How Can I Get An Interview Call From IIM Ahmedabad? – CAT 2015 : PGP 2016 -18

Our estimated minimum targets for overall CAT score for general category students from different disciplines who have a consistently good academic record

Arts/Humanities – 95%ile

Commerce/Management/Business – 98.6%ile

Engineers – 99.75%ile

Bachelors in Sciences/Dentists/B.Pharms etc – 99%ile


(Please note that the above are estimates based on our experience and data. No one can guarantee a call. You are responsible for any decision you make based on this analysis)


The detailed shortlisting and selection criteria for IIM Ahmedabad for the Class of 2018 is available here.

The first instinct after seeing the criteria is that most aspirants are going to be left scratching their heads. It is the most complicated criteria that we have seen from IIM A (since the time criteria became public).

While the ingredients of the criteria remain similar to last year, the AR normalization and differences in weights attached make the criteria complex.

Some salient features

1) The changes seem to hint that IIM Ahmedabad is trying hard to increase diversity of background of candidates. The attempt seems to be get more non-engineering background  students to get admission – a process which had started 2 years back. We expect that among the 180 odd general category admits next year, the diversity will be very high. Only 50% of general category admits for the Class of 2018 will be from engineering background as per our estimates.

In the process there is also hope that there will be more female students. IIM Ahmedabad has avoided relaxing norms for female candidates like the other old IIMs – IIMs CLIK.

2) Do note that IIM Ahmedabad is not doing any board/university wise normalization at all. The adjustments are based only on the academic disciplines you are from.

3) The other thing that clearly stands out is the high amount of importance given to past academics by IIM Ahmedabad. If you are not a consistent performer you will not stand a chance at IIM Ahmedabad. Most general category students with 10th and 12th scores less than 80% will find it almost impossible to get in.

4) Work experience has no weight at all in the shortlisting of candidates. The number of freshers is going to be very high in the Class of 2018.


There are 2 main routes to get an interview call from IIM Ahmedabad

1st Route to get a call

There are 7 Academic Disciplines that IIM Ahmedabad has identified and categorized. If you are among the top 1% in that discipline based on a Composite score formula that is calculated by IIM A, you will automatically get a call. This process does not look at which category you belong to (General, OBC, SC/ST etc)

So how does this work?

You need to first satisfy a 3 point criteria

1st – Meet the minimum percentile cutoff criteria – Overall 90+, Sectionals – QA 90+, DI/LR 80+, VA/RC 80+

2nd – If you meet this criteria you need to meet the next based on your 12th Disciplines,

P ≥ 80 (Science), 77 (Commerce), 75 (Arts/Humanities)

Where P is the average of the percentages of marks scored in 10th and 12th std. exams.

3rd  – (Percentage of marks in the bachelor’s examination) ≥ Minimum cut-off percentage (discipline-wise as shown in the Table 5).



Let’s assume Shyam a Commerce graduate scored 98.5%ile in CAT 2015 with a 92%+ in all 3 sections!

– His scores in 10th and 12th are above 85% and his graduation score is 75%. Being a commerce graduate puts him under AC-3.

Super! He satisfies all the three criteria above.

Hold on,

Meeting the 3 criteria above won’t give you a call yet! (And this is just the first route for shortlisting that we are still talking about. Talk about making things complicated!)

Now, an Application Rating Score will be calculated based on the tables below

At different stages of the selection process ‘Application Rating’ (AR) score of an applicant will be used. An applicant’s AR score is the sum of the rating scores ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ (Tables 2-4) based on her/his percentage of marks obtained in 10th standard, 12th standard (depending upon the stream, viz., ‘Science’, ‘Commerce’ ‘Arts & Humanities’) and bachelor’s degree examinations (depending upon the discipline) respectively






So, how do we calculate Shyam’s Application Rating score based on the above data?

8 points for 10th Std + 8 points for 12th Std + 7 points for Graduation (under AC-3) =23

But, this needs to be normalized!

So, IIM A has a formula for that too. Normalized AR score of an applicant is equal to his/her AR scores divided by average of the top 50 AR scores from the applicants’ pool.

