XAT Preparation 2024

Register now for latest MBA Exam & Admissions Updates

Updated on
May 18, 2023

XAT 2024 Preparation: How to Prepare for XAT? Key Preparation Topics, Time Management, Strategy


XAT 2024 Exam date is January 7, 2024. XAT exam will be a computer based test of 3 hours & 10 minute duration from 2 PM to 5.10 PM and will consist of 101 questions. A well planned XAT 2024 Preparation for the XAT exam, can get you admission in prestigious XLRI, IMI, IMT, LBSIM, XIMB,TAPMI, XIME, BIMTECH among other top B-schools. Your XAT 2024 preparation should be as per the revised XAT exam pattern and syllabus as this XLRI has added Essay Writing Test in XAT 2024 exam. 


Major Focus of Preparation: First 3 Sections
Now, XAT exam 2024 is divided in five sections out of which the score of three major sections on VALR, DM, QADI will be counted for percentile calculation and subsequent shortlisting process by XLRI. The fourth & fifth section on GK & Essay Writing will not be counted in merit list preparation by XLRI.


So, unless you score high in the first three sections, you may not be shortlisted by XLRI for final admission round to its PGDM-BM or PGDM-HRM programmes. Accordingly, you need to prepare well for XAT 2024 with equal focus on all the three sections and should devise the best XAT preparation strategy to devote time to improve upon your weaknesses and further strengthen your strong areas. 

XAT 2023

XAT 2024 Preparation: Key Components
In view of the experts and past XAT toppers, the XAT Exam 2024 preparation requires a well-planned approach with time management. The XAT MBA preparation 2024 should be based on following important aspects and must be completed at least a fortnight before the XAT 2024 exam date.

  1. Understand XAT 2024 Exam Pattern & Syllabus to know XAT exam 2024 preparation topics
  2. Get the best Preparation Material
  3. Prepare with Best preparation  Books
  4. Take Mocks to check your current XAT Exam Preparation Level
  5. Focus on section wise Preparation concentrating more on Decision Making
  6. Prepare XAT Exam Preparation Time Table
  7. XAT Exam 2024 Preparation Online or offline with or without Coaching? Make a choice
  8. XAT MBA preparation tips from toppers & experts

You need to design your own XAT exam preparation strategy which should be well defined. One of the important points which differentiate XAT exam 2024 preparation from other exams is the Decision Making Preparation for XAT exam and the strategy to prepare for this important XAT section.  


1. XAT 2024 Preparation as per Exam Pattern 
Your XAT 2024 preparation may not take off, unless you are aware what are the key components and sections in XAT exam, what are the topics on which questions are asked in XAT exam. It is like beating about the bush as you will not be able to know how to start XAT preparation online or offline nor it will be possible to collect the best XAT MBA preparation material.


1.1 XAT Exam Pattern
Before moving on your preparation path, it is very important to understand the XAT exam pattern which has gone with perceptible changes during last few years. Going by the tradition in changes in different type of questions in XAT, you cannot rule out a different XAT exam 2023. The coming months will be a crucial period to devise a well chalked out plan for your  preparation time table.

MBA Entrance Exam & MBA/PGDM Admissions | Apply Now
Woxsen University MBA Admissions 2023 Amrita School of Business Coimbatore MBA 
BIMTECH PGDM Admissions Open 2023 Great Lakes PGPM & PGDM Admission
IESMCRC Mumbai PGDM Admissions 2023 IIMS Pune PGDM/MBA Admission 2023
Mahindra University Hyderabad MBA Admission JAGSoM Bangalore PGDM Admission 2023
MET Mumbai (e-PGDM) Admission 2023 Jaipuria Institute of Management PGDM Admission
IFMR GSB, Krea University MBA Admissions 2023 Delhi School of Business PGDM Admission


Your XAT preparation 2024 has to be as per the revised XAT pattern which is as under:

