Types of Group Discussion (GD)

Nitin Rao updated on : 20 Nov 2017

Let's discuss the several types of Group Discussion and also find below examples for your better understanding!

Group Discussion (GD) is a process where an exchange of ideas and opinions takes place and are debated upon. This process is mostly used for selecting candidates for admission to management schools basically for MBA.

A typical GD comprises a small group of candidates. Each group is then given a topic for discussion. The topic can be general or specific. Example: Kashmir Conflict or just a phrase saying "Where there's a will there's a way".

Types of Group Discussion (GD)

Types of Group Discussions


Case Study Based

  • Knowledge-Based – GD involves facts and figures with substantial information
  • Abstract – GD involves out of the box topics checking your creativity
  • Controversial – Tests your analytical skills as well as maturity level
  • Opinion Seeking – Opinion based GD checking your presentation skills and leadership qualities
  • GD involves a discussion around a situation or a scenario provided to you. You will be provided with a scenario, along with a problem which you need to resolve.

Topic-Based Group Discussion:

Elaborating on each, let’s read what each type of topic-based Group Discussion is all about:

Knowledge-Based Topics

Under this kind of group discussion, you require in-depth information about the topic been given to you.

  • You should be able to support it with facts and figures
  • Your information should be substantial.


(Source: www.shutterstock.com)


  • Unique Identification Number
  • Cold War
  • Is terrorism the price we have to pay for democracy?
  • Globalisation and Privatisation
  • Is Mixed Economy preferred?
  • MBA or PGDM?
  • Privatization of Universities/colleges/schools
  • Does India need a dictatorship?
  • MBA in India is overrated

Abstract Topics

Under this type of a group discussion, the panellist gives a topic which is absolutely out of the box. Abstract topics are more about intangible things. These topics test your creativity and also, to some extent, your thinking ability.

Such topics can be interpreted in different ways by the candidates. In such topics, your comprehension skills and communication skills are judged.

(Source: www.shutterstock.com)


  • A Teardrop on my Guitar
  • Where there’s a will there’s away
  • 26 Alphabets
  • Infinite Numbers
  • A Walk to Remember
  • Six Billion and One Gold

Such topics do not require facts or figures but simply judge your imagination and how well you can associate it with your day to day life.

Controversial Topics

Such topics can lead to an argument, they’re argumentative in nature. They are meant to generate controversy and at the same time, judge the analytical skills of the participant to see if he/ she can think rationally, without any bias and arrive at a harmonious conclusion.

Such topics are  also given by the panelists so that they can judge the maturity level of the students and they don’t start screaming at other candidates., If, as a student, you  are not in favour of what another candidate is saying, then you should be smart enough to put across your point candidly without / bashing the speaker.


  • Reservation should be removed
  • Quota System should be Abolished
  • Maintaining Brotherhood is a social obligation
  • Beauty Pageants give a wrong impact on the women of India
  • Politics in India
  • Reality shows- Should children be banned from coming to such shows?

Opinion Seeking Topics

In such topics, candidates are asked to put across their opinions, their point of views. The panellists look for presentation skills when given such topics and also your ability to work in a team which means that your leadership skills are also judged.


  • Women – boon to the society or bane to the society
  • Love Marriage or Arranged Marriage
  • Nuclear Family or Joint Family

Case-Based Group Discussion:

Under a case-based group discussion, a situation or a scenario is left to students for an open discussion. The information about the situation will be provided to you, a problem regarding the same situation will be given, all you will be asked for is to resolve it.

Topics given during this type of discussion are more management related, for example, the panellists might give you a situation which could be a conversation/argument between an employee and the boss etc.

These are open end discussions, wherein nobody is right or wrong, using their thinking ability they decide what they can do in such situations etc.

The panellist under the case-based group discussion, look for the decision-making skills, his/her ability to work in a team etc.

NOTE: IIM AIIM Indore and IIT SOM Mumbai have a case-based discussion rather than topic-based discussion in their selection procedures.

TIP 1: Be updated with the latest current affairs which will provide you to give facts and figures during a Group Discussion which will value addition for you.

TIP 2: Practice topics well in advance, manage a list of topics from various group discussions held in the previous years, consult your friends or seniors who have been through the same process.


Good Luck!!

Recommended articles

Leave Your Comments Views or Questions here