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CAT Exam Syllabus 2023-24 - VARC, DILR and QA

Calender Icon CAT Registration Ends: 13th September 2023

CAT Exam Syllabus 2023

CAT Syllabus: In this article we help you understand the syllabus for CAT exam 2023-24. Studying through the CAT syllabus 2023-24 will help you get into the top twenty IIM’s and around 100 other institutes that accept the CAT exam score 2023-24.

Indeed this is a fact that CAT does not have any prescribed syllabus but it has 3 sections viz; DILR , VARC ,and QA and traditionally aspirants are tested out in these sections , primarily for their quantitative skills and language skills. 

QA and DILR sections will test your quantitative aptitude and your data analytical skills along with your logical reasoning  whereas in VARC , you will be tested for your language skills in areas of grammar , vocabulary etc. 

CAT is highly competitive common admission Test being conducted on behalf of 20 IIMs. It is important for you to ensue that you do have clarity on the fundamentals of these sections. 

Off-course CAT scores are meant only for IIMs but since CAT has attained a prestigious platform with perceived recognition as the best quality exam hence, top MBA institutes also accept only CAT scores. 

Focused CAT aspirant like you should also note that CAT scores are in percentile basis and not on percentage basis besides a rider with negative marking of minus one score, therefore, CAT is the most competitive exam wherein approximately one lac seventy-five thousand aspirants vie with each other year to year. 

The most important point in regard to CAT syllabus is that since nature of  CAT exam is to test your  Quantitative skills and Language Skills hence CAT has been formed in sections like QA, DI LR and VARC etc. 

There won’t be any syllabus for CAT 2023-24 also and questions will be asked among above sections only but yes there may be slight changes of shifting numbers of questions here and there. 

However, CAT aspirants must note that past pattern of CAT has suggestive history of asking question from different areas in sections of CAT which are detailed as below in this content article. 

Let Us take you through some important CAT Study Material PDF.

CAT Syllabus 2023-24: Marking Scheme

The CAT exam pattern has changed over the years and now has 100 questions divided into 3 sections. The exam questions are a mix of Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) and Non Multiple Choice Questions (Non MCQs). Marking Scheme details are as follows:

Question Type Correct Answer Incorrect Answer
Multiple Choice Questions +3 -1
Non-Multiple Choice Questions +3 Nil

CAT Syllabus 2023-24: Exam Syllabus

There are three main sections in the CAT exam 2021 and the exam syllabus of CAT is divided accordingly. The CAT exam 2023-24 is time bound test and candidates will get 60 minutes to answer each section. Candidates must answer all questions in a section and only then move to the other section.

The details of the CAT syllabus 2023-24 for exam are as follows:

CAT Exam Sections CAT Exam Sections Breakup MCQ Non-MCQ CAT Syllabus
VARC Reading Comprehension 24-28 Nil
  • Analogies
  • Antonyms
  • Contextual usage
  • Different usage of same word
  • Fill in the blanks
  • Foreign language words used in English
  • Grammar
  • Idioms
  • Jumbled paragraphs
  • One word substitution
  • Para Completion and inference
  • Para-jumbles
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Sentence completion
  • Sentence correction
  • Syllogisms
  • Verbal Logic
  • Verbal Reasoning
Verbal Ability 3-5 4-5
DILR Data Interpretation 12 4
  • Assumptions
  • Bars
  • Binary Logic
  • Blood Relations
  • Caselets
  • Clocks and Calendars
  • Coding-Decoding
  • Data Arrangement
  • Data Structures
  • Data Sufficiency
  • Direction Sense
  • Family Tree
  • Line Graphs
  • Pie Charts
  • Proposition
  • Puzzles
  • Seating Arrangement
  • Series
  • Sets
  • Statements
  • Syllogism
  • Tables
  • Venn Diagram
Logical Reasoning 12 4
QA   23-27 7-11
  • Algebra
  • Averages
  • Geometric Progression
  • Geometry
  • HCF & LCM
  • Inequalities
  • In-equations Quadratic and linear equations
  • Logarithms
  • Mensuration
  • Number system
  • Partnership (Accounts)
  • Percentages
  • Profit & Loss
  • Ratios and Proportion
  • Surds and Indices
  • Time-Speed-Distance
  • Trigonometry
  • Work and time

CAT Syllabus: Key Points

Here are some key points that candidates must keep in mind while preparing for the CAT syllabus 2023-24:

  • CAT 2023-24 exam is an online exam with 75 MCQ and 25 Non MCQ type questions.
  • In the last 3 years, since 2015 there are almost nil questions based on vocabulary and grammar.
  • Mostly there are up to five Reading comprehension passages and all questions are a set of 4
  • For the QA and DI sections, candidates are allowed to use on screen calculator
  • Popular Topics: 
    • QA: Percentage, Profit & Loss, Work, Time & Speed, Compound interest
    • VA: Jumbled paragraph, Paragraph summary and picking odd sentence out of jumbled sentence.


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