CAT 2020 Official Mock Test Released by IIM Indore: Suspense over total number of questions remains – check changes


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November 6, 2020
IIM Indore has released the official CAT 2020 Mock Test on after a delay of about 15 days with reduced test duration, sectional time limit and many other changes. The Mock test is meant to familiarize the Candidates with different types of questions generally asked in CAT (MCQs/ Non-MCQs) and the exam console. Read the article below what are the key changes introduced in CAT exam by IIMs
CAT 2020 Official Mock Test Released

Official CAT 2020 Mock Test is released by IIM Indore with many changes to enable the candidates to familiarize themselves with different types of questions generally asked in CAT (MCQs/ Non-MCQs) and the exam console. Releasing the CAT Mock Test 2020, IIM Indore has clarified, “The objective of this Mock Test is not to disclose the exam pattern for CAT 2020 and the actual exam may or may not contain similar type or number of questions.” Read this article to know what are the key changes introduced by IIMs in CAT exam and what are the changes that IIMs have not shared in the CAT official Mock Test :

Official CAT Mock Test 2020: 10 Key Changes

  1. CAT 2020 official Mock Test is designed with a total duration of 120 minutes for the non-PwD candidate
  2. PwD candidates will have the option to complete the entire test with all three sections, within a maximum of 160 minutes.
  3. The Test is divided into three sections - I. Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), II. Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR) and III. Quantitative Ability (QA). These sections will be administered in the CAT question paper in the same order as above
  4. The question paper will have a mix of Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) type with options and non-MCQ type
  5. The names of the three sections are displayed on top bar of the screen. The section you are currently viewing is highlighted
  6. The time allotted to each section is 40 minutes. On completion of 40 minutes, the clock will stop, the particular section will be locked and the responses to the section will be auto-submitted. You will then need to move to the next section and start answering the next set of questions.
  7. On submission of all three sections a summary of your answers will be displayed on your screen.
  8. PwD candidate will have maximum 53 minutes and 20 seconds to attempt each section. They will have an option to submit the answers of a section at any point of time after the completion of 40 minutes.
  9. Each Section is based on the pattern followed over the last few years.
  10. The actual CAT 2020 exam may or may not contain similar type or number of questions 
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CAT Exam Changes: Not Divulged by IIMs
Candidates were anticipating more than what is revealed in the CAT Mock test. However, IIM Indore has not obliged the CAT aspirants with following changes in CAT pattern:

No Change in Total Number of Questions: It was anticipated that official CAT Mock would be released with reduced number of total questions on the expected CAT 2020 exam pattern. But IIM Indore has kept the same number of 100 total questions in CAT Mock test despite the reduction in the CAT test duration to 120 minutes from 180 minutes earlier.

No Change in Sectional Composition of Questions: Each section in CAT Mock has same composition of MCQ and Non-MCQ questions as was there in previous years. VARC has 34 questions; DILR has 32 questions and Quant section consists of 34 questions. The sectional composition has same ratio of MCQs and Non-MCQs as appeared in previous years.

IIMs do not reveal the exact number of questions in CAT exam and as such IIM Indore has also refrained from divulging this vital information. According CAT 2020 Convener, Prof. Harshal Lowalekar, faculty at IIM Indore"CAT generally does not reveal the number or type of questions or the paper pattern. In fact, the CAT pattern is regularly changed so that the exam does not become predictable.”

What to Expect in Actual CAT 2020 Question Paper? Experts offer answers
India’s Top CAT Experts like Arun Sharma, Arks Srinivas after analysing the key changes in CAT 2020 exam have shared with the following changes as expected in CAT Question paper

1. CAT 2020 Expected Pattern
According to Arks Srinivas, IIM Calcutta alumnus & National Head MBA Prep, (India & Abroad) at Career Launcher, given the drop in test duration, the number of questions may therefore be proportionately decreased. Srinivas says that there is a good chance that the pattern could be one of the following:                

  •  25 questions each in (VARC, DILR and QA)
  •  24 questions in VARC, 22 questions in DILR, 24 questions in QA

Arun Sharma IIM Bangalore alumnus, Founder, Mindworkzz and Bestselling Author says, “I expect 33% drop in questions. This will mean there will be appx 66 questions in CAT 2020 - However, be prepared for anything between 60-70 questions in the test, with maybe an even mix amongst the 3 sections (like 22-22-22) or maybe a 23-20-23.”

2. Expected Number of Questions in CAT 2020
Section wise number of questions in CAT 2020 will obviously be reduced with the reduced number of overall questions. However,

During last year, CAT test paper was divided into three sections with VARC 34 questions, DILR 32 questions and Quant 34 questions, making a total of 100 questions. The sectional composition of questions in CAT 2020 is expected to change substantially.

Based on past trends and changes in overall and sectional time slots, CAT experts expect 25% to 30% drop in number of questions across the sections. Besides, their division in MCQs and Non-MCQs in each section is also expected to be reduced. The sectional composition of questions in CAT 2020 is likely to be as under:

Time Limit (in minutes)
No of Questions (Expected)
Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension
25 – 26
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning
25 – 24
Quantitative Ability
25 - 26

3. Be ready for any surprises!
CAT exam over the years is known for surprises and twists in its exam pattern and twists. CAT 2020 in a changed pattern may come with many surprises as under:

  • Number of Non-MCQs may go down
  • Difficulty level may go down as the sectional time duration is reduced to 40 Minutes
  • Higher score can be obtained by attempting fewer questions
  • With CAT being conducted in three slots, score normalization may benefit many due to varying difficulty level
  • Arithmetic may dominate the Quant section
  • Gap between RC and VA questions may narrow down

CAT Official Mock Test in Previous Years
Since 2015, Official CAT Mock test has remained a full length replica CAT question paper. It used to be released a month before the actual CAT exam by IIMs for the benefit of CAT test takers. The Mock contained almost same number and type of total and section wise questions as you could expect in actual CAT exam.  For the first time in  2015, IIM Ahmedabad included Non-MCQs in CAT exam and released the CAT mock test on the same pattern with division of questions in MCQ and Non-MCQ type. Similar pattern has since been followed by all the subsequent CAT conducting IIMs and each official Mock Test released by them reflected the correct picture of forthcoming CAT exam.

This is the first time that CAT Mock test has refrained from releasing the expected composition of CAT question paper with tentative number of questions for the CAT 2020 exam despite the fact that the time duration for CAT exam is reduced to 2 hours from earlier 3 hours and the sectional time limit is also reduced to 40 minutes each from 60 minutes each.

It is advisable not to get misled by any type of misleading information making rounds in social media, instead visit the CAT official website or regarding the right information.

CAT 2020 scores will be accepted by 20 IIMs, FMS Delhi, SPJIMR Mumbai, MDI Gurgaon, IMI New Delhi, IMT Ghaziabad, Great Lakes, LIBA, NITIE Mumbai, JBIMS Mumbai, TAPMI Manipal, XIM Bhubaneshwar among others for admission to MBA/PGDM  2021-23.

Stay tuned to for more updates on CAT Mock Test 2020