CAT 2023 - Syllabus, Exam Pattern, Learn Concepts, Selection Criteria

The CAT 2022 exam consists of 3 sections - Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning, and Quantitative Ability.

Last Updated: May 30, 2023Registerand stay updated with syllabus-exam-pattern preparation.
CAT Exam

The CAT 2022 exam consists of 3 sections - Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension, Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning, and Quantitative Ability.

Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning in the CAT exam syllabus is focused to judge the person's ability to crunch numbers, and concepts and apply the same within a limited time span whereas Verbal Ability and reading comprehension are to know the person's command over the language.

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CAT Exam Pattern 2021

The CAT 2021 exam pattern is as follows:

Each correct response carries 3 marks, while each incorrect response carries -1 marks. Non-MCQ questions will not be negatively marked.

  • VA-RC - This section consists a total of 26 Questions. 17 Reading Comprehension questions and the rest consist of Verbal Ability questions.
  • DI-LR - This section consists a total (24 questions) of 5 sets with 3 sets containing 4 questions each and 2 sets containing 6 questions each.
  • QA - This section consists of 26 questions from various topics. Based on historic trends, most questions for CAT exam can be expected to be from Geometry, Arithmetic, and Algebra (in descending order).

CAT Exam Pattern & Marking Scheme

Section Total Questions No. of MCQ Questions No. of TITA Questions Marks (MCQ) Marks (TITA) Total Marks
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension 26 20 - 21 4 - 5 +3, -1 +3, no negative 78
Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning 24 20 - 21 2 - 3 +3, -1 +3, no negative 72
Quantitative Ability 26 20 - 21 4 - 5 +3, -1 +3, no negative 78


CAT Syllabus 2021

Quantitative Ability Syllabus For CAT 2021: 

Check: Quant Formulae Cheat Sheet

Arithmetic Algebra Number Systems
1. Time, Speed & Distance 1. Inequalities & Modulus 1. LCM and HCF
2. Time & Work, Pipes & Cisterns 2. Functions & Graphs 2. Divisibility Rules
3. Simple Interest & Compound Interest 3. Linear & Quadratic Equations 3. Base Change
4. Ratios, Proportions & Variations 4. Polynomials 4. Finding Unit's Place, Ten's Place of a number
5. Percentages, Profit & Loss, Discount 5. Logarithms 5. Cyclicity, Number of trailing zeroes
6. Averages, Mixtures & Alligations 6. Algebraic Identities 6. Remainders
7. Maxima Minima 7. Prime Factorisation
8. Factorials
9. Indices & Surds
Geometry & Mensuration Modern Mathematics
1. Circles 1. Permutations & Combinations
2. Triangles 2. Probability
3. Polygons 3. Set Theory (Including Venn Diagrams)
4. Co-ordinate Geometry 4. Binomial Theorem
5. Lines and Angles 5. Arithmetic, Geometric and Harmonic Progressions (Sequence & Series)
6. Trigonometry

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning Syllabus For CAT Exam 2021:

Data Interpretation Logical Reasoning
1. Tables 1. Number, Symbol, Letter Series
2. Pie Charts 2. Coding Decoding
3. Bar Graphs 3. Blood Relations & Family Tree
4. Directions
5. Binary Logic
6. Games & Tournaments
7. Linear & Circular Arrangements
8. Team Formations
9. Order & Ranking

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension Syllabus For CAT 2021:

Verbal Ability Reading Comprehension
1. Parajumbles (Tips) 1. Tone Of Writing (Tips)
2. Para Completion 2. Passages (Tips)
3. Statements & Assumptions 3. Logical Inferences Tree
4. Fill In The Blanks
5. Sentence Completion

The CAT 2021 syllabus can ideally be completed in a span of 4-8 months, depending on the level of preparation of a candidate.

CAT Exam Syllabus - Important Concepts

1. Cyclicity and Unit Digit of a Number
Cyclicity is a basic but a very important concept in CAT exam and is used to find unit digit of a particular number. No matter what the number is or what power the number has, you can use the concept of cyclity to find the unit digit of that number in seconds.
So, starting with the concept, every no. say "x^n" repeats its unit digit in a cycle of 4 (power).

Number x^1 x^2 x^3 x^4
1 1 1 3 4
2 2 4 8 6
3 3 9 7 1
4 4 6 4 6
5 5 5 5 5
6 6 6 6 6
7 7 9 3 1
8 8 4 2 6
9 9 1 9 1

For instance, you have to find the unit digit of (348)^21

The unit digit of (348)^21 will solely depend upon 8 and not on any other digit. Now divide the power 21 in the form of (4n + a). Thereby we can write 21 as 4(5) + 1. So, as fore-stated the unit digit repeats itself in a cycle of 4, we can say that the unit of (348)^21 = (348)^1.

Therefore, unit digit of (348)^21 = 8^1 => 8.


2. Number of squares and rectangles in a chess board
In a n*n chessboard,
The total no. of squares = 1^2 +2^2+3^2+…..+n^2
= n*(n+1)(2n+1)/6 (summation formula)
and the total no. of rectangles are given by: 1^3 +2^3+3^3+…..+n^3
So, for instance in a 8*8 chessbosard,
no. of squares are: 8*(8+1)(2*8+1)/6
i.e. 8*9*17/6
=1,224/6 => 204
and no. of rectangles are given by: [{8^2}*{(8+1)^2}/4
i.e. 64*9^2*/4
=5,184/4 => 1296 (this includes the no. of squares as well)
No. of rectangles, which are not squares are: 1296 - 204 => 1092 learn more


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