With 2.9 lakh applications received of the Common Admission Test 2008, an estimated 2.4 lakh students took the examination on Sunday, said Gautam Puri, Vice-Chairman, Career Launcher. In the comparatively moderate-difficulty paper, the English section threw a surprise item with 40 questions instead of the regular 25. Some students found the paper lengthier because of this but said that the easier Quantitative Analysis section made up for it. While the Quantitative section was not too difficult, Data Interpretation had gone up a notch or two, he added. The change in the pattern of the paper could have been brought about with the intention of taking in more non-engineers, said Biswaroop Padhi, Director, IMS Learning Resources Pvt Ltd, Ahmedabad.
Rahul Modani, a Junior Telecom Operator with BSNL, who took the test, said, 'I am happy; due to this change people with strong English will be able to make it. But that also means that the sectional cut-off might be high.' The rough cut-off marks for Data Interpretation (DI) could be pegged at 28-30 marks, while for Quantitative at 30-32 marks and for English at 46-48, said Puri. If a student scores 125 marks in all, he should be eligible for a call from any of the Indian Institutes of Management, which take in students via CAT scores, he said. From next year, CAT is slated to go online and will no longer be conducted through centres in India. For those who think they have not fared too well in the exam, Mr Puri had to say that they should now focus on the other exams of institutes such as Symbiosis, XLRI, FMS, IIFT and others to be held in the next 45 days, which are a gateway to the other top management colleges of the country.