XAT 2021

Updated on
Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Xavier Aptitude Test, popularly known as XAT, is one of the largest MBA Entrance Exam for Admission to XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB, TAPMI and 150+ MBA Colleges in India. Every year more than 1,00,000 candidates from all disciplines including Engineering, Commerce, Humanities, Science, Law apply and appear in XAT exam to get into of the various MBA programs offered by these top B-schools. Over the years, XAT has become an easier test but to get a high percentile (90+) in XAT requires 4-5 months of serious preparation.


Based on past trends, XAT in 2021 will be held on Sunday January 3, 2021. XAT is conducted annually by XLRI Jamshedpur and is therefore known as XLRI-XAT. XLRI will release XAT Notification in the third week of August 2020. Immediately after the release of notification, registration process for XAT will begin. In this article, you will read all key points to plan your XAT 2021 journey, including important dates, syllabus & pattern, how to prepare, past XAT toppers interviews and much more. You will also find important links to Free XAT Mock Tests and genuine Past XAT Test Papers released by XLRI. So, read through the article till the end.


What is XAT Exam?
XAT full form is Xavier Aptitude Test. It is the Admission Test for admission to MBA/PGDM programs in XLRI and other top MBA colleges like SPJIMR Mumbai, IMT Ghaziabad, XIMB Bhubaneswar, TAPMI Manipal and 150 other top MBA colleges in India. XLRI will offer admission on the basis of XAT 2021 only and will not accept any other test score. There are more than 70 cities and more than 100 venues where XAT 2021 will be conducted in India. 

MBA/PGDM Admissions 2020: Application Deadline closing soon | Apply Now!
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IMT Ghaziabad 15 Months Full-Time PGDM Executive IMT Nagpur, PGDM Admissions 2020

XAT 2021: Key Changes in Test Pattern
Following changes have been introduced in XAT by XLRI:

  • XAT is now changed to a computer based test from paper based test
  • Single slot exam
  • Test timing changed - 9.30AM to 12.30PM from 10AM to 1 PM
  • Total questions increased to 100 from 99
  • No Essay Writing test
  • NAT Questions without negative marking introduced
  • All questions are of MCQ type
  • GK section not counted for percentile calculation
  • ¼ Negative Marking for wrong answer
  • Visually impaired candidates with scribe are given additional 25 minutes to solve Part 1 of  the exam
  • Marks for every correct answer : 1
  • No Negative marking for General Knowledge section in part-2
  • All the MCQ type questions have five options with one correct option

Xavier Aptitude Test 2021: Highlights & Key Features
Following are the salient features of XAT with details on XAT exam date 2021, XAT Notification, XAT eligibility among other key points

Test Conducting Body

Xavier School of Management (XLRI) Jamshedpur

Number of MBA colleges under XAT


Mode of Exam

Computer Based Online Exam

Application Process

Online; Simultaneously apply for entrance exam and for XLRI PGDM Programs

Application Fee


XAT Full Form

Xavier Aptitude Test

Cut offs for XLRI

96 to 97 XAT percentile

Total Questions in the Exam


Sectional Division of Test

4 Sections with different number of Questions in Each Section.

Section which is not counted to prepare merit for shortlisting


Exam Difficulty Level

Moderate to Difficult

XLRI conducts XAT in the month of January every year. After releasing the XAT Notification 2021 and finalizing the XAT exam date 2021, XLRI will announce the complete schedule and all XAT 2021 important dates.  Although XLRI will accept only XAT score, the other associated top MBA colleges will accept other exam scores also. XLRI has been conducting XAT for more than 60 years. Earlier it was paper based test, but since 2018 XAT has become a computer based test


XLRI & Other Top MBA Colleges Cut offs, Fee, Intake
Check the fee, number of seats and programmes offered by XLRI and other MBA colleges accepting score of Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) in the table given below:

Institute Name

Fee (Rs.in Lakhs)*


Flagship PGDM Programme

XLRI Jamshedpur








XIM Bhubaneswar




IMT Ghaziabad




IRMA Anand (Gujarat)




MICA Ahmedabad




TAPMI Manipal




*May increase for 2021-23 batch


XAT 2021 Important Dates
XLRI will announce the complete XAT schedule in the third week of August 2020 with XAT application fee, XAT admit Card date, XAT result date among other XAT 2021 important dates. The tentative dates are as under:

