CAT Eligibility 2022

An entry to the MBA world requires the candidates to appear for entrance exams of which the most popular is the CAT or Common Admission Test. The CAT Score allows the candidate to be eligible for most of the best B-Schools in India including the IIMs which hold the CAT Exam.

The CAT eligibility has remained more or less the same in the past years. Students can expect similar criteria this year as well. Aspirants should review the criteria, given below in detail, to check if they are eligible for the exam before they begin preparing.

Overview- CAT Eligibility Criteria 2022

Aspirants who wish to apply for the exam must meet the following eligibility requirements to sit for the CAT entrance exam 2022-

Qualification

Requirement

Age

NA

Educational Qualification

Bachelor’s Degree

Marks in Graduation

50% (General Category)

Work Experience

Not Compulsory

Reservation

As per category

Given below is a more detailed description of the eligibility criteria. It provides an in-depth understanding of the entrance exam and its requirements. Aspirants who wish to get admission to the top B-schools of the country should ensure they meet the criteria for the CAT exam before they can score well on it.

CAT Eligibility 2022- Educational Qualifications

In order to appear for the CAT Exam, the candidates have to meet the requirements of the CAT Eligibility Criteria of 2022. Given here is a brief outline of the CAT eligibility criteria based on academics:

  • In order to be eligible for the CAT Exam, the candidate has to pass their Bachelor's degree with at least 50% (for General Category and for candidates from the NC-OBC caste). For SC/ST and Differently Abled (DA) candidates, the percentage required is 45%.
  • For the Degree to be counted, the University that has awarded the degree has to be recognized by the MHRD.
  • If the University awards grades or CGPA instead of marks, the conversion factor given by the University has to be used. If there is no conversion factor specified by the University, the CGPA has to be converted into percentage by direct conversion i.e., divide the CGPA received by the highest CGPA possible and multiply the result by 100.
  • Candidates who have completed their professional degrees with over 50% (45% for SC/ST/PwD) are also eligible for CAT.

Note: For candidates who are appearing for their final year in 2022 (graduating in 2022 or 2023), a promotion/pass certificate in the previous year will make them eligible to appear for CAT 2022.

CAT Eligibility: Marks Calculation

The calculation of marks for the CAT exam eligibility is as follows-

  • Universities/ institutes follow their own criteria for assigning marks on graduation. The CAT marks calculation will be based on this process.
  • If the university awards grades or CGPA instead of marks, the conversion method provided by the university has to be used to convert the marks to percentages.
  • In case the university has no methodology for converting marks/ CGPA to percentage, it is to be done through direct conversion. It means that the candidate should divide the achieved CGPA by the highest CGPA possible and multiply the result by 100.

CAT Eligibility: Final Year Students

Final year students are often confused about their eligibility for the CAT entrance exam. Here are the points these students need to keep in mind when checking their eligibility-

  • Final year students of all bachelor's degrees are eligible to apply for the CAT exam.
  • However, if selected for further stages, these students are required to clear their bachelor's with the required percentage and provide proof for the same at the time of selection.
  • If the candidate is unable to meet this requirement, their results in the further admission processes will be rendered null and void.

Note: For candidates appearing for their final year in 2022 (graduating in 2022 or 2023), a promotion/pass certificate in the previous year will make them eligible to appear for CAT 2022.

CAT Eligibility: Documents Required for Final Year Students

The breakup between freshers and candidates with work experience in CAT generally oscillates between 40% and 60%. Thus, the number of final year students appearing for CAT each year is quite significant. The first step is to clear the CAT Exam Eligibility 2022. To comply with the CAT Exam Eligibility Criteria, the candidates need to furnish some additional documents such as:

  • An additional document, since the candidate does not possess their final degree certificate with the total grade obtained. The document must have the sign by the Principal/ Head of Department/ Registrar/a Director of the Institute verifying that the candidate has over 50% marks in the course on the date the certificate is issued.
  • Post their admission to any of the B-Schools, the candidates will be required to furnish their final certificate from their graduation to continue in the institute.

CAT Eligibility 2022- Work Experience

As the application form for CAT asks about work experience, candidates are often doubtful of its effect on the overall application and exam process. Here is a better understanding of the role of work experience in the CAT exam-

  • Candidates appearing for the CAT entrance exam are not required to have prior work experience.
  • Though the CAT application form has a section for work experience, this condition is not a prerequisite.
  • Work experience has some weightage in the later stages of the admission process in IIMs. However, within the CAT exam, having any experience will not affect the scores or eligibility.