  • Exam Date: Sunday, January 7, 2024
  • XAT 2024 Testing Mode: Online Computer Based
  • Total Questions Expected: 101 (Based on Last year pattern)
  • Time Duration: 3 Hours 10 minutes from 9.30 AM to 12.40 PM
  • Number of sections: 5 ( Verbal, DM, QA, GK, Essay Writing)
  • Type of Questions: Multiple Choice Type (MCQs) with 5 answer options & Descriptive Essay Writing Test
  • Questions with negative marking: 75
  • Questions without negative marking: 25 (GK Section) + 1 Descriptive Essay Writing
  • Score awarded for each correct answer: 1 Mark
  • Negative marking (Applicable for  wrong answers): ¼ (0.25) Mark

1.2 XAT Exam pattern 2024: Sectional Composition 
The distribution of section wise marks in XAT 2024 with number of questions is expected to be on following pattern:

No. of Expected Questions (MCQ Type)
Maximum Marks
Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning (VALR)
Decision Making (DM)
Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation (QADI)
General Knowledge (GK)
Essay Writing Test (Descriptive)
101 - 103

Read More on XAT 2024 Exam Pattern


1.3 XAT Exam 2024 Preparation as per Syllabus
You can collect the best preparation material, preparation books and study material only when you are aware about the XAT exam 2024 preparation topics that you need to study for XAT 2024 preparation.  XAT exam Syllabus gives you a complete idea what are the XAT exam preparation topics on the basis of which you can prioritise and select the topics for XAT exam 2024 preparation.


XAT 2024 Syllabus comprises the topics on Verbal Ability, Reading Comprehension, Logical Reasoning, Decision Making, Quantitative Ability, Data Interpretation, General Knowledge, and  the subjective essay writing test. XLRI awards 3 marks for Essay Writing Test. The XAT syllabus is now revamped and covers 101 questions divided in 5 sections.


1.4 XAT 2024 Preparation: Key Changes in Syllabus

  • The number of sections in XAT exam preparation 2024 as per XAT Syllabus are 5 from earlier 4 Sections. Total questions in each of these sections are also changed.
  • The Essay Writing test topic Section has been restored in XAT syllabus
  • Entire XAT 2024 exam will be a single session computer based test
  • Questions on Decision Making remain most important in XAT exam preparation as no other national level exam has such section. Accordingly, good preparation for XAT Decision Making is required.
  • GK syllabus in XAT does not pose threat in getting shortlisted by XLRI. The preparation for GK questions in XAT should be enough to get you qualifying scores. The GK score in XAT is not counted to arrive at merit score.
  • Maximum overall marks for percentile calculation in XAT are 75
  • GK Section with 25 marks and Essay writing test with 1-3 marks are not counted for percentile calculation. There is No negative marking in GK & Essay section.

.. Read More


2. XAT Preparation Material

Your preparation material will consist of XAT Study Material, preparation books and material from various other sources like coaching centres, online material, XAT Mocks taken by you, among others. Accordingly, while looking for XAT material, you should keep following in mind:

  • Quality of XAT Study Material -
  • XAT Exam preparation books: Are they XAT exam specific?
  • XAT preparation tips from toppers to choose the right strategy

3. XAT Preparation Books
The XAT books and preparation material online or offline play a major role in helping you score high in the XAT exam. XAT exam preparation books will not only guide you how to begin your XAT 2024 exam preparation but will also strengthen your fundamentals and clarify your concepts. The exercises and different difficulty level questions will also help you to practice on variety of questions. 


You need to get the best preparation books which can help you focus on XAT specific study. In fact, XLRI XAT is considered a tougher exam and therefore its preparation requires your focused attention.  There are hundreds of books available in the market on XAT exam 2023 preparation but you need to choose the best books for preparation.  A distinction has to be made in preparation books and the best books for XAT exam preparation.


3.1 Best books for XAT Exam 2024 Preparation
Since there are few common core sections in XAT and CAT, the books to prepare for XAT and CAT exams are also very much similar. A few of the best books for XAT preparation recommended by toppers are:


3.2 XAT Books by Arun Sharma

  • How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT - by Arun Sharma (Published by McGraw Hill)
  • ‘How to Prepare for Data Interpretation for CAT’ - by Arun Sharma (Published by McGraw Hill)
  • ‘How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for the CAT’ - by Arun Sharma (Published by McGraw Hill)
  • How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT’- by Arun Sharma & Meenakshi Upadhyay  

