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Last 3 years Paper Analysis of NMAT

Last Updated - September 20, 2017

NMAT is a prominent exam for securing admission in Narsee Monjee and other management programs of top B-schools in India. The examination is all about time management and it measures the skill required to succeed in a business school.

The questions are generally of easy to moderate difficulty level, so, one could score well in this exam provided that one is quick in selecting or rejecting any question. In the year 2014, the difficulty level ranged between moderate-difficult with Quants and Logical reasoning as the tricky ones. 2015 paper highlights that NMAT Exam Pattern was same as the 2014 paper but was less difficult as the difficulty level was moderate. In 2016, the difficulty level was somewhere between easy to moderate which allowed the examinees to solve more than 80% questions with 70% accuracy rate.

NMAT is a Computer Based Test (CBT).  Every examinee is provided with a randomly created test from a pool of questions. Candidates have the flexibility to select the order/sequence of the test sections which includes- Language Skills, Quantitative Skills and Logical Reasoning. As there are 120 questions to be covered in 120 minutes, it is of paramount importance that one should have a concrete plan to score well in this exam. As there is no negative marking in the exam, there is an added incentive for marking all questions.
All questions are asked from the prescribed NMAT Syllabus with no surprises included in the paper.

NMAT Previous Years Paper Analysis

NMAT is a quantitative test rather than a qualitative examination. In order to achieve a score of around 210–220 (for Narsee Monjee), one has to correctly attempt around 70–75 questions. The difficulty level of the question paper ranges from easy to difficult. More than 70% questions are easy in nature and can be solved with ease, but on the other hand, it is a time-based exam and one must solve the questions smartly by keeping the time limit in mind. One can easily ace the exam by practicing NMAT Sample papers and previous year question papers.

The paper comprises 3 sections with Quantitative Aptitude as the most important one with 48 questions. Other sections include logical and language questions with Language as the easiest one.

Here is the section wise previous 3 years NMAT paper analysis (2016, 2015 and 2014).

Difficulty Level of the Previous Years Question Papers

NMAT 2016 Paper Analysis

The difficulty level of the question paper somewhere ranged between easy to moderate. Quants was the time-consuming section while Language Skills was easier and with proper knowledge about the grammatical rules and vocabulary, one could easily attempt all the questions with 88% accuracy.

NMAT Quantitative Skills

Difficulty Level: Easy to Moderate
'Quantitative Skills' in NMAT consists of Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation. The section comprises 48 questions and the allotted time is 60 minutes. It is a test of conceptual knowledge and speed in calculations. Most questions fell in the range of easy to medium difficulty.

There were approximately 5 questions from number system, 9 questions on arithmetic, 3 on geometry, 1 on algebra and 4 on modern mathematics. DI and DS had 20 and 6 questions respectively. Anyone who is good with calculations and knows the concepts of quant would not have had much difficulty in attempting the questions. DI problems did not require much calculation as in past papers. Most of them included organized data in form of line graph, pie charts and tables.

Attempting around 36 to 38 questions with 79% accuracy would fetch a good score.

NMAT Logical Reasoning

Difficulty Level: Moderately Easy

The reasoning section in NMAT is a mix of Logical Reasoning, Non-Verbal Reasoning and Verbal Reasoning. Logical Reasoning consists of 40 questions with a time limit of 38 minutes. The examinees found this section to be moderately easy in terms of the difficulty level of the last year. Around 10 to 12 questions were from Verbal Reasoning while the rest pertained to Non-Verbal Reasoning.
Important topics covered matrix arrangement, linear arrangement, coding, family tree, alphanumeric series, venn diagram and decision-making. Attempting 28 to 30 questions with 75% accuracy would be a decent effort.
Overall, the level of questions in this section was easy to moderate. There were questions based on every possible type of reasoning - mathematical puzzles, coding-decoding, blood relation based questions and critical reasoning. Anyone with a flair to solve mind-boggling puzzles and is accurate in choosing from confusing options would score well in this section.

NMAT Language Skills

Difficulty Level: Easy to Moderate
NMAT Language Skills comprises 32 questions which need to be solved in 22 minutes. Last year, there were 2 Reading Comprehension (RC) passages with 4 questions each. The passages were short and had a word count of 300-400 words. The overall difficulty level was found to be between easy and moderate.  A total attempt of 26 to 28 questions with 88% accuracy would be considered as a good score.
It is a test of reading speed, vocabulary skills, grammar and verbal reasoning. RC questions had easy sentences with confusing and tricky options, where one could possibly choose the incorrect option. In terms of the number of question, para jumbles were next to RCs with a total no. of 5 questions with an average difficulty level.
Approximately, rest of the section had synonyms & antonyms, and error spotting with 3 questions in each one of these. FIBs (prepositions) and FIBs (Vocabulary) had 3 questions each.
Lastly, Cloze test had 4 questions. The section was easy to moderate level and anyone who is an accurate and an efficient reader knows the rules of grammar would have easily attempted the questions.

