CAT Results – Dates, Result Calculation, Score Normalization & More

CAT Results 2020 are likely to be announced in the first week of January 2021. Candidates can check their results on the official website of CAT by using their respective login credentials. Once the results are announced, IIMs and various other management colleges will declare their separate CAT cutoffs. Only those candidates who succeed in qualifying the CAT cutoff will be called for the final admission process including a written ability test, group discussion and a personal interview. 

CAT is one of the most prestigious entrance exams which is considered by more than 100 B-schools in India for the purpose of shortlisting eligible candidates for admissions. In 2019, more than 2.44 lakh candidates participated in CAT, out of which only 10 candidates were able to score 100 percentile. 

In this article, we will discuss some important details about CAT Result 2020. However, before exploring the details, here are a few important facts related to CAT results:

  1. 20 IIMs and more than 100 B-schools across India accept the CAT score for the purpose of admissions. 
  2. 10 candidates scored a perfect 100 percentile, while 21 individuals scored a 99.99 percentile in CAT 2019. Despite the efforts of IIMs to bring greater class diversity, the top rankers are usually from engineering/technology backgrounds. 
  3. The CAT exam boasts of fair participation of female candidates. In 2019, over 75,000 women appeared for the CAT exam and they made up over 35% of the applicant pool. The highest score amongst females was by a student from BITS Pilani who secured a percentile score of 99.98%. 

Important Update- Indian Institute of Management, Indore has notified on its official website that the CAT 2020 will be conducted on 29nd November 2020. The official confirmation regarding the mode of exam is yet to be made. Although, it is expected that the governing body of the exam might conduct the CAT 2020 in ‘Remote-Proctored Test’ mode. Also, CAT 2020 registrations will commence from 5th August 2020 and the deadline for completing the registration process is 16th September 2020.

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CAT Result – Important dates 

The result of CAT 2020 will be available in the form of a scorecard which can be downloaded from their official website. Here are some important dates candidates applying for CAT must remember:

Events Dates*
Exam  29th November 2020
Release of Response Sheet and Question Paper Last week of November 2020
Release of Final Answer Key  First/Second week of December 2020
Result First week of January 2021
Selection Process April to June 2021

*The dates mentioned in the table are tentative and subject to change.

CAT Result – How to Check?

CAT Results will be available on the official website from the first week of January 2021. Candidates will receive notifications related to results through their registered email and mobile number. The steps to download the CAT 2020 scorecard are as follows:

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Step 1: Visit the official website of CAT 

Step 2: Click on download CAT scorecard. 

Step 3: Enter your user ID and password.

Step 4: Click on the download scorecard link and download it for future references.

Read More: CAT Counselling – Dates, procedure and admission details.

CAT Result – Score Card Details

The CAT scorecard contains details which are crucial for calculating the CAT score. It also has some other vital information about the applicant. The details in the CAT Scorecard include:

1. Personal details of the candidate – Name, gender, date of birth, as filled during the CAT registration

2. Candidate’s contact details – Candidate’s postal address and email ID

3. Category details – Information on the category that the candidate belongs to (General, EWS, NC-OBC, or SC/ST). The CAT scorecard also displays the candidate’s PWD/DA status.

4. Test details – Registration number/login ID, test date, and slot

5. Scaled score – Since the CAT exam is conducted in two slots and the test paper differs for each shift, the level of difficulty also varies. In such a situation, scaling of CAT scores is a method that ensures a fair evaluation for all the candidates. The CAT 2020 scorecard will contain section-wise scaled score and an overall scaled CAT score.

6. Percentile Score – It is a relative score which is calculated on the basis of the rank of a candidate in comparison to the rank of the rest of the candidates appearing for the CAT examination. 

For example, if 100 candidates appeared for the exam, and your rank is 25, it means that the rest of the 75 candidates have scored less than you. So, your percentile score would be calculated in the following way: 

(75/100) X 100 = 75%ile.

CAT Result: Image

CAT Result - Score Card Details
CAT Result – Score Card

CAT Result – How is the CAT Result Calculated?

IIM has announced a ‘CAT Percentile and Score Calculation’ method in order to maintain transparency in the CAT evaluation process. 

Step 1: Firstly, each candidate’s section-wise scores are totalled to arrive at an overall score. 

Step 2: Then, the section-wise and overall CAT scores are normalized and converted into scaled scores.

Step 3: Finally, these scaled scores are converted into definitive CAT percentiles, which are then put on the final scorecards. 

Note: As per the CAT examination pattern:

  1. Each question is of 3 marks.
  2. For each wrong answer, 1 mark is deducted. 
  3. There is no provision of negative marking for non-MCQ type questions. 

