Management education is arguably the most sought after field of higher education today in India and the world at large. The field of management is constantly evolving with great opportunities and therefore it attracts many of the young minds who would like to make their mark in this lucrative field. The attraction of the management education therefore knows no bounds especially in India where the other field of work have limited prospects. At the pinnacle of the management education we have the most prestigious and top b schools of India. To kick-start the management education and subsequent career for the students, one of the biggest challenges is getting selected in the right B school. For this purpose, the aspirants must prepare for one of the competitive examinations known as the management entrance test.
There are many management entrance examinations and tests that are carried out in the country with different formats, different difficulty levels and giving entrance to different business schools. One of the most widely accepted and therefore sought after management entrance examinations is CAT which is conducted by the Indian Institutes of Management. The CAT helps the aspirants secure admission in not only more than 20 Indian Institutes of Management but also in many private and government educational institutions.
Apart from CAT, there are many more entrance examinations which can help the students start up their management careers which follow similar format and have similar eligibility criteria. Some of these exams are GMAT, NMAT by GMAC, and IBSAT. Each of these have their own advantages that the students can leverage to maximize their chances of starting their management education and subsequent careers.
Conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) the Graduate Management Aptitude Test (GMAT) is a globally accepted management entrance examination which the students can take. The GMAT can be attempted whenever the students feel ready since it is conducted many times in the year. All the students must do is register for GMAT and select the next exam date that is coming up along with the test center. Being a computer adaptive test, the format of GMAT differs from many other management examinations. The duration of GMAT is 3.5 hours with a total of 80 questions that the students can score. The various sections of the GMAT test are Verbal Reasoning, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing.
The eligibility criteria for the test are also relaxed since the student is only required to produce a valid passport of a country, while the other eligibility criteria can be checked by the respective management institution at the time of entrance. The test scores would be valid from five years of taking the examination and the results can be received instantly at the end of the test, while the official marksheet takes about 20 more days. The GMAT can get the students admission in many top business schools of India such as IIM Ahmedabad, IIM Bangalore, IIM Calcutta, XLRI Jamshedpur, FMS Delhi, IMT Ghaziabad, ISB, MDI Gurgaon and ICFAI Business School.
The IBSAT is another top level management entrance examination that is conducted once a year by the prestigious ICFAI Foundation for Higher Education. The test dates are coming up in December, 2018 soon. The format of IBSAT is like CAT with various sections of 140 MCQ (Multiple Choice Questions) to be answered in a computer based test within two hours. The IBSAT measures the student’s aptitude in areas such as quantitative techniques, data interpretation, data adequacy, vocabulary, analytical reasoning and reading comprehension.
One of the biggest advantages that students can have while attempting IBSAT over other management examination is the provision of no negative marking. Success in the IBSAT test makes the students eligible for taking admission in the various campuses of the ICFAI Business School which can be a great platform to start a management career.
NMAT by GMAC
NMAT is a management exam conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), which also conducts the GMAT. Within each cycle of admissions, the students can attempt the GMAC up to three times and the highest score of the student will be considered for the entrance. This helps the students become more confident since they get more than one attempt for the same test. The test has 120 questions to be attempted in the areas of Language Skills, Quantitative Skills and Logical Reasoning Skills. The NMAT by GMAC scores are admissible in management institutes such as NMIMS University, ICFAI Business School, Alliance School of Business, Amity Business School etc.
SNAP in another national level management entrance examination which is conducted once a year by the Symbiosis International University. The SNAP test is a computer based test of 130 questions which are Multiple Choice Questions and Special Questions. These questions are divided in four sections and need to be completed in two hours. The students can get admission in around 15 management institutes including the ones operated by the Symbiosis International (Deemed University).
Xavier’s Aptitude Test also known as XAT is administered by XLRI Jamshedpur on the behalf of Xavier Association of Management Institutes (XAMI), and is immensely popular with the estimated 90000 aspirants every year. The scores of this computer based test are accepted at more than 150 business schools. The test duration has recently been reduced to three hours, with removal of essay type questions. The test also has negative marks allocated for incorrect answers. With no age limit and no cap on the number of attempts one can take at the exam, the XAT does see a of candidates with the eligibility criteria of having completed 3 years of graduation.
Although CAT has become synonymous with the management education in India, there are many tests that can help the students gain advantage over their competition and success in starting off their careers. A good strategy for the students would be to maximize their opportunities by taking advantage of these entrance exams and embark on the journey to the top business schools of India.