NMAT 2019 - Analysis (19th Oct)

NMAT 2019 (October 19, 9:00 a.m.) had the usual paper pattern. There were hardly any surprises. There were three sections—Language Skills, Quantitative Skills, and Logical Reasoning with no negative marking and one mark for each correct answer. There was a fifteen-minute tutorial, followed by a choice of deciding the sequence of the sections. The duration of the exam was 135 minutes and the student had 2 hours to attempt all the questions of the 3 sections.The first RC passage was based on Astrophysics and Cosmology with three inference-based and one fact-based question. The second RC passage was based on the causes and effects of the extinction of bees with four inference-based questions. The length of the passages was around 500-600 words each.

The Verbal Reasoning section was fairly easy with a total of fifteen questions. There was only one question of Syllogism with 3 statements, followed by four conclusions. There were two Statement-Assumption questions, three Statement-Conclusion questions, and two questions based on Strong-Weak Arguments. This was followed by four questions on Statement-Inference (where the Statements were of 4-5 lines), two questions on Statement-Argument and one question on Statement-Course of Action. The quant-based Reasoning section contained questions on Coding (4 qs.), Input (3 qs.), Blood relation (1 q.), Seating arrangement (1 q.), etc.

The Quantitative Skills section was of a similar level of difficulty as that of last year. Most of the questions were conceptual and less calculative. Most of the questions were based on arithmetic. Overall, the level of difficulty of this section was moderate. Based on our experience, one should have solved close to 84-92 questions (across the sections) in 120 minutes. The remaining questions should have been calculated attempts (educated guess) because of the marking scheme. Just like last year, the paper pattern varied for different candidates in the same slot. However, the difficulty level didn’t vary drastically. Anyone with a weak reading speed would have faced a tough challenge due to the strict sectional time constraint.

The pattern of the paper was as follows:

S. no Section No. of Questions Time (in Minutes) Difficulty Level Possible
1 Language Skills 32 22 Moderate 26-28
2 Quantitative Skills 48 60 Easy-Moderate 34-37
3 Logical Reasoning 40 38 Easy-Moderate 24-27
  Total 120 120 Easy-Moderate 84-92

Logical Reasoning

The Logical Reasoning section was easy-moderate. Most of the questions were from predictable areas. There were two LR sets in total. The singlets were pretty easy. There was only one question based on Blood-Relation, followed by machine input-output questions which were of moderate difficulty level. Questions based on coding-decoding had varieties as all the three questions were on different pattern, out of which one was very tricky. There were 15 questions from the area of Verbal Logic. The options were not very close and so, the level of difficulty was moderate. Any student with a basic understanding of the fundamentals of verbal logic could have answered these easily. The questions in verbal logic ranged from easy to moderate level of difficulty.

Topic No.of Questions
Coding 4
Strong-Weak Arguments 2
Blood Relation 1
Statement-Conclusion 3
Statement-Argument 2
Statement Inference 4
Course of Action / Decision making 1
Statement-Assumption 2
Syllogism 1
Logical Reasoning(arrangement and puzzle) 8 (2 sets, 4 questions each)
Input/output 3
Missing number and visual reasoning 3
Mathematical Puzzles 3
Singlets (Contained Venn diagram, set theory and series based) 3
Total 40

Quantitative Skills

The Quantitative Aptitude section was of easy-moderate level. Arithmetic dominated the section. Number system, too, made its presence felt. The Data Sufficiency questions were from diverse topics such as Number system, Profit and loss, and Average. These questions were of moderate level. One could have solved these by just using the basic concepts. The Time and Work questions were easy. The Arithmetic Progression questions were time-consuming.

Questions from mixed graph were very calculative whereas questions from Pie chart were time consuming. The remaining 3 sets were easy and less calculative. There were a total of 5 DI sets which included pie-chart, line graph, mixed graphs, and tables, each containing 4 questions.

Topic No. of Questions
SI & CI 2
Time and work 1
Ratio & Proportion 3
Profit and Loss 2
Averages 1
Percentage 1
Number System( HCF/LCM and units digit based) 4
Progression 2
Logarithm 1
Geometry 1
Mensuration 1
Probability 3
Permutation and Combination 1
Data Sufficiency 5
DI 20 (5 sets, 4 questions each)
Total 48

Language Skills

Coming to the vocab questions of NMAT, there was one synonym question, where the students were asked to find the synonym of ‘perilous’ and one antonym-based question, where the students were asked to find the antonym of ‘amenable’. There were six analogy questions, out of which two were fairly easy and four were of moderate-difficulty level. Overall, the vocabulary based questions were easy, with the usage of words like alleviate, aggravate, elusive, dogma, lugubrious, etc. The cloze test passage had 4 questions which were easy, as well.

In the 2 Reading comprehension passages, the questions were mostly inference-based. No vocab based question came from the RCs. There were a total of 4 para-jumble questions. They were easy and could be easily be solved by the student. The remaining questions in the section were based on grammar. The preposition based Fill-in-the-blank questions were quite easy. The sentence-correction questions were easy too and the questions were based on parallelism and subject-verb agreement. The pattern of this section remained on predictable lines. Overall, the section was of moderate level of difficulty keeping in mind the time constraint.