So if the average of top 50 AR scores is 28, then Shyam’s AR score is 23/28 = 0.82

We are not there yet! Now we go the final step,

CS (Composite Score) = 0.3 (Normalized AR score) + 0.7 (Normalized overall score in CAT-2015)

Now, there will be a normalized CAT Score based on the equivalent CAT score. So if Shyam has scored 98.5%ile it will have an equivalent absolute score in his marksheet which will be normalized with the CAT 2015 topper’s score (our guess). Let’s assume that comes to a figure like 0.78

So Shyam’s CS = 0.3 (0.82) + 0.7 (0.78) = 0.792

Now, if 0.792 is among the top 100 people or top 1% of all Commerce category (AC-3) aspirants whichever is lower Shyam will be shortlisted for the Written Test and the Personal Interview

Imagine this for all the 7 disciplines now. Phew!


Our Analysis – We expect roughly 400 general category candidates to get a call through this route. For an engineer getting a call through this route means scoring in excess of 99.85%ile at the minimum (this is our estimate based on last year’s data)


2nd Route to get a call

(Updated – IIM A removed the grad criteria through this route which caused much fury. However for general category candidates it will make hardly any difference according to us)

This route will only be used for remaining candidates. What this means is that there is certain amount of candidates that IIM A will interview in each category (General, SC/ST, OBC, PWD). If after the first route that number has not been reached, the remaining candidates will be picked up from this pool. We believe there will be very few general category candidates who will get calls from this route. This route is more relevant for candidates under the quotas – OBC, SC/ST. PWD.

We have a 3 point criteria again.

1st Criteria – Preliminary screening – 1st thing is you need to satisfy minimum criteria based on your category and the cutoffs given below to be considered. The process remains the same as in route 1 mostly except that cutoffs are relaxed based on which category you belong to :


2nd Criteria – P ≥ Minimum cut-offs (specific to the category and the stream as shown in Table 6)

Where P is the average of the percentages of marks scored in 10th and 12th std. exams.




Once this has been met, repeat the AR calculation and the CS calculation as explained in the 1st Route above. The top candidates with a CS score in the respective category will be called for the written test and personal interview.

Our Analysis – We don’t see more than 200-250 general category candidates being called for the process based on this route as we expect around 400 candidates to get called from the Route 1 itself. For all other categories, this is the only route to get a call.


Final selection

Selection at this stage will strictly be based on the ranks of the candidates computed separately for each category (General/SC/ST/NC-OBC/DA) on the basis of their ‘Final Composite Scores’ (FCS).

The numbers selected in different categories will be in proportions mandated by law. The FCS of a candidate who appears in AWT & PI will be computed as follows:


FCS = 0.40 (Normalized PI Score) + 0.10 (Normalized AWT Score) + 0.5 (CS).


The normalized PI and AWT scores of a candidate are equal to his/her PI and AWT scores divided by the average of the top 1% scores in PI and AWT respectively.


The above is a fairly standard formula for final selection under each quota. Note the virtual irrelevance of the work experience factor. It may have an impact in the interview but that’s about it. No marks for having worked.


Do ask us, our experts and partner schools for a 360 Degree evaluation of your profile here


For last year’s selection criteria at IIM A, read here

Read everything about IIM A here

For selection criteria of various old IIMs last year, click here


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Does the new criteria mean that if my grad score is less than 71 then I stand no chance of a shortlist even with 90+ in Xth and XIIth?

Bharath Sai

Two queries:
1.I have a bsc percent of 67 according to marks and 77 percent (7.7*10) as per university conversion formula. I am in my final year.Which formula should I use?(My university awards both marks and grades and mentioned the above conversion formula.)
2.Is there a chance of relaxation of average of 10th and +2 avg score to 75 if sufficient candidates aren’t found with avg of 80 in both and other criteria post cat results?Which IIMs might be relaxing acads weightage this year?

Team Insideiim

There is no chance of a relaxation of cutoffs. They have come out with this criteria based on candidate data from CAT 2014.
They will look at your actual marks and not the university conversion formula


Engineering Graduate with 93% in Xth, 87% in XIIth and 78.7 % in Btech. Do i have achance to get a call?

Team Insideiim

You can read the criteria above and make that analysis yourself. You have a chance because you at least satisfy all minimum criteria. CAT Score target we have already given. Please note that these are minimum cutoffs and actual could vary based on candidate pool and CAT performance of other candidate’s in your pool of academic discipline


You say that minimum cut offs and actual could differ based on the CAT performance of candidates in the pool same as mine. Can a high CAT score cover up for failing to meet the minimum the minimum grad cut-off?
Will other IIMs also go by such standards as far as grads are concerned?

Team Insideiim

A cutoff is a cutoff. You wont get an IIM A call even if you score 100 percentile if you haven’t met minimum grad cutoff. Other IIMs also take scads very seriously but it is unlikely to be so harsh.