XAT Schedule 2021

Important Dates

XAT Notification Date

August 20, 2020

Date for Registration start

August 23, 2020

Last date for Registration & Application submission online without late fee

November 30, 2020

Registration Last date with late fee

December 10, 2020

Admit Card download Start Date

December 20, 2020

Last date to Download Admit Card

January 3, 2021

Exam Date

January 3, 2021 (9.30 AM to 12.30 PM)

Result date

By January 31, 2021 (Expect on Jan 25)

Exam Details: Pattern, Questions, Scoring
XAT is online computer based test. The aggregate maximum marks in XAT are 100 for 100 questions divided in 4 sections. Each correct answer is awarded +1 mark and each wrong answer will attract the penalty of -0.25 mark. Total time duration for the exam is 3 hours. XAT 2021 exam pattern is as below:

Sections in Exam

Number of questions

Overall Time Duration


75 Total MCQs

165 Minutes

Verbal and Logical Ability


No Sectional Time Limit

Decision Making


No Sectional Time Limit

Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation


No Sectional Time Limit


25 Total MCQs

15 Minutes

General Knowledge



Total questions (Part 1 + Part 2)



Candidate are allowed to go to Part 2 after completing the time duration of 165 minutes in Part 1 Read More


6 Steps Admission Process to xlri through xat 2021


XAT Eligibility
XAT eligibility criteria 2021 need only a pass in your bachelor’s degree while other exams need a particular percentage of marks. The eligibility to appear in XAT is probably the simplest one among all the National Level MBA entrance exams. Read More


How to Apply for XAT?
The exam registration process is online and can be completed in six simple steps at official XAT website. It starts on August 23, 2020 and will close on November 30, 2020 without late fee. Read More


How to Prepare for XAT?
XAT exam full form – Xavier Aptitude Test comprises 3 major sections which are very important for shortlisting and determining your merit position. The 4th section on GK is not taken in account to determine the merit. The XAT preparation should be in accordance with revised pattern of entrance exam and as per its syllabus. The exam calls for special preparation for Decision Making section apart from other XAT topics. You need to focus on following while preparing for XAT:

  1. Follow the XAT Pattern: Thoroughly understand the structure, number and type of questions  
  2. Scan thoroughly XAT Syllabus
  3. Decide, if you need Online XAT preparation with coaching or wish to self-prepare for the exam
  4. Get best Books for XAT preparation
  5. Attempt XAT Mock Tests & XAT Previous Test papers
  6. Devise strategy to crack XAT with 95+ percentile Read More

XAT Score Accepting Colleges
There are 150+ MBA colleges who will accept XAT score. Some of the top MBA colleges accepting XAT score for MBA admission 2021 are:

  • XLRI Jamshedpur
  • SPJIMR Mumbai
  • IMT Ghaziabad
  • XIM Bhubaneswar
  • TAPMI Manipal
  • XIME Bangalore, Kochi, Chennai
  • BIMTECH, Greater Noida
  • FORE School of Management, New Delhi
  • GIM Goa
  • Great Lakes, Chennai
  • LIBA Chennai Read More

XAT Date for Notification 2021
XAT exam information with exam date, and other related dates will be released on XAT 2021 website in August 2020 third week. XAT 2021 Notification containing exam details, exam format, exam centres and all the XAT exam dates 2021 will be released in the leading news papers also. All the exam dates with other information and FAQs are available on MBAUniverse.com XAT website.


It is expected that around 1 lakh candidates will appear in XAT as the number of candidates going for XAT registration 2021 are expected to increase again. Over the years the candidates applying for Xavier Aptitude Test have increased as the data for past XAT exam registration also reveal this fact.


XLRI-XAT: Searching for Cream of Talent
XAT MBA entrance exam attracts the cream of talent in India. The best talent of country aspires for XAT accepting colleges. The admission to XLRI is possible only through high scores in XAT MBA entrance exam. Return on investment at XLRI is high. 2 years fee and other expenses at SPJIMR, XLRI come to around Rs.16 to 20 lakhs.  Top recruiters from India and the world eye these institutes for their placement season. The offered salary packages go as high as Rs.25 to 35 lakhs per annum to the students of XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT among others who offer admission on the basis of XAT exam scores.


XAT 2021: Offers Level Playing Field
XLRI conducts XAT on behalf of XAMI.  XLRI believes that single testing session with same difficulty level will provide level playing field to all the XAT test takers without any discrimination. Around 90 thousand to 1 lakh candidates explore admission opportunities in XLRI and other member and associate MBA colleges accepting XAT scores.


Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT full form) is the second largest MBA entrance test to pursue MBA/PGDM in 11 member institutes and 140 Associate institutes accepting XAT scores. Till 2017 XAT remained a paper based test. With effect from 2018, XAT has become an online computer based test. XLRI – the XAT conducting authority has announced the XAT 2021 exam date as January 3, 2021. 


The XAT date is same across the country. On a single date, the exam will be held in 46 XAT test cities in India. However, the 2 cities abroad namely, Kathmandu and Dubai are no longer the XAT test cities.


XAT in 2021: Summary

  • XAT is one of the oldest MBA entrance exams being held for last 60 years.
  • XAT date is January 3, 2021
  • XAT pattern is now changed to online computer based test
  • XAT will be of  3 hours duration from 9.30 AM to 12.30PM
  • XLRI Jamshedpur conducts XAT every year in the month of January
  • XAT question paper is divided in 4 sections
  • Only 3 sections in XAT are taken into account to calculate the XAT percentile score and XAT merit list for written exam
  • Total questions are 99 and are of MCQ type
  • There is no Essay Writing Test in 2021 XAT Test
  • Apart from XAT registration and filling up the XAT application, candidates need to apply separately to their preferred MBA colleges including XLRI, SPJIMR and others.
  • Correct answer for each MCQ in XAT will get 1 mark
  • Negative marking 0.25 (¼) for MCQs from Sl no.1 to 75
  • No negative marking for MCQs from Sl No. 76 to 100 (GK questions)
  • Each question in XAT is followed by 5 answer options

Register for XAT exam updates

Exam dates and schedule

  • Notification date: 20-08-2020 10:00 AM (Tentative)
    Registration – Online: 23-08-2020 10:00 AM to 30-11-2020 05:00 PM (Tentative)
    Admit Card Release: 20-12-2020 10:00 AM (Tentative)
    Exam Date & Timings- Online: Sunday, January 3, 2021 - 09:30 to 12:30 (Tentative)
    Result: 31-01-2021 08:00 PM (Confirm)

XAT toppers

Saswat Gupta, Delhi
XAT 2018 - 99.98 Percentile ....
Read more
Kumar Ravi, Munger
XAT 2018 - 98.80 Percentile ....
Read more
Rajat Tomar , Uttar Pradesh
XAT 2016 - 98.67 Percentile ....
Read more
Jhalak Agrawal , Mathura
XAT 2017 - 98.23 Percentile ....
Read more
Mukesh Goyal, Punjab
XAT 2017 - 99.80 Percentile ....
Read more
Shekhar Kapoor,
XAT 2016 - 99.06 Percentile ....
Read more

XAT Eligibility Criteria 2021

XAT eligibility criteria 2021 for XLRI-XAT exam to be held on January 3, 2021, need only a pass in your bachelor’s degree while other exams need minimum 50 percent marks to apply for the exam. XAT 2021 eligibility is probably the simplest one among all the National Level MBA entrance exams.


Read more

XAT Application Form 2021

XAT Application 2021 Form filling process starts on August 23, 2020 on official XAT exam website. The XAT Application form 2021 last date for XAT online application form 2021 submission is November 30, 2020 without payment of late fee.


Read more

XAT Registration 2021

XAT Registration 2021 process was closed on December 10, 2019 at midnight. The last date for XAT 2020 registration was extended to December 10, 2019 from earlier November 30 without late fee payment. XLRI has waived off the XAT 2020 late fee payment for registration. Applicants could apply for XAT 2020 with basic payment of fee. You could register and apply for XAT 2020 by making a payment of Rs.1700/- towards XAT registration fee instead of Rs.2000/- and to XLRI by making a payment of Rs.300/- per program instead of Rs.500/-. The extra amount of Rs.300 and Rs.200/- was the late fee which was waived.   


Read more

XAT Admit Card 2021

XAT 2021 Admit card release date is December 20, 2020. XLRI will release the XAT Admit Card 2021 on official XAT exam website in the afternoon on December 20. 


 XLRI which is conducting XAT 2021 exam on January 3, 2021 will release the XAT 2021 Hall Ticket on XAT official website - onlinexat.  The XAT Admit Card 2021 Download process is available from December 21, 2020 till January 3, 2021, the XAT 2021 exam day. The XAT Admit card 2021 download will be available online only and can be completed from official XAT exam website. 


