XAT 2021 Exam Pattern, Syllabus, Preparation Tips and Books

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    XAT Exam Pattern is specified by XLRI Jamshedpur the conducting body of the exam. Going by previous years, it is a computer based test of 3 hour duration. 99 questions are asked from 4 sections: Decision making, Verbal & Logical ability, Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and General Knowledge. Check XAT 2021 Syllabus

    • XAT exam pattern underwent a few major changes like essay writing section has been removed from XAT. NAT (Numerical Answer Type) Questions have been added to the paper.
    • There is no sectional time limit now that means candidates can attempt any question from any section of their choice. Moreover, candidates can submit the exam after 30 minutes of the commencement time. Download XAT Sample Papers

    Also, the scores obtained in GK section will not be included in the final score or percentile of candidates. You can leave 8 questions unattempted. Beyond that, a penalty of 0.05 per question will be charged. There is no negative marking for GK section.

    Highlights of XAT 2021 Exam Pattern

    FeatureDetails
    Exam ModeComputer Based Test
    Total Number of Questions99
    Total Marks300
    Number of Sections
    Name of SectionsVerbal and Logical Ability Decision Making Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation General Knowledge
    Duration of Exam180 minutes 
    Medium of ExamEnglish
    Type of QuestionsMCQs
    Number of Answer Choices5
    XAT Marking Scheme

    +1 mark for a correct answer

     - 0.25 mark for an incorrect answer

    Beyond 8 unanswered questions, 0.05 marks will be deducted for each unanswered question.

    Questions without Negative MarkingNo Negative Marking for GK Section

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    XAT Sectional Division of Questions

    XAT 2021: Sectional Division of Questions and Time Limit

    XAT 2021paper will be divided into 4 sections viz Verbal and Logical Ability, Decision Making and Quantitative Ability &, Data Interpretation and General Knowledge. Exam consists of 99 multiple choice questions to be solved in the duration of 3 hours.Candidates can move to the GK section, after completing the first three sections in the initial 165 minutes. There is no sectional limit between the first 3 sections. However, for GK section, the candidates will get a duration of 15 minutes. An extra time of 25 minutes shall be given to the scribe for completing the first 3 sections. There is no time concession for GK section.

    The sectional division of questions and time limit as per the XAT 2021 Pattern is tabulated below:

    Section NameMax. QuestionsTime Limit
    Verbal and Logical Ability26165 minutes
    Decision Making21
    Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation27
    General Knowledge2515 minutes
    Total99 180 minute

    Check Topper Tips to Crack XAT 2021

    XAT Marking Scheme

    XAT Marking Scheme

    Marking scheme of XAT 2021 is expected to remain the same as 2020. The following table elucidates the changes in XAT Marking scheme over the past 4 years.

    YearCorrect AnswerIncorrect AnswerUnanswered Questions
    Question LimitScoring
    XAT 2020+1-0.258-0.05 per question
    XAT 2019+1-0.258-0.05 per question
    XAT 2018+1-0.2512-0.05 per question
    XAT 2017+1-0.2512-0.05 per question

    XAT Sectional Exam Pattern

    XAT Verbal and Logical Ability Exam Pattern

    The section comes up with 26 questions of miltiple choice. Around 4 reading comprehension are asked with 14 to 16 questions in total. Verbal ability posses 8 to 10 questions. The level of difficulty generally is moderate to difficult. Important Topics from VARC & LR are:

    • Para Jumbles
    • Para Completion
    • Vocabulary
    • Analogy
    • Critrical Reasoning
    • Statements and Assumptions

    Recommended Books for Verbal Ability

    XAT English Preparation Books
    Book nameAuthor
    Verbal Ability and Comprehension for XAT (2nd ed.)Bharat Patodi
    MBA (XAT, IIFT, NMAT, SNAP, CMAT)Gautam Puri

    Recommended Books for XAT Logical Reasoning

    XAT Logical Resoning Books
    Book nameAuthor
    Koncepts of LR – Logical Reasoning for CAT, XAT, CMAT, Bank PO & Other Aptitude TestsGajendra Kumar
    Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning for CAT/XAT/IIFT/CMAT/MAT (Box Set)Gajendra Kumar

      XAT Decision Making Exam Pattern 

      Considered one of the prominent sections in XAT candidates should scorefairly good in decision making to make it to XLRI. Total 21 questions are posed from decision making with 7 to 8 seta. each set folllows 2 to 3 questions to be answered. The level of difficulty is moderate to difficult. Important aspects covering the topic are:

      • Short caselets
      • Analytical Reasoning
      • Situational sets
      • Data Arrangement Sets

      XAT Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation Exam Pattern

      27 questions are asked in total from quants as well as DI. These are individual questions along with sets. each set has 3 to 4 questions to be attempted. Candidates should expect that level of difficulty ranges from Moderate to difficult. Important topics asked are:

      • Geometry
      • Tables
      • Graphs
      • Arithmetic
      • Trigonometry
      • Statistics
      • Profit & Loss
      • Speed and Distance
      • Clocks

      Recommended Books for XAT Quantitative Ability

      XAT Quantitative Ability Books
      Book nameAuthor
      Quantitative Aptitude Simplified for XATDeepak Agarwal
      Concepts of Numbers for XAT and Other Aptitude exams (Old Edition)Gajendra Kumar

      XAT General Knowledge Exam Pattern

      GKin any entrance exam whatsoever cannot be defined in partiuclar as the subject scope is quite vast. Everything under the sun forms part of general awareness. Total of 25 questions are asked in XAT to be attempted in 15 minutes. Keyfeature of this section is that marks obtained are not taken into account while calculating XAT scores. Important topics to be covered up are:

      Politics, History, Sports, Nation and States, Business, Literature, Economics, International Relations, Society

      Recommended Books For XAT General Knowledge

      Books play an important role in the life of students. It is very important to choose the right books for proper preparation. Given below are some recommended books for candidates preparing for XAT 2021:

      XAT Important Books
      Book nameAuthor
      General Knowledge 2021Arihant
      IIFT & XAT (GK Compendium) 2016-17Career Launcher

      Target XAT 2021 (Past Papers 2005 - 2017 + 5 Mock Tests)

      Disha
      XAT Solved Papers 2008-2016 Career Launcher
      Jabbing the XATR.K Jha

      Recommended Magazines

      Reading magazines is a fun way to boost your vocabulary and stay updated with topics for general awareness. 

