Mainly seen as an entry route to pursue a Master’s in Business Administration Program across several domains of expertise, MBA entrance exams is what has become the centre of focus of today’s generation. MBA Entrance exams are not as old as the concept of aptitude assessment. In the Pre-Entrance era, B-Schools used to grant admission solely on the academic merit of a candidate, let alone MBA entrance exam. But now, as the population of students wanting to pursue post graduation in business management is on incessant rise, almost all the major b-schools of the country accept admissions based on MBA entrance exams, which gives them a right sense of judgement and the ability to select candidates who survive and outperform a highly competitive environment and win the race of MBA entrance exams.

Over 2 lakh people appear for CAT, XAT, NMAT and other MBA Entrance Exams. All of them are hunting for a seat at the top B-Schools in the country. However, the first step in this journey begins with the form filling of the various exams and B-Schools. In our country, the present generation students largely trip in favour of IIMs ,XLRI, FMS , ISB, IIFT etc which are high end A listed B-schools. But, due to the underlying cut off criteria and selection procedures, not everyone is able to score an admission in these coveted institutes. However, a little extra effort and consistent hard work can make it possible in a matter of a few months i.e preparing well for CAT/MAT/IIFT which are all Major MBA entrance exams as such.

Given the importance of the forms and notifications as well as the tendency of the B-Schools/conducting bodies to remain rigid in terms of the deadlines, it is immensely important for each candidate to keep track of the MBA Entrance Exams Notifications as well as the B-School Notifications. Read on to have an in-depth understanding of the major running MBA entrance exams in the country, B-school notification, registration , eligibility criteria, selection procedure and much more related to

MBA Entrance Exams Notifications 2020

As per the regular norms, the MBA entrance exam cycle commences in the months of September or October every year and ends in March or April the next year while the registration of the same commences from May or June every year and ends somewhere between January or February the next year. Some of the prominent entrance exams like CAT, XAT, NMAT, SNAP, MICAT, IIFT are conducted during November, December and January.

Career Launcher helps you keep track of the MBA Notifications with the table given below:

Name of the Exam

Conducting Body

Start Date (Form filling)

End Date (Form filling)

Exam Date

More Information

Official Link


CAT 2020

IIM Indore

5th August 2020

23rd September 2020

29th November 2020

Click here

Click here

Application Closed

GMAT 2020


Third week of April 2020

Any time of the year (Ideally September-October 2020) 

Chosen by the candidate

Click here

Click here

Application Open

CMAT 2021

National Testing Agency

Last week of November 2020 

First week or second week of January 2021

Last week of January or First week of February 2021

Click here

Click here

Application not yet opened

XAT 2021

XLRI Jamshedpur + XAMI

12th September 2020

30th November 2020

3rd January 2021

Click here

Click here


NMAT 2020

NMIMS Mumbai

14th September 2020

30th November 2020

4th November – 20th January 2021

Click here

Click here


SNAP 2020


24th September 2020 

28th November 2020

20th December 2020, 6th January 2021, 9th January 2021

Click here

Click here


IIFT  2021

IIFT Delhi

6th November 2020

20th December 2020

24th December 2020

Click here

Click here



MICAT 1 2021

MICA Ahmedabad

20th October 2020

26th November 2020

5th December 2020

Click here

Click here

Application closed


MICA Ahmedabad

27th November 2020

20th January 2021

30th January 2021

Click here

Click here

Not Started Yet


TISS Mumbaii

20th Nov 2020

15th Dec 2020

January 2021 (tentative)

Click here

Click here


MAH-CET 2021

Directorate of Technical Education, Maharashtra

Third week of January 2021 (tentative)

Second week of February (tentative)

First week of March 2021 (Tentative)

Click here

Click here

Not yet started

PGDBA 2021

IIM Calcutta,

IIT Kharagpur and ISI Kolkata

First week of December 2020 (tentative)

Second week of January 2021 (tentative)

February 20, 2021 (Written Test)

Click here

Click here

Not yet started


IRMA, Gujarat

19 October 2020

31 December 2020

First week of February 2021 (tentative)


Click here


MAT 2021


Last week of December 2020 (tentative)

