Saturday, January 27, 2007

Indian B-School Cut-offs & Percentile requirements

This is an attempt to compile the likely cut-offs for various business schools for admissions to their MBA/PGDBM programmes. Unless specifically mentioned, the cut-offs given below are for the flagship programmes of the respective institutes. All cut-offs are for open/general category students and unless mentioned the cut-offs are in percentiles and not percentages (%) or absolute scores.

Wherever possible, the cut-offs mentioned have been sourced from the respective b-schools, else it has been predicted based on past and current data plus personal interactions and experience. Though I have tried to minimise mistakes to the best of my knowledge, please forgive should a mistake have crept in. The cut-offs mentioned may not be the lowest cut-off but of the lowest point after which very few students would get a call. Please confirm this information with at least one other source before making any final decisions, and use the data prudently.

IIM Ahmedabad - CAT- 98.3 percentile
IIM Bangalore - CAT - 92 percentile
This year, IIM Bangalore has given huge weightage to work-experience thus bringing the cut-offs down. I have personally seen students not getting calls with 99.8 percentile!! ( this student had very good scores across sections but no work-experience)
IIM Calcutta/Kolkata - CAT - 97 percentile
IIM Indore - CAT - 98 percentile
IIM Kozhikode - CAT - 98 percentile
MDI Gurgaon - CAT - 97 percentile
cut-off for MDI Human Resources programme would be about 95 percentile
Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad (MICA) - CAT - 90 percentile
MICA also accepts XAT and GMAT scores. Though there is no confirmation for the same, it's widely believed that MICA expects a high English/Verbal score. Yet, quite a few Engineers do make it through so there is no bias against any academic groups.
Institute of Management Technology (IMT), Ghaziabad - CAT - 95 percentile
May not be considering sectional cut-offs
International Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi - CAT - 93.6 percentile
You also need to fare well across sections as IMI considers sectional cut-off as well.
FORE, New Delhi - CAT - 88 percentile
Quite a few very high scores, with percentile over 98 in the CAT were not given calls - FORE may have an upper cut-off.
NITIE, Mumbai - CAT - 97 percentile
Sectional cut-offs considered, only for Engineers
XLRI, Jamshedpur - XAT - 95 percentile
Goa Institute of Management (GIM), Goa - XAT - 87 percentile
T.A. Pai, Manipal (TAPMI) - CAT - 93 percentile
Sectional cut-offs required
University Business School (UBS), Chandigarh - CAT - 93.6 percentile
Sectional cut-offs: don't know for sure
Nirma, Ahmedabad - CAT - 90 percentile
K J Somaiyya, Mumbai - CAT - 83 percentile
for those without any work-experience the cut-offs may jump to over 88
Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management - CAT - 85 percentile
Great Lakes, Chennai - CAT - 85 percentile
Work-experience required
Welingkar, Mumbai - CAT - 85 percentile
ISWBM, Kolkata - CAT - 80 percentile
IMDR, Pune - CAT - 70 percentile
IMFR, Chennai - CAT - 70 percentile
Amity, Noida - CAT - 70 percentile
Amity also has its own separate entrance test called AMCAT, you need to score over 60 approx out of 100, there is no negative marking here. You can also enter through MAT with a score of 600 plus.
SDM, Mysore - CAT - 75 percentile
Birla Institute of Management & Technology (BIMTECH), Greater Noida - CAT - 80 percentile
You may apply through MAT as well. BIMTECH also has a separate category of admissions for industry sponsored candidates.
Alliance, Bangalore - CAT - 82 percentile
Kirloskar, near Bangalore - CAT - 70 percentile
Jamnalal Bajaj (JBIMS), Mumbai - MAT percentile of 99 plus
the chief entrance test is Maharastra's state test, the Common Entrance Test (CET) or what's also known as MH-CET or M-CET
Symbiosis Centre for Management & Human Resource (SCMHRD), Pune - CAT - 94 percentile
the chief entrance test is the SNAP, a score of 75 should do, though like other Symbiois colleges, SCMHRD also factors in other parameters like work-experience and educational background before arriving at the GD/PI shortlist.
Symbiosis Institute of Business Management (SIBM), Pune - SNAP score of 83.75
IMT, Nagpur - CAT - 90 percentile
S P Jain, Mumbai - CAT - 89 percentile
SIIB, Pune - Internation Business - SNAP score of 76.75
SIIB, Pune - Agri Business - SNAP score of 51.00
Both the above Symbiosis cut-offs have been arrived at after giving weightages to various parameters including work-experience, education etc. For details, check the official SIBM site

For the sectional and overall cut-off for the IIM CAT 2008, click here.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

MICAT: Mudra Institute of Communication, Ahmedabad's (MICA) Selection Test

Mudra Institute of Communication, Ahmedabad (MICA) is South Asia's leading Communications School today. The Post Graduate Programme in Communications Management (PGPCM) is MICA's flagship programme, the elimination for which happens through either of CAT, XAT or GMAT - the choice being yours. However, post this stage MICA uses an additional written test, besides the regular GD & PI as a part of the selection process. It's called the MICA Admission Test or in short MICAT.

