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Is CAT EXAM mandatory to take admission in IIM ? top courses without CAT 2024

Is CAT  EXAM mandatory to take admission in IIM ? top courses without CAT 2024
Home > Blogs > Is CAT EXAM mandatory to take admission in IIM ? top courses without CAT 2024

    The objective of this blog is to adequately reply to the oft-repeated query of the students aspiring to enrol in the MBA programme - Is CAT  Exam mandatory to take admission in IIM? & also to explore the top courses without CAT 2024.

    The two-year full-time residential Post Graduate Programme in Management (PGP) at IIMA, leads to a Master’s degree in Business Administration. 

    CAT Exam :

    The IIM CAT/ IIM entrance exam is conducted each year. 

    The CAT exam is basically an aptitude test for judging the verbal and comprehension skills, data interpretation & logical skills and quant aptitudes of the candidates.

    Students are required to write the CAT exam for admission to India’s top business schools, or IIMs. 

    The CAT exam comprises of following three sections:-

    Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC)

    Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR)

    Quantitative Aptitude (QA).

    Students prefer to seek guidance and coaching by joining CAT courses. During the CAT courses, students do a lot of practice by attempting the previous years’ question papers. 

    CAT entrance exam’s eligibility :

    The eligibility for IIM CAT prescribes that candidates should possess a Bachelor’s degree with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA(45% for SC/ST/PWD candidates). Students appearing for the final year of Bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification examination can also apply. 

    Candidates who have completed a professional degree (CA/CS/ICWA/FCAI) with the required percentage can also appear in the IIM entrance exam i.e. CAT Exam for IIM admission.

    Indian Institute of Management AhmedabadIIMA offers IIM courses in management with specialisations in specific areas like marketing, finance, strategy, consulting, operations, HR, etc.

    People from different backgrounds like -Finance, Consulting, IT/ITeS, FMCG/Retail, Engineering, PSUs, etc., pour in to seek IIM admission to pursue the coveted IIM courses such as PGP/MBA at IIMA. They compete in the CAT exam which is mandatory for admission to the PGP at IIMA. 

    The process of IIM admission to the flagship PGP programme at IIMA prescribes the CAT exam for Indian students, & the GMAT exam for overseas students. The shortlisted candidates are required to take analytical writing tests & personal interviews. 

    Executive MBA from IIM without CAT -The MBA-PGPX from IIMA

    The Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad’s One Year Post-Graduate Programme in Management for Executives (PGPX), commonly called (MBA-PGPX) is designed for working professionals possessing an undergraduate degree in any discipline ( study of 10 + 2 + 3 or 4 years) & work experience of at least 4 years. The minimum age prescribed is 25 years. However, valid GMAT/GRE scores are required.

    Similarly, executive MBAs from IIM without CAT are provided by institutions such as -IIM Bangalore EPGP, IIM Calcutta MBAEx, IIM Indore EPGP, IIM Kozhikode EPGP, IIM Lucknow IPMX.

    In addition to the PGP two-year programme, IIM Ahmedabad online courses of shorter duration are also very popular amongst working professionals. 

    IIM Kozhikode :

    IIM Kozhikode offers IIM online courses such as the ‘Senior Management Programme’ for Graduate/diploma holders with 10+ years of experience. The duration of such IIM online courses is one year. The programme fee for IIM online courses is Rs. 6,00,000+GST.

    Indian Institute of Management Raipur :

    As far as IIM certificate courses are concerned, IIM Raipur offers an Executive Development Programme in General Management. Such IIM certificate courses are of one-year duration. The classes of IIM certificate courses are usually held on Sundays to enable working professionals to upskill their talents with ease. The  IIM certificate courses’ fee is Rs. 2,31,000+GST.

    Shiv Nadar University : 

    Shiv Nadar University offers an MBA (Business Analytics), a 2-year full-time residential degree programme.


    A candidate must hold a bachelor’s degree or equivalent with a minimum of 50% marks(final year student can apply)

    Valid score of any one of the entrance exams is required:- GMAT/GRE (2020-24) CAT(2020-23) or XAT/NMAT/GATE (2021-24) Score only.

    Shiv Nadar University’s Course fee structure:

    Application fees

    Rs. 1,800

    Admission fees

    Rs. 70,000

    Security deposit

    Rs. 25,000

    Annual Tuition fees

    Rs. 6,65,000

    Annual living fees

    (Subject to revision of 5% to 8% in the second year)

    Rs. 2,50,000

    IMT Ghaziabad, Nagpur and Hyderabad

    The Institute of Management Technology (IMT) offers a 2-year full-time residential Post Graduate Diploma in Management program at its Ghaziabad, Nagpur and Hyderabad campuses.

    Eligibility criteria:

    A candidate must possess a Bachelor's degree(of a Minimum of three years) in any discipline with a minimum of 50% marks in aggregate.

    For admission to the IMT Ghaziabad’s management programme, the candidates must submit valid CAT / XAT / GMAT scores.

    For admission to the management programmes at IMT Nagpur and IMT Hyderabad campuses, the valid scores of CAT/XAT/GMAT/ CMAT are accepted. It may be noted that CMAT scores are considered for IMT Nagpur and IMT Hyderabad campuses only.

    Fee structure:

    IMT Ghaziabad’s fee structure for the two-year Post Graduate Diploma in Management programmes (Marketing/Financial Management/Banking and Financial Services) for 2024-2026 is as under:-


    1st year (In INR)

    2nd year(in INR

    Total(In INR)

    Admission fee




    Academic fee




    Alumni fee




    Caution deposit(refundable)








    IMT Ghaziabad offers scholarships of 25% on the academic fees to all female students. Besides, eligible and shortlisted candidates are offered 100% Tuition fee waiver as well. 

