CAT Question Paper 2021: Download Previous Year Papers- Embibe
  • Written By Mrinalini_M
  • Last Modified 26-06-2022
  • Written By Mrinalini_M
  • Last Modified 26-06-2022

CAT Question Paper 2021: Download Previous Year Papers

CAT Question Paper 2021: Common Admission Test (CAT) is scheduled to be conducted by IIM Ahmedabad on November 28, 2021. One of the most important aspects of CAT Exam preparation is that candidates must solve the past year or previous year CAT question papers in order to strengthen the concepts and score good effective marks. 

CAT question appears to be easily readable and has an easily accessible format for the benefit of the aspiring candidate in nailing the exam. CAT’s previous year’s question papers should be solved now as this is the peak month for the preparation. CAT mock test link is activated from October 31, 2021. Continue reading this article to find all the important insights for the CAT question papers.

CAT Previous Year Papers – Highlights

Solving question papers and appearing for mock tests before the exam will help aspirants in getting familiar with the exam pattern of CAT 2021. Getting acquainted with the exam structure will help the candidate in knowing about the important qualities that are required to ace the CAT exam. CAT mock test will be released during the first week of November 2021. Candidates who are appearing for CAT must check the below table for an overview of the CAT exam.

ParticularsQuestion paper details
CAT sections3 sections

VARC (26 questions)
DILR (24 questions)
QA (26 questions)
Total number of CAT questions76
Exam duration2 hours
CAT sectional exam time40 minutes
CAT marking scheme+3 marks for every correct answer
-1 for every wrong answer
No negative marking for Non-MCQs
Total marks228

CAT Question Paper 2021

CAT question paper is one of the best preparation resources for the Common Admission Test 2021. CAT question papers have all the valuable insights about the exam such as CAT Exam pattern, type of question asked, weightage of topics, etc. Candidates preparing for the exam must solve the question paper and CAT mock test series for ensuring that they are well prepared with the exam syllabus. By solving the previous year’s question papers, candidates observe an improvement in the preparation strategy. Applicants must know about the type and nature of questions asked in the CAT Exam. CAT sample paper with solution PDF will enhance the learning about questions and time taken in each category. 

CAT Question Paper Free Download

The candidate who wishes to appear for CAT can download the previous year’s question papers. By solving the CAT question papers and attempting CAT mock tests, candidate can appear for the Final exam of CAT that is scheduled to take place in the month of November. Practising mock tests will help in boosting the self-confidence level. Let’s look into the benefits of solving the CAT Question Papers first.

  1. It will give candidates an idea about the type of questions and difficulty level of the exam.
  2. Candidates will get to identify their weaknesses – both academic and skill-related (time management, question selection, etc).
  3. Solving CAT question papers will also help candidates improve their time management skills and overall test-taking strategy. They will be able to observe and understand the time they need to spend on each question, which type of questions should be attempted first, which questions to skip, etc.

CAT Previous Year Question Paper PDF

CAT Exam is organized via online mode. CAT question paper with solution PDF allows aspirants to solve the paper in an exam setting with answers to check the negative marking. Applicants who are planning to appear in CAT 2021 must be familiar with the previous year’s CAT question paper to help aspirants in gauging their current level of preparation. Interested candidates must download the CAT papers of 2018 and 2017 from the below table. 

CAT 2018 Question PapersCAT 2017 Question Papers
CAT 2018 Slot 1 PapersCAT 2017 Slot 1 Papers
CAT 2018 Slot 2 PapersCAT 2017 Slot 2 Papers
CAT 2018 Shift 1CAT QA 2017
CAT 2018 Shift 2CAT Dl 2017
CAT VA 2017
CAT Answer Key 2017
CAT Sample Paper

CAT 2021 sample papers and previous year’s question papers are available in this article. The candidate must go through and practice the various sets to strengthen the preparation for the 2021 exam. The candidate must not only depend on the previous year’s question papers and sample papers, instead, but the candidate must also even appear for a mock test to have an easy hands-on exam structure.

