CLAT Exam Pattern 2020, Marking Scheme, Syllabus & Books

Urvashi Singhal Urvashi Singhal
Exams Prep Master

Major changes have been announced in CLAT 2020 exam pattern by The Consortium of National Law Universities (NLUs). As per the press release brought out by the consortium on November 22, 2019, there will be a reduction in the number of questions. Previously the paper pattern was of 200 questions that were to be attempted in 120 minutes (2 hours). Now the paper will have around 120-150 questions that needs to be attempted in 120 minutes. All sections will carry more comprehension based questions. However, the duration of the examination, test mode and descreptive questions will remain unchanged. The National University of Study and Research in Law (NUSRL), Ranchi will be conducting CLAT 2020. Read more to get full information on changed exam pattern. 

Changes in CLAT 2020 Exam Pattern

The key points regarding CLAT 2020 exam pattern have been given below as per the official press release:

  1. Reduction in total number of questions: In the upcoming CLAT examination, less number of questions will be asked unlike previous years. The number of questions may range between 120-150. As confirmed by Prof. Faizan Mustafa, “Asking students to answer 200 questions in 120 minutes is not right as it puts students under a lot of mental stress”.
  2. Removal of Legal Aptitude Section?: In the previous years, CLAT question papers consisted of Quantitative Techniques, English, Current Affairs, Deductive Reasoning, Logical Reasoning, and Legal Aptitude sections. However, inclusion or exclusion of Legal Aptitude section has not been discussed in the press release. The grey clouds will clear only after the release of official notification in the last week of December 2019.
  3. Increase in Comprehension based questions: CLAT 2020 exam will carry more comprehension based questions in all sections for both UG and PG programs. According to the press release, “Comprehension based questions would be asked from Quantitative Techniques, English, Current Affairs, Deductive Reasoning and Logical Reasoning. The idea is to get better students to National Law Universities who have competence in reading texts and demonstrate skills in inferential reasoning. Similarly, the PG admission test will also have comprehension-based questions”.

Features that remain unchanged:

  1. Exam Mode: The paper will be conducted in pen and paper mode.
  2. Descriptive Questions: CLAT PG exam will have descriptive questions like that of past year.
  3. Duration of Exam: The paper duration will be of 2 hours.
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CLAT 2020 Exam Pattern


CLAT Exam Pattern – LLB Program

The paper for LLB course is divided into five sections. The first section aims to check a candidate’s ability to logically solve a situation. The second section tests a candidate’s interest and knowledge for Law. Other sections evaluate candidate’s passage comprehension ability, mathematics and Basic English knowledge.

Section-wise questions distribution is given below:

SectionTotal QuestionsMaximum Marks
English (including Comprehension)4040
GK and Current Affairs5050
Elementary Mathematics2020
Legal Aptitude5050
Logical Reasoning4040
Total200 Questions200 Marks

CLAT Syllabus for LLB

Syllabus for the UG program covers questions from General Knowledge & Current Affairs, Legal Aptitude, English, Mathematics, Logical Reasoning. The GK and Legal Aptitude section will carry the highest weightage in the law entrance exam. The details regarding each course in order of their weightage is provided below:

In General Knowledge & Current Affairs

The syllabus is usually very vast and varied for this section. This section will include questions from both General Knowledge as well as Current Affairs. The questions on GK will test the static knowledge of candidates on some of the prominent aspects of national and international level.

Some of the frequently asked topics are:

  1. Outline of Indian Economy 
  2. National Income of India 
  3. Indian Tax Structure 
  4. Major Industries in India
  5. Banking & Finance
Know How to Prepare for GK Section?

In Legal Aptitude

This section will test candidates’ ability and interest towards understanding and solving issues of legal nature. They will have to apply their research aptitude and reasoning to solve various legal propositions.

This section will cover the following topics:

  1. Legal fundamentals and terms 
  2. Legal Maxims and Important Landmarks 
  3. Supreme Court Judgments
Know How to Prepare for Legal Aptitude?

In English including Comprehension

This section aims to test the grammatical knowledge of candidates. The questions will focus on making corrections in sentences that are grammatically incorrect, jumbled sentences, idioms, and phrases etc. It will also include passage of approximately 300 – 400 words. Candidates have to answer questions based on the main theme of the passage as well as some of the keywords present in the passage.

Some of the important topics to be covered under this section are:

  1. Comprehension Passages 
  2. Subject-Verb Agreement 
  3. Noun 
  4. Pronoun 
  5. Adjective and Determinants 
  6. Adverb
  7. Active Passive Voice
Know How to prepare for English Section?

