Xavier Aptitude Test or XAT is a similar exam like CAT but slightly different in terms of syllabus and pattern. Both of the exams are MBA entrance exams and their syllabus is almost the same except in XAT there is an extra section named “Decision making”. Both of them are online exams though XAT became an online exam very recently. XAT typically occurs after a month of CAT. Mentioned below are the points which make XAT different from CAT and the approach one should follow to prepare for XAT 2019.
All you need to know about XAT
Time-Time is one of the most important factors that candidates need to know from beforehand. XAT is nowhere near easy and candidates cannot divide fix the amount of time they will give to each exam like CAT.
XAT is not a speed test – CAT is a speed test but XAT is not one. In XAT the numbers of questions are 72 which are way less than CAT where the questions are 100. So, XAT questions are way more difficult than CAT’s. Difficult means the calculations for each question will be longer and the questions will be analytical in nature. So, a candidate cannot hurry while answering the questions.
Decision making – This is one of the main things that differs XAT from CAT. XAT has this section and this one is equally important as this section also has its own cut off mark. This portion consists of a mix of behavioural, managerial and mathematical questions. This portion is a challenge because it is not based on theoretical knowledge.
General knowledge and essay – XAT has general knowledge and essay section unlike CAT and like other sections this section also has a fixed cut off marks. Candidates who give XAT after CAT often skip these sections as they are not included in CAT.
Negative marking – Like CAT, XAT also has negative marking scheme. For every 4 wrong answers, 0.25 marks are deducted. So, candidates not only have to answer the questions, they will also have to make sure that they don’t give incorrect answer by trying to solve every question. For every unanswered question 0.5 marks are deducted except for 12 unanswered questions.
Strategic approach for XAT
Time – Candidates should solve the easy and medium level questions from all the questions at first and then they can go for the hard questions. This strategy is a good one to clear all sectional cut offs. This way they score enough marks to pass all the sections and also have time to attempt the hard questions for overall percentage.
Decision making – To pass this section with ease, candidates must solve all the previous year questions papers (at least last 10 years). This portion is a challenge for most candidates. One thing that every candidate should keep in mind while solving this portion is that they should not form any personal opinion or favour any one side. Candidates should answer logically by carefully studying the question and analysing all the sides of the question.
General knowledge and essay – The only way to solve general knowledge section with a breeze is to go through the newspapers every day. Going through newspaper helps the candidates to not only answer the general knowledge section but also improve their English which is very much important. As for the essay part, the candidates should practice writing essay within a given time every day. Candidates can also buy different books and go through them.
Negative marking – For the negative marking, the candidates must answer each question carefully. If you can’t attempt a question then its fine but don’t answer the questions you have done wrong. You can leave 12 questions unanswered so don’t go ahead and try to attempt every question and loose more marks than necessary.
The above mentioned are the main strategic approach a student should take. However, there are still some key points that a candidate should know about.
- You must improve your English as this language can be tricky and you need to know about its tricks to understand the questions.
- Know your strength and weakness and prepare yourself accordingly.
- Give as many mock exams as you can as it helps you to prepare for the real exam.
- Give equal importance to each section and don’t leave any section out.
- While answering the questions, be sure that the option you are choosing is correct because they have “None of the above” option too as this is where candidates make the most mistakes.