Past years CAT Exam Analysis: Latest Trends & Question Types

In this article, we will provide a detailed analysis of the CAT exam pattern and question types based on the latest trends observed over the past 10 years. Understanding these trends is crucial for your CAT exam preparation, as it allows you to align your study strategy with the changing patterns and stay ahead of the competition.

Watch this video if you want to skip reading the whole blog. Below is an in-depth syllabus analysis of the CAT Exam.

Key Takeaways:

  • The CAT exam pattern and question types have changed over the past years.
  • By understanding the latest trends, you can align your preparation with the current exam pattern.
  • Knowing the different question types in the CAT exam will help you develop effective strategies to tackle them.
  • Staying updated with the changing patterns will give you an edge over other CAT exam aspirants.
  • Analyzing the past trends will help you optimize your preparation and maximize your chances of success in the CAT exam.

CAT Exam Pattern Trends

Important Dates

Mark your calendars with these important CAT dates (tentative):

CAT Registration Start Date: August 1, 2024

CAT Registration End Date: September 23, 2024

CAT Exam Date: November 24, 2024

No. of Questions

66 (VARC-24, DILR-20, QA-22)

Sections in Exam

3; VARC, DILR and QA

Exam Duration

2 hours

Time Allotted per Section

40 minutes

Slots for Exam


Mode of Exam

Computer-based Exam

Medium of Instruction


Types of Questions


CAT Marking Scheme

+3 for every right answer

-1 for every wrong answer

TITA has no negative marking

Changes in CAT Exam Pattern

  • Introduction of Non-MCQs: One significant change in the CAT exam pattern is the introduction of non-MCQs (Multiple Choice Questions) in addition to the traditional MCQs. Non-MCQs require candidates to type in their answers instead of selecting options, which tests their problem-solving and calculation abilities.










16 questions of RC – 4 passages of 4 questions each. 

8 Questions of Verbal ability – Parajumbles, para completions, parasummary and odd sentence out





4 sets of 5 questions each

Areas questioned – Bar Graph, Arrangements, Missing Data and Puzzles (Games)





Dominated by questions of Arithmetic and Algebra.





  • Variation in Sectional Composition: The CAT exam pattern has witnessed variations in the number of sections and their composition. In some years, there have been three sections, while in others, there have been two. The weightage and number of questions in each section have also been subject to change.
  • Introduction of On-screen Calculator: To aid candidates in solving complex calculations efficiently, the CAT exam has incorporated an on-screen calculator. This has been a significant change that allows candidates to focus on logical reasoning and problem-solving without the burden of manual calculations.

CAT Exam Structure and CAT Exam Question Types

When preparing for the CAT exam, it is essential to have a clear understanding of the different question types that you will encounter. Familiarizing yourself with these question types and their respective formats will enable you to develop effective strategies and improve your chances of scoring well. Let’s explore the various question types that frequently appear in the CAT exam:

1. Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)

MCQs are a common question type in the CAT exam. In this format, you are presented with a question and a set of options, and you must choose the correct answer from the given options. These questions test your knowledge and critical thinking skills

We with our expert faculty compiled ideal CAT 2024 preparation materials




2. Data Interpretation (DI) Questions

Data Interpretation questions assess your ability to analyze and interpret data presented in the form of tables, graphs, and charts. You will be required to extract relevant information, make calculations, and draw conclusions based on the given data.

Different types of sets with video explanations to understand the best methodologies are very important.

Go to Quantifiers DILR sets with Video Solutions

3. Logical Reasoning (LR) Questions

Logical Reasoning questions evaluate your logical thinking and reasoning abilities. These questions often involve solving puzzles, analyzing patterns, making deductions, and evaluating arguments.

4. Verbal Ability (VA) Questions

Verbal Ability questions focus on assessing your English language skills, including grammar, vocabulary, and reading comprehension. You may be required to answer questions related to grammar rules, vocabulary usage, sentence rearrangement, and passage-based comprehension.

5. Quantitative Aptitude (QA) Questions

Quantitative Aptitude questions test your mathematical and problem-solving skills. These questions cover various topics such as arithmetic, algebra, geometry, number systems, and data interpretation.
CAT 2024
Understanding the different question types in the CAT exam will help you allocate your study time efficiently and develop targeted preparation strategies. Let’s take a look at a table summarizing the question types and their respective formats in the CAT exam:

Question Type


Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)

Choose the correct option from given choices

Data Interpretation (DI) Questions

Analyze and interpret data from tables, graphs, and charts

Logical Reasoning (LR) Questions

Solve puzzles, analyze patterns, evaluate arguments

Verbal Ability (VA) Questions

Grammar rules, vocabulary usage, reading comprehension

Quantitative Aptitude (QA) Questions

Mathematical and problem-solving skills


Mocks play an important role in determining the route that the CAT preparation will take. It will enable the candidate to analyze their performance and identify their weaknesses & strengths.
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What is the purpose of analyzing the CAT exam pattern and question types?
The purpose of analyzing the CAT exam pattern and question types is to gain insights into the latest trends and changes in the exam, which can help students better prepare and stay ahead of the competition.
The section on CAT exam pattern trends focuses on highlighting any significant changes that have occurred in the exam pattern over the years, providing valuable information on the structure and format of the CAT exam.
What can I expect to find in the section about CAT exam question types?
The section about CAT exam question types explores the various question types that appear in the exam, helping students understand their formats and develop effective strategies to approach and tackle them successfully.
Is a calculator allowed in CAT?
No, calculators are not allowed inside the examination hall. Candidates should memorize ad practice the basic equations and formulae required for CAT.

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