Jaideep M

Is it not too harsh,that an engineer person getting 100 percentile in CAT but not meeting C2 (10th,12th average percentage less than 80)and C3 (graduation percentage less than 78) criteria will not even get an interview call? By the way it is very very difficult to score an aggregate of 78% in engineering in a lot of universities across the country.

Team Insideiim

It may be harsh but we can’t do much about it, can we? It is definitely unfair in some ways but then its difficult to get 70% in Arts too in many universities. So in the end somewhere it evens out. But there is life beyond IIM A.

shrigiri Krishna

I am a final year B.Tech student (OBC). Till date my score is 71.3 %(upto 3-2). I haven’t finished engineering yet and there is a wide scope of increasing the score(may be +4-5 %) by the end of the course. Now, my question is that, which score do they consider for short listing the candidates (assuming a high CAT percentile) ?

Karan Sharma

with 56.2 % in 12 and 8 cgpa in 10 class and also 7.1 cgpa in collage and belongs to SC category . do you think he can get a call letter from iim a . if yes what percentile he should at least score in cat .

Rakesh Perumalla

I have 78.5 in X class , 89 in +2 , I’m a Chartered Accountant with 56 % and I don’t have bachelors degree.. will my class X have the impact to reject my application , is it possible to get call if I have 98% + in CAT

Team Insideiim

A <80 10th Std score makes is very tough to get a call but given that you are a commerce grad, if you score 99.5%ile+ it may help

Stuti Pansari

P ≥ 80 (Science), 77 (Commerce), 75 (Arts/Humanities)
Where P is the “average” of the percentages of marks scored in 10th and 12th std exams.
Does this imply that for a a general category student who has a score of 95% in 10th and 75% in 12th still has a chance because the average score is 85% > 80% ?


B.Sc. pass course ( Physics , Chemistry & Maths ) with 72.3% , 12th with 87.2% and 10th with 93%. Is there any chance for me to be there in IIM A?
if yes then what percentile score must I score in CAT ?
Thanks ! 🙂

Varun Garg

I’m expecting a 98 (point something) percentile in CAT 2015. I’m a commerce student (Male) with 89% in 10th, 98.5% in 12th and 83% in my graduation. What are my chances of getting a call from IIM-A/B/C?

Ayush Saraf

I have more than 95% in class X and XII and 70.62% in Grad ( Commerce). Also expecting a 99+ percentile in CAT. Will 70.62 be rounded off to 71% since the minimum cutoff for commerce is 71?

Shweta Sahu

I am expecting 99% in CAT and 80% (or above) in commerce graduation, my past academic is poor with 60% in 10th and 50% in 12th. Do I have any chance left for IIMA?

Antriksh Pandey

Sir my 10th marjs are 90% and 12th 83% with graduation 71 in science stream.i am a pwd or da candidate..what are my chances of getting a call if i get 85 percentile

Team Insideiim

Looks good. Try scoring as high as possible. The basic profile seems to be in place.

Antriksh Pandey

Sir my this year score is 74, 84 and 91 with overall 87 percentile.i am a da or pwd candidate..wats ur take…wat all calls i can expect…pls reply as soon

Antriksh Pandey

Sir my this year score is 74, 84 and 91 with ovrall 88 percentile.i am a da or pwd candidate..wats ur take…wat all calls i can expect…pls reply as soon

Sachin Narula

Hi, I am a commerce graduate (67%) with 3 years of experience. I scored 72% in 10th and 69% in 12th. What should be my CAT percentile in order to be safe to get calls from most of the IIMs, if not from all.

Team Insideiim

99.6 to 99.7 – still no guarantee of all calls – acad are average – for more questions go to

shivani saluja

Hi I am currently pursuing
B.Sc. Chemistry(H)(1st year)and I am interested in pursuing mba. I got 10 cgpa which is 95%in class 10th 94.2% in class 12th and 8.27 sgpa in 1st sem.I wanna know whether being a fresher or from chemistry background decrease my chances of admission in IIM-A?

Team Insideiim

Why do you have an impression that it will lower your chances? Diversity can only help you as long as you have good academic scores and you have very good scores by all means so far

Jay Mehta

Greetings sir,
I am in the final year of Engineering so I am from AC 4. And my current CGPA is 8.99 so equivalent percentage is 84.9%. My past record is 94.2% in 10th and 84.31% in 12th.
What can be the minimum CAT score for me to receive the call?

Thank you.