Candidates must solve various sample papers for CAT to learn more from these types of MCQ-type questions.

CAT 2021 Question Paper- Importance

Below we have mentioned some of the vital points i.e. tips and facts which make it important to solve CAT sample question papers during CAT exam preparation. Let’s have a look at the below facts:

  • Acquaints with CAT exam paper: CAT question papers & sample papers will give candidates an extensive idea and real picture of the actual CAT exam paper.
  • Enhances speed and accuracy: It is highly beneficial for candidates to practice as many CAT sample papers as they can. This will help candidates in solving the actual CAT question papers more smoothly and swiftly. By acquainting with them candidates will come across various different question variations.
  • Improves time management: By engaging in solving CAT Exam papers, the candidate will gain a firm hold on time management strategies. Candidates must make sure that they keep an eye on the time while solving the sample papers. This will prepare the candidate to solve questions frequently and more firmly. This will help the candidate in solving the question in the respective time frame and formulate the strategies for solving the paper effectively.
  • Helps in self-analyzing the performance: The best thing about solving or engaging with the sample papers and CAT mock test is that this helps candidate in knowing about their strengths and weakness and thus also encourage candidates in focusing on weaker sections. After analyzing the preparation, candidates can easily strategize the preparation.
  • Broadens the solving capability: Solving or studying the individual questions usually limits the candidate’s tendency of solving questions but by solving question papers, the candidate widens the scope to face different questions and predict the important questions that might show up in the exam.

For beginners, the first and foremost move to score well is to solve an ample amount of CAT question papers. This may be difficult to adhere to time but by regular practice, one will be able to restrict themselves in solving the question in a certain time frame and move out of their comfort zone.

Advantages of Solving CAT Previous Year Question papers

There are many advantages for the candidates who want to solve CAT previous year papers. This provides candidates with an extra edge over others when it comes to preparation. Candidates who wish to prepare for CAT without any prior coaching for those solving the CAT exam papers will play an effective and vital role. Some of the advantages of the CAT exam are listed below:

  • Helps candidates in managing time management strategies.
  • Helps candidate to know in detail about the CAT Exam pattern.
  • Helps candidate in understanding the most important and frequent topics
  • Helps to understand the most important and frequent topics.
  • Helps candidate in devising problem-solving techniques

CAT Previous year paper pattern 2021- Download

Candidates are highly advised to solve the maximum number of CAT question papers. Download the question paper of the previous year from the table provided above. Steps to download CAT previous year’s pattern includes:

  • 1st Step: Candidates can choose CAT’s previous year’s question paper.
  • 2nd Step: After that, click on the direct link of a particular year.
  • 3rd Step: The candidate will be redirected to the question paper.
  • 4th Step: The candidate will download the question paper after clicking on the download button provided on the page.
  • 5th Step: Click a printout of the paper.

CAT 2021 Exam Pattern

CAT consists of three sections quantitative aptitude, verbal ability & reading comprehension & data interpretation & logical reasoning. CAT Syllabus mainly consists of 10th -12th standard and this remains undefined. The exam pattern has observed some changes in the past year. The exam duration has been reduced from 3 hours to 2 hours. The total question for the exam has been reduced from 100 to 76. Candidates must be well versed of the exam pattern as this will helps candidates in commencing the preparation strategies well.

However, solving CAT previous year papers will give an idea about the nature of the exam. Candidates will get an idea about what to expect in the exam after referring to the CAT Question Papers. CAT exam pattern and test structure have been announced along with CAT 2021 updates. Candidates who are planning to appear for the CAT exam can familiarise themselves with this. The time allotted is 120 minutes to answer the questions and there is a time limit of 40 minutes. This exam is conducted in online mode.

SectionsTotal Number of QuestionsMaximum Marks
Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension2678
Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning2472
Quantitative Ability2678
Total76 Questions228 Marks

CAT is an online exam. Both MCQ and Non-MCQ type questions are asked. The total time duration for the exam is 2 hours or 120 minutes.

