Prometric, trusted provider of market-leading test development and test delivery solutions, is IIMs' partner in developing and delivering CAT 2013.
"While overall registration has declined, the ratio of female candidates over two years has continued to steadily increase, to 29 per cent," said Professor Rohit Kapoor, CAT 2013 Convenor.
"The rise of candidates with two or more years of work experience, registering for CAT, has risen to 16 per cent over the same span, while candidates with little to no work experience have declined to 66 per cent.
"It is understandable, in our current economy, that many working professionals are choosing to acquire greater work experience before diverting attention from their present employment to undertake an MBA. We now set our focus on delivering the CAT for nearly 2 lakh aspirants seeking to earn a place among this year's available IIM seats."
Female aspirant registrations are up from 27 per cent in 2012, and candidates with two-plus years of work experience are up from 13 per cent last year.
Candidates with little to no work experience are down from 68 per cent last year.
Across all IIMs, 115 seats have been added for B-School admissions this year, a total of 3,335 seats.
Other trends include Technology/Engineering backgrounds comprising 70 per cent of candidates, an increase of 6 per cent from last year, continuing a two-year increase.
Economics, Management and Science make up the remaining 23 per cent, while all others make up the remaining academic backgrounds.
There is a 2 per cent rise in DA candidate registration.
By region, Maharashtra had the highest number of CAT registrations, followed by Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.
"In 2012, Prometric and the IIMs delivered 191,642 CAT exams," said Soumitra Roy, General Manager, Prometric India.
"This year we can expect similar participation as seen by the registration numbers. Together with the IIM Convenor, we have tirelessly worked to ensure all test centres are prepared for this year' CAT window. We wish all candidates the very best for CAT 2013 and encourage all test takers to prepare well and arrive for their exams one and a half hours before their scheduled appointments."
CAT 2013 will be conducted over a period of 20 days from 16 October to 11 November 2013.
Helpful Tips for a Smooth CAT 2013 Experience:
Preparatory tools in the form of a practice test, videos and other information are available on the CAT website, http://www.cat2013.iimidr.ac.in/.
All candidates are encouraged to take the practice and familiarise themselves with the exam screen layout, navigation tools like "Next", "Previous", "Mark" etc., review screen and on-screen timer. This would also enable them to understand the concept of the timed sections and alleviate apprehension they may have regarding the test format.
It is advisable for candidates to check their test centre location, travel time and traffic conditions in advance, and plan their travel accordingly. A map with travel directions is available for all test centres on the CAT website, http://www.cat2013.iimidr.ac.in/.
Candidates should have all of their documents in place days before the test day to avoid any last-minute stress, including Admit Cards for CAT 2013, and valid and original photo identification. SC/ST and DA candidates should bring supporting documents.
For a list of acceptable forms of photo identification, visit the CAT website.
Prometric may also send important updates via email and/or SMS so candidates should check their email account and phone regularly.
What to expect at the test centre
Candidates are expected to arrive at their scheduled test centre at least 1.5-hour before their scheduled test time.
Only registered CAT 2013 candidates will be allowed inside the test centre.
Candidates must present their Admit Card and photo identification and carry them at all times.
Candidates will not be allowed to take the test if either of these is not presented.
Apart from Admit Cards, photo identification, SC/ST and DA documents, nothing will be allowed inside the actual testing room.
Candidates will be required to store small personal belongings in a plastic bag provided, away from the testing area. They should not bring bags, valuables and large items to the test centre as Prometric will not be able to store these.
As part of the biometric check-in process, a candidate's digital image as well as fingerprint will be captured. This will allow the IIMs to verify a candidate's identity during any follow-up interviews.
Once the check-in process is completed, candidates will be escorted to their assigned seats. There could be some waiting time before the test starts to allow for all candidates to be checked in.
For the full test day procedure, a video is available from the CAT website.
Taking the CAT 2013
Prior to the commencement of the actual test, there will be a 15-minute tutorial that candidates are advised to go through.
All candidates will be provided with scratch paper, pencils and an eraser for use during the test.
After reading and accepting the non-disclosure agreement, the test will begin.
All candidates will first be presented with the section on Quantitative Ability (QA) and Data Interpretation (DI).
A countdown timer set at 1 hour 10 minutes (i.e. 70 minutes) will appear on the top-right corner of every screen. Candidates can navigate within this section using the "Next", 'Previous" and "Review" buttons. Since the two sections are separately timed, test takers can focus all their energies on one section at a time.
Once the time ends for the first section, candidates will no longer be able to go back to it.
The second section on Verbal Ability (VA) and Logical Reasoning (LR) will then begin, with a fresh timer counting down once again from 1 hour 10 minutes. Security is taken very seriously at Prometric.
The security measures in place for CAT protect candidates by ensuring genuine and legitimate scores are used to select students for placement into IIM and other B-School programmes. All testing areas will be audio and video recorded and any suspicious or disruptive behaviour could lead to a candidate's test being invalidated by the IIMs.
For any issues during the test, candidates may raise their hand to notify a test centre administrator. A technician will also be on stand-by at every location. Candidates are reminded that they are bound by the Non-Disclosure Agreement and should not be discussing the questions post the examination.
All registered candidates will get to test
Prometric has taken all the necessary preparations to ensure CAT 2013 candidates have smooth testing experiences. All test centres have been quarantined prior to the start of the testing window to allow Prometric to prepare and test all the equipment that is being used for CAT.
In the unlikely event of a technical issue, candidates are requested to remain calm and immediately alert a test centre administrator. All test centre staff has been fully trained and certified, and are well equipped to assist candidates during the test. Excess capacity has been built in to all locations for unforeseen technical issues that cannot be resolved by on-site technicians. In case a new terminal is assigned to a candidate, the test will resume from the point it was last left so the candidate will not lose any testing time.
Prometric remains committed to providing the best possible testing experience and that all registered candidates get to test within this year's testing window.
Candidates should not forget to check their emails and the CAT website regularly for all important updates.
Checklist for a smooth experience
Carry the right documents - latest Admit Card, original and valid identification, SC/ST and DA support documents.
Plan sufficient travel time, check map/directions on the CAT website.
Arrive at least one-and-a-half (1.5) hours before scheduled test time.
Make use of the practice test to get a feel of the functionality and navigation of the actual test.
Check emails regularly for any updates from Prometric.
--IBNS (Posted on 10-10-2013)