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CAT 2018 Eligibility Criteria, Convener Allows Short Duration Bachelor Degree

Last Updated - April 25, 2018

Here is some good news for CAT 2018 aspirants. The CAT 2018 Eligibility Criteria for the most prominent MBA entrance exam has undergone a pleasant change. Interested candidates who have successfully completed graduation courses of shorter duration of 2 years will also be allowed to take the CAT 2018. This comes as a breath of fresh air for the Indian education system as more number of people from diverse backgrounds and ages will be able to sit for CAT exam. This is a step forward from the Convener of the CAT 2018, IIM Calcutta or IIM Kozhikode, to ensure a diverse population in different B-schools, especially the IIMs. CAT 2018 Registration Form has also been revised to carry out the process. 

CAT 2018 Eligibility Criteria does not state any age bar in order to qualify for taking the exam. The age bar field in the CAT 2018 registration and application form has been deleted. However, the academic fields for bachelor’s degree in the form have been changed.

We can now expect retired officials, lecturers and professors of renowned institutions, PSU officers, etc. to take the CAT 2018. Isn’t that a pleasant change? The people mentioned above completed their graduation according to the old pattern from the universities that used to conduct graduation courses for a duration of 2 years.

What Actually Changed In CAT Eligibility

Many candidates have made such requests to the CAT Convening bodies in the past to be allowed to take the CAT Exam with a 2-year graduation degree. In the year 2014 and 2015 CAT Convening Body permitted such aspirants to take the exam but they had to fill in 3 years of graduation as their educational qualification because there was no option to fill the 2 years of bachelor’s degree.

Agreeing to the request of such candidates, who aspire to take the CAT Exam, Prof. Rajendra K. Bandi, Convener CAT 2016 has made the necessary changes in the CAT 2016 registration form. From 2016, CAT has amended its Eligibility Criteria giving a chance to candidates with graduation of 2 years.

CAT 2018 Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria for CAT 2018 states no specification regarding the duration of a candidate’s of bachelor’s degree. According to the official notice of the CAT 2018:

  • It is mandatory for the candidate to hold a Bachelor’s Degree, with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA.
  • A relaxation of 5% is given to the candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Persons with Disability (PWD) categories. They must hold a Bachelor’s Degree with at least 45% marks or equivalent CGPA.
  • This degree should be awarded by any University or Educational Institute as incorporated by an Act of the Parliament or State legislature in India or declared to be deemed as a University under Section 3 of the UGC Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification recognized by the Ministry of HRD, Government of India, India.
  • No age limit has been mentioned in the eligibility criteria.

What Caused The Change

The convener of CAT exam has been receiving such request by candidates to amend the application form field. Finally, IIM Bangalore, the conducting authority of CAT 2016 approved of modifying the form and providing with the change.

What will be the Outcome?

The change that IIM Bangalore had brought about in the CAT Exam registration and application form has been welcomed by experts in the education industry. This change helped in breaking the stereotypical applications by engineers in the IIMs and other top B-schools. There would be varied mix of students taking MBA classes this year!

There are numerous people who graduated in the 80’s and took 2-year graduation courses in Arts, Commerce or Science streams. During that time, most universities covered under the UGC Act offered 2-year graduation courses.

All National Level competitive exams such as the CAT, XAT, Civil Services, etc. accepted candidates who had successfully completed 2-year graduation courses. Implying, that during the 80’s, 14 years of minimum education was essential till graduation. It has now been changed to 15 years of minimum education till graduation.

Aspiring candidates who are around 50 years or more of age and completed graduation in Arts, Science, Commerce stream in the early 80’s from UGC recognized Universities have 14 years of education till graduation. But no aspirant in spite of holding a graduate degree from UGC recognized Universities could register for CAT 2014 or CAT 2015, if they held a Bachelor’s degree of 2 years duration.

This change has been brought in CAT Application process. This will encourage lots of people to take the CAT and apply for PGDM courses in IIMs and other B-schools. Many veterans who have a vast pool of knowledge will be motivated to apply for MBA courses.



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