In Logical Reasoning

The section on Logical Reasoning is aimed at checking a candidate’s ability to analyze patterns and arguments. This would include questions on syllogisms, logical sequences, analogies, etc. Understand and analyse various conditions set in questions and deduce correct conclusions.

The important topics under this section are:

  1. Logical Puzzles 
  2. Statement Conclusions Derivation of Conclusions 
  3. Cause & Effect Reasoning 
  4. Statements Assumptions and Statement Arguments   
Know How to prepare for Logical Reasoning?

InMathematics (Numerical Ability)

In this section, candidates will be asked to answer questions based on class 10th Mathematics syllabus (elementary mathematics). It will test candidate’s accuracy with numbers and calculations.

The key topics in this section are:

  1. Numbers
  2. HCF and LCM 
  3. Fractions
  4. Logarithms
  5. Percentage
  6. Time &Distance
  7. Ratio & Proportion
Know How to prepare for Mathematics?

CLAT Exam Pattern – LLM Program

Exam Pattern for CLAT LLM program will encompass topics from Constitutional Law, Jurisprudence, Contract, Torts, Criminal Law, International Law, IPR etc. LLM Paper will have as many as 150 objective type questions. Sectional distribution of questions is indicated below:

SectionTotal QuestionsMaximum Marks
Constitutional Law5050
Other Law Subjects5050
Total150 Questions150 Marks

CLAT LLM Syllabus

Constitutional Law and Jurisprudence will both have an equal weightage of 50 marks each in the question paper. Whereas, the rest of the questions will be coming from different topics like Criminal law, International Law, etc. The details regarding Constitutional law and Jurisprudence is given below for reference:

Constitutional Law consists various rules, practices, and doctrines that govern the functioning of a modern state and other political communities. Candidates will be asked questions based on concepts that they have studied in their graduation.

Jurisprudence in a broad sense can be called the “philosophy of law”. It is classified into three branches - analytical, sociological, and theoretical. The questions in this section will be set on the basis of the syllabus prescribed in the graduation degree course.

The Tort Law is comparatively a recent common law development in India based on codifying statutes including statutes related to damages. Some of the crucial tortious obligations like Negligence, Nuisance and Defamation should be revised in detail.

Contract can be referred to as a piece of legal document which is a mutual agreement made by two or more parties, enforceable by law. Important decisions made by Supreme Court and High Court in relation to modern day commercial activities form a very crucial part of this subject.

Criminal Law, also known as Penal Law is aimed at regulation of Social code of conduct and prohibition of any antisocial activity that poses a threat to the safety, property, health and moral welfare of citizens. Significant topics on principles of criminal liability and mens rea (“guilty mind” in Criminal Law) should be given special attention.

International Law as a subject is focused on the set of legal guidelines and contracts that govern the relations between two states or nations. International Laws can be broadly classified into Public International law, Private International Law and Supranational Law.

CLAT Recommended Books

CLAT is a topmost competitive law entrance exam and it requires a thorough revision of all the topics. There is no right time to start for the exam, but it is always better to start as soon as you decide to sit for the exam. Hence, it becomes important for a candidate to prepare a schedule, know where all they should study for CLAT. Check How to prepare for CLAT

Candidates can refer following books to prepare for CLAT 2020:

Name of CLAT BooksAuthorSubject
Word Power Made EasyNorman LewisEnglish
Objective General English R. S. Aggarwal
Quantitative Aptitude For Competitive Examinations R. S. AggarwalMathematics
Quantitative Aptitude For Competitive Exam 6th Edition Abhijit Guha
Legal Aptitude For The CLAT - Workbook: A Workbook A.P. BhardwajLegal Aptitude
A Modern Approach To Logical ReasoningR. S. AggarwalLogical Reasoning
Analytical ReasoningM K Pandey
Manorama Yearbook 2020 (English)Mammen MathewGeneral Knowledge
Quick Reference General KnowledgeEdgar Thorpe

    CLAT Exam Pattern FAQs

    Ques. Who will be conducting CLAT 2020?

    Ans. CLAT is conducted by 19 NLUs as per their year of establishment. Hence, CLAT 2020 will be conducted by the National University of Advanced Legal Studies or NUAL’s on Second week of May 2020.

    Ques. Are there any changes introduced in the mode of law examination?

    Ans. No, The Common Law Admission Test or CLAT will be conducted in offline mode only.

    Ques. What will be the medium of CLAT Exam?

    Ans. Like previous years, the medium of the Common Law Admission Test will be English only.

    Ques. Are there any changes made in CLAT Exam Pattern by the conducting body?

