MICAT II February 2016 Test Analysis

MICAT or MICA Test is the MBA entrance exam for Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad. The test is conducted by MICA across multiple cities for eligible candidates. The first test –MICAT I - for the 2016 academic year was held on 13th December 2015. After the round of interviews, a few students were selected.

The second test – MICAT II – was held on 14th February 2016. As compared to MICAT I, considerably lower number of students appeared for the test.  All students reported receiving the same paper. However, the order and options of questions were jumbled. The test’s on-boarding process was smooth.

The test comprised of six sections:

  • Section - A (Descriptive)  >> 4 Questions                 
  • Section - B (Psychometric) >> 37 Questions
  • Section - C (Reasoning) >> 30 Questions
  • Section - D (General Awareness) >> 25 Questions
  • Section - E (Verbal Ability) >> 25 Questions
  • Section - F (Quantitative Analysis) >> 25 Questions

35 minutes were allotted for Section A (Descriptive) and 130 minutes were available for the remaining sections. During the first 35 minutes, candidates were not allowed to navigate to any other part of the test paper. After 35 minutes, the candidate could navigate to other sections. As opposed to MICAT I where questions were of an easier level, most of the questions in MICAT II were either time-consuming or of a moderate level of difficulty. Sections A and B carried no negative marking while wrong attempts in Sections C, D, E and F would attract a subtraction of 0.25 marks.

Section - A (Descriptive) 
This section tested the analytical and descriptive writing ability and creative skills of test-takers. The total time given for attempting these questions was 35 minutes. As in the official mock test, the first three questions were related to each other. For the first two questions, students had to write five points for and against a particular topic. In the third question, the students had to write a 300 word answer either in favour of or against the topic as a part of a letter to the editor. The instructions for the question clearly stated that ‘no marks would be awarded for a neutral viewpoint’. Students reported that the topic for the first three questions was based on ‘happiness’. Students had to describe points on whether it was possible to be happy if one was too concerned about opinions of other people.

The fourth question in this section consisted of four pictures. From a dropdown menu, students had to select a particular pictorial combination (A-B-C-D or D-C-B-A and all such possible combinations) and explain it with the help of a story. The pictures were related to trees, owls, vendor in a flea market and cyclists on an expedition over snow-capped mountains.

At one centre, some students reported a critical glitch with the interface in the Descriptive writing section. On writing the picture-based story and clicking ‘Save’, the texts of the first three questions were erased and the text of the picture-based story was copied in the first three questions as well.

Although the test would auto-save the answers every three minutes or so, students are advised to click on the ‘Save’ button after writing a few sentences to prevent any loss of data in case of server breakdown during this section.

Section - B (Psychometric)
There were around 37 questions in this section. The test instructions mentioned that it was necessary to attempt all the questions in this test and failure to do so would lead to disqualification of the candidate. In this section, there were no correct or incorrect responses.

The very first question had multiple statements out of which test-takers had to pick 10 statements describing one’s personality traits. Selection of statements less than or more than 10 was disallowed and one could not move to the next question until the ten options were selected. The statements did not need to be ranked. When few students selected more than 10 options and clicked the ‘Save and Next’ button, the test would not navigate further. Students are advised to count  ten options while marking this question so as to avoid any glitches.

The second set of questions asked one to choose from a set of two arguments and to rate them in accordance with one’s personality traits. Around 25-26 questions were based on this pattern. One statement was presented on the left and another was on the right side of the screen. The six options from which students needed to mark their answer were:

  • Strongly agree with the statement on the right
  • Moderately agree with the statement on the right
  • Somewhat agree with the statement on the right
  • Strongly agree with the statement on the left
  • Moderately agree with the statement on the left
  • Somewhat agree with the statement on the left

In the third set of questions, the students had to rank various actions, responses in the given scenario on a scale of 1 to 6 (where a rating of 1 implied highest priority and a rating of 6 meant lowest priority). Around 10-11 questions were of this type. For someone accustomed to taking psychometric tests, this section was simple and less time consuming.

Section - C (Reasoning)
MICAT’s Reasoning section is one of its kind among all Management tests in the sense that it combines 30 word-combination, statement-assumption, statement-conclusion and visual reasoning questions to present an arrangement of questions with moderate-to-difficult complexity levels.

This time around, there were some difficult questions in each type and the rest of the questions were on the moderate side.

Topic No. of Qs. Level
Word Relationship 15 Moderate to Difficult
Statement-Conclusion 5 Moderate
Statement Assumption 5 Difficult
Visual Reasoning - Find the missing figure 5 Moderate to Difficult

However unlike other tests and to add to the level of complexity, the options of the statement-assumption and statement-conclusion type questions kept changing from question  to question. For example, option [3] in the first statement-assumption stood for “None of the statements” while the same option for the next statement-assumption stood for “Both  the statements are valid”. Students are advised to read the answer options before marking them.

If the difficult questions were given a miss, a student could have attempted 18-20 questions in this section with about 80-85% accuracy.

Section - D (General Awareness)
This section consisted of 25 questions. As a departure from the usual pattern, there were barely any questions on mergers and acquisitions, advertising, logos, financial abbreviations and other corporate topics such as brand and marketing campaigns. Some questions were present on national and international current affairs which students normally find difficult. Questions related to politics, court judgements, enquiry committees and international events made their debut at MICAT II.

Some questions were on brands, corporate heads and sub-brands and business taglines. Some questions types were in the form of ‘Match-the-questions-with-the-answers’ format. However, these questions were quite simple and by eliminating the wrong options, the right answer could easily be arrived at. For a student not well-versed with static and current affairs, this section would have been enormously difficult. Candidates with good knowledge about the topics could have easily answered about 16 -18 questions in this section with 85-90% accuracy.

Section - E (Verbal Ability)
This section consisted of phrase replacements, jumbled paragraphs, idioms, double blanks and a Reading Comprehension passage. As in MICAT I, the MICAT II also contained only 1 RC passage. Though the passage was long, three questions were on the easier side.

Topic No. of Qs. Level
Double FIB 5 Easy to Moderate
Jumbled Paragraph - 4 sentences 5 Moderate to Difficult
Replace the phrase/word with its meaning 5 Easy
Meanings of idioms 5 Moderate to Difficult
Reading Comprehension 5 3 Easy, 2 Moderate

Students should have targeted attempting 22-23 questions in about 30 minutes with about 80 % accuracy.

Section - F (Quantitative Analysis)
This section consisted of 25 questions. Most questions were of a moderate level of difficulty.  The section was dominated by questions on DI. There were a total of four DI sets (bar graphs, line graph and table) with two questions in each set. Though the DI questions were easy, they involved a good amount of calculations and were time-consuming. There were 7 questions on Arithmetic. These questions were mainly on Profit & Loss, TSD and Time and Work. Questions on number systems  were mainly on divisibility and surds and indices.

The break-up of the questions in the section is given below:

Topics

Number of question

Level

Numbers System

5

Moderate

Arithmetic

7

Moderate

Algebra

1

Easy/Moderate

Geometry

1

Moderate

Modern Math

3

Moderate

Data Interpretation

8

Difficulty/Moderate

This section was somewhat more difficult than the MICAT I exam. An attempt of about 20 questions with about 80-85% accuracy in about 40 minutes will be considered a good attempt.

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