Second or Third week of February (Tentative)

Third week of February 2021 (tentative)


Click here

Not yet started 

ATMA 2020


Association of Indian Management Schools  

December 2020 (tentative)

First week of February 2021 (tentative)

Second-third week of february 2021 (tentative)


Click here 

Not yet started

MBA Admissions 2020

Starting 8th May 2020, many b-schools have already started declaring their results or are presently in the process of doing the same. As per the AICTE notice, a good number of decent b-schools like JBIMS Mumbai, SIMSREE, KJ SIMR and Welingkar twenty IIMs, IIFT, MDI Gurgaon, MICA, SPJIMR Mumbai, FMS New Delhi, IMT Ghaziabad will be actively accepting applications of candidates through CAT 2020, XAT 2020, MAH CET 2021, IIFT 2021 etc adhering to the latest guidelines of AICTE regarding sticking to the status quo of the previous year’s fee structure for the batch of 2020-22.

MBA admissions 2020 has been a difficult judgement call for candidates who are looking forward to pursuing MBA this year. Due to the impact of the current situation, many top tier institutes like IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, Kozhikode, Indore, FMS Delhi, MDI Gurgaon etc. came up with the idea of cutting short the selection procedure in the interest of candidate’s and their family’s safety. Hence, they started conducting online personal interviews. Candidates were interviewed by the admission panel through skype or zoom instead of going through the ordeal of regular GD-WAT-PI. The final composite score of the candidate was calculated after revising the weightages of different parameters of admission I.e. the academic scores, graduation scores, work experience, gender diversity and social category. This proved to be a major advantage in terms of clearing the sense of uncertainty among the candidates who are on the fence about continuing their studies.

What is actually meant by the MBA Entrance Exam?

Majority of the country’s B-schools accept MBA entrance exams as a qualifying criterion for admission into MBA/PGDM programmes. In recent years, pursuing MBA/PGDM has gained immense popularity based on a number of factors. The primitive concern related to MBA is the amount of time and efforts a candidate has to put in before and after MBA admissiona. There is no point in doing an MBA if you have not understood everything about it. Here are some points that would help you understand the entire MBA information sandbox:

Main MBA Entrance Exams


MBA Program Fees

Rs 2.0 lakhs – 30 lakhs

MBA Disciplines

MBA Finance, MBA Marketing, MBA International Business, MBA Digital Marketing, MBA Business Analytics and others. 

MBA Average CTC Offered

– Tier 1 B schools: 20 lakhs- 28 Lakhs
– Tier 2 B schools: 12 lakhs-18 Lakhs
– Tier 3 B schools: 3 lakhs –7 lakhs

Top Recruiting Sectors

Banking, Finance, Telecom, Events, Sports, Branding & Advertising, Digital Marketing, Foreign Trade, Human Resource Management, Marketing, etc.

Top Recruiters

Amazon, Apple, Bain & Company, Citigroup, Deloitte, Facebook, Accenture, etc. 

Apart from the freshers, MBA is advantageous for professionals who have 3-4 years of industry experience. It is only after being a part of the corporate world that people realise the importance of a master’s degree in business administration. MBA is an extremely helpful way to jump up to middle/senior management within any organization or to start one’s own business. Some people go a notch higher than others and pursue their MBA from abroad by clearing International MBA exams.

Role of AICTE and UGC in MBA Entrance Exams

Pursuing an MBA/PGDM programme from high end MBA institutions of our country e.g. IIMs, FMS, SPJIMR, IIFT, XLRI , ISB etc can bring home a fortune.However, it is not possible to pursue mba without an entrance exam. Since all these B-Schools accept different examinations for MBA, the protocol is to appear for only those examinations whose scores are primarily accepted by your targeted institution. A variety of important entrance examinations like CAT (for IIMs, FMS and other A listed B schools), GMAT (for ISB Hyderabad, MICA or any of the major IIMs), XAT (for XLRI and it’s 11 member institutes), IIFT (for IIFT Delhi, kolkata and kakinada), NMAT (for NMIMS Mumbai and 50 other B-schools), CMAT, ATMA, MAT etc have been approved by AICTE (All India Council for Technical Education or UGC (University Grants Commission) for the purpose of candidates who wish to get admission in these coveted institutions and move up the management ladder

