CMAT 2021: National Testing Agency makes bizarre announcements; Pushes Exam Date to May, Results to July!

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February 23, 2021
NTA has announced bizarre changes in the CMAT 2021 exam dates with glaring anomalies between NTA Official Website and in its own Notifications. In a big glitch, while the NTA Notification dated February 12 suggests CMAT Exam Date as “March/April 2021”, the NTA Website displays CMAT 2021 exam date as “May 8, 2021” and CMAT Result Date is shown as “July 22.” This raises several questions about the conduct and credibility of CMAT exam
NTA Making Bizarre Changes in CMAT 2021 Exam Dates

Important Update: February 24, 2021, 5.00 PM
After publication of this article on February 23, 2021 at 11.40 AM, NTA has removed CMAT 2021 Exam Dates and Result Dates from the “Active Exam” tab/page on its website. NTA Website says CMAT Exam Dates and Result Dates “to be decided later”. We hope NTA publishes correct information soon..

National Testing Agency (NTA) has announced bizarre changes in the Common Management Admission Test (CMAT)exam dates with glaring anomaliesbetween NTA Official Website and in its own Notifications. In a big glitch, while the NTA Notification dated February 12 suggests CMAT Exam Date as “March/April 2021”, the NTA Website displays CMAT 2021 exam date as “May 8, 2021”. What’s more bizarre is that CMAT Result Date is shown as “July 22”! This raises several questions about the conduct and credibility of CMAT exam. is publishing both these sources in this article with a hope that NTA and AICTE leadership take note and resolve this anomaly at the earliest.

Before we progress, here is a quick primer on CMAT. Initiated by regulatory body AICTE, CMAT is one of the top MBA entrance exams leading to admission in 1000+ MBA and PGDM B-schools. Great Lakes Chennai, GIM Goa,Welingkar Mumbai, BIMTECH,IMT Nagpur, SDMIMD Mysore are some of the prominent B-schools that accept CMAT scores for admissions. CMAT was launched by AICTE in 2012 and till 2018 exam was conducted by AICTE. But in 2019, NTA was given the responsibility to hold CMAT. CMAT exam is taken by more than 50,000 candidates. Any changes in CMAT exam dates impact hundreds of B-schools and thousands of students.  

MBA/PGDM Admissions Open 2021 | Apply Now!
BITS Pilani MBA in Business Analytics WeSchool (Welingkar) Mumbai Admissions
BIMTECH Greater Noida, PGDM Admissions IFMR GSB-KREA University, MBA Admissions
Lexicon MILE Pune, PGDM Admissions 2021 Great Lakes PGPM & PGDM 2021
LIBA Chennai, PGDM Admissions 2021 ITM Navi Mumbai PGDM Admissions 2021
UPES University MBA Admission Open 2021 IMT Hyderabad PGDM Admissions 2021
MDI Murshidabad, PGDM Admission Open  SOIL Gurgaon 1 Year PGPM & 2 Year PGDM 
IBA Bangalore, PGDM Admissions Open JAIPURIA Group, PGDM Admissions open
NDIM New Delhi, PGDM Admissions 2021-23 IMT NAGPUR PGDM ADMISSIONS 2021-2023

Now, let’s review frequent changes NTA is making in CMAT 2021 Schedule and has put the future of MBA aspirants at stake:

Sr No
Announcement/Notification by NTA
CMAT 2021 Registration Last Date
CMAT 2021 Exam Date
Released on December 23, 2020 at
January 22, 2021
February 22/27, 2021
Released on February 6, 2021on NTA Website (
February 6, 2021
No information about CMAT exam date
Released on February 12, 2021 on NTA Website (
March 1, 2021
Exam Dates Postponed to March “Last Week/Early April 2021”
Information Displayed as on 23.2.2021on CMAT official website, under “Active Exams” section
23 January 2021
Exam Date: May 8, 2021
Result Date: July 22, 2021

As is evident from table above, NTA has changed CMAT 2021 exam dates many times. What’s puzzling is that while NTA Notification (Image 1 below) dated February 12, 2021 mentions CMAT exam dates as “Last Week/Early April 2021”, CMAT website (Image 2 below) mentions CMAT Exam Date as May 8, 2021 and Result Date as July 22, 2021!