The MICAT is designed to assess the candidates' skills, analytical and divergent thinking, written communication and familiarity with the Indian ethos (this is from the official MICA website). The entrance test is of 1 ½ to 2 hours’ duration and consists of objective-type questions on English and reasoning. There will be some questions on communication as well. You could be asked to develop a slogan/jingle or an advertisement for a brand of mineral water, a new holiday resort, etc.

One myth which almost everybody holds about MICA is the need for "creativity". Please bear in mind that the PGPCM programme at MICA will not land you up with a job in the creative department of any advertising agency - you will instead be in the Media Planning or Account Management or Planning Department. So don't try to be unnecessarily creative while attempting otherwise simple questions. Yes, feel free to let yourself loose if a certain question demands so. And please don't use any verbose language - keep it short and simple. ( you will learn more about KISS once you are inside MICA)

MICAT Sample Questions:


Each question has a set of four statements. Choose the alternative where the third segment in the statement can be logically deducted from the preceding two.

A. All fools are idiots; some men are fools; some men are idiots.

B. All fruits have seeds; All seeds have vegetables; All vegetables have fruits.

C. No fruits are vegetables; All flowers are vegetables; No flowers are fruits.

D.No fruits are seeds; All flowers are seeds; No fruits are flowers.

You consume so many products. Mention any of one your favourite brands in any category and tell us (a) why it's your favourite? (b) Did the advertisement and promotion of that particular brand influence you in any way to buy it? Do not exceed 30 words.EnglishUse each of the following words in a sentence to clearly bring out its meaning: (a) clandestine (b) misdemeanour (c) cataclysmic (d) debatable (e) criteria (f) divisive (g) junket

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

East Delhi: Addresses of MBA Entrance Coaching Institutes

List of CAT Prep Institutes in East Delhi. Though East Delhi is a huge geographical area, all these coaching instiutes seem to be clustered on the Vikas Marg stretch. Here's a list of the branch offices of some of these coaching institutes in this part of town.

1. PT Education
First Floor, Above Sony World, 3, Park End,
Vikas Marg, New Delhi
Phone: 011-22443402 / 08

2. Career Launcher
1st floor, Sikka complex , Commercial Complex,

Preet Vihar
New Delhi - 110092, Delhi
Phone: 011-22443352, 22443382

3. TIME (has 2 centres in East Delhi)
C-4/18, Ankur Complex, Acharya Niketan,
Mayur Vihar Phase I, New Delhi - 110091

F203, IInd Floor, Ashish Complex,
New Rajdhani Enclave, Vikas Marg,Opp. Jhankar Banquet
Phone No. : 42440139/22017044

IMS, surprisingly seems to not have a centre in East Delhi.

Addresses of Coaching Institutes for CAT / Other MBA Entrances: West Delhi

1. IMS Learning Centre,
J-2/21, Najafgarh Road, Rajouri Garden Pin 110027
Phone: 41447295-97

2. Career Forum
EFS Institute, 116-117 Suneja Towers II,
Janakpuri District Centre, NEW DELHI - 110058
Phone Numbers: 011-25555494, 9818550475

3. T.I.M.E ( Triumphant Institute of Management Education)
J-2/6A 1st Floor, B.K. Dutt,
Rajouri Garden, New Delhi-110027
Phone Numbers : 25441026/41447973

4. PT Education
J-1/164, Nandi Apartments, Rajouri Garden ,
New Delhi Ph: 011-25412263, 25419384

5. Career Launcher
Building No. 22, Ist floor , Central Market, Punjabi Bagh(W)
New Delhi - 110008, Delhi

Phone: 45408237, 45408238

Remark: Career Launcher doesn't have a centre for CAT prep in West Delhi proper. Punjabi Bagh is in North-West Delhi