Important Parameters related to MBA Admissions 2020

Each year, there are lakhs of aspirants who leave no stone unturned to score admission in the top tier B-Schools of the country. Apart from gearing themselves up for different MBA entrances such as CAT, XAT, MAT, CMAT, NMAT, ATMA, TISSNET, MAH CET, etc. they try to factor in other important parameters required to land themselves in their targeted b-schools. These parameters are given below:

  • Qualifying exam of top B schools
  • Eligibility criteria for Entrance exams
  • Types of Entrance Exams
  • Important dates related to Entrance Exams
  • Admission procedure 2020
  • Group Discussion and Personal Interviews
  • Things you need during exam registration
  • Last minute tips

MBA Admission 2020: Qualifying exam of topmost B schools

The first and the foremost concern of the aspirants should be related to categorizing the b-schools based on which entrance exam scores are accepted by them. The given list may prove helpful to the aspirants:

Important notice : This is to be kept in mind that all the twenty running IIM (Indian Institute of Management) branches strictly accept CAT scores. Find a defined list of section-CAT cut off for all the IIMs by clicking here.

Name of the B school

Type of Qualifying Exam

Management Development Institute, Gurgaon


Faculty of Management Studies, Delhi


Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Delhi


Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai


Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai


SP Jain Institute of Management & Research, Mumbai


XLRI-Xavier School of Management Jamshedpur


Institute of Management Technology Ghaziabad


Symbiosis Institute of Business Management


Prin. L. N. Welingkar Institute of Management 

Development & Research


IRMA, Anand


MICA, Ahmedabad


ICFAI Business School Hyderabad 


Visit Top B-school Info to know more about the admission criteria and shortlisting procedure of all the major running B-Schools of our country accepting MBA entrance exam scores.

Common Eligibility Criteria for MBA Entrance Exams 2020

The eligibility criteria for all the management entrance exams i.e CAT, MAT, XAT, IIFT, NMAT, SNAP, PGDBA, IBSAT, IRMASAT, TISSNET, MAH-CET etc is somewhat similar, given as under:

  • A candidate must have completed his bachelor’s degree (10+2+3) or (!0+2+4) from a recognized institute with a minimum of 50% marks or equivalent grade point average (45% for reserved category candidates)
  • There is no specific age limit to appear for the exams.
  • The students who are Indian citizens can give university-level, state-level and national level papers. International students can only give national level papers and they need to visit India for the purpose of the same.
  • Final year candidates are also eligible to apply.

MBA Admissions 2020: Types of MBA exams

Generally, students opting for MBA prefer to appear for CAT (Common Admission Test) which is a national level entrance test. One of the major reasons behind this is that CAT scores are accepted across 150+ b schools in the country. However, top colleges accepting CAT scores, especially IIMs are far more selective when it comes to shortlisting candidates for admissions mainly because of the heterogeneous nature of the group of students hailing from different educational, societal and economic backgrounds.

Another reason for the selective nature of IIMs is the uneven ratio of the number of students taking CAT every year (approx. 2.5 lakh candidates for last year) and the all the IIMs and each one has its individual way of shortlisting candidate for Admission

Know more: How to get into an IIM?

  • Common Admission Test (CAT): CAT is the oldest and the leading national level MBA entrance examination in our country. It is the only examination which is conducted in the month of November every year in a computer-based CBT mode. Being the only entry route to all the IIMs of our country, CAT attracts almost 2.5 lakh students every year. Apart from the IIMs, all the A listed B schools like S.P Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR), Faculty of Management Studies (FMS), Management Development Institute (Gurgaon), Institute of Management Technology (IMT), Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies (JBIMS), International Management Institute (IMI), National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE) accept

    CAT scores on a majority for their business administration programmes. Visit CAT 2020 Updated Exam Pattern to understand this year’s examination structure.

