MAT vs CMAT: Which is Tougher?


CMAT and MAT are the national level management entrance examinations. Both the exams are taken by the aspirants who are seeking admission to top management institutes across India. However, students preparing for management examinations are usually confused as to which management entrance examination is better?

All of us know that management examination is considered as one of the most challenging entrance examination conducted across India. So, students usually look for a more comfortable substitute for these examinations. Keep reading the article to get details related to the Management Aptitude Test and Common Management Admission Test in terms of their examination pattern, level of difficulty and many more.

All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) conducts CMAT for admission to an MBA program in the AICTE approved colleges. This examination has somewhat succeeded in lowering the burden of students who wish to appear for different State Board of Private Colleges entrance tests.

MAT is conducted by the All India Management Association (AIMA). The AICTE has also instructed the approved colleges to consider the score obtained by candidates in CMAT. So, there are more colleges which consider CMAT score than those conducting MAT score. The score obtained in both the exams are valid for one year.

Difference Between CMAT and MAT

The difference between both the exams are based on various parameters is given below:

Pattern of Examination

MAT – This entrance examination comprises multiple-choice questions, and students can appear for this exam either in online or in offline mode. The exam is conducted four times every year, i.e. in January, May, September and December. There will be 200 questions that need to be completed in 150 minutes.

CMAT – This exam is conducted in the Computer Based Test (CBT) mode. There will be 100 questions in the question paper and candidates will get 180 minutes to complete the paper. There will be no section-wise time limit and cut off in this examination.

Marking Scheme

In MAT, for each correct answer, candidates will get one mark, and for every incorrect answer, 0.25 marks will be deducted. However, in CMAT, each question carries four marks, and for every wrong answer, one mark will be deducted.


In MAT, if a student scores between 80 and 100 marks, it is considered a good score. In CMAT, a score ranging between 290 and 300 marks is required to get a student to leading Business School.

Level of Difficulty

In terms of difficulty level, there is not much difference in between both the exams. However, CMAT is somewhat more comfortable as compared to MAT as there are fewer questions in the than that in MAT.

There is no subtle difference in the type of questions asked in these two prestigious entrance examinations. Students will be checked in 4 sections in CMAT and five sections in MAT. The type of questions is usually the same. In CMAT, there are different sections for the subjects of Mathematical Skills and Data Analysis and Data Sufficiency. However, these sections are merged into one section in MAT.

Most of the students who wish to pursue an MBA are usually under stress and continuous pressure to qualify stringent entrance tests such as CAT or XAT as we all know that there is a massive competition among management aspirants to crack CAT. In case you will not be able to qualify CAT, do not lose hope as you can choose management exams that pave their way to top B-Schools. The difficulty level of these tests is comparatively easy in comparison to the CAT.

There is no such difference in these two tests, but if you look a bit deeper, you will find that CMAT is a bit difficult in comparison to MAT. As the exam is conducted every three months, so, students need not to worry if they failed in the first attempt. The syllabus for both the exams is the same. So, one can prepare for both of these examinations simultaneously.


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