What is the IIMCAT?

If you are starting to look into taking your Common Admission Test (CAT), you may have heard the term “IIMCAT.” What is the IIMCAT? Read on to find out@

What does the “IIM” in IIMCAT Stand For?

In the term IIMCAT, the first three letters stand for “Indian Institutes of Management.” The Indian Institutes of Management are an association of public business schools in India. Every IIM school specializes in graduate-level business degrees. The most commonly offered grad degree in the IIM university system is the MBA. But these schools also offer other graduate-level majors related to business. (The IIM Wikipedia page lists all IIM schools, with a handy map so you can see the many Indian cities where you can attend IIM courses.)

All of the IIM graduate degrees have one thing in common, besides their business focus. To get into grad school on an IIM campus, you need qualifying scores on the CAT. In addition, every IIM school also has one thing in common, besides being a publicly funded Indian B-school: collectively, these schools sponsor the CAT.

Is the CAT for IIM Schools the Same as the CAT for the IITs or the IISc?

As you may already know, in 2011, the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) universities started requiring the CAT for some of their graduate degrees. In that year, the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore also began requiring the CAT for admission to a number of its graduate programs.

This represents a major change in the role of the CAT in Indian higher education. However, the CAT itself has not been changed to meet the needs of the IITs or the IISc. In fact, these two higher education organizations only use the CAT for their degrees in technology management and science management. So the CAT is still being used as an admissions test for management and business-oriented studies.

So, What’s the Difference Between the IIMCAT and the CAT?

The IIMCAT is the CAT. In fact, the official name for the Common Admission Test is the IIMCAT. Alternatively, sometimes the test is also referred to as the IIM-CAT (with a dash between “IIM” and “CAT”) or the IIM CAT (with a  space between the “IIM” and the “CAT”).

IIM is part of the test’s official name because the IIM sponsors the CAT; the CAT really is the Indian Institute of Management’s Common Admission Test.

Why It’s Helpful to Know the Term IIMCAT

If you’ve already been searching the web for CAT prep materials, then you may have realized why it’s useful to know that the CAT is really the IIMCAT. Using the full name can help you really narrow down and focus your web searches for this exam. CAT itself is a very common abbreviation. In fact, CAT can even refer to other standardized tests, such as the California Achievement Test. And of course, searching online for “CAT” will also get you many cute-but-unhelpful web pages about people’s pet cats.

What is the IIMCAT?

Grumpy Cat =/= IIMCAT

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