    Also Read : CAT preparation tips

  • Management Aptitude Test (MAT) - Also One of the oldest MBA entrance examinations in the country, MAT is conducted four times in a year and accepted in over 600+ b-schools as a qualifying criterion for MBA. View Last year's MAT analysis here.
  • Common Management Admission Test (CMAT) - Like other management entrances, CMAT is also a 3-hour long test held in an online (CBT) mode and is organized annually by NTA (National Testing Agency). The scores are accepted by 1000+ AICTE approved institutions. View the exam pattern and syllabus of CMAT 2020 by clicking here
  • Xavier’s Aptitude Test (XAT): XAT is a flagship entrance test which is the only qualifying criterion of XLRI Jamshedpur, XIM Bhubaneswar and other 10 Xavier member institutes. The test is conducted by XLRI and taken by approx. 75000 candidates every year. The normalization process of XAT is different from other MBA exams. The registration of XAT 2021 is expected to begin from August 23, 2020. XAT is the second most popular entrance test taken by candidates who wish to pursue MBA from a top A listed b school as XAT scores are accepted in major b schools I.e SPJIMR, TAPMI, Greatlakes Chennai Etc.
  • Symbiosis National Aptitude Test : SNAP is a national level MBA entrance test. It is a path for admission to some premier b schools of the country. The paper is conducted by Symbiosis International (Deemed) university, a b school which has been irrevocably churning out some of the best business minds of the nation every year. SNAP is the only way to secure admission in SIBM Pune, SCMHRD Pune and other 14 member institutes of Symbiosis International University. The exam is scheduled to be held on 14th December 2020. Know more TISS’s National Entrance Test : TISSNET is one of the most coveted entrance exams which is administered by Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai for admission into it’s flagship programme i.e M.A in Human resource management and other MA programmes offered by this prestigious institution. A candidate can apply for a maximum of 3 programmes across 2 TISS campuses. TISSNET will be held on 20th february 2021 across more than 40 test centres of the country. In addition to TISSNET , students interested specifically in MA (HRM &LR) and MA (ODCL) programmes need to appear for another short exam called TISSNET. know more.
  • Also Read : How to prepare for TISSNET and TISSMAT?
  • IIFT : IIFt is an institute-level examination which is conducted by Indian institute of foreign trade for the purpose of selecting students to pursue their flagship MBA (International Business pogramme) which are one of the most selective programmes in international business with immense global reputation and prominence. IIFT is convened by NTA (National Testing Agency) annually in an online mode. Approximately 80,000+ students from all over the country appear for IIFT which makes it one of the most popular MBA entrance exams in the country. Click here to know about IIFT 2021 analysis and cut offs.
  • NMAT : Administered by the same agency which runs the most popular MBA entrance exam of the world i,e GMAT, NMAT is a national level MBA entrance exam conducted primarily for admission in the residential PGDM programme of NMIMS Mumbai, VIT Vellore XIMB along with thirty established B schools in India. Students need to know in detail about the top colleges they would like to target through NMAT to know more about the specialized programmes which are affiliated by the top most global accreditation boards. NMAT can be taken thrice and the examination is held in two modes i.e either through a test centre or online proctored more.Read more.

Also check :

NMAT 2020 Exam Analysis

How to prepare for NMAT

Apart from the above-mentioned exams, some other major entrance exams for MBA course are MAH-MBA CET, GMAT, PGDBA, ATMA, IRMASAT, IBSAT, PGCET, KCET, TANCET, UPESMET, etc

Apart from the above-mentioned exams, some other major entrance exams for MBA course are MAH-MBA CET, GMAT, PGDBA, ATMA, IRMASAT, IBSAT, PGCET, KCET, TANCET, UPESMET, etc


 Important dates Related to Main Entrance Exams

Here is the list of popular MBA entrance exams for MBA admission along with important dates:

    • Last date to apply for the exam: 20th December 2020

    • Date of the exam 6th December 2020

  • Xavier’s Aptitude Test (XAT) 2021

    • Last date to apply for the exam: 30th November 2020

    • Date of the exam: 3th January 2020

  • MICAT Admission Test (MICAT I and II) 2021

    • Last date to apply for MICAT I = 26th November 2020

    • Date of MICAT I Exam = 5th December 2020

    • Last date to apply for MICAT II = 20th January 2021 

    • Date of MICAT II Exam = 30th January 2021

* Final composite score will be calculated based on your performance in MICAT I and II


