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XAT 2014: Be selective in attempting XAT questions: Dr V Bal

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50 views spoke to Dr Vishwa Ballabh, admission chairperson, XLRI to know the expected pattern of XAT 2014, B-schools accepting XAT 2014, expected numbers of candidates for XLRI admission shortlist, and other important issues related to XAT and XLRI admissions.

Q: Will there be any change in pattern for XAT this year as compared to the last year test?
A: There are minor adjustments to the pattern of the last year exam. In XAT 2014, to be held on January 5, the General Knowledge will be part of the Main Paper. However, it will not be used for the cut-offs and determining the overall percentile for short-listing the candidates for personal interview.

XLRI and some other Associates member may use GK marks for the final assessment/selection.

Q: How many questions are expected this year in XAT 2014?
A: The number of questions will be 85 (+/- 5) for the three sections and GK will contain 20 (+/- 3) questions. Overall, this part of examination will be 2 hours and 30 -35 minutes. This will be followed by an Essay for 20- minutes. Essay will also be evaluated for the final selection to XLRI and therefore, we suggest to candidates to write essay properly and seriously.

Q: How many Aspirants appeared for XLRI admission 2013? What is your expected number of applicants this year (Since you have increased seats also)?

A: For XLRI, the number of applications was closed to 38,000 last year. We expect this number to go up to 50,000 this year since we have increased the seats to BM to 180, for HRM 180, Global MBA 20 and for GMP 120. Thus, the number of seats in XLRI has increased to 500.

Q: How many institutes will accept XAT scores? Can you name a few top B-schools who would be using XAT 2014 score for their admission?
A: Almost, close to 115 institutes have so far tied up for using XAT scores. The top few institutes include XLRI, XIMB, LIBA, SP JAIN, TAPMI, XIMR, GIM, XIME, BIMTECH, Asia Pacific Institute, IMT-Ghaziabad and many others. 

Q: What is the expected number of applicants for XAT 2014?
A: It is difficult to anticipate given the economic condition, but I am expecting close to 1,10,0000 applicants. This is because the number of XAT Associate members has gone up and also, most of the prominent non-IIM Institutes are associated with XAT.  XLRI has also increased the seats.

Q: Given the increased number of seats, what will be the approximate number of candidates who will be called for GD-PI process at XLRI?
A: The number of candidates to be shortlisted for the advance stage should be in close vicinity to 2500. We, however, are yet to arrive at the exact number of candidates that would be called for this state.

Q: When all other tests like CAT, CMAT are conducted in computer-testing mode, what is the unique advantage of paper-pencil test like XAT? Are you considering changing the test mode in next one-two year?  
A:  XLRI strongly believes that there is still a wide digital divide in the country. All candidates are not proficient in handling the computer based examinations equally. The paper and pencil based tests provide level-playing field to all the candidates. Also, there is no learning effect. These are the reasons why XAT continues to remain a paper and pencil based test.

Q: What is your message to the XAT 2014 Aspirants?
A:  XAT 2014 paper will be discriminatory and candidates need to have patience while choosing questions. They should be selective in attempting the questions. Selecting right question will be the key to success. 

Q: How should one apply to XLRI admissions? What is the application fee for the same?
A: After registering for XAT 2014 online, you need to separately register for XLRI programmes. XLRI Jamshedpur shortlists its applications based on XAT scores. The registration fee for one programme at XLRI is Rs 1050 and the same for two programmes is Rs 1650. For every additional programme at XLRI, you will have to pay Rs 200 extra. The application fee for XAT 2014 is Rs 950.While the registration window for XLRI admission will begin on September 2 and continue till December 21, 2013, the registration window for XAT will close on November 22.

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