3.3 XAT Books by Nishit K Sinha

  • ‘Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT’ - by Nishit K Sinha (Published by Pearson)
  •  ‘Logical Reasoning and data Interpretation for the CAT’- by Nishit K Sinha (Published by Pearson)
  •  ‘Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT’-by Nishit K Sinha

3.4 XAT Exam Preparation Books pdf Free Download
Your preparation books Pdf free download available on various websites can help you compare the quality of the downloaded XAT Study Material for XAT preparation. Apart from this, your XAT study material should include:

  • Latest RC Passages and practice questions provided by Study centres like TIME, CL among others 
  • Editorial and short articles published in English news papers 
  • ‘Word Power Made Easy’ – by Norman Lewis
  • ‘High School English Grammar & Composition’ – by Wren & Martin
  • Regularly solve the Verbal Ability questions from your XAT study material especially on Para summary, Jumbled Paragraphs

Please note that online XAT study material provided to you by your coaching institute or the offline XAT practice test papers bought from Market; XAT test series attended by you; the study and practice material for XAT provided to you by your coaching centre in hard copy can prove to be a good source of XAT preparation material.


4. XAT Preparation 2024 with Previous Test Papers
Previous year papers comprising XAT questions and detailed solutions are a good source of XAT preparation material. They give you the idea and type of XAT questions that you may face in the real XAT exam paper 2024. After strengthening your fundamentals, your XAT exam preparation should focus on practicing with more and more previous XAT test papers. This XAT preparation strategy will not only give you an opportunity to solve real XAT exam questions, but will also bring more confidence in you after you are able to solve variety of questions. Solve XAT Previous Test Papers


4.1 XAT Preparation with Mocks
Practice test papers for XAT prepared by top experts and XAT toppers are good tool for XAT 2024 preparation and to crack XAT exam with high score. XAT exam 2024 preparation with sample papers can become easy as the XAT Mocks include the best selected questions for XAT preparation. These Mock tests are available both online and offline. Since XAT has gone green as a computer based test, with the XAT online preparation you will be able to boost your XAT exam 2024 preparation as if you are attempting an actual XAT exam.


There are number of XAT mock tests comprising model XAT exam questions to help in your XAT preparation. So, don’t miss them.


The more you study the XAT study material and the more you practice on XAT Mock tests and XAT sample papers, the more you will be able to score in XAT exam. Prepare with XAT Mock Tests


5. XAT Preparation for Decision Making
One of the important sections for XAT preparation is the Decision Making (DM). In view of LovishSoien, DM percentile of 94+ and an overall percentile of 99.49 in XAT and was student of XLRI Jamshedpur, Decision Making (DM) section in Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT) tests you not on your ability to learn concepts or remember formulas, but on your ability to holistically view a situation and propose a solution to a problem.


Preparation for Decision Making (DM) in XAT requires focused attention on following points:

  • DM also tests you on your ethical standing and asks you to take a decision in a conflicting situation.
  • Prepare as per the three different types of questions asked in Decision Making section. These are:

Data Based: Data given and the answer is to be based on analyses of the data,

Situation Based: A scenario wherein you will be tested on your ethical standing,

Mixture: A mixture of both of the above


5.1 How to Prepare & Approach the DM Question

  • Analyse the situation: Understanding the motives behind the test will help you align your thinking process with the expectations of the test setter. Thus before answering a question you need to first analyse the situation from the different perspectives, i.e., the economic as well as the social perspective.
  • Frame the answer in your mind: Read, understand and try to gauge the motive behind the question. Once you have done this try to frame the answer within your mind without looking at the options, as sometimes the options can be misleading and lead you to a different outcome.

Once, you have framed the answer, match your answer with the options given. Most often, if you have used proper reasoning, you will be able to match your answer with one of the options and arrive at the correct solution.


Eliminate incorrect options
The questions in XAT have five options for each question. But not all the five options are relevant. After a basic reading of the question you can start eliminating the options and in most cases, you would be able to eliminate at least two options.