Key Points about CAT Eligibility

  • There is no age limit for the CAT entrance exam as per the Eligibility Criteria.
  • The current eligibility criteria state that the candidate should have a bachelor's degree of at least 3 years. However, the previous bachelor's degree of 2 years will also be accepted if the university is recognised by UGC.
  • Candidates in their final year of graduation or awaiting results are also eligible for the exam.
  • The percentage of marks obtained is calculated according to the practice of the university.
  • For further admission processes in IIMs, the candidate should maintain a unique and valid email ID as well as a phone number for official communications.

CAT Eligibility and IIM Eligibility: What is the Difference?

While the IIMs convene the CAT Exam, the eligibility criteria for both the bodies do not run parallel. There are minor points of contradictions that every candidate should note while pursuing this field-

  • While there is no age limit for both the CAT Exam eligibility and IIM eligibility, the 2-year bachelor’s degree accepted by the CAT entrance exam is not accepted by the IIMs. IIMs only admit a 3-year bachelor's degree for their Management Programs.
  • Though CAT does not require work experience, IIMs allot some weightage to work experience though it is not mandatory either.

Apart from this, there are no contradictions between the CAT Exam Eligibility and the IIM Eligibility.

Who is Ineligible for the CAT Exam?

  • A candidate who did not appear for their bachelor's degree and failed to meet the qualifications.
  • A candidate with marks less than 50% (for General Category and NC-OBC) or 45% (for SC/ ST/ PWD) in their graduation.
  • A candidate pursuing both their bachelor's degree as well as a professional degree but has yet to complete both of them.
  • A graduation certificate from a university not recognised by the UGC/ AICTE/ MHRD. The candidate will be considered ineligible to appear for the CAT Exam.

Reservation of Seats

After the CAT Exam Eligibility and the Exam itself are cleared, the goal of every student is to enter the IIMs; the highest regarded MBA Colleges in India. However, the IIMs are government-run institutions which means they follow the government policies regarding reservations for the underprivileged categories.

  • Consequently, it implies that the CAT entrance exam also follows the reservation criteria.
  • There is a separate category for the Differently Abled Individuals or Persons with Disability in the reservations.
  • To avail the Caste Based Reservation, the candidates need to provide proof in the form of the SC/ST/OBC Certificate in the application form. Following this, the original document may be required during the final admission process.
  • The standard formats for the caste certificates are provided on the official CAT website so that there is some uniformity and verification of the certificate can be done relatively easily.

The reservations for the CAT exam are as follows:

Category

Reservation

Scheduled Caste

15%

Scheduled Tribe

7.5%

Other Backward Classes of NC-OBC

27%

Economically Weaker Section

Up to 10%

Person with Disability

5%

Person with Disability: Reservation Category

The PwD will include candidates who have the following problems/disabilities:

  • Candidates having hearing impairment
  • Candidates with low vision/blindness
  • Candidates with a locomotive disability or cerebral palsy, leprosy cured, dwarfism, acid attack victims and muscular dystrophy
  • Autism, intellectual disability, specific learning disability and mental illness
  • Multiple disabilities from amongst persons under clauses (a) to (d)
  • Other ‘specified disabilities’ mentioned in ‘The Schedule’ of the RPwD Act 2016

These conditions make the candidates eligible for the PwD category in all the colleges under CAT. There is however a caveat that the candidates should have at least 40% of the handicap mentioned above to be eligible. The candidates with disability are also given 20 minutes more per section keeping in mind their condition. For candidates with vision-related issues, a scribe will be provided at the centre along with a wheelchair for candidates who have locomotive disabilities or blindness.

Conclusion

It is essential for every student to understand what is CAT exam and the CAT Exam Eligibility Criteria before they start the CAT Preparation in earnest. More importantly, the candidate should be aware of the documents that they may be asked to furnish during the CAT Registration Process as well as the further admission processes. The documents required for the further processes of different colleges can be easily found online and the candidate would be well advised to keep those documents ready for inspection at the time.

The CAT 2022 Notification will be released in July 2022 tentatively. The tentative dates for the CAT entrance exam are around 27/28th November 2022