Eligibility to Download XAT Admit Card 2021

Read more

XAT Exam Pattern 2021

Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) 2021 will be conducted by XLRI Jamshedpur for MBA admission 2021 on behalf of XAMI on January 3, 2021 from 9.30 AM to 12.30 PM in a single session. XAT 2021 Exam Pattern is the Online computer based test. XAT 2021 will be the 4th computer based test in the 60+ years history of XAT exam. Till 2017, XAT Exam Pattern remained a Paper Based Test. 


XAT Exam Pattern 2021
XAT Exam pattern 2021 has been revised. Now the XAT 2021 exam pattern will consist of four sections instead of earlier five. Number of questions in revised XAT pattern 2021 will be 100.  Below is shared the key changes in XAT 2021 exam pattern:


Following changes have been introduced in XAT 2021 exam by XLRI:

Read more

GK for XAT 2021

General Knowledge (GK) for XAT 2021 will be the 4th section in the exam. GK has become an important section now due to the fact that it is now an integral part of XAT exam 2021. In the changed XAT exam pattern, the 5th section on Essay Writing Test has been removed from XAT 2021 exam. So, alongwith other three sections, XAT GK questions will also play an important role in XAT 2021 online computer based test.


XLRI Admission 2021: GK Plays Important Role
XAT GK questions are placed in a separate section. The XAT GK section is not taken into account for percentile calculation but XLRI Jamshedpur uses it as a good source to assess candidates’ performance in the shortlisting and final selection round process.  


Read more

XAT Syllabus 2021

XAT 2021 exam syllabus is divided into 4 sections - Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension; Decision Making, Quantitative Aptitude and General Awareness. Except the General Awareness, all the other three are core sections that determine the XAT percentile score as well as XLRI shortlisting criteria. The score of General Awareness section is taken into account at the time of personal Interview round.


Read more

XAT Answer Key 2020

XAT 2020 Answer Keys have been released on January 10, 2020 as already predicted by MBAUniverse.com. Along with the XAT 2020 answer keys, XLRI has released the XAT 2020 question paper with objection form to challenge the official answer key.


The last date to challenge the XAT 2020 official answers and file objection online is January 11, 2020 till midnight. According to XLRI notification dated January 10, 2020, “Candidate response sheet along with correct answers is available for XAT test takers.   If you have any objections with the answers, you may raise them through the online objection form by 11-Jan-2020 (23:55 hrs).”


How to download XAT 2020 Response Sheet and Answer keys

Read more

XAT Preparation 2021

A well planned XAT Preparation 2021 for the XAT exam, to be conducted by XLRI Jamshedpur on January 3, 2021 as computer based test can get you admission in prestigious XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB,TAPMI, XIME, BIMTECH among other top B-schools. It is high time that XAT 2021 preparation must be started without any further delay as per the revised XAT exam pattern. 


In view of the experts and past XAT toppers, the XAT Exam preparation requires a well-planned approach with time management. The XAT preparation 2021 should be based on following important aspects and must be completed at least a fortnight before the XAT 2021 exam date.

Read more

XAT Exam Centres 2021

XAT 2021 will be held in 72 test cities across the country at more than 100 test venues. There may  not be International test cities for XAT 2021. Earlier XAT was used to be conducted in Dubai (UAE) and Kathmandu (Nepal) also. In view of rising number of applicants, XLRI has increased the number of test centres to 72 from earlier 46 XAT exam cities. 


The XAT 2021 test cities are spread across the country. It is expected that in comparison to last year, number of XAT 2021 test venues may increase further to accommodate the rising number of test takers. The important details about the XAT test venues in these XAT test cities 2021 are available below. The name of the XAT 2021 test centre will be indicated in the XAT Admit Card.


Read more

XAT Selection Procedure 2020

Selection procedure of XLRI-XAT is more governed by the admission policy of XLRI Jamshedpur and other 150 member and associate B-schools accepting XAT scores in their admission process.


XAT 2021 score is the mandatory requirement in the XLRI selection process for its highly ranked PGDM programme. Xavier School of Management (XLRI) Jamshedpur will shortlist you on the basis of your XAT score immediately after the XAT result is declared in the last week of January 2021. The first step to participate in XLRI 2021 Selection procedure is to apply for XAT and to apply simultaneously to XLRI Jamshedpur through the same application form. The admission application process 2021 at XLRI Jamshedpur closes on November 30, 2020. 