Once, you have eliminated these two options, the next step would be to reason why each of the remaining option will be the correct answer, and the option that convinces you the most shall in most cases be the correct answer. Read More on How to prepare for Decision Making in XAT


6. XAT Exam 2024 Preparation: Time Table
One of the most important preparation tools is your exam preparation time table. As the  preparation time goes on reducing month after month with every passing day, you need to revisit your preparation strategy and synchronise it with remaining preparation Time. The preparation tips by toppers who suggest ‘How to prepare for XAT in 3 months or 2 months’; ‘How to crack XAT Exam with a planned XAT Preparation  strategy in 2 months’ and so on, are more relevant.


Finalizing the preparation time table depends upon your skill set also. How much preparation you need? What are your weak areas and how much time you need to improve upon them could differ from person to person.  

MBA Entrance Exam & MBA/PGDM Admissions | Apply Now
BIMTECH PGDM Admissions Open 2023 IMI Bhubaneswar PGDM Admission 2023
IESMCRC Mumbai PGDM Admissions 2023 IFMR GSB, Krea University MBA Admissions 2023
NIA Pune PGDM Admission Open 2023 Great Lakes PGPM & PGDM Admission
IBA Bangalore PGDM Admission 2023 Jaipuria Institute of Management PGDM Admission
JIMS Rohini PGDM Admission Open 2023 Sri Balaji University Pune MBA  Admissions
NDIM Delhi PGDM Admission 2023 JAGSoM Bangalore PGDM Admissions 2023

7. Should I prepare for XAT with Coaching or prepare at home? Here is the answer..
After synchronizing the preparation time, you need to find out whether to go for XAT coaching or start XAT Exam 2024 Preparation at home. One of the important preparation tips for beginners is to come out of this dilemma of moving between XAT coaching and XAT preparation at home is given here.


If you wish to prepare with XAT Coaching institute in big or small cities, you can find best XAT coaching centres in Delhi, Kolkata, Bhubaneswar and all the other cities. You can also opt for online preparation through coaching without going to class room. The preparation through class room XAT coaching and XAT Exam Preparation Online from home have their own merits and demerits in regard to expenses, time involvement, commuting to and fro, peer learning, interaction with faculty among others. It depends upon you which one is suitable to you. 


7.1 Option-1: Self Preparation for XAT
If you wish to self prepare for XAT 2023, you need to understand first how to prepare for XAT exam at home with the help of XAT Preparation Books, and other appropriate XAT Study Material. So instead of depending upon only XAT coaching, focus on XAT preparation books recommended by XAT toppers - like XAT preparation books by Arun Sharma,  XAT preparation book by Nishit Sinha, available good XAT 2024 Study Material for XAT preparation,  XAT Preparation Online Study material, freely available XAT preparation online facility, XAT exam Quiz, XAT Mock test. These XAT Preparation Tips 2024 can pave your way in right direction to XAT Exam Preparation  and make you aware how to prepare for XAT exam with a well devised preparation plan and clear understanding ‘How to Crack XAT Exam without XAT coaching’.


How to prepare for XAT without coaching and with self study?
There is no substitute of XAT preparation with self study which does not require any coaching until and unless you are stuck. Experts therefore, recommend that you should start your XAT exam preparation by self study and later make it a mix of self study as well as help from coaching to avoid wastage of time.

  • Self Preparation is the best preparation strategy for XAT 2024 however time is also an important factor. If a candidate gets stuck on some question due to his/her lack of conceptual clarity, the wastage of time is more and depression begins to set in. It might need a simple push to come out of the shallow waters. This help can be provided by your XAT mentor online or offline depending upon your preference or a mix of both.  
  • Most of the candidates coming from Engineering or other technical background find it easy to get along well with Quant, DI and LR but when it comes to Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, they find the section difficult. Only there an expert guidance may be required.
  • XAT preparation 2024 needs improvement in your speed and accuracy as the time to solve per question is less. The question difficulty level in XAT is considered a little higher than in other exams but you have a little more than 1 minute per question to solve and the marking scheme in XAT exam is uniform, so it requires you to focus more on questions counted for merit score, while GK can be taken care of in the remaining time. It will therefore, not be sufficient to score overall high in XAT 2024; your section wise score should also be high to become eligible for shortlisting at XLRI
  • XAT 2024 preparation should equip you with continuous sitting for more than 3 hours without break. To achieve this you are required to take more Mocks, XAT previous year test papers.