CAT Exam Marking Scheme:

Type of QuestionsCorrect AnswerIncorrect Answer

CAT 2021- Important Dates

Candidates who are preparing for the CAT exam must have a look at the below-mentioned important CAT dates. This will ensure that candidates do not miss out on any event. Let’s have a look at the important dates.

The important dates for CAT Exam are as under:

CAT ExamNovember 28, 2021
Release of CAT Answer KeyFirst Week of December 2021
Declaration of CAT ResultSecond Week of January 2022

When To Start Practicing CAT Exam Question Papers?

Aspirants must solve CAT question papers as soon as they are done with the syllabus of the CAT exam. Candidates who are beginning to start the preparation from the scratch must look at the CAT exam question papers. This will help candidates to get familiar with the exam pattern of CAT. If the candidate starts to solve the question papers before the preparation then it is of no use. The first and foremost step to begin preparation is to complete the CAT syllabus and ensure that candidate is well versed with all the formulas and theorems. Three months before the preparation of the CAT exam is the ideal time to solve the exam. It is highly recommended by CAT toppers that aspirants must solve 30-40 mock tests during CAT preparation.

CAT Mock Test 2021

IIM Ahmedabad has activated the CAT mock test link for different categories. Applicants who are preparing for the CAT must avail of the CAT mock test to boost the preparation and even get familiar with the latest exam pattern. Aspirants can take a couple of mock tests for gaining control over sections. CAT mock test help aspirants in getting an idea about the type of questions that will be asked in the exam. CAT mock test improves the speed and accuracy in solving the questions. Mock test help in encourages the student in getting their hands on the latest exam pattern and even be aware of the latest syllabus and exam pattern. 

CAT Preparation Tips

Candidates should first be thorough with the CAT exam pattern and CAT syllabus. Then they must clear their concepts and solve CAT practice questions for each and every topic. Once they have finished the entire syllabus, they must start solving CAT question paper and mock tests.

Make the best use of these resources. Download the CAT previous year question papers and solve them diligently once you have finished the entire syllabus. Analyze your performance and then devote as much time as you can to your weak areas. Also, revise the whole syllabus on a regular basis. Do not leave complex topics for later.

Related links:

CAT Syllabus
CAT Preparation
CAT notification
CAT Mock Test
CAT Important Date
CAT Exam pattern
CAT Exam centre

FAQs On CAT Previous Year Question Paper

Read some frequently asked questions about CAT’s previous year question paper below.

Q.1: In what order CAT question paper sections will be displayed?
The sequence of the CAT question paper section is Verbal ability & reading comprehension, Data interpretation and logical reasoning, and quantitative aptitude. The candidate must download the subject and slot-wise sample paper from the link above. 

Q.2: What is the benefit of solving CAT question papers for practice?
Solving CAT question papers will help candidates in understanding the exam pattern and know the question type. This will help the candidate in knowing the exam question-wise weightage of topics and difficulty level.

Q.3: How to download previous CAT previous question papers?
CAT’s previous question papers will be downloaded by visiting the official website. CAT exam question papers will be provided with the answer key. The right manner to appear for this is that after attempting for a specific particular section, the applicant will then have to move to the next section. 

Q.4: Can the candidate use the calculator to solve the CAT question paper?
No, it is not catered to use the calculator while solving the CAT question paper. Candidates will not be allowed to use virtual or manual calculators inside the exam hall.

Q.5: When should the candidate start taking CAT mock test?
Solving CAT mock test or question paper will require time and one should appear for mock test. After proper CAT preparation, candidates can take CAT mock tests. CAT mock test must be taken at least 3 months before the exam date.

As CAT syllabus is almost the same as the syllabus of bank recruitment exams, you can take bank mock test series for your preparation. Embibe provides Bank Mock Test Series for free. But keep in mind that you have to solve CAT question papers as well as mock tests of the same level as the actual exam.

We hope that this article on CAT Question Paper has helped you. If you have any confusion, feel free to drop your queries in the comment section below. We will get back to you at the earliest.


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