Exam Dates

Official notification

Second week of January 2021

Commencement of registration

Second week of January 2021

Application fee

Rs.1000 for General category

Rs.800 for Reserved category

Application Deadline

Fourth week of February 2021

Issuance of hall ticket (start)

First week of March 2021

Issuance of hall ticket (Deadline)

Second week of March 2021

Exam Date

Second week of March 2021

Announcement of Result

Fourth week of March 2021

What will be the MBA Admission procedure for 2020?

Important Parameters


Eligibility Criteria

At least 50% in graduation, final year students can register as well.

Age limit


Selection of the Entrance exam based on targeted colleges

20 IIMs, FMS, IMT, MDI, IMI and IITs accept CAT scores

XLRI accepts only XAT scores

NMIMS accepts only NMAT score

Sixteen symbiosis member institutes accept the SNAP score

Selection of shortlisted students for further admission rounds (Group Discussion- Written Ability Test-Personal Interview)

Shortlisting is based on weightage given to several parameters regarding exam score, academic background, professional work experience and gender diversity.

Top B Schools like IIMs, FMS, IMT and MDI conduct mandatory batch-wise group discussion sessions of students who are shortlisted.

Declaration of merit lists by the universities

The institutes announce the result of candidates in the form of merit lists. It can be downloaded from the official website of the institute. The list usually contains the name of the selected student, registration number, roll number, entrance Exam score and entrance exam percentile.

Accepting admission letter and payment of acceptance fees

Post declaration of the result, the university/B-school sends an e-offer letter via an official email. A candidate needs to revert to the email by accepting the offer letter and paying the acceptance fees by the given date to seal your admission.

The data/statistics formulated every year in form of cut offs, weightage, Batch Profile, Gender Diversity, Academic Diversity, summer placements and final placements play a mandatory role in shaping up the repute of the institute. If I talk about the topmost b schools in our country, most of the institutes’ admission procedures can be drawn along similar lines. 

MBA Admission 2020: Group Discussion and Personal Interview

Group Discussion is an important part of the MBA admission procedure. GD is usually conducted in batches. Different institutes have different methods to assess the candidates based on group discussion but the most common of all is that each candidate of a batch is handed over a common topic to discuss about. Read more

Also Read: Group Discussion Topics for MBA Admissions

Post Group discussion, the institute conducts a personal interview session with the selected candidates. Personal Interview is the face-to-face interview where a candidate is put through a series of questions related to personal as well as professional life deliberately. Asking critical questions gives an overall evaluation of the candidate’s confidence, presentation skills and whether he/she is a fitment for pursuing the management programme or not.

MBA Admission 2020: Things you need during Exam Registration

While applying to a B-school, you will be required to upload copies of important documents mentioned as under:

  • MBA Entrance Test Report and Hall Ticket

  • Graduation Passing Certificate/Consolidated Mark sheet

  • 10th and 12th Grade Passing Certificates and Scorecards

  • Government ID proof

  • Work Experience Certificate (if any)

MBA Registration 2020: last minute tips

Eligibility Criteria of targeted B schools 

  • MBA Admission protocol has instructions for who can or cannot take part in it. These instructions, known as the eligibility criteria, explain the characteristics that should be common in all the candidates. The eligibility criteria for all the main entrance exams is almost similar. It includes age, gender, number of attempts, nationality etc.

Gearing Up for the entrance exams

  • In case you are not on board with preparation at present, there is still a silver lining. CAT and all the management entrances will be either held towards the end of 2020 or in the beginning of the year 2020. You might want to begin with a relevant mock test to analyze your current performance and then break down the syllabus into two parts I.e. weak topics and strong topics. Start from the basics and settle down on a perfect preparation strategy that will be conducive to your learning style and will help you achieve your desired percentile in the exam.