Image 1 – NTA CMAT Notification dated Feb 12, available on NTA website

nta cmat

Image 2 –“Active Exams” tab on NTA website, accessed by on 23.2.2021

nta cmat

CMAT 2021 aspirants and B-schools accepting CMAT score are wondering why both the dates are different on same website

CMAT in May? Delay in Admission 2021
If indeed CMAT 2021 is held on May 8 and the result is declared on July 22, both CMAT aspirants and CMAT score accepting B-schools will be adversely impacted.

Since almost all top 100 B-schools start their academic session in June/July, CMAT result announcement in July will delay Admission 2021 season.

What’s worse, some candidates may deicide to completely skip taking CMAT 2021 exam due to these flip flops. This will result in drop in MBA/PGDM admissions 2021. 

MBA/PGDM Admissions Open 2021 | Apply Now!
BITSoM Mumbai, MBA Admissions 2021 IFMR GSB-KREA University, MBA Admissions
LIBA Chennai, PGDM Admissions 2021 LBSIM Delhi, PGDM Admissions 2021 Open
BIMTECH Greater Noida, PGDM Admissions XISS Ranchi,PGDM Admission 2021
IMS Unison University MBA Admissions 2021 Sri Balaji University, Pune MBA Admissions
JAGSOM (Formerly IFIM) Bangalore Admission IPE Hyderabad PGDM​ Admissions 2021
SDA Bocconi Asia Center, IMB Batch 2021-23 SDMIMD Mysore, PGDM Admissions 2021
Amrita Coimbatore, MBA Admissions Open LEXICON MILE Pune, PGDM Admissions Open
DSB-VIPS Technical Campus, PGDM 2021-23 NBS Ahmedabad, PGDM Admissions Open
JIMS Rohini, Sec-5, PGDM Admissions 2021-23 NDIM New Delhi, PGDM Admissions 2021-23

Top MBA Colleges Accepting CMAT 2021
CMAT exam scores are accepted by PGDM B-schools, and MBA Departments of Public Universities and Private. Here is a list of top colleges accepting CMAT 2021:

Sr No 1
Type of the Institute
Great Lakes Chennai
Private PGDM B-School
Private PGDM B-School
JBIMS Mumbai
Mumbai University B-School
4. K J Somaiya Institute of Management, Mumbai
Somaiya Vidya Vihar Private University
Welingkar Mumbai
Private PGDM B-School
Mumbai University B-School
Savitribai Phule Pune University 
IFMR Graduate School of Business at KREA University, Sri city
KREA - Private University
BIMTECH Greater Noida
Private PGDM B-School
IMT Nagpur
Private PGDM B-School
Private PGDM B-School
VIT Business School, Vellore
VIT Private University

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CMAT: Faltering execution leads to drop in test takers
CMAT was known as AICTE CMAT till 2018 as it was AICTE which conducted this credible exam. The exam was conducted twice in a year – September and February till 2015 and then as yearly exam in the month of January from 2016 onwards. In 2019, as part of the larger consolidation of all entrance exams into single agency, NTA was assigned the task of conducting CMAT. Since then, CMAT exam is losing its focus and relevance.

The delay of CMAT 2021 to May is confounding, as during last five years CMAT was conducted in the month of January. This is the first time that CMAT is being conducted so late. Besides, there were more than 1.5 lakh CMAT test takers when AICTE used to conduct CMAT twice a year. This number is gradually coming down.

Table 1: CMAT Exam Dates

CMAT Exam Year
CMAT exam dates
CMAT 2014
Sep 2013 &Feb 2014
CMAT 2015
Sep 2014 &Feb 2015
CMAT 2016
Jan 17, 2016
CMAT 2017
Jan 28, 2017
CMAT 2018
Jan 20, 2018
CMAT 2019
Jan 28, 2019
CMAT 2020
Jan 28, 2020
CMAT 2021
May 8, 2021 (announced)

Source: Research

Table 2: CMAT Number of Test Takes

CMAT exam year
Total Test takers in the year
CMAT 2014
CMAT 2015
CMAT 2016
CMAT 2017
CMAT 2018
CMAT 2019
CMAT 2020
CMAT 2021

Source: Research

Time for AICTE to intervene…
If CAT 2020 could be conducted onNovember 29, 2020, which is as per previous year’s schedule, on behalf of MBA Community is asking why CMAT 2021 can’t be conducted in time. Flip flops on exam dates and delay in exam will causesome students to drop the exam, thus adversely impacting MBA/PGDM Admissions 2021.

Perhaps, it is time for AICTE leadership to step in and keep a close watch on CMAT 2021 to save the candidates as well as the B-schools from undue stress and delays.

Stay tuned to for more updates on CMAT 2021