    Institutes like -SIBM, Pune, XLRI, Jamshedpur, Xavier University, Bhubaneshwar, Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Delhi accept scores of other competitive entrance examinations such as XAT, MAT, GMAT, SNAP, etc., unlike IIM courses that mandate CAT exam scores. 

    MBA online Universities:

    MBA Online Universities do not insist on providing CAT exams or other competitive examination scores.

    The eligibility criteria for admission to the Online MBA programme is that a candidate must possess a Bachelor’s Degree of Minimum 3 years duration with at least 50% marks (45% in case of candidates belonging to reserved category).

    Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) :

    IGNOU, a central University offers a two-year Master of Business Administration (Online) programme with the flexibility for students to complete it in a maximum of 4 years.

    The IGNOU offers different areas of specialisation like; Human Resource management, Financial Management, Operations Management, Marketing Management, and Services management.

    The two-year MBA  programme fee at IGNOU is Rs 15,500 per semester (Rs. 62,000/- for the entire programme.)

    Private Online Universities : 

    The leading private Online Universities that offer cost-effective Online MBA programmes are:-

    1. Manipal University: 

    Manipal University offers an Online MBA with specialisations in Finance, Marketing, HRM, Analytics Data Science, IT & FinTech. & Operations Management. The two-year MBA  programme fee is Rs. 1,75,000/-.

    2. Graphic Era University : 

    Graphic Era (Deemed to be University) offers Online programmes with a range of Electives that provide in-depth knowledge and skills in multitudes of varied sectors. Graphic Era University offers the following MBA electives:-
    • Marketing
    • Human Resource
    • Entrepreneurship
    • International Business
    • Logistics & Supply Chain Management
    • Digital Marketing
    • Hospital Administration
    • Airport and Airline Management
    • Retail Management

    The two-year MBA  programme fee at Graphic Era (Deemed to be University) is Rs. 80,000/-.

    3.Vivekananda Global University:  

    Vivekananda Global University offers MBA Online programmes with the following Specialisations:- Human Resources • Marketing • Finance • HealthCare • Agri-Business • Information Technology • International Business • Operations Management

    The two-year MBA  programme fee at Vivekananda Global University is Rs. 32,500/Semester; a total of Rs. 1,30,000 for the entire programme.

    4. Maharishi Markandeshwar University:

    (Deemed to be University)Maharishi Markandeshwar University offers two two-year Online MBA in specialisations such as Marketing, Finance, HR, International  Business, Information Technology, Hospital Management, Hospitality Management & Agri-Business Management. The two-year MBA  programme fee at Maharishi Markandeshwar University is Rs. 27,500/Semester; a total of Rs. 1,10,000

    for the entire programme.

    5. Uttaranchal University :

    Uttaranchal University offers Online MBA with the following specialisations- Marketing, Digital Marketing, HR, Business Analytics, Financial Management, International Business and Information Technology. The two-year MBA  programme fee at Uttaranchal University is Rs. 66,000/-.6. Mangalayatan University : 

    Mangalayatan University offers online M.B.A. courses that give the learner the opportunities to enhance their managerial and leadership skills.

    The online M.B.A. courses at Mangalayatan University are designed to offer a comprehensive curriculum that covers various aspects of business management, including marketing, finance, human resources, operations, and strategy. The two-year MBA  programme fee is Rs. 67,000/-.

    6. Professional University: 

    Lovely Professional University offers industry industry-oriented MBA Course curriculum that helps students upgrade their skills through interactive sessions, simulations & case studies. The two-year MBA  programme fee at Lovely Professional University starts at Rs. 32,000 per semester.

    7. GLA University : 

    GLA University offers a two-year Online MBA programme in the following 10 industry-related specialisations:-

    • Marketing Management
    • Human Resource Management
    • Financial Management
    • International Business Management
    • Information Technology Management
    • Operations Management
    • Banking & Financial Services
    • Business Analytics
    • Retail Management
    • Supply Chain Management
    • The two-year MBA  programme fee is Rs. 68,000/-.
    • Conclusion Of the CAT Exam

    Online MBA colleges in India offer cost-effective two-year (4 Semesters) programmes with an array of specialisations without stipulating any requirement of CAT exam score or other competitive entrance exams like GMAT/GRE etc,

    Online MBA programmes are designed to provide students the flexibility to pursue their studies at their own pace while balancing their personal and professional commitments. 

    The expert counsellors of the Distance Pathshala provide personalised guidance to aspiring students and help them enrol in the Online MBA programme, well within their budget.

    Students must grab the golden opportunity to enrol in the cost-effective Online programmes by connecting with the experienced Counsellors of the Distance Pathshala who are always happy to help.

    FAQs. Of Cat Exam

    Yes, a valid CAT Exam score is required for admission to PGP management programmes offered by the IIMs. Valid GMAT/GRE scores are also accepted for admission to Executive MBA programmes.

    A valid CAT Exam (Common Admission Test) score is required for seeking admission to the PGP/MBA programs from reputed B Schools in India.

    CAT entrance exam eligibility prescribes that a candidate must possess a Bachelor’s degree with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA(45% for SC/ST/PWD candidates). Students appearing for the final year of Bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification examination can also apply. Candidates who have completed a professional degree (CA/CS/ICWA/FCAI) with the required percentage can also appear for the CAT exam.

    CAT exam assesses Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension (VARC), Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning (DILR) and quantitative Aptitude (QA) unlike the test for IIT entrance which primarily tests the knowledge of Physics, Chemistry and Maths subjects of 11th and 12th standards.
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