Register for CAT Scholarship Test to give a head start to your CAT 2021 preparation

Taking more than one entrance Exams

  • Taking more than one entrance exams helps proliferate your chances of getting shortlisted by your targeted B-school by giving more edge to our MBA application over other students. For example, there are colleges like SPJIMR, PUMBA, JBIMS and SIMSREE that accept more than one management entrance test. Gearing up for multiple examinations simultaneously would mean the institute will consider all scorecards and choose the one with your best performance in order to shortlist you.

Knowing the ROI of your MBA degree

  • One of the most important factors to keep in mind is which MBA program will fetch you the highest return on investment. It is a known fact that MBA is a costly affair. Hence, the prospective students have the right to be concerned about the cost of their MBA programme. The top five b schools with the highest ROI in India are FMS Delhi, JBIMS Mumbai. Department of Management Studies (IIT Delhi), SJMSOM (IIT Bombay), VGSOM (IIT Kharagpur).

Placement Reports and Alumni Base 

  •  Placements as reflected in the best b-schools of the country have grown significantly in all numbers. The average salary offered by most of the cluster 1 b schools is between 12-20 lakhs per annum. Most of the MBA colleges have a huge gap between the highest and the average monthly packages. With the rising demand of fresh MBAs, the hirers have become more eager to present more jobs to MBA. Each institute releases its own placement report wherein they mention the number of students who have got placed, their name and background information, salary statistics and diversity data. It is mandatory to look out for such reports if you are targeting MBA admission 2020.

Campus tours

  •  Campus visits are critical to the entire cycle of selecting which institute would be correct for you. One looks at the university from a completely different perspective when he/she arrives at a campus. There is a feeling, a feeling of pride on how far they have come in their careers to be a part of a stellar B School. Seeing the hostel rooms, tasting the food, interacting with the faculty members, exploring the campus etc are critical elements to acknowledge which school will be right. 

Preparing well for GD-WAT-PI 

  • GD PI is also one of the key parameters for MBA admission 2020. Let’s assume you received a great percentile in the entrance exam, you submitted your application along with your scorecard to your dedicated B-School and you were fortunate enough to receive a call back. GD-PI are the latter selection rounds that every candidate must attend in order to get selected for admission. However, there are some misnomers regarding the rounds of GD-WAT-PI. If you have been selected for GD-PI, it is highly unlikely that you will get rejected in the same. There could have been thousands of others standing where you are, but they are not. You had been shortlisted because you are a notch above the rest.  A great entrance score goes a long way. Do not stammer during the GD-PI rounds and make sure you give your best and stay confident.

Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE)

The GATE exam is one of the most widely taken entrance exams. Engineers, who aspire to work in some of the most reputed PSU’s of our country and the government sector appear for GATE every year. This year, more than 8.5 lakh engineers appeared for GATE and only a few thousands were able to make their way into IITs/NITs/IISc etc. for a master’s degree. The result was released on March 13, 2020. Apart from the stated future prospects, GATE is a GATEWAY to a different set of opportunities for a graduate engineer in entry level positions of world-renowned companies, getting an opportunity to join fellowship programs from CSIR and so on.

GATE 2021 will be conducted between 5th-7th February 2020 and 12th-14th February 2020.

Visit GATE 2021 notification to know more.

Premium engineering colleges like IIT Mumbai, IIT Guwahati, IIT Madras, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Delhi, IIT Kanpur, IIT Roorkee, IISc Bangalore, NITIE Mumbai etc accepts valid GATE 2021 scores to allow admission into admissions to PG Diploma programmes in Project Management, Manufacturing Management and Industrial Engineering. To know more about GATE 2021 Exam Pattern and other details, click here.

MBA Admission 2020: Latest guidelines by AICTE Regarding Admissions

AICTE (All India Council for Technical Education) is a statutory body that approves PGDM programmes offered by the top b schools of India. AICTE had released its first notice regarding the MBA admissions 2020 on May 1, 2020 and released the revised notice on July 2,2020. Below is the instruction given by AICTE to all the B schools: 

Admission Deadline

10th August 2020 (extended from 31st July 2020)

Commencement of academic session 2020-22

1st August 2020

Fee structure of B schools


Cancellation of MBA seat 

Until 5th August 2020 (earlier July 25) 

Full refund of fees with a partial deduction of Rs 1000 

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