XAT 2019 Test Analysis

XAT-2019, conducted on 6 January 2019 was overall a smooth affair without any technical glitches.  


The test-structure was the same as that of last year and was in two parts: Part-1 and Part-2. Part-1 consisted of 26 questions in Verbal and Logical Ability, 21 questions in Decision Making and 27 questions in Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation (Total 74 questions). Questions in Part 1 carried 1 mark each, and negative marks of 0.25 for each incorrect response.  Further, unattempted questions beyond 8 questions attracted a negative marking of 0.1 mark.The questions in Part-1 were to be attempted in 165 minutes without any sectional timings. One move between the different sections freely.

Part-2 consisted of 25 questions on General Knowledge to be attempted in 15 minutes.The negative marking did not apply for Part-2 (General Knowledge section). XAT-2019 did not have an essay, unlike previous years.

Each question had 5 options
Contrary to reports prior to the test, there were no Non-MCQs or  the Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions in the test.  

Part 1
Section Number of questions Time
Verbal and Logical Ability 26 165 minutes
Decision Making 21
Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation 27
Part 2
General Knowledge 25 15 minutes


Verbal and Logical Ability Section (26 questions)

The Verbal and Logical Ability section of XAT 2019 was reported to be difficult. While this is usually the case in XAT, this time, the section was even tougher in comparison to the previous years. There were 14 Reading Comprehension questions and 12 Verbal Ability/Reasoning questions.
The Verbal ability/Verbal Reasoning questions were predominantly reasoning-based (Critical Reasoning and Jumbled Paragraphs); there were four vocabulary & usage-based questions (Fill in the Blanks). While these were mostly of medium difficulty, there were a few challenging Critical Reasoning questions which required  one to identify fallacious arguments. .
The 14 RC questions were distributed among five passages. One of the passages was  a short poem and was particularly difficult. The remaining four passages had a mixture of medium to difficult questions. Nearly all the questions were of an inferential nature.

Area/Questions No. of Qs. Question Type Level of Difficulty
Verbal Ability / Reasoning
Antonym 1 Vocabulary-based 1 Medium
Fill in the blanks (3/4 blanks) 3 Vocabulary-based 3 Medium
Jumbled Paragraphs 2 Reasoning-based 1 Medium, 1 Difficult
Analogy 1 Reasoning-based 1 Difficult
Critical Reasoning 5 Reasoning-based 1 Easy, 1 Medium, 3 Difficult
Reading Comprehension
Passage 1 – Poem – Black lake 2 All were Inferential 2 Difficult
Passage 2 – Creativity & Mood disorder 3 All were Inferential 1 Medium, 2 Difficult
Passage 3 – Women’s speech 3 All were inferential 1 Medium, 2 Difficult
Passage 4 – Elevating emotions 3 All were inferential 1 Medium, 2 Difficult
Passage 5 – Art appreciation 3 All were inferential 2 Medium, 1 Difficult

An attempt  of about 14-16 questions in this section in about 55 minutes, with about 75-80% accuracy would be considered a good attempt. We expect the cut-off for this section (for the general category) to be around 6-7 for XLRI -BM and XLRI-HRM programs

Decision Making Section (21 questions)

This section consisted of 21 questions, and unlike last year, none of the questions were quantitative.  
This section consisted of 7 sets of 2-4 questions each. Most of the passages were short and easy to read. As usual, some questions had a fair deal of ambiguity – in that either no answer seemed correct or s more than one option appeared correct. Overall, the questions were of medium difficulty. Therefore, the choice of sets/questions to attempt would have depended mainly on your personal preferences and strengths. Overall the section was more difficult compared to last year's test.

Area/Questions No. of Qs. Question Type Level of Difficulty
Case 1 – Principal Bhalla 3 Ethical Dilemma 2 Medium, 1 Difficult
Case 2 – Minister Raja Thakur 3 Ethical Dilemma 1 Easy, 1 Medium, 1 Difficult
Case 3 – PR Manager/Agency 2 Business Decision 1 Easy, 1 Medium
Case 4 – HR Manager 4 Business Decisions 2 Medium, 2 Difficult
Case 5 – Ice-Cream Franchise 4 Business Decisions 2 Easy, 2 Medium
Case 6 – Sanchit Hospitals 3 Ethical Dilemma 1 Medium, 1 Difficult
Case 7 – Electro Auto 2 1 Business Decision & 1 Ethical Dilemma 2 Difficult

In about 55 minutes, an attempt of  about 13-14 questions with about 75-80% accuracy would be considered to be  good . We expect the cut-off for this section (for the general category) to be 7-8 for the XLRI -BM  program and 6-7 for XLRI-HRM program.

Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation Section (27 questions)

This section was easy to moderate level of difficulty, like in XAT-2018. Out of the 27 questions in the section, 21 were on Quantitative Ability and 6 were on Data Interpretation. This section was dominated by questions on Geometry (8 questions), followed by Arithmetic (5 questions). As per the feedback received from students, there was a confusion between square root and pi sign on the screen. As a result, students had to be extra vigilant. This section had a few sitters, which should not have been left. Some questions were difficult with close options. As per the feedback received from students, one question in one DI set could not be answered because of inadequate/ambiguous data.
Following is the break-up of the questions in the section:

Quantitative Ability (21 questions)
Easy Medium Difficult Total
Coordinate Geometry 2 2
Trigonometry 1 1 2
Mensuration 1 1
Triangles 1 1
Circles 1 1
Triangles-Quadrilaterals 1 1
Total Geometry 3 4 1 8
Averages (also included the concept of median) 1 1
Percentages 1 1
Ratio-Proportion 1 1
Profit & Loss 1 1
Simple & Compound Interest 1 1
Total Arithmetic 4 1 5
Polynomials 2 2
Inequalities 1 1
Total Algebra 2 1 3
Divisibility 1 1
Data Sufficiency 2 2
Total Numbers 3 3
Modern Maths
AP-GP 1 1
Logarithms 1 1
Total Modern Maths 1 1 2
Data Interpretation (6 questions)
Pie chart + Bar chart (Calculations) 3
Table 3

An attempt of about 18-19 questions (with about 80 percent accuracy) in about 55 minutes  would be considered a good attempt. We expect the cut-off for this  section (for the general category) at 9-10 for the XLRI -BM  program and 6-7 for XLRI - HRM program


There was NO break between Part I and Part II.

General Knowledge

The 25 GK questions comprised 7 current affairs questions and 18 static GK questions. Overall the GK  section was difficult. 15 questions were based on national events, 8 questions were based on international events and 2 questions were general. As usual, the questions covered a wide range of ares and gave no special advantage to specialists in any one area. The topics were diverse - Science, History, Geography, Business, Economy, names of political personalities, etc.

As there was no negative marking in this section, all questions should have been attempted. A score of 6 - 7 would be a good score in this section.


Overall, XAT-2019 was one notch more difficult than XAT-2018, mainly due to difficult Verbal and Decision Making sections.
We expect the overall cut-off (for the general category) for the second round of admission for the XLRI BM program at 28-30 and for XLRI-HRM program at 26-28.
Last year the sectional cut offs in the general category for female candidates for both the XLRI -BM program and the XLRI -HRM program were marginally lower.This year too we expect the sectional cut offs for  female candidates to be a bit lower.


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