List of MBA Prep / CAT Coaching Institutes in North Delhi / North Campus

1. Roots Education
2519, 1st floor, Hudson Lane, Kingsway Camp, Delhi - 9
Telephone : 64510803, 47081956

2. Career Forum,
Merry International Senior Sec. Public School ,
Pocket H -19, Sector -7, Rohini, Delhi - 110085
Phone Numbers: 64506956 , 9212117399

3. PT Education: North Campus
2520, Hudson Line, Kingsway Camp, Delhi Ph: 011 - 27427785, 27427786, 32560808

4. PT Education, North Delhi
1, Kohat Enclave, Pitampura, New Delhi
Ph: 011-42451031, 42451032, 32611441

5. TIME, North Campus
G-14 A, 1st Floor, Vijay Nagar, Delhi - 110 009
Phone No : 27458195/27465203/27419563

6. IMS Learning Centre - North Campus
2529, Hudson Lines, North Campus Pin 110009
Phone numbers: 30965272, 27429661

List of MBA Entrance Prep Institutes / their branches in South Delhi.

A 31, II Floor, Above Sony World, Kailash Colony Market.
Phone No :29235077/41622923/41734029
2. Career Launcher
Kailash Colony, HS-17, 2nd Floor, Near Punjab and Sind Bank ,
Main Market, Kailash Colony,
phone: 26452181, 51632969
3. TATHAGAT ( This blog recommends, especially if you are damn serious about your CAT prep)
HS-13, Kailash Colony Market
Near GK-1, New Delhi - 110 048
Phones: 9891147846 / 9999658139
4. IMS Learning Centre, Kailash Colony
HS-12, Main Market, Near Anupama Sweets
phone numbers: 41731456-57
5. PT Education
A-21, Kailash Colony, New Delhi
Ph: 011-29239359 / 29234822.
5. Roots Education
They hold classes at Laxman Public School, Hauz Khas, New Delhi - 16.
You may contact them at these numbers: -41828858, 41828859, 65646758
6. Career Forum
C-16, Ist Floor, SDA Commercial Complex, Opp IIT Main Gate,
NEW DELHI - 110 016.
Phone: 011-26529494, 26528030, 9313748080
Other MBA / CAT Prep Institutes in South Delhi: Alchemist, Manchanda, Sachdeva New PT College and a host of smaller coaching institutes.
(Information compiled from various sources. Though we have tried to ascertain the correctness of the information, we shall not be held liable for any errors that may have crept in due to sundry reasons.)

List of CAT Coaching Centres / Branches of MBA Entrance Prep Institutes in Delhi - Central

List of CAT Coaching Centres / MBA Entrance Preparation Institutes in New Delhi - Connaught Place/Delhi Central: Address, Phone Numbers & E-mail Address, branch-wise

1. IMS Learning Centre,
101-A, Ashoka Estate Building, Barakhamba Road, New Delhi – 110 001.
Phone Numbers: 23359967-68, 70/87. E-mail:

2. Career Launcher,
16/47, B Block, 1st Floor, Connaught Place, New Delhi – 110 001
Phone Numbers: 23358918, 23358914

3.Tathagat (New Institute but highly recommended)
72 Rear, Janpath
Near Pizza Hut
New Delhi - 110 001

Phones: 9999658139, 9891147846
( If you want to check out their quality of material/teaching, get a first hand idea at their CAT website here.)
4. T.I.M.E.
12, Scindia House, Top Floor, Connaught Place, New Delhi - 110 001

Phone No.:23321275/23318026

5. PT Education
214-17 , Naurang House , 21 , K.G. Marg , Connaught Place , New Delhi -110001
011-41510891 /92/93 , 32589148 / 32624740

( The information is correct to the best of our knowledge. This is only an attempt to assist students who are looking for information on MBA Entrance Preparation Institutes and we shall not be held responsible for any error in the information. Kindly check from at least from one other source before acting on the information given here. This may not be a comprehensive list.)