Candidates must also note the following important facts related to CAT results.

1. CAT Percentile – The result of CAT is declared in the form of percentile. Good score leads to a higher percentile.

2. CAT Score Validity – CAT Score is valid for only one year. Candidates should apply for MAB academic sessions of various colleges, soon after their CAT results. 

CAT Score Vs Percentile: Past records

The relationship between score and percentile is not very complicated. In simple words, a higher score means higher percentile, which will lead to a better college. Here is a table showing how much percentile (tentative) is granted on a range of scores. 

CAT Percentile CAT Score
100 230 and above
99.02 to 99.95 155.85 to 200.49
98.03 to 98.98 142.83 to 155.24
97.05 to 97.84 134.6 to 141.07
96.02 to 96.99                     127.98-134.5
95.08 to 95.97 123.36 to 127.97

CAT Admit Card – Score Normalization

CAT takes place in two sessions/slots and each applicant sits in one of the two sessions. Both the sessions have different questions that vary on their difficulty level. In order to ensure fairness and equity in the marking process, the CAT examination authority follows a normalization process where marks of each candidate are scaled. 

The normalisation process shall adjust for location and scale differences of score distributions across different forms. After normalisation across different forms, the scores shall be further normalised across different sections. The Scaled Scores obtained by this process shall be converted into percentiles for purposes of shortlisting.” reads an official statement regarding the normalization technique applied by IIMs. 

Previous Years’ CAT Result Trends:

Year No. of Candidates Appeared Scores Obtained (max) Conversion into Percentile
CAT 2018 2,09,405 154 99
CAT 2017 1,99,632 230.17 – 232.31 100
CAT 2016 1,95,000 220.09 – 241. 68 100
CAT 2015 1,79,602 254.61 – 249.9 100
242.33 99.99
235.33 99.98
215.54 – 215.43 99.89
180.02 99
CAT 2014 1,67,829 268.700 – 261.740 100
245.92 99.97
227.65 99.87
178.02 98.07

CAT 2020 Answer Key

IIM will issue the CAT Answer Key for 2020 in the form of PDF by last week November 2020. Candidates may check the CAT Answer Key on the official website. Candidates should match their responses to calculate their score or raise objections in case of any discrepancies.

  1. Candidates will be provided with answer keys for CAT 2020 Slot 1 and Slot 2.
  2. IIM has increased the amount for challenging the answer key from INR 1000 to INR 1200 since 2018.
  3. IIM declares that the challenges received against the answer keys are carefully examined by expert panels.  

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How to Challenge CAT 2020 Answer Key?

You can find the step-by-step process to challenge the answer key below:

  1. Sign into your account using CAT 2020 login credentials to access the CAT 2020 answer key. Then, click on the option of ‘Objection Form’
  2. Use the ‘+’ icon to raise an objection, if any.
  3. Select fields such as section name, question number, type of question from the dropdown menu.
  4. Select one of the three options given- i) None of the options is correct; ii) More than one option is the correct choice; iii) The answer key is not correct
  5. You can also add remarks (up to 500 words) to back your claim. 
  6. Candidates may file as many objections as they want.
  7. Once the objection is submitted, no further changes can be made.

CAT Result – FAQs

✔️ Q. What is a good CAT score?

If the overall score of the candidate is more than 140, it will be considered as a good score. From 140 to 200+ marks, the percentile comes out to be between 95 and 99.9 percentile. However, the highest scores and percentile can vary from year to year owing to a number of factors.

✔️ Q. How can I check my CAT result?

Candidates can check their CAT results through its official website The result is declared in the first week of January and can be downloaded with the help of the user ID and password used for registration.

✔️ Q. When will the result for CAT 2020 be declared?

The result for CAT 2020 is expected to be declared in the first or second week of January 2021. As soon as the CAT results are declared, IIMs begin the shortlisting of candidates for the second phase of the selection process. Candidates must note that the CAT results announced in percentile are a relative score. Also, the CAT score is one of the key criteria for the selection process, but not the only criteria for getting selected in IIMs and other top B-schools. There are several other elements that are considered for the selection process including the candidates’ academic record, co-curricular activities, work experience, etc.

✔️ Q. What was the highest percentage in CAT 2019?

Since percentile is a relative ranking of candidates, a few candidates who score the highest marks are put at 100 percentile. In CAT 2019, as many as 10 candidates secured a perfect score in the exam.

✔️ Q. Is there any difference between the CAT score and CAT percentile?

IIM clearly cites that the CAT score is the marks obtained by candidates as per the exam marking scheme, whereas percentile reflects the relative position secured by the candidate amongst the total test-takers.

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