7.2 Option-2: XAT Preparation with Coaching
If you wish to prepare for XAT with coaching, it is important to find out the best coaching for XAT exam preparation that can focus on all the sections to prepare for XAT, like Decision Making which is not a common section for other exams. Even the best coaching for XAT exam may have its draw backs in regard to imparting XAT coaching on certain topics. So alongwith your preparation through the best XAT coaching, you should find out the best coaching for XAT preparation for the topics that need your greater attention.


Benefits of XAT Preparation with Coaching
XAT coaching helps you overcome many weak areas. The XAT 2024 preparation through coaching can be a class room regular or weekend coaching or it can be XAT preparation online through the coaching centres. Good Coaching institutes like TIME, CL, IMS among others provide best XAT preparation material with practice questions.


But again, while preparing for XAT with coaching is good if you get all your doubts cleared and all the topics relevant for XAT preparation are covered.


Accordingly, you need to choose for the best coaching for XAT preparation. XAT preparation online is a good answer to the working professionals who find it difficult to attend regular class room coaching for XAT. During the past few years preference for XAT online coaching has gone up many times. In fact XAT preparation through online coaching for XAT is more cost effective, less time consuming and offers you more time to practice XAT question papers and XAT exercises.


7.3 Option-3: XAT Exam Preparation Online
XAT online preparation can be done though XAT online coaching as well as by taking XAT preparation material online. In factXAT online preparation is a good answer to the working professionals who find it difficult to attend regular class room coaching for XAT. During the past few years preference for XAT online coaching has gone up many times.


XAT online preparation is more cost effective, less time consuming and offers you more time to practice XAT question papers and XAT exercises.


8. XAT Preparation Tips: How to start XAT preparation at home?

Past XAT toppers suggest to start XAT preparation 2023 at home now without waiting any further. XAT toppers with 95.84 percentile, Shreyas Vasudevan did not attend any XAT coaching and prepared for XAT exam at home. He suggests self preparation for the exam and advises to solve more Mock Tests.


In view of the XAT toppers you consistently need to improve on your weak areas and monitor the improvement regularly. Besides taking Mocks is not enough, you must analyse each Mock. Without analysis of Mock, attempting a mock test may not be useful. If you are weak in VA & RC, reading different articles and novels, conversing in English with friends and even watching English TV series and movies will be helpful.


10 Preparation Tips for XAT
Step by Step Preparation tips for XAT as recommended by XAT toppers are:

  • Step 1: Scan the XAT Exam Pattern & Syllabus
  • Step 2: Attempt a few XAT Mock tests/previous test papers to figure out your strong and weak topics
  • Step 3: To begin with make sure to devote a minimum of 2-3 hours a day for XAT preparation Step 4: Divide your time as per your skill set and requirement to build your Basics and bring conceptual clarity through books, study material as per XAT Exam pattern & Syllabus
  • Step 5: Decision Making (DM) section in XAT is unique, so prepare it well.
  • Step 6: Data Interpretation (DI) is considered a bit more time consuming. Start practicing on DI questions. Use approximation techniques for quick calculations.
  • Step 7: Consistently work to improve upon your weak areas by allotting more preparation time
  • Step 8: Take as many Mocks as possible with low to high difficulty level, analyse errors and improve in subsequent mock test
  • Step-9: Complete your XAT preparation 15 days before the XAT exam day. Don’t start anything new after that
  • Step 10: Be ready for the XAT exam day, treat actual XAT exam like another Mock Test

8.1 How to prepare for XAT Exam in 6 months?

  • Preparation Start Date: May/June
  • Daily Time to Devote: 2-3 Hours
  • Preparation Over Date: Mid December
  • Preparation Activity after December 15: Revision, Mocks but Nothing New to begin

XAT preparation tips for beginners or for the repeaters are not much different. XAT preparation time of 6 months is sufficient to crack the exam. Following should be adhered to before proceeding on XAT preparation journey:

  • As you are left with sufficient XAT exam preparation time, first of all go through and understand the XAT exam pattern
  • Get a good feel of XAT 2024 exam syllabus
  • Find out your strong and weak areas
  • Start building up the fundamentals and get conceptual clarity on the topics which fall in your weak areas
  • Don’t waste too much time on theory. If you have understood the basics, attempt XAT sectional quiz.
  • Practice after theory is a must. Accordingly take periodical XAT 2024 Quiz, attempt XAT previous years Mock test, XAT previous years question papers
  • Get the best XAT preparation material with best books for XAT preparation.
  • Beginning your XAT preparation early will give you time to periodically assess yourself and overcome your weaknesses.
  • Remain confident right from the day one during your XAT preparation journey.
  • Self Preparation is the best preparation strategy for XAT 2024 however time is also an important factor. If a candidate gets stuck on some question due to his/her lack of conceptual clarity, the wastage of time is more and depression begins to set in. It could be a small quant formula, LR logic, or Verbal usage clarity which might need a simple push to come out of the shallow waters. This help can be provided by your mentor online or offline depending upon your preference or a mix of both.  

8.2 How to prepare for XAT in 3 months?

  • Preparation Start Date: July/August
  • Daily Time to Devote: 3-4 Hours
  • Preparation Over Date: Mid December
  • Preparation Activity after December 15: Revision, Mocks but Nothing New to begin

XAT preparation time of three months is not short. What you have done in last three months or whatever you have prepared can be revised now in three months with various XAT preparation tools. The time is ripe to intensify a little your XAT preparation strategy for three months:

  • See that you have achieved good clarity on fundamentals and have strengthened your basics
  • Alongwith going through the books for XAT preparation, visit number of  online XAT preparation material
  • It is time that you started taking XAT Mock test, analyse your errors and rectify them
  • Instead of reading the theory again and again, now you should attempt the question and when you are stuck, visit the basics and clarify your point to clear the confusion
  • Solve XAT previous year question papers
  • Join a good Test series for XAT preparation

8.3 How to prepare for XAT 2024 in 2 months?

  • Preparation Start Date: September/October
  • Daily Time to Devote: 3-4 Hours
  • Preparation Over Date: Mid December
  • Preparation Activity after December 15: Revision, Mocks but Nothing New to begin

It may sound a little surprising but it is true. Many XAT toppers are of the view that XAT preparation time of two months is good enough to crack XAT exam. Even 2 months are good to score 95 percentile provided you are sincere enough.

  • Focus more on XAT Exam Quiz, XAT Mock tests, different types of questions as appeared in XAT
  • Don’t leave any XAT Mock Test without analyzing it
  • Go through the Books for XAT preparation and the XAT preparation material and ensure  that you have gone through the sectional and overall quiz and practice tests in these XAT preparation books.
  • There are some strong areas within your weak areas and some weak areas within your strong areas. Try to focus on all the weak areas and see if you are able to improve them. However, you should not waste more time on them. Instead focus more on your strong areas and improve them further.

XAT Preparation Summary & XAT Test Day Strategy to Score 95 Percentile
The four sections of XAT exam need a systematic study schedule. Looking at the level of difficulty and surprise elements that appear in XAT every year, a thorough preparation of 4-5 months is required to crack XAT 2024. You can move forward with your XAT preparation taking lead from following tips:

  • XAT 2024 Preparation does not require you to study round the clock, instead you need to study smartly and with intelligent approach to crack the questions correctly in minimum time to achieve high score.
  • According to the experts and toppers, the best way to prepare for XAT 2024 exam is to know your strengths and weaknesses and start working on them now. Since there is time to get over with your weakness and further strengthen your strong areas, you must devote around 2-3 hours a day from now on to crack XAT 2024 with a high score. 
  • Despite number of changes brought about during last 5 years in XAT, the basics of the exam have not changed. Accordingly the XAT study material based on past XAT exam papers and XAT Mocks is the great tool to prepare for XAT 2024.
  • You need to study smartly and with intelligent approach to crack the questions correctly in minimum time to achieve high score
  • XAT 2024 exam will have 3 major sections contributing to your percentile score. Attempt any section within overall time limit. You need to ensure high score in each of the 3 sections as there is also a sectional score cut off in XLRI XAT cut-off.
  • It may be noted that even half of the total questions in XAT exam, if attempted right can fetch you a percentile of 98-99. The need is to maximize your correct attempts and minimize the wrong attempts
Short name

Question and Answers

No Questions have been asked yet