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Get Ready for the Group Discussion(GDs)

You must have received your CAT score-card by now, and it's now time to get ready for the crucial next phase of the B-School Entrance process - the Group Discussions and the Personal Interviews. The first point that you need to understand now, and this is very crucial, is that unlike the written test which was an elimination process, the Group Discussion & Personal Interview (GD PI) rounds are a selection process. At the Common Admission Test (CAT) stage, your objective was to just be one-up on others so that you finish around the 99th percentile. However, now you need to make a sufficient impression and convince the GD/PI panel that you are good enough to be selected for the prestigious MBA seat.
In this post, we will discuss how one needs to prepare himself for the GDs and a few handy tips for the B-School Group Discussions.
In the Advanc'edge MBA, Chitra Jha correctly and succinctly defines a GD: Group Discussion is simply an informal discussion amongst a group of candidates belonging to the same age-group and possessing similar aptitude (as proven by the CAT). A group generally comprises six to ten candidates, who have the full freedom to discuss their views on a given subject in the manner they please. This exercise gives the examiners an opportunity to assess the personality traits of many candidates within the same time-frame.
The beauty of this unstructured process is that whenever a group of human beings is given a common task within a set time limit, the group dynamics soon finds a leader or leaders. Those who have natural leadership traits in them display their inborn talents and automatically take over as leaders, enabling the selectors to gauge everyone's leadership quotient. Simultaneously, several important personality characteristics of the candidates can be observed when they are engaged in the discussion, and their guard is lowered.
A most common misconception is that you must speak as much as you can and as many times. While it's important that you make yourself heard sufficiently and put forth your point of view across clearly, and if need be, a little forcefully - it would be most imprudent to try and hog all the limelight. Remember at all times that you are not on a podium but on a round table ( mostly invisible!!). Your objective for the GD should be: To put forth your point/s on the GD topic across to everyone else, supported by logical and meaningful reasons for your stand. Also factor in a secondary objective, which if well executed alongwith the main objective can make you a winner - be a good listener, so that you can sieve out points put forward by your colleagues which you can embed into your arguments as further support. Thus, you will manage to increase the circle of influence for yourself and convince the group on your stand.
You may also take note of the following points for a good GD:
1. No amount of tips and suggestions can help you if you do not have a sufficient knowledge base - you must be regulary reading at least one English newspaper and one Business daily. Make sure to read the editorials and columns - while knowledge is essential, the GD is ultimately a place to voice your opinions and back it up with logic. Look at the way the top columnists structure and build up their argument to convince you of their stand.
2. Begin the GD only if you are absolutely sure you have enough reason to do so - remember that you will be immediately noticed - while you will get points for the initiative, it can easily backfire too if you make a fool of yourself.
3. If you can support your arguments with statistics and quotes from influential people, nothing like it. But at no point should you resort to a lie.
4. Listen to others. It helps.
5. You may disagree with a point raised by someone else - but you must counter the point politely and logically. Don't overdo it.
6. Never lose your cool. Never.
In a later post, we will discuss Personal Interviews at length.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

MBA Programmes in India for Working Professionals

Are you a Working Professional? If yes, check out this list that we have created of institutes in India offering MBA or Post Graduate Management programmes specially meant for candidates with work experience. Click here.

Friday, January 05, 2007

IIM Ahmedabad Short Listing Criteria CAT 2006: General, OBC, SC, ST & PWD Categories

Short-listing Candidates for Admission to Post-Graduate Programme (PGP) 2007-09 of
IIM Ahmedabad

Available Seats in the Post Graduate Programme 2007-09 of IIMA
A total of 280 seats are available for admission to the Post-Graduate Programme 2007-09 of IIM Ahmedabad. The break-up of 280 seats for various categories of students is given under:
General - 192, OBC (6%) - 17, SC (15%) - 42, ST (7.5%)- 21, PWD (3%) - 8

Minimum Cut-off Requirement of IIM Ahmedabad
In the CAT 2006 bulletin, IIM Ahmedabad had announced the minimum cut-off requirement for each section and overall score as given under:
“Please note that the cut off for short listing SC/ST/PWD candidates for group discussion and personal interview would not be less than 17% score in each of the three sections of CAT-2006 and no less than 25% score in aggregate. For other categories, it would be no less than 25% in each of the three sections and no less than 33% in aggregate. The actual cut-offs used for short-listing, however, may be higher than the above mentioned percentage scores and would depend upon the performance of candidates in CAT-2006.”

Category-wise, the number of candidates, who met these criteria in CAT 2006, is as under:
General : 3431
OBC : 174
SC : 168
ST : 20
PWD : 14

Category-wise Short-listing Criteria and Number of Candidates called for Group Discussions and Personal Interviews
From the qualifying candidates meeting minimum cutoff requirement, the candidates were short-listed
on the following basis:

1. General Category candidates: Out of qualifying candidates, who applied for PGP of IIMA, 608 General category candidates were short-listed. Candidates, whose percentile in each section was above 95.33 and who have an overall percentile above 98.3, have been called for the GD & PI.