      • Competition Success
      • India Today
      • Business World
      • Business Line by The Hindu Group

      XAT Exam Day Instructions

      XAT 2021 Exam Day Instructions

      Candidates have to follow the instructions while taking the exam. The instructions will help you to take the computer based exam easily. For time management, a timer will be present on the right- hand side corner of the computer screen. No specified sequence has to be followed by the candidates while answering the questions. While responding to the questions, you will get options for checking the count of attempted and unattempted questions. Candidates can change their response to another option if needed. Also, you can answer the questions in any sequence but you can see only one question at a time.  There are a few more instructions that should be taken into consideration are:

      • They can select the option of ‘Next Question’ or ‘Previous Question’ to move on to different questions.
      • The ‘Erase’ button at the bottom of the screen can be used to change the response. 
      • To review a particular question, candidates can use the ‘tag’ option to bookmark it and later ‘de-tag’ the same, if required. 
      • To know the status of every question, there is a color palette on the right-hand side of the screen. Different colors against the question status they represent are as follows:
      On Screen FeatureInterpretation
      Yellow Question hasn't been answered and kept for review
      Purple Question has been answered and marked for review
      White Question hasn't been answered
      Green Question has been answered

      Most of the selections made by the candidate will be on autosave mode. You must make sure that questions marked for review or attempted will be considered attempted unless you use the ‘erase’ option on them. After finishing the exam you can use the ‘Preview Submit’ Button to view their responses. Candidates can only leave the exam hall after the completion of 3 hours.

      Books play an important role in the life of students. It is very important to choose the right books for proper preparation. Given below are some recommended books for candidates preparing for XAT 2021

      XAT Previous Year Pattern

      XAT Previous Year Exam Pattern Analysis

      There were some major changes introduced in the exam pattern of the XAT 2019 paper. It is expected that those changes will be continued in this year’s XAT 2021 exam pattern. XAT 2019 Exam pattern changes are mentioned below:

      1. Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions were added. 
      2. The duration of the exam was changed to 3 hours compared to last year’s 3½ hours. 
      3. Essay type questions were removed from the paper. 
      4. No negative marking for the wrong answer under the General Knowledge section (Part – 2).

      The following table displays XAT Exam Pattern (Over Past 3 Years):

      Section2019 (Essay section scrapped)2018 (XAT in CBT Mode)2017
      VA/RC262424
      DM212121
      QA/DI272727
      GK252525
      Total999797

      For section-wise analysis of XAT previous years’ paper click here.


      XAT 2021 Model Test Paper

      Candidates can practice the model test paper given on the XLRI’s official website a few days before the exam. The questions will give a fair idea about what can be expected in XAT 2021. This paper will have a time duration of 2 hours. The actual XAT paper pattern will have a time duration of 3 hours. The sections will include Verbal and Logical Ability, Decision Making, Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation, and General Knowledge. Practicing XAT 2021 Model Paper, along with the sample papers, will help you enhance your speed and accuracy. They will help you manage your time properly. 

      XAT Exam Pattern FAQs

      XAT Exam Pattern FAQs

      Ques. Any changes in the overall pattern compared to last year?

      Ans. The overall exam pattern was changed last year. No new changes are expected this year. 

      Ques. What is the syllabus for GK section of XAT? How do I prepare for it?

      Ans. GK questions for XAT can be based on Politics, History, Sports, Nation and States, Business, Literature, Economics, International Relations, Society. To prepare for the same, candidates must devote some time to current affairs everyday, leaving GK section preparation for the last is a mistake that most candidates commit and it causes unnecessary stress. Candidates can read newspapers or watch daily current affairs on various news channels to remain updated. A good command over GK will be immensely helpful for the Group Discussion round. Check XAT 2021 Preparation Tips

      Ques. Will the candidates be able to choose the order of sections according to their choice?

      Ans. Yes, the applicants can choose any section, to begin with. However, GK section can be attempted by the candidates after they’re done with the first 3 sections. 

      Ques. Will there be an essay section in XAT 2021?

      Ans. Essay Section was removed from XAT Exam Pattern in 2019. XAT 2021 is expected to continue on the same line. So there will be no essay sectionthis year as well.

      Ques. What will be the duration of the exam?

      Ans. The exam duration will be 3 hours.

      Ques. Will there be any sectional time limit or overall time limit?

      Ans. First 3 sections have to be completed in 165 minutes, 15 minutes will be given for the GK section.

      Ques. Will the candidates have access to an on-screen calculator?

      Ans. No, the candidates will not be given access to the on-screen calculator.

      Ques. What are the sections for XAT 2021?

      Ans. XAT 2021 Exam Pattern comprises of 4 sections:

      • Verbal and Logical Ability
      • Decision Making
      • Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation
      • General Knowledge

      We hope this article will be helpful during your XAT Preparation. Once you are thorough with the exam pattern and syllabus, the preparation journey becomes a smooth-sail. We wish you luck for the exam. In case of any query, ask in the comments below.

      *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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