    Ans. No, the authorities have not yet notified any changes in the exam pattern of LLB and LLM paper. The paper pattern is as follows:

    ParticularsLLB ProgramLLM Program
    Mode of ExamOfflineOffline
    Medium of ExamEnglishEnglish
    Duration of Exam120 minutes120 minutes
    Type of QuestionsMCQsMCQs + Subjective
    No. of Questions200150
    Marking Scheme+1/ -0.25+1/ 0.25

    Ques. How can I prepare for CLAT online?

    Ans. Apart from coaching centers, there are various other mediums through which one can prepare for CLAT. They are as follows:

    Topic NameReference Links
    PrepositionsQuiz 1Quiz 2
    AnalogiesQuiz 1Quiz 2
    SpellingsQuiz 1Quiz 2
    AntonymsQuiz 1Quiz 2
    Sentence CorrectionQuiz 1Quiz 2
    SynonymsQuiz 1Quiz 2
    Para JumblesQuiz 1(-)

    Preparing from these sources will not only help you to analyse the status of your preparation but will also gain confidence for the law entrance examination.

    Ques. Is the exam pattern of AILET and CLAT similar?

    Ans. No, the exam pattern for both the exams are different. They paper pattern for CLAT and AILET is as follows:

    Mode of ExamOfflineOffline
    Number of QuestionsFor LLB – 200
    For LLM – 150
    For LLB – 150
    For LLM – 100
    Duration of Exam120 minutes90 minutes
    Total MarksFor LLB – 200 marks
    For LLM – 150 marks
    For LLB – 150 marks
    For LLM – 100 marks

    Ques. Can the books for AILET be used for preparing for CLAT exam?

    Ans. Yes, the books recommended for AILET exam can be used for preparing for CLAT. The only difference between the examinations are the pattern and the conducting bodies. NLU Delhi is the conducting body of AILET, whereas, 19 NLUs holds CLAT on a rotational basis.Check CLAT Syllabus

    Ques. Can I refer CLAT recommended books for JMI law entrance exam?

    Ans. Yes, the books for the Common Law Admission Test can be referred for preparing for Jamia Milia Islamia law exam.

    *The article might have information for the previous academic years, which will be updated soon subject to the notification issued by the University/College


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    How to should i prepare gk according to new pattern for clat

    08 Dec, 2019 00:20
    Shobhna Chaturvedi

    Hi Pratiksha, following are the books that you may refer to for preparing well in CLAT exam:

    • For static GK you can refer to LUCENT GK (Subjective) or General Knowledge by Arihant.
    • Also, you can read NCERT of the related subjects from class 6 to 10.
    • For Current Affairs, magazines can be read such as Manorama Year Book, Pratiyogita Darpan etc can be referred.

    09 Dec, 2019 15:35

    is constitution of india in clat syllabus2019

    20 Sep, 2019 00:20
    Shobhna Chaturvedi

    Hi Haider, you can check the Syllabus for the exam in detail from here.

    20 Sep, 2019 11:09
    Simran Prasad

    Is there any upper age limit for CLAT-2020 UG programme?

    17 Sep, 2019 00:20
    Shobhna Chaturvedi

    Hi Simran, you can check the Eligibility Criteria for this exam from here to know the desired info.

    17 Sep, 2019 12:43
    Ishita Roy choudhury

    I have query relating to the changes made to the clat llm examination 2019. Whether the exam pattern will be subjective in all or just a part of it will be subjective and if it is so then are there any changes made to the syllabus for the examination and how to get the question pattern for the same.

    20 Oct, 2018 15:13
    Akansha Expert

    Hi Ishita, You may please check the official website i.e.

    20 Oct, 2018 15:29
    Yashika Khandelwal

    I have finished my HIgh Schooling with a Canadian diploma and it only goes up to Grade 11. DO you think I am eligible for CLAT 2019??

    05 Oct, 2018 00:20
    Akansha Expert

    Hi Yashika, You may please check this link for getting the CLAT Entrance eligibility.

    05 Oct, 2018 13:11
    Surbhi Sen

    how to prepare for clat what are the more law courses

    25 Jun, 2018 00:20
    Garima Bansal

    Hi Surbhi, To know how to prepare you may check this link:- Preparation tips and to know law courses you may check this link;- Law courses

    25 Jun, 2018 11:15

    how to prepare for clat what are the more law courses

    06 Mar, 2017 11:59

    Hi Deepraj, to know the procedure for application for CLAT exam, please find the link

    11 May, 2017 15:05
    Ayush Mandekar

    What are the chances of clearing CLAT exams for SC quota candidates?

    06 Mar, 2017 11:59

    Hi Ayush, to get the idea on SC quota candidates score, you may go through the CLAT category wise cut off. Please find the link for the same

    11 May, 2017 15:01

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