XAT Syllabus 2025

Highlights, Section-Wise Topics, Preparation Tips, Books

Updated on 16th March 2024 | 10:17 am | #XATSyllabus2025

The XAT exam syllabus, set by XLRI Jamshedpur, includes Decision Making, Verbal & Logical Ability, Quantitative Aptitude & Data Interpretation, and General Knowledge. It is recommended that serious candidates become familiar with the XAT syllabus well in advance to plan their preparation and allow ample time for mock tests.

It's important to note that Essay Writing is evaluated only for candidates who successfully progress through the shortlisting process. All questions in the exam, excluding Essay Writing, are of the multiple-choice type. The XAT Exam is known for its higher level of difficulty compared to CAT in each of its sections. Additionally, the Decision Making Section does not follow a specific syllabus; instead, it assesses the candidate's presence of mind and analytical skills, setting XAT apart as one of the toughest MBA entrance exams.

Start preparing for XAT 2025

XAT Syllabus 2025: Overview

The XAT Syllabus is just as extensive as the CAT Syllabus and similar to CAT, it does not have an official syllabus which gives the convening body some flexibility while setting the paper. Before the XAT Syllabus, the XAT Exam Pattern has to be carefully looked at. The XAT Exam is composed of 5 sections:

The marking scheme for the XAT Exam 2025 is expected to be:

Due to this rule of not leaving more than 8 questions unattempted, the candidates have to be extremely strategic in the questions that they decide to leave.

As mentioned above, the XAT Syllabus is not explicitly released by XLRI Jamshedpur, which convenes the XAT. However, the previous XAT papers can be used as a guideline for the types of questions asked as well as the topics that are generally tested in the XAT Exam. To prepare according to the XAT Syllabus, we need to look at the syllabus according to the sections.

Here is the breakdown of the XAT syllabus 2025 for your reference:

XAT Exam Syllabus

Relevant Topics

Verbal and Logical Ability

Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary, Analogy, Parajumble, Grammar, Critical Reasoning, Fill in the Blanks, etc.

Decision Making

Data Arrangement, Conditioning, Grouping, Complex Arrangement, Caselets, Assumptions, Premises, Conclusions, etc.

Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation

Arithmetic, Geometry, Mensuration, Percentage, Surds and Indices, Algebra, Mensuration, Bar Diagrams, Pie Charts, Tables, Data Interpretation, etc.

General Knowledge

Science, Economy, Business, Politics, Static GK, Sports, Prize and Award, World, Government, Constitution of India, etc.

XAT Syllabus 2025: Section-Wise Topics

Understanding the XAT syllabus is crucial for effective preparation. Similar to other management entrance tests, the XAT syllabus comprises four main sections:

This understanding allows candidates to practice effectively for the exam. Here is the section-wise analysis of the XAT syllabus 2025 given below:

Verbal & Logical Ability

This section is a combination of Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC) & Logical Reasoning. It consists of three distinct sections for preparation purposes:

Verbal Ability

This part of the Verbal & Logical Ability Section is similar to the VA section in the CAT Exam. Thus the topics that are generally tested in the XAT Exam and hence are considered part of the XAT Syllabus are:

Reading Comprehension

In the XAT exam, Reading Comprehension holds less weight than in the VARC section of the CAT Exam, but it remains significant. As with CAT, all topics are included in the XAT Exam, and passages are constrained by a limited word count. However, this brevity doesn't necessarily make the passages easier to read.

The types of questions asked in the RC section according to the XAT Syllabus are:

Logical Reasoning

The Logical Reasoning section in the XAT Syllabus is mostly covered by the CAT Syllabus. There are generally few questions for this section in the XAT Exam. It also includes some Critical Reasoning Questions which are generally not asked in the CAT Exam.

The topics generally tested in the Logical Reasoning part according to the XAT Syllabus are:

The Logical Reasoning Questions in the XAT Exam could be in the form of sets or individual questions.

Decision Making

The Decision Making section is unique to the XAT Exam in comparison to all other MBA Entrance Exams. It tests the candidate on their presence of mind and ability to read the situation so that the candidate's problem-solving/case-solving skills can be tested. The number of questions in this section varies from paper to paper.

The topics which are generally tested in this section according to the XAT Syllabus are:

To prepare for the Decision Making Section of the XAT Syllabus, the candidates are encouraged to solve as many XAT Exam Papers of the Past as possible. This will ensure that the candidates are familiar with not only the topics of the section but also the language of the XAT Exam.

Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation

This section is a combination of two sections of CAT: Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation. This is basically to check your analytical and problem-solving skills.

Quantitative Ability

The XAT Syllabus for the Quantitative Ability section is similar to that of the CAT Syllabus. According to the previous XAT Papers which determine the XAT Syllabus, the topics generally tested are:

Given the extensive nature of the XAT Syllabus in the Quantitative section, it is important to start the preparation as soon as possible. The level of difficulty of the XAT Questions is tougher than that of the CAT Questions due to which knowing the basics is not enough.

Candidates would benefit if they study for the Quantitative Ability section with XAT in mind rather than CAT so that they can get accustomed to that level of difficulty.

Data Interpretation

The XAT Syllabus for the Data Interpretation section consists of:

The Questions are generally in the form of sets, like in CAT, however individual questions may also be asked on occasion.

General Knowledge Section

This is another section that CAT does not test. However, despite the presence of the section, the XAT percentiles are calculated based on the first 3 sections.

The XAT Syllabus in this section is extremely vast with current affairs as well as conventional GK (trivia). The topics which are regularly asked in this section include:

Essay Writing

The XAT exam syllabus included the essay writing section till XAT 2018 before the section was removed from the XAT syllabus. However, in XAT 2022, XLRI Jamshedpur reintroduced the essay writing section.

The essay writing section is the only descriptive question in the XAT syllabus. With the introduction of this section, candidates can expect an increase of 10 minutes in the total time allotted for the exam. Essay writing is also a broad topic with an infinite possibility of questions. In XAT 2022, candidates had to choose between two given topics while in XAT 2023 and 2024, candidates had to choose one essay topic from 3 options.

The Essay Writing section focuses on abstract ideas and contemporary thoughts. The section is only evaluated if the candidate is shortlisted for further admission rounds at an institute,

XAT Syllabus 2025: Preparation Tips

Now that the XAT syllabus has been clarified based on previous XAT papers, here are a few points to keep in mind while preparing for XAT.

XAT 2024 Analysis

XAT 2025: Best Books for Preparation

Books can indeed be invaluable companions, especially when preparing for an entrance test with no specific syllabus. Finding the right books is crucial for effective preparation in such cases.

Therefore, here are some of the books that you can refer to for your XAT 2025 preparation:



High School English Grammar

Wren and Martin

A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning

R.S. Aggarwal

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

Ajay Singh

9th and 10th Grammar Books

A Modern Approach to Logical Reasoning

R.S. Aggarwal

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning

Gautam Puri

Quantitative Aptitude For Competitive Examinations

RS Aggarwal

Quantitative Aptitude for All Competitive Examinations

Abhijit Guha


The XAT Exam is recognized as one of the toughest MBA Entrance Exams due to its high difficulty level. This difficulty can benefit candidates in preparing for other MBA entrance exams. The first three sections carry the most weight in terms of pattern and percentile calculation. All sections are equally important due to their similar numbers of questions and sectional cutoffs. Many candidates consider the Decision Making section to be crucial as its preparation is quite challenging. Therefore, thorough preparation according to the XAT syllabus is vital for clearing the XAT cutoff.


The key topics covered in the XAT syllabus are:

  • Verbal and Logical Ability
  • Decision Making
  • Quantitative Aptitude & Data Interpretation
  • General Knowledge
  • Essay Writing

The best strategies to prepare for the Decision Making section are as follows:

  • Practice decision-making questions every day to familiarize yourself with the types of questions.
  • Review past year's papers to understand the types of questions that appear in the exam.
  • Avoid making your conclusions or judgments regarding the question, only answer based on the facts provided.
  • Pick the answers that minimize the damage and maximize the benefits in the given scenario.

The mathematical section of XAT is vast, much like CAT. However, here are some of the major areas that you must focus on when preparing for the exam:

  • Algebra
  • Number Systems
  • LCM and HCF
  • Arithmetic
  • Profit and Loss
  • Geometry

If you are also preparing for CAT while preparing for XAT, except the Decision Making section of XAT your preparation strategy will remain the same.

  • Focus on establishing the basics
  • Practise mock tests regularly
  • Review the past years’ papers
  • Stay updated on current affairs

Suggested Readings

XAT 2025 XAT Exam Pattern XAT Preparation Tips XAT Colleges