CAT 2020 Attempts vs Percentile Analysis

Abhinav Chamoli
Abhinav ChamoliPublished On: November 28, 2020 | CAT

Increasing your accuracy while solving questions will increase your CAT percentile but it impacts the time you take to solve per question. So, where does the sweet spot lie in the attempts vs percentile analysis of CAT? Find out here.

CAT 2020 Attempts vs Percentile Analysis

CAT Ideal Attempts vs Percentile - How many questions to attempt in CAT 2020 is a very common question asked by candidates appearing for the exam. The number of questions you are targeting in CAT 2020 combined with your accuracy will define your CAT 2020 score. Understanding the relationship between your number of attempts in CAT and your final score will also pave the way of understanding how to get 99 percentile in CAT 2020.

In this article, we take a look at the attempts vs percentile analysis of CAT 2020, including basic aspects such as the exam pattern, marking scheme, score calculation, detailed analysis of and comparison between the number of attempts and percentile of a candidate in CAT 2020.

CAT 2020 Exam Pattern & Marking Scheme

The following exam pattern and marking scheme is followed for CAT 2020.

SectionNo. of QuestionsTotal Marks

CAT 2020 Marking Scheme - You get 3 marks for every correct answer in CAT 2020 and 1 mark is deducted for every incorrectly answered MCQ. There is no negative marking for non-MCQs or TITA questions. Hence, your accuracy has a major role to play in deciding your CAT 2020 percentile.

CAT 2020 Score Calculation

Calculation of CAT 2020 scores of a candidate basically takes place in 3 steps.

Step 1: Raw Scores of a candidate are calculated based on their number of correct and incorrect attempts by using the marking scheme.

Step 2: Since CAT 2020 is conducted in multiple shifts, scaled scores of a candidate are calculated after normalizing for any difference in difficulty level across shifts.

Step 3: Finally, the CAT 2020 percentile of a candidate can be calculated. Scaled Scores are used when calculating the percentile of a candidate.

We have explained both the scaled score calculation and normalization process of CAT 2020 in more detail in the following articles.

CAT 2020: How Scaled Score will be Calculated for Three Shifts?CAT Normalization Process 2020 - Revised Process for 3 Shifts

CAT 2020 Score vs Percentile

Here is a quick comparison of the score vs percentile of CAT 2020 based on previous year trends.

CAT 2020 PercentileCAT 2020 Scaled Score
99+ percentile155+
90 - 99 percentile107 - 154
80 - 89 percentile71 - 106
70 - 79 percentile51 - 70

This is a very crude approximation of our detailed CAT 2020 Score vs Percentile Analysis. Check it out for a more detailed explanation of the same.

CAT 2020 Attempts vs Percentile - Role of Accuracy

Accuracy plays a major role in deciding your percentile based on your number of attempts. The number of attempts drops drastically with the increase in accuracy. However, one should also keep in mind that the time taken per question also increases to maintain high accuracy.

Accuracy vs Attempts vs Time
For best results, it is important to establish a balance between Accuracy, Attempts and Time.

CAT 2020 Attempts vs Percentile Analysis

The following attempts vs percentile analysis provide a rough estimate to the candidates on how many questions they need to attempt to reach their goal. We have considered the previous year trends and mathematical estimations while creating the analysis. It is also important to note that an error margin of +/- 5 marks must also be included when calculating the CAT 2020 percentile 

Here is a table providing the comparison between accuracy and number of attempts required for various percentiles.

Target PercentileNo. of Attempts
70% accuracy80% accuracy90% accuracy
70 percentile292420
80 percentile403328
90 percentile605143
99+ percentile887260

The following information has been represented in the following graph.

CAT 2020 Score vs Percentile Graph

The perks of increasing accuracy are clearly apparent in the above graph. Following are some of the major inferences which can be drawn.

Inference No. 1Difference between number of attempts at 70 percentile  vs  Difference between number of attempts at 99+ percentileThe difference between the number of attempts at 70 percentile is much smaller as compared to the difference between the two at 99+ percentile.
Inference No. 2

Difference between 70% and 80% accuracy for 99 percentile  vs  Difference between 80% and 90% accuracy at 99 percentile

For a 99+ percentile score, the difference between 70% and 80% accuracy is much higher as compared to the difference between 80% and 90% accuracy.

Hence, we can make the following deductions from this given information.

Deduction No. 1 - From Inference No. 1, it can be seen that the benefit of increasing accuracy in CAT 2020 is much higher when aiming for a higher percentile. Thus, a candidate aiming for a 90+ percentile score will benefit more from increasing his/her accuracy as compared to a candidate aiming for a 70 percentile score.

Deduction No. 2 - From Inference No. 2, it can be seen that there are limits to the benefits you get from increasing accuracy in CAT 2020. If you increase your accuracy over 90%, this difference would drop further. Since time is limited, it is better to try and maintain accuracy between 80 - 90% while also maintaining a good speed in CAT 2020.

CAT 2020 Attempts vs Percentile Section-Wise Analysis

Based on the information given above, here is a section-wise breakdown of the attempts vs percentile analysis of CAT 2020.

With 70% Accuracy

Target PercentileNo. of Attempts
70 percentile119929
80 percentile15121340
90 percentile22182060
99+ percentile30292988

With 80% Accuracy

Target PercentileNo. of Attempts
70 percentile97824
80 percentile12101133
90 percentile18161751
99+ percentile25232472

With 90% Accuracy

Target PercentileNo. of Attempts
70 percentile86620
80 percentile109928
90 percentile16131443
99+ percentile22182060

This was a section-wise analysis of the attempts vs percentile in CAT 2020. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us on the CollegeDekho QnA Zone.

Colleges Accepting CAT 2020

Find out which is the best college for you based on the CAT 2020 Cut Off by using the following tools.

CAT College Predictor 2020CAT 2020 Rank Predictor

The following articles can be checked for a list of colleges accepting CAT 2020 for admission to their MBA/PGDM courses.

List of MBA Colleges Accepting 50-60 Percentile in CATList of MBA Colleges Accepting 60-70 Percentile in CAT
List of MBA Colleges Accepting 70-80 Percentile in CATList of MBA Colleges Accepting 80-90 Percentile in CAT

If you need help with admissions, fill the Common Application Form (CAF) or call our helpline number 18005729877.

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