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This is a list of evolving advice about the Common Aptitude Test (CAT) for admissions to various management institutes in India. I have gathered a few questions that people sent me over social media and email.
Of course, I do not have the energy or the resources to respond to every query, but I try my best. You should read Communication.

Disclaimer: Before you read the advice on this page, you should go ahead and read this.

Q: Importance of choosing colleges and specializations before beginning to prepare for CAT.

It depends on you, honestly, as in what you want as a career. If you like engineering, then I don’t think you need to do an MBA right now. I chose to do an MBA because I had some financial constraints at home, and MBA pays well. Being from the IIT system, if you indeed want to pursue an MBA, maybe you can do it abroad after a few years of quality work with some firm. Just options, again, not a bit of hard and fast advice.

I am at IIMA, so I can speak for it: IIMA does not offer specializations. It instead provides a general management degree in which you take courses from various areas, viz. Finance, HR, Econ, Marketing, etc.

Where you want to go would depend on what kind of an MBA experience you wish to have and what you aspire to do post-MBA. For, e.g., IIMA has a good track record of placing its students in consulting firms (maybe much more than others), IIMC has a good history in Finance (as far as I’ve heard), and so on. Gujarat is a dry state, so if you are a party animal, maybe you can do it by going to IIMB. I don’t see much difference between ABC, except perhaps A’s alumni base is more diverse and broader.

Of course, the first step is to take the CAT exam, which should not be a big deal for engineers. But, yeah, prepare well by writing the mock tests, etc. Overall, where you wish to go and what you want to study should not be a factor in preparing for CAT. Most, if not all, management institutes in India accept CAT for admission, so a good CAT score and a well-rounded interview should be good.

:question: Do you have any question about CAT or IIMA? Feel free to leave a comment, I’ll try to answer them as an update to this essay.


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