Topic No. of Questions
Reading Comprehension Passages 8 (2 passages of 4 questions each)
Para Jumble 4 (4 sentence)
Error Spotting 3
FIBs (Correct sequence of Prepositions) 2 (1 blank each – 3 sentences)
FIB (One sentence, double blanks) 3
Synonyms 1
Antonym 1
Analogy 6
Cloze Test 4
Total 32


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NMAT 2018

The NMAT paper pattern did not see any changes in NMAT 2018. The difficulty level of the NMAT exam in 2018 was parallel to the difficulty level in NMAT 2017. However, for NMAT 2018 the NMAT cut off reduced by 1 mark. The overall NMAT 2018 cut off was 209.

Section No. of questions Marks/QTotal Marks Time Allotted Cut-off Mumbai campus) Cut-off (Bengaluru and Hyderabad Campus)
Quantitative Skills 48 3144 60 minutes 65 60
Logical Reasoning 40 3120 38 minutes 60 50
Language Skills 32 396 22 minutes 57 55
Total 120   360 120 minutes 209 200
Read complete NMAT 2018 Analysis.

NMAT 2017

For NMAT 2017, the difficulty level was on similar lines with NMAT 2016. There were no changes in the paper pattern. Nonetheless, the overall NMAT cut-off increased by 2 marks. The overall NMAT 2017 cut off was 210.

Section No. of questions Marks/Q Total MarksTime Allotted Cut-off Mumbai campus) Cut-off (Bengaluru and Hyderabad Campus)
Quantitative Skills 48 3 14460 minutes 65 65
Logical Reasoning 40 3 12038 minutes 60 60
Language Skills 32 3 9622 minutes 60 50
Total 120   360120 minutes 210 190
Read complete NMAT 2017 Analysis.

NMAT 2016

For NMAT 2016, the difficulty level was a tad lower than earlier years'. There was no change in the paper pattern. The overall cut-off, however, remained static, as has been the trend with NMAT over the years.

Section No. of questions Marks/Q Total MarksTime Allotted Cut-off Mumbai campus) Cut-off (Bengaluru and Hyderabad Campus)
Quantitative Skills 48 3 14460 minutes 74 70
Logical Reasoning 40 3 12038 minutes 61 55
Language Skills 32 3 9622 minutes 55 55
Total 120   360120 minutes 208 200
Read complete NMAT 2016 Analysis.

NMAT 2015

NMAT in 2015 was conducted by GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council), the owner and the administrator of the GMAT exam. This was a deviation from the previous years when Pearson VUE created the NMAT exam on behalf of NMIMS. The over-all cut-off remained the same as last year's, though there were minor changes in sectional cut-offs. Sectional cut-offs fell by a small margin.

Section No. of questions Marks/Q Total MarksTime Allotted Cut-off Mumbai campus) Cut-off (Bengaluru and Hyderabad Campus)
Quantitative Skills 48 3 14460 minutes 70 60
Logical Reasoning 40 3 12038 minutes 55 50
Language Skills 32 3 9622 minutes 50 50
Total 120   360120 minutes 208 196
Read complete NMAT 2015 Analysis.

NMAT 2014

NMAT 2014 was conducted by Pearson VUE. The exam was quite predictable with respect to the pattern and the difficulty level. The exam was easy-to-moderate and the overall cut-off remained the same at 208 marks.

Section No. of questions Marks/Q Total Marks Time Allotted Cut-off Mumbai campus) Cut-off (Bengaluru and Hyderabad Campus)
Quantitative Skills 48 3 144 60 minutes 70 60
Logical Reasoning 40 3 12038 minutes 61 50
Language Skills 32 3 9622 minutes 55 50
Total 120   360120 minutes 209 196
Read complete NMAT 2014 Analysis.

NMAT 2019 is going to be conducted from 4th October 2019 to 17th December 2019 and like last year, it is being administrated by GMAC. NMAT has had a very standardized pattern in the last few years which is not going to change. With respect to the pattern and structure of the exam, candidates can heave a sigh of relief. The overall difficulty level too will be along similar lines. The overall cut-off is expected to be around 208-210, which is the range around which the last few years' cutoffs have hovered. We can expect a little ambiguity from the sectional difficulty levels and sectional cutoffs can fluctuate by small margins.

For NMAT 2016, Quantitative Skills sectional cut-off rose from 70 to 74, despite the presence of highly calculation-intensive Data Interpretation questions, as the standalone quant questions were easier than last year. This shows that there can be varying difficulty levels even within a single section. A candidate should try to attempt around 75-80 questions to make it to a safe score of between 210-230, after accounting for a few errors.

Since sections are timed, understanding of fundamentals and the speed of attempting questions are the 'make or break' factors.

As there is no penalty for wrong answers, candidates should adopt a strategy wherein they attempt all the questions. About 80 questions out of 120 should be genuine attempts and the rest could be guesses/calculated risks based on elimination. If a candidate is purely guessing on the rest of the questions, then all the answer choices selected should be the same option as this maximizes the probability of getting a few of them correct!

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