NMAT 2016: Distribution of Questions v/s Ideal Attempts


The following table highlights the total number of questions, NMAT 2016 difficulty level, important topics and the ideal attempts.

SectionQuantitative AbilityLogical ReasoningLanguage Skills
Number of Questions484032
Time allotted to each section603822
Difficulty LevelEasy to ModerateModerately EasyEasy to Moderate
Accuracy of attempted questions79%75%88%
TopicsDI (line graph, pie-chart, tables), algebra, geometry, number system, data sufficiencymatrix arrangement, linear arrangement, coding, family tree, alphanumeric series, Venn diagram, decision-makingReading Comprehensions
Ideal Attempt36-38 questions28-30 questions26-28 questions

NMAT 2015 Paper Analysis

The difficulty level of NMAT 2015 was moderate. The questions were tricky and therefore time-consuming. The paper pattern was similar to the last year trends and proper practicing of the previous year question papers, following NMAT Preparation Tips and mock tests could easily fetch good marks.

Quantitative Aptitude + Data Interpretation

Difficulty level: Moderate

The section had at least one question from each topic under QA and DI. Important topics were algebra, arithmetic, averages, geometry, modern mathematics, number system, percentage, profit & loss, ratio & proportion, time & work.
There was a balance of questions between Data Interpretation and Data Sufficiency. Overall, NMAT 2015 was a predictable paper as the pattern, syllabus and difficulty level was same as NMAT previous year question papers. A good score could be fetched by attempting 30 to 32 questions with 75% accuracy.

Verbal Ability + Reading Comprehension

Difficulty level: Moderate

The section ranged between easy to moderate. There was a total of 4 para jumbles, 2-3 reading passages with four questions each. An attempt of 24 questions (correct ones) can be termed a good score i.e. solving 26 to 28 questions with 87.5% accuracy would fetch good marks in this section.

Logical & Analytical Reasoning

Difficulty level: Moderate

This section included questions from– arrangements, an assumption based questions, blood relations, coding-decoding, direction sense, puzzles, sequences & series and strengthening & weakening.

The section was easy but due to the range of questions, it is better to rate it as a moderate one. Around 30-32 attempts with 75 % accuracy can be considered as a good score.

NMAT 2015: Distribution of Questions v/s Ideal Attempts


The following table highlights the total number of questions, NMAT 2015 difficulty level, important topics and the ideal attempts.

SectionQuantitative AbilityLogical ReasoningLanguage Skills
Difficulty LevelEasy to moderate but time-consumingModerately EasyModerate
Accuracy of attempted questions75%75%87.5%
TopicsDI (pie-charts, bar graphs, tables), Data Sufficiencyarrangements, family tree, coding, alphanumeric series, directions, blood ties and decision-makingTwo Reading Comprehensions, Para jumbles, sentence correction, critical reasoning and analogies
Good Attempting30-3230-3226-28

NMAT 2014 Analysis

Quantitative Ability

Difficulty Level: Moderate to Difficult

NMAT 2014 Quantitative Ability section included questions from data sufficiency, number theory and geometry. Around 8-12 questions were from Data Interpretation. DS questions were on the trickier side and proper practice was required. Geometry problems were also seen to be complicated to solve. Attempting 25-28 questions with 58% accuracy was considered a good score.

Logical Reasoning

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Logical Reasoning section featured common topics such as Syllogisms, Linear and Circular Arrangement, Family Tree, Coding and Series. Questions were based both on Verbal and Analytical Reasoning. Some questions were found to have inherent errors but the overall difficulty level was on the moderate side. Solving 22 to 24 questions with 55% accuracy was considered a good attempt.

Language Skills

Difficulty Level: Easy to Moderate

Language Skills section consisted of 2 reading comprehension passages with four questions in each set. The passages were short and simple with direct questions being asked. Other questions were based on para jumbles, synonyms & antonyms, sentence correction and prepositions. Solving 24 to 25 questions correctly in this section was considered as a good attempt.

Distribution of Questions v/s Ideal Attempts


The following table highlights the difficulty level, section wise attempts, important topics and ideal attempts:

SectionQuantitative AbilityLogical ReasoningLanguage Skills
Difficulty LevelDifficultModerateModerately Easy
Accuracy of attempted questions58%55%75%
TopicsDI, Data Sufficiency, Number Theory and GeometrySyllogisms, Linear and Circular Arrangement, Family Tree, Coding and SeriesRC, Para jumbles, synonyms and antonyms, sentence correction and prepositions
Good Attempt25-2822-2424-25



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