamshedpur. XAT 2018 is another prestigious entrance examination which is conducted for admission to XLRI and other associated B schools. Around 90000 candidates register and apply for XAT to get admission in more than 150 B-schools accepting XAT scores.

XAT 2018 will be the first online computer based test in the 60 years history of XAT exam. So far XAT was conducted as paper based test. XAT 2018 will be conducted in a single day and single session.

XAT 2018 Registration will close on November 30 without late fee and on December 15, with late fee.

XAT 2018 Exam pattern
XAT 2018 will no longer be a conventional paper pencil mode exam and it will be a computer based online exam.

XAT 2018 exam will have 5 sections of Verbal and logical Ability; Decision making; Quantitative Ability; General awareness and Essay writing.  Except essay writing all the other questions are of objective type. The GK and Essay writing scores are not taken into account while awarding the percentile scores and preparing the merit list.

Other 3 sections will have 72 questions to be solved in 170 minutes. Entire test comprising about 97 MCQs and essay writing has to be attempted in 210 minutes.

The results are percentile based and are declared in the last week of January. 

No top B-school accepting other exams
Despite being All India exams, the status of B-schools accepting CMAT and MAT scores remain dubious. There are many B-schools in the AICTE  list which claim the CMAT score acceptance, but these B-schools categorically deny accepting CMAT scores.

However, the B-schools in Maharashtra accept the scores of CMAT and MAT alongwith MAHCET and other exams. The admission process to Maharashtra MMS/MBA programmes is routed through the Centralised Admission Process (CAP) conducted by DTE Maharashtra.

Don’t delay: Finalise your registration
Prof S K Agarwal, Verbal Ability expert on CAT/XAT/SNAP preparation suggests the candidates not to miss any important MBA entrance test and draw their plan to register now. MBA aspirants should register without waiting for the last date to IIFT, CAT 2017, NMAT 2017, XAT 2018 and SNAP 2017 as there are number of B-schools who will accept both CAT 2017 and XAT 2018 scores.

It will make you proud if you get through multiple entrance examinations. It will boost your confidence level as well as more options will be available before you.

If you appear in MBA entrance exam in 2017, you will get admission in 2018 and will be able to complete your MBA in 2020. At present admission to all the top ranked B-schools in India is open. You need to finalize now and register for the preferred MBA entrance exams without any further delay. Please note to avoid last day registration rush which leads to technical problems while opening, submitting the registration and application form and making online payment.

Stay tuned to for more updates on MBA Admission 2018 in top B-schools

Read also:

Take CAT 2017 Mock Full LengthTo assess your preparation in revised CAT 2017 exam pattern with 100 questions.
CAT Previous Year Question Papers, Answer With Solution:
CAT 2008    |    CAT 2007    |    CAT 2006    |    CAT 2005   |    CAT 2004
Section 1: Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension CAT 2017: Quiz 1 CAT 2017: Quiz 2
Section 2: Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning CAT 2017: Quiz 1 CAT 2017: Quiz 2
Section 3: Quantitative Ability CAT 2017: Quiz-1 CAT 2017: Quiz-2