Providing a major relief to the CAT 2015 aspirants, IIM Ahmedabad, the CAT 2015 convening IIM has announced that all questions will carry equal marks and ‘there are no negative marks for non-MCQ type questions’. For the first time in the history of CAT, the short descriptive answer questions (Non MCQs) will appear in CAT 2015. Till there is no publication by CAT Centre 2015 for the benefit of aspirants, it may remain difficult to understand the probable pattern and type of these descriptive answer questions (Non MCQs) in CAT 2015.
IIM Ahmedabad the top B school of the country has been assigned the responsibility to convene CAT 2015 and true to its name, the top rated B-school has brought many changes in the forthcoming CAT 2015 exam.
As was shared earlier by MBAUniverse.com that big changes and surprises have been announced for CAT 2015 exam by IIM Ahmedabad and one of such changes is the inclusion of Non MCQ type questions answers to which will have to be typed on computer screen in the exam. The number of sections have also been increased from 2 to 3.
Number of Non MCQ answer questions in each section
The descriptive answer questions or non MCQs will be placed in each of the 3 sections and it is expected that their number could be 5 to 8 in each section although the exact number has not yet been shared by the CAT Centre 2015. Responding to a query ‘how many non-MCQs are there in each section’ IIM Ahmedabad says ‘The number of questions varies and cannot be disclosed’.
CAT 2015 takers to type the answer on computer screen
Since CAT 2015 is a computer based test (CBT), the test taker cannot write the answers to non MCQs in paper-pen mode. On the contrary the answers have to be typed on the computer screen with a right approach. IIM Ahmedabad further explains in regard to marking and how to answer the descriptive type of questions stating ‘All questions carry equal marks. However, for non-MCQ type questions, you must type the answer.’
Marking/grading scheme for Non MCQs in CAT 2015
Sharing about the marking/grading scheme in CAT 2015, IIM Ahmedabad says ‘For questions other than MCQs, 3 marks are assigned for ‘correct answer’ and no marks for ‘wrong or no attempt’.
According to Prof S K Agarwal, expert on Verbal Ability and mentor on CAT 2015 preparation, this announcement is aspirant friendly as it implies that the candidates attempting the Non MCQ or short descriptive answer questions do not have to be afraid of losing their marks due to award of 1/3 penalty for wrong answer written on computer screen. Now you can attempt these questions without fear of penalty.
Word of caution; no reprieve in scoring for MCQs
Please however remember that the scoring scheme for multiple-choice questions remains the same as there will be awarded 3 marks for each correct answer and an incorrect answer will attract the penalty of minus (-) 1 mark. There will be no marks nor there would be any deduction for unattempted questions.
Exact type of Non MCQ questions in CAT 2015
Since there is no fixed syllabus for the CAT 2015 exam not has CAT ever defined it for CAT preparation, IIM Ahmedabad has advised the CAT 2015 aspirants ‘You can take our mock test to understand the pattern of exam and types of questions. Check the CAT website regularly for the announcement of mock test.”
The CAT Centre 2015 will be sharing the probable type of Non MCQ questions in CAT 2015 exam through the Mocks more than a month before the exam day. It is proposed that the Mock for CAT 2015 will be published in public domain in the middle of October 2015 while the CAT 2015 exam is scheduled on November 29, 2015 in 2 sessions.
3 sections: Follow the order
CAT 2015 exam will now be divided in 3 sections instead of 2 although number of questions will remain the same 100. There will also be equal time limit of 60 minutes assigned to solve questions for each of the 3 sections. The first section will be of Quantitative Aptitude (Quant) with 34 questions; Second section will have 32 questions on Data Interpretation (DI) and Logical Reasoning (LR) and the third section in CAT 2015 is renamed as VRC (Verbal and Reading Comprehension). This section will consist of 34 questions to be answered in 60 minutes.
The test takers cannot move from one section to another before completion of 1 hour assigned to the particular section. Besides test takers cannot attempt the sections the way they want. IIM Ahmedabad has specific instructions for the test takers ‘You must answer the sections in a pre-specified order and this order will remain same for all the candidates.’
According to Prof S K Agarwal CAT Verbal Ability expert, this will be more appropriate also since the candidates will have limited and fixed time of 60 minutes to spend for each of the 3 sections. Whether they attempt the first, second or third section initially is immaterial as they have to remain with one section for full 60 minutes. So it will be better to attempt the questions according to order of sections when you are not allowed to toggle between the sections.
Common Admission Test (CAT) 2015 is the mandatory entrance exam for the admission to flagship PGP 2016-18 batch comprising 5500+ seats in 20 IIMs and more than 10000 seats in other top rated B schools like FMS, SPJIMR, MDI, IMI, IMT, BIMTECH, NITIE, JBIMS, TAPMI, Great Lakes among others.
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