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CAT Counseling: Check here full schedule for CAT 2018

CAT Counseling is conducted separately by 19 IIMs across India after the declaration of CAT results. The results are declared by IIM, Lucknow. Candidates have to initially register online for the counseling and after successful completion of subsequent rounds of counseling procedure, they must report at the allotted IIM for Group Discussion, Written Ability Test and Personal Interview. Here you will get complete information about CAT counseling, how to register for counseling process and more.

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Below given is the comprehensive counseling process followed by IIMs for admissions to post graduate management courses through CAT.

Highlights of CAT Counseling

CAT Counseling Dates January, 2019
CAT Conducting Body Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta
Application Mode Online
Website  All IIMs conducts it individually
Total Participating institutes 19 IIMs
Total Seats 4000 (approximately)


CAT Counseling Dates

Issue of CAT Notification July 2018
CAT Exam date November/ December 2018
CAT Exam Results Declaration January 2019
CAT Option Entry will begin from Second Week of January 2019
CAT First Spot Admissions Third week of January 2019
CAT Second Spot Admissions (Remaining NRI seats after first round, if any, will be considered as General All India Merit seats) Fourth week of January 2019


CAT Counseling Process

As soon as the results will be declared, IIMs will release their cut off scores on the basis of which the entire process of counseling will be carried out. The complete process of CAT Counseling will include five stages, listed below:

  • Online Registration for CAT Counseling
  • Document Verification
  • Entry of Web Options
  • Seat Allotment
  • Reporting to an IIM

Registration Process of CAT Counseling

Candidates must first of all register for CAT Counseling online through the official portal through the following procedure:

  • Log in to the official website of IIM (www.iimcat.ac.in).
  • Click on New Registration link.
  • Fill in the registration form with valid details.
  • Cross check the form before submissions.
  • Click on Submit tab to complete the registration.

Document Verification

Candidates must report to the allocated counseling venue during the registration process with the original as well as photocopies of the necessary documents. The Counseling Application form should also be submitted along with the documents. Applicants must pay the counseling fee in order to proceed for the further admission rounds.

  • Candidates must preserve the system generated receipt which will be used during the CAT Web Options Entry process.
  • All the applicants must bring the following listed documents for the verification:
    • Original counseling letter
    • Admit card
    • Bank draft to be made as per the guidelines mentioned as per CAT prospects
    • Class 10th mark sheet & passing certificate
    • Class 12th mark sheet and passing certificate
    • Rank card
    • Graduation degree/ Provisional
    • Caste certificate (if applicable)
    • Medical certificate
    • Passport size photographs

Web Options Entry

  • Candidates will have to log in to Web Options portal with the User ID and password received during the certificate verification process.
  • A list of all the institutes for counseling will be displayed on the screen.
  • Select the options in order of preference.
  • Save & Lock the choices.
  • Take the print of the finally filled in options form for future reference.

Seat Allotment Process

  • The authorities will announce CAT Seat Allotment after few days of options entry.
  • The allotment process will depend up on the seats available and candidate’s percentile.

Reporting to an IIM

  • This is the second stage of CAT selection process. Candidates must reporting to the institute within the given time framework, failing which, their candidature will be cancelled.
  • Candidate’s performance in test, academics and work experience will be considered for selection.
  • Further, Written Ability Test (WAT), Group Discussion (GD) and Personal Interview (PI) will be conducted at the allocated institute.

CAT Selection Process

Final admissions to post graduate management programs to IIMs through CAT is done in two phases:

  • All India Entrance Test
  • Admission process at IIMs (WAT, GD and PI)

Written Ability Test (WAT)

Over the years, most of the IIMs prefer WAT over GD. Almost 11 out of 19 IIMs conduct WAT instead of GD, except IIM Lucknow and IIM Kozikhode which conducts both GD and WAT. The test is designed to analyse candidate’s thinking ability and their ability to formulate and communicate their thoughts.

  • Candidates will have to write an essay on any of the given topic.
  • At each IIM, the time allotted for WAT is different.
  • Applicants must try to put in as many ideas as they can in a clear and comprehensive manner.
  • Topics can be taken from any general domain including Current Affairs, Government policies, Trade & Commerce, Social issues, etc.
  • Some of the essay topics allotted in past years are listed below:
    • Media Influence
    • Corruption
    • Petroleum Subsidy
    • Women’s Reservation Bill

Group Discussion (GD)

GD is conducted to assess the ability of the candidate to communicate within a group. Some Candidates will be divided in groups consisting 8-10 members. Students are then asked to put forward their views on any of the given topic. The main aim is to shortlist the candidates who understand the dynamics of group and prove to be an excellent team player. Some of the examples of topics for GD are:

  • Cricket Vs Football
  • Excise Tax on Jewellery
  • GST

Personal Interview (PI)

This is the final deciding round at every IIM. The performance in PI is one of the most crucial factors affecting the admissions. Candidates will have to face a panel of 3-4 interviewers. Candidates must be well prepared for the round and know the frequently asked questions in personal interview. Questions range from the academic records and stream, Extra- Curricular Activities, Work Experience, etc.

Applicants are therefore advised to have an extensive knowledge of their academic subjects before they proceed for PI. An in depth knowledge about their subjects studied, will give them an extra edge over their competitors.

CAT Intake Capacity

Indian Institutes of Management Intake Capacity
IIM Ahmadabad 385
IIM Bengaluru 382
IIM  Calcutta 462
IIM Lucknow 419
IIM Indore 450
IIM Kozikode 375
IIM  Shillong 120
IIM  Ranchi 120
IIM  Rohtak 120
IIM  Raipur 120
IIM Trichy 102
IIM Udaipur 120
IIM Kashipur 90
IIM Nagpur 60
IIM Vishkapatnam 60
IIM Sambhalpur 60
IIM Sirmaur 60
IIM Jammu

Factors Affecting CAT Admission Process

The final score of the candidate will be issued based on various factors listed below:

Factors Scoring (Maximum 50 marks)
Aggregate CAT Score 38
Graduation Marks 2
SSC Marks 2
HSC Marks 2
Work Experience 2
Diversity Factor: Gender 2
Diversity Factor: Academic Discipline 2

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