What After CAT 2024 Exam? Some Important Things To Do

04 December, 2023
Parthiva Mewawala, IMS India

2.88 lakh students took the CAT exam on November 26th, 2024. While that itself is a record number of students, it also signals intensifying competition for a few coveted seats in the top business schools of India. With the IIMs releasing results only in the second week of January, it is a long, tense wait for all aspirants. But does the process end here? In anticipation of CAT results, candidates often overlook other upcoming exams, form-filling deadlines, and GDPI preparations. There are many important things to do after taking the CAT exam. We’ve outlined them here so you don’t miss any of them.

 

What are the most important things to do after taking the CAT exam?

Now that the CAT exam is over, students can breathe a sigh of relief. After all, they’ve been working hard for several months. However, with so much more to do, they also need to be proactive about the following things. These are the most important things to do after taking the CAT exam.

  1. Keep track of all the college application deadlines

Apart from registering for the qualifying exams, you also need to register for each college within the stipulated deadlines to stand a chance. But with little time remaining and many deadlines already passed, you must start filling out the forms now. Waiting until after the CAT results are out will put you in a tough spot. You can refer to the table below to get an idea of which forms to fill out and when.

 

2. Keep your prep for all other MBA exams on track

Even though most MBA aspirants dream of attending the IIMs, it is challenging to land a seat there. Fortunately, several non-IIM colleges are just as good, if not better. Many of these colleges have separate exams besides CAT for their admissions. It is strongly advised to sign up and diligently prepare for them. This will ensure that even if you don’t get into an IIM, you will still get into a great business school. The most popular exams include SNAP, MICAT, NMAT, XAT, MAH MBA CET, CMAT, ATMA, and GMAT.

 

Even after you’ve taken your CAT exam, it is crucial to continue studying hard for the other exams. Brush up on your concepts again, practise different question sets, and give as many mocks as possible. Again, don’t just wait for the CAT results to come out before taking further steps for your MBA.

 

3. Work on beefing up your profile with courses and certifications

Most premier institutes don’t just consider entrance exam scores but also take a holistic review of your entire profile, portfolio, and CV. The post-CAT days are an excellent time to start improving your overall profile with relevant certifications from reputed sources. Get your portfolio in order and smoothen out your CV. Work on improving your CV presentation so that you can put your best side forward. Many coaching institutes host webinars and workshops in this regard. There are many YouTube videos also available online that teach you the best way to create and present yourself during interviews.

 

4. Get all your documentation in order

Many of us have yet to collect our marksheets, certificates, and degrees from our schools and colleges. These documents are critical for the counselling process. Running around to gather them at the last minute will only add unnecessary stress to an already stressful process. Moreover, the earlier you get your documents in order, the faster you can catch any untoward errors and get them corrected. Most counselling processes require the following documents:

 

  1. CAT 2024 scorecard
  2. Certificates for class 10 and class 12, along with a passing certificate
  3. Graduation certificate and marks card
  4. Photo identity card
  5. Photograph and signature
  6. Professional work experience certificates 
  7. Valid caste certificate 
  8. For DAP/PwD applicants, issue the certificate according to the format provided on the CAT website.
  9. Income certificate in the format provided on the CAT website (applicable for EWS applicants).
  10. Certificates for extra-curricular activities
  1. Start preparing for the GDPI process

The GDPI will carry more weight for your final admission call than your CAT score. So, while you wait for the official CAT scorecard, begin our prep for the written assessment, group discussion, and personal interview rounds. Many students with impressive profiles and CAT scores have missed out on their dream MBA colleges because of poor scores in their GDPI rounds. 

 

You must be proactive and start looking up videos and reading blogs about the types of questions generally asked in these rounds. Start reading newspapers, brushing up on our GK and current affairs, and working your vocabulary. Write down your prospective answers to these questions and get them vetted by experts. Try to be as original and creative yet professional as possible. If your coaching institute holds mock interviews, participate in them and diligently take notes to improve your presentation.

6. Get to know your prospective colleges a little better

While you don’t know your exact scores yet, you can predict your scores using our CAT 2024 score calculator. These probable percentiles should give you a fair idea of which colleges you can hope to get a call from based on the historic percentile cutoffs you can find here – CAT cutoffs for IIMs and other top colleges.

 

But how will you choose which college to go to should you get into more than one? One obvious way is to go by the rankings and perception. But this approach, too, falls short when the colleges being compared are almost the same on all parameters. 

 

IMS students can sign up for one-on-one mentoring sessions with their mentors to get personalized aid in choosing the right college out of all the possible options. For others, they can start by tapping into their network on LinkedIn and talking to the alumni as well as current students of their preferred colleges to get a better idea of how the college is. You can also attend open days, virtual events, and workshops the respective campuses hold. Armed with all the information, you’ll be better equipped to make the right choice for your future.

 

7. Take a well-deserved break

Amidst all the hustle and bustle lies our most important pointer – take a well-deserved break from all the hard work and stress. You’ve put in months, if not years, into your CAT preparation. You deserve to take it easy for a while. Take time for yourself and your interests. IIMs are not looking for workhorses; they want well-rounded individuals with their interests and opinions. Moreover, too much stress can wreak havoc with your GDPI. Manage your stress, take a short trip, or just go play gully cricket with your friends. 

 

The CAT exam might be the most crucial exam of your life; it can singlehandedly make or break your career. But there are many important things to do after taking the CAT exam. Keep a watch on all the application deadlines, maintain your pace for the other entrance exams, and start preparing for your GDPI. As long as you follow these seven tips, you should be good to go.

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