CAT fails to make an impact

This year, there are fewer takers for the Common Admission Test

This year, there are fewer takers for the Common Admission Test (CAT), which is mandatory for admissions to the Indian Institutes of Managements.

According to data released to the IIMs, nearly 2,04,267 candidates have registered for CAT this year. Last year, nearly 2,41,000 candidates had registered for the first ever computer-based test. Ever since the IIMs extended the registration window by one week, there were speculations that there would be lesser number of takers.

“The decision to extend the registration period was taken to provide candidates with additional opportunity to register, and at the request of some candidates who required a longer registration period,” said Prometric, the agency which has been assigned to conduct the online test.

Himanshu Rai, convener for CAT 2010, attributed the drop in registration to global recession and the subsequent impact on placements. “Apart from the IIMs, nearly 158 management institutes accept the CAT score. During recession, many of these small institutes could not provide placements for their candidates. Even Indian Institutes of Management had to extend its placement week to accommodate all students. This had prompted many candidates to stick to their jobs than pursue a management programme,” he noted.

The male-female ratio of candidates appearing for the test is 74:26 this year. A major chunk of candidates this year, that is  close to 1,22, 837 are from the engineering background,   32,048 from commerce background and 21,809 are BBM graduates. Nearly 81 per cent of candidates who want to crack CAT are from the general merit category.

OBC (non-creamy layer) candidates comprise 11 per cent, while SC and ST candidates comprises of six per cent and two per cent, respectively. Statistics also reveals that 72.65 per cent candidates have work experience of up to six months.

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