CAT Eligibility Criteria 2019: Know Age limit, qualification, seat reservation, IIM eligibility

IIM Kozhikode has released the CAT 2019 Eligibility Criteria and candidates are advised to read it carefully before getting registered for the MBA entrance exam. Read on to find out important eligibility conditions such as seat reservation, age limit, qualification required and other important details here.

Aug 1, 2019 13:27 IST
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CAT 2019: Eligibility Criteria
CAT 2019: Eligibility Criteria

The CAT 2019 eligibility criteria has been specified by the CAT exam organizing body i.e. IIM Kozhikode. As per the official notification, aspirants who fulfills the eligibility criteria, can only apply for the CAT 2019 exam. CAT exam being one of the most coveted national-level MBA entrance exam, is an entry ticket to all the IIM and other prestigious institutes such as IIT, FMS, and SPJAIN etc. This year, the exam is scheduled to take place on 24th November. Soon, candidates will be able to get registered for the exam, once the registration window goes live on the official website.

Therefore, before the CAT registration begins, take a look at the eligibility criteria, to ensure if you are eligible to appear for the exam. Here are the key aspects which every candidate must take care of before getting registered for the CAT exam:

CAT 2019 Eligibility Criteria

There is not much change introduced in the eligibility criteria for appearing in the CAT exam since 2014. The eligibility criteria set by the CAT convening body every year for the upcoming exam. Some of the important aspects which candidates should look forward to are:

Academic Background

Candidates must hold a Bachelor’s Degree awarded by any of the Universities incorporated by an act of the central or state legislature in India or other educational institutions established by an act of Parliament or declared to be deemed as a University under Section 3 of the UGC Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification recognized by the Ministry of HRD, Government of India.

Final year Graduation Students

Candidates appearing for the final year of bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification examination and those who have completed degree requirements and are awaiting results can also apply.

Marks obtained in the Graduation

Candidates with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA (45% in case of the candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and Persons with Disability (PWD)/Differently Abled (DA) category) can apply for CAT 2018. The percentage of marks obtained by the candidate would be calculated based on the practice as followed by the respective University/Institution.

Snapshot of CAT Eligibility Criteria:





Recognized Bachelor's degree of minimum 3 years' duration.

No age limit

At least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA

(45% in case of the candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST) and

Persons with Disability (PWD)/Differently Able (DA) category)

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CAT 2019: Seat Reservation

As per the Government of India requirements, 15% of the seats are reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC) and 7.5% for Scheduled Tribe (ST) candidates. 27% of seats are reserved for other backward classes candidates belonging to the “non - creamy” layer (NC - OBC). As per the provision under section 39 of the PWD Act, 1995, from 2019 onwards, instead of 3 per cent, the reservation for Persons With Disability (PWD) candidates has been raised to 5 per cent. Apart from the reservation that has been granted to other categories, from 2019 onwards, 10 per cent reservation has been extended to candidates applying from Economically Weaker Section (EWS) Category.



Scheduled Caste (SC)


Scheduled Tribe (ST)


Other Backward Classes “non-creamy” layer (NC-OBC)


Economically Weaker Section (EWS) 10%

Persons With Disability (PWD)


Once the candidate has chosen a particular category while filling the online application form, no changes in the category will be accepted or entertained at the later stage. Candidates applying under SC / ST / N C-O B C / PWD / EWS category are also required to upload a copy of the certificate(s) at the time of CAT online registration and they are also required to submit a photocopy of the certificate at the time of interview.  

CAT Eligibility Criteria vs. IIM Eligibility

Candidates should not consider or assume the fulfillment of CAT eligibility criteria as a sure shot means to get short listing for admission to the IIMs. CAT eligibility criteria differ from IIM's eligibility criteria on various grounds. A few of them are:

  1. CAT 2019 eligibility prescribes ‘No Age Bar’ to appear in CAT exam whereas IIM restricts any candidates to seek admission on the basis of age bar.
  2. Candidates can appear for the CAT exam with 2 years of graduation, however, a candidate cannot seek admission in the IIMs unless they have completed education with 10+2+3/4 year format.

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