Read more

XAT Previous Year Question Papers

XLRI has released four XAT Previous Year Question Papers on the XAT exam official website. In each subsequent year of XAT exam, one recent XAT previous question paper is added to this list. However, these XAT question papers released by XLRI are without answer key. The question papers are from the XAT year 2015 to 2018 and can be attempted any number of times freely by anyone.


XAT previous year question papers are the best guide to prepare for the XAT question paper 2021. XLRI release the XAT Previous Year papers after the beginning of application process in August. XAT 2021 exam date is January 3, 2021. 


Read more

XAT Analysis 2020

XAT 2020 Analysis: Tough Decision Making, Quant Moderate

The XAT 2020 got over at 12.30 PM on Sunday, January 5, 2020 with many substantial changes introduced in the exam like NAT questions. This year the Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) began at 9.30 AM with a time duration of 3 hours instead of earlier three and half hours as a computer based test. 


XAT 2020 has been reported a bit more difficult exam with tricky Decision Making and it is expected that XAT cut offs may remain low in view of the difficulty level of the exam.


Read more

XAT Mock Test

XAT Mock Tests for XAT 2021 will be released by XLRI in the 3rd week of December 2020. The official XAT Mock test is the best guide to prepare for the XAT exam. XLRI will release the official XAT Mock Test for XAT 2021 a few days before the XAT exam day of January 3, 2021. There are  four XAT mock test papers available on official XAT exam website without answer options. 


XAT is an important MBA entrance test leading to MBA admission 2021 in XLRI, SPJIMR, IMT, XIMB, TAPMI, XIME and other 150 MBA colleges in India.  


Read more

XAT Result 2021

XAT 2021 exam result date is January 31, 2021 as announced by XLRI. However, XAT 2021 result is expected much earlier, even before January 20, 2021 as happened last year when XAT result was declared on January 16, 2020.


Despite announcing the XAT exam result date, XLRI declares the XAT result more than one or two weeks before the officially announced date. You can login to XAT official website and download XAT Scorecard after XAT exam result declaration. XAT Scorecard doesn’t display your XAT raw Score but XAT Percentage and XAT Percentile score only.


XAT 2021 Result: Important Dates

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XAT 2021 Cutoff for XLRI, SPJIMR and top B-schools

XAT 2021 cut offs will be released immediately after the XAT result 2021 is declared. It is expected that XAT Result 2021 will be declared in January 2021 second week. XLRI will also release the XAT Shortlist of candidates for admission 2021 for different XLRI programmes with XAT sectional and overall cut offs.

  • XLRI XAT 2021 Cut off for flagship PGDM-BM is expected at 95%ile
  • XLRI XAT 2021 Cut off for PGDM-HRM is expected at 93%ile

XLRI Admission 2021 Shortlist
Based on past trends, the number of candidates to be shortlisted for admission 2021 are expected as below:

Read more

XAT Essay Topics and Essay Writing Tips

XLRI has deleted the Essay Writing Test section from XAT 2020 exam. It is possib le that the Essay Writing test in XAT may be reintroduced in 2020. The list of XAT essay topics for consists of XAT essay topics which appeared in past Essay writing tests in XAT.  XAT Essay topics are mostly based on abstract ideas as appeared in past. The Essay Writing Test in XAT may be replaced b y Writing Ability Teast (WAT) in the final selection round by XLRI.  

Read more

XAT Percentile Predictor 2020

XAT 2021 Percentile Predictor becomes live on the XAT exam day on January 3, 2021. After coming out of XAT 2021 testing hall, you will be anxious to know your XAT percentile and your chances to get into  XLRI, SPJIMR, XIMB, IMT among others top MBA colleges accepting XAT exam score.


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Question and Answers

  • Answered by : MBAUniverse Editorial Team on Monday, August 19, 2019, 05:37 PM

    XLRI Jamshedpur is expected to start XAT exam 2020 application process on or around August 22, 2019. You need to fill up and submit XAT application form online only.  

  • Answered by : MBAUniverse Editorial Team on Monday, August 19, 2019, 05:36 PM

    Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) is the mandatory entrance exam for admission to XLRI Jamshedpur. It is now a computer based test of 3 hours duration. Next XAT is XAT 2020 which will be held on Sunday, January 5, 2020.