The Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) on Saturday announced the schedule, dates and venues where the Common Admission Test 2018 (CAT 2018) for entry into India’s top business management schools will be held. CAT is not only the entrance examination for all IIMs for their MBA programs but is also accepted for admission into several other top B-schools in India. The 2018 CAT examination will be held across 147 cities on November 25. This year IIM, Calcutta, is coordinating the exam.

Here is all you need to know about CAT Examination 2018:

1. CAT 2018 will be conducted on 25 November in two sessions. CAT examination centres will be spread all over the country in 147 cities.

2. Registration for CAT 2018 will be open from 8 August to 19 September. CAT application form can be filled in online mode only and the examination is also conducted online.

3. CAT candidates will be given the option to select 4 test cities in the order of preference. Cities and centres will be assigned to the candidates only after the last date for CAT 2018 registration and hence candidates need not rush to block slots and cities in the initial days of registration.

4. IIMs will try their best to assign candidates to their first preferred city. In case it is not possible, they will be assigned a city following their given order of preference. In the rare case that a candidate is not allotted any of the preferred cities, he/she will be allotted an alternate city. However, candidates will not be able to select which of the two sessions they want to appear at because it will be assigned randomly.

5. Candidates must pay the registration fee through online payment modes only, which will include credit cards, debit cards and net banking.

6. After submission of the CAT application form, candidates will be permitted to download their examination admit card from 24th October onwards, till the date of test.

7. The duration of the test will be 180 minutes. There will be three sections. The first one will be on verbal ability and reading comprehension. Second section is on data interpretation and logical reasoning while the third section is on quantitative ability.

8. Candidates will be allotted exactly 60 minutes for answering questions in each section and they will not be allowed to switch from one section to another while answering questions in a section. Some questions in each section may not be of multiple-choice type. Instead, direct answers will have to be typed on the screen. The tutorials will clearly explain this. Also, IIMs will allow use of basic on-screen calculator for computation during the CAT examination.

9. Tutorial to understand the format of the CAT exam will be available on the CAT website from 17 October. Candidates are advised to work on the tutorials available on the CAT website well in advance.

10. The CAT website contains a section on Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that addresses some of the commonly asked queries regarding CAT 2018. Candidates may also contact the CAT helpdesk at 1800-2663-549 or cathelpdesk@iimcat.ac.in. CAT results are likely to be out only in January.

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