2. OBC Category Candidates: Out of qualifying candidates, who applied for PGP of IIMA, 55 OBC category candidates were short-listed. OBC Candidates, whose percentile in section 1 and section 3 was above 90 and who have an overall percentile above 98.3, have been called for the GD & PI.

3. SC Category Candidates: Out of qualifying candidates, who applied for PGP of IIMA, 123 SC category candidates were short-listed. SC Candidates, whose percentile in section 1 and section 3 was above 65 and who have an overall percentile above 85.3, have been called for the GD&PI.

4. ST Category Candidates: Out of candidates, who applied for PGP of IIMA, all 20 ST category candidates, who met minimum cutoff requirement, were short-listed for the GD&PI.

5. PWD Category Candidates: Out of the candidates, who applied for PGP of IIMA, all 14 PWD category candidates, who met minimum cutoff requirement, were short-listed for the GD&PI.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Understanding / Reading the IIM CAT Score card

Based on information collected from various sources and studying the IIM Common Admission Test score-cards of a few students, including Nihalani Aarti Vijay Kumar's, we arrived at the following results: ( In case you are wondering, Aarti is the national CAT topper with a 100 percentile score )

Important change: Unlike last year, the percentage scores mentioned for each section this year are a percentage of the maximum score in the section. Last year, the percentage score indicated your score divided by the sectional toppers score. So this year, you can actually calculate your absolute score. Just keep this in mind - though each section had a maximum of 100 marks (25 questions x 4 marks ), the IIMs will keep out the questions which had errors out of the calculation.

You may use the following table for your reference: ( in order - section 1, 2,3)
Set 111 - 25, 25, 23

Set 222 - 25, 25, 24
Set 333 - 25, 25, 23
Set 444 - 25, 24, 24

For example, if your score card says 78.33 % for section 3 ( Set 444), it means you have scored 68 marks in that section. ( Set 444 had 24 questions considered for section 3 and 68/96 is equal to 78.33 percent)

I am reproducing the score card of Arti / Aarti Nihalani for your reference:
LR(Percentage Score) 65 DI/LR(Percentile Score) 99.8 Verbal(Percentage Score) 53 Verbal(Percentile Score) 99.97 Quantitative Ability(Percentage Score) 78.125 Quantitative Ability(Percentile Score) 99.82 Total(Percentage Score) 65.375 Total(Percentile Score) 100

Another thing: the total percentage is calculated slightly differently, it's the average of the 3 sectional percentages. You can check using the above scorecard. Cheers!

CAT 2006 scorecard / result out

The IIMs have announced the results for the Common Admission Test (CAT) held on 19th November 2006. After a brief confusion yesterday morning, where the online link after being put up by one of the IIMs was subsequently withdrawn, has been sorted out and you can find out your CAT 2006 scores here now.

For those of you, who have got the desired percentile scores, a hearty congratulations. I hope you are already gearing up for the crucial Group Discussion & Personal Interview rounds. While IIM Kozhikode seems to have announced the results, the other IIMs seem to have delayed the results and the situation will be clearer in a day or two. Officially, 6th January looks to be the new deadline for announcing results.

Now, there were close to 2 lakh students who wrote the CAT 2006 and in spite of your best attempts, there will be lots of you who would miss the desired IIM call. What should one do?

- if you have narrowly missed the call, it may be a very good idea to gain some work experience in the coming year and write the CAT again in 2007.

- if for some or the other reason, you do not want to wait for another year, go for the next best options only: viz MDI Gurgaon, MICA Ahmedabad, NITIE or some of the other top b-schools through the other tests like FMS & XAT

- if your percentile scores are much lower, say below a 60 percentile, then you need to do some serious reassessment of your performance and future options. Do you think you had put in optimum effort this year? If no, then you may try again next year. If yes, then you may have to look beyond MBA. Please remember that there is not much point doing an MBA from just any b-school - an MBA will add value to your profile only if it's done from a decent place so take your time before deciding. Consult your teachers and friends - they would know you well to give you a good advise. At least look at the world beyond MBA also - there are plenty of emerging fields and you would surely find something of your interest. It may not be a bad idea at all to make use of scientific career planning tools like Psychometric Analysis to find out your areas of interest, strengths & weaknesses.

- don't lose heart, always remember that the IIMs are a very good option but not the only one. Cheers!

IIM websites:
Ahmedabad -
Bangalore -
Calcutta -
Lucknow -
Indore -
Kozhikode -