CAT vs MAT: Differences and Similarities

Nidhi updated on : 07 Jul 2017

CAT and MAT are the two most popular management entrance exams in India. Let's take a look at the most important parameters to compare CAT and MAT exams.

With MBA entrance exam season at its peak, students from across the country are appearing for various tests to get admission in top B-schools of India.

Since Common Admission Test (CAT) and Management Aptitude Test (MAT) are the two most renowned MBA entrance examinations across the country, students often face the dilemma while choosing between CAT and MAT. However, being an MBA aspirant, how would you decide that whether you should go for CAT or MAT in the first place?


To help students overcome this confusion, I would share some of the parameters basis which you can compare CAT and MAT exam and select the most suitable exam as per your preferences.

But, Before pointing towards the differences between CAT and MAT tests, one should have a brief knowledge of the duo. So, here we go!

About Common Admission Test (CAT)

CAT is a popular entrance exam for candidates seeking admission in the prestigious Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and other top B-Schools of the country. Every year, lakhs of students take CAT exam for making it to IIMs and another tier I management institutes across the nation. This year, CAT test is going to be held on December 4, 2016.

Check details on CAT 2017

About Management Aptitude Test (MAT)

MAT, on the other hand, is also a management entrance exam for the students willing to take admission to various B Schools and prominent management colleges in India. MAT exam is conducted 4 times in a year. MAT Dec 2016 is going to be held on December 11, 2016 (Paper Based) and December 17, 2016 (Computer Based).

Now that you have a brief knowledge of both the exams, let’s take a look at some of the parameters to make comparison between CAT and MAT Test -




Conducting Body

Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs)

All India Management Association (AIMA)

Paper Language


English and Hindi

Mode of Exam

Computer Based (Online)

Both Computer Based and Paper Based

Level of Exam

Tougher to crack

Easier as compared to CAT

Frequency of Test

Once in a year

Four times in a year (Feb, May, Sept and Dec)

Eligibility Criteria

The candidate must have minimum 50% marks in the Bachelor’s degree.

No minimum percentage required appearing for MAT exam

College Level

For Tier I institutes and B-Schools including IIMs

For Tier II institutes and other B Schools

Exam Pattern

Section I:

Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension

Section II:

Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning:

Section III:

Quantitative Ability:

I: Language Comprehension

II: Mathematical Skills

III: Data Analysis and Sufficiency

IV: Intelligence and Critical Reasoning

V: Indian and Global Environment

Negative Marking

One mark will be deducted for each wrong answer.

0.25 marks will be deducted for each wrong answer.

Time Management

Time management is very crucial while appearing for CAT Test.

Time pressure is not such a problem while cracking MAT Test.

Exam Fee

INR 17,00/- (INR 850/- for SC/ST/PH students)

INR 12,00/-

Level of Competition


Low as compared to CAT

Despite being the management entrance exams, there are various differences between MAT and CAT. However, there are many other parameters where these both exams share some similarities. Let’s take a look at those factors:

Similarities Between CAT and MAT

Exam Category

Management Entrance Exam

Exam Level

National Level

Age Limit

No Age Bar


MBA and PGDM Programs

Electronics Devices

Calculators, mobile phones and other electronic gadgets are prohibited inside the examination hall.

Hope the abovesaid difference and similarities between CAT and MAT exam will help you in making the final decision and get admission in MBA or PGDM programs across the country.

Stay tuned with HTCampus for more updates!!

Recommended articles

Leave Your Comments Views or Questions here