Managing the CMAT


B-school aspirants across India were flummoxed last month with the announcement by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICRE) of the first Common Management Admission Test (CMAT). The national level exam is the first ever common entrance test for management students and will take place between February 20th and February 28th. Registrations for the CMAT began on December 9, 2011 and around 2.5 lakh students from all over India will be appearing for the test. Test scores should be made applicable to 4,000 business schools excluding the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs); however, institutes report that they had no imitation of the new exam and are not sure if they will be accepting scores by students.

MBA aspirants are already under stress over taking numerous exams, and the change is only adding more to their agendas. Students have started studying for the exam even though they are not sure if the institutes they are applying to will consider the national-level exam. The Director of XLRI Father Abraham said, “There is no way that our institute will make CMAT test score applicable in our admission policy for the next academic year. We are absolutely certain on this matter because according to the Supreme Court (SC) interim order, this test is not part of those permitted for admissions across all B-schools. At XLRI, we have already shut the admissions policy for the next year.”

Coaching institutes have hastily constructed courses for the CMAT but had to wait till the last moment for more information. As this is a new exam, it will be a test-run for most coaching institutes on the required preparation. They are building mock tests to help students familiarise themselves with the format of the exam. With the exam dates approaching, the number of students enrolled on the courses for CMAT have also shot up. While it’s a great idea to have a common test for all management institutes, it should have been announced well in advance, allowing students to prepare and for institutes to change their admission policies. Some management entrance tests are already over. With students waiting for a year or two to gain admission to an institute of their choice, the new exam could well throw a wrench in their plans. As the top B-schools may not consider the CMAT this year, the purpose of the test, to reduce the number of exams that management students have to give, has been greatly undermined.

• The three-hour test will comprise four sections – Quantitive Techniques and Data Interpretation, Logical Reasoning, Language Comprehension and General Awareness.

• There will also be negative marking of one mark for each wrong answer.

Volume 1 , Issue 7


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