For all the applicants who will be sitting for the Xavier Aptitude Test tomorrow, it is going to be first entrance examination of the year. XAT is very different from the other conventional exams because it grills you not only on GK but also on essay writing skills. The Decision Making section is unique to it which tests one with critical reasoning abilities. With XLRI and XAT Admissions Chairperson Mr. Munish Thakur already declaring that this year it is going to be a test of accuracy, the applicants may take a sigh of relief that it might not be a speed test. Many good B Schools apart from the Xavier’s accept XAT score like SP Jain, IMT, Tapmi, MICA etc so a lot is at stake.
For Readers & Aspirants writing XAT tomorrow, here are a few pointers from my experience:
You would be writing one of the most standard and sought after mba exam in the country.
Three things one should heed while attempting XAT Tomorrow :
1) Manage your time well: There are 3 sections in XAT: Quantitative Aptitude, English Language and Logical Reasoning & Decision Making. One needs to clear the sectional cutoffs as well as the overall cutoff to get a call from XLRI as well as XIMB. Choose the questions wisely. Remember the markings (percentiles) is relative and it is not one of those objective exams where you can answer all the questions in the given time. Negative marking could cost you a coveted call, so act judiciously. The decision making section can be time consuming. Make sure you have attempted adequate number of questions in each of the three sections and then try maximizing your score according to your strengths.
2) Getting a XLRI HR call is easier in terms of percentiles: Focus on English Language +Logical Reasoning section as the cutoff for this is on the higher side. For a BM call, focus more on Quantitative Aptitude.
Last year XAT gave percentage as well as percentiles. The following were the cutoffs for XLRI BM & HRM:
HRM: QA >= 70, VA >= 85, DM >= 80 Overall >= 88
BM: QA >= 90, VA >= 80, DM >= 80 Overall >= 94
Now speaking in terms of percentages it was observed that:
Quantitative Aptitude: Scoring 20 percentage points fetched you around 80 plus percentile.
English Language and Logical Reasoning: Scoring 38 percentage points fetched you around 85 plus percentile.
Decision Making: This was in similar lines with the English Language section wherein scoring about 38 percentage points fetched you close to 85 percentile.
With the above analysis one can figure out the actual difficulty level of XAT 2014 and hence can deduce the scores needed for a XLRI call. For XIMB the cutoffs dipped last year due to the increase in the number of seats. It was around 91 percentile for Business Management and around 84 percentile for Human Resource and Management.
3) General Knowledge and Essay writing: Though this section is not considered for a call, but for the final admission by XLRI, once cannot neglect this for sure. An important thing to notice here is that you would be writing the essay after a 2.5 hours of exhaustive and strenuous exam. Try to be clear and relevant in the content and stick to the word limit given. The topics generally are not very tough and mostly related to the current happenings. The reason one cannot afford to neglect this part is that it could be the talking point in your interview. As for the general knowledge section, it is mostly a mix of static and current affairs. This year the number of questions has been increased from 20 to 30. Try finishing it off in 10 to 15 minutes focusing more on accuracy. Last year it was observed that candidates with high XAT scores could not make it to the final list of XLRI with low gk scores.
Practice and Self-belief are very important things for an examination. When it is XAT, it becomes further more important. Do net let pressure build on yourself during and channelize your strengths positively. Have a good sleep and act upon your strategy. Never give up!
Most importantly, keep your calm.
All the Best.