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What Is a Good CAT 2022 Percentile/Score? - Check Here

Abhinav Chamoli
Abhinav ChamoliUpdated On: December 01, 2022 12:19 pm IST | CAT

'What is a good score or percentile in CAT?', is a typical question in the minds of aspirants. Find out what a good CAT percentile score is, and how to earn a good percentile in CAT, right here!

What Is A Good Percentile in CAT?

The Common Admission Test or CAT is one of those exams that are on the radar of every MBA aspirant. Most of the top MBA colleges in India accept CAT scores for admission to their MBA/PGDM programs. Nevertheless, being one of the most popular MBA entrance exams, CAT is also known for the fierce competition among its candidates. CAT 2022 was conducted on November 27, 2022. Candidates must leave no gaps in their CAT preparation if they wish to achieve a decent percentile score. The examination strategy that candidates rely on must be in accordance with the exam pattern. With proper time management and presence of mind, any CAT percentile target is achievable. 

Meanwhile, candidates can check out the CAT 2022 Question Paper for Slot 1, Slot 2, and Slot 3, including the CAT exam analysis 2022, CAT 2022 answer key, and CAT cutoff 2022 for IIMs  below. The memory-based questions will be made accessible in a PDF format.

CAT Question Paper 2022
CAT Exam Analysis 2022
CAT Answer Key 2022 (Released)
CAT Cutoff 2022 for IIMs

The answer to what is good CAT percentile score can vary depending on the candidate. For most candidates, a 90 percentile in CAT or above is an excellent score. However, there are several parameters for judging a percentile score as well. However, in simple words, a good percentile/score for CAT 2022, can be defined as one that helps you get admission to your dream college or university. In this article, we have mentioned all the information candidates would need to understand what is a good percentile score in CAT 2022.

CAT Section-wise Distribution of Questions & Marks

To understand how to calculate the CAT score, you should know the distribution of questions and marks in each section of the CAT exam.


No. of Questions

Marks Allocated

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension



Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning



Quantitative Ability






The CAT question paper contains 66 questions with 3 marks allocated to each question. Hence, the total score in CAT is 198 while the total score of each section in CAT varies as per the number of questions they contain.

How is CAT Score Calculated?

CAT score is calculated by counting the number of correct questions, multiplying it by 3 and decreasing 1 mark for each incorrectly answered question. However, the CAT normalization process has to be applied before the final score of a candidate can be calculated. Then, candidates are given a rank based on their CAT scores.

CAT 2022 Normalization

When calculating the CAT 2022 scores, the normalization process is utilized to make sure that candidates are marked fairly and equally throughout all sessions. CAT normalization is carried out under the underlying assumption that the distribution of applicants' ability is constant across all of the sessions, much like the GATE score. All variations in the level of difficulty of the question papers across different sessions are taken into account by the normalization procedure utilized by GATE.

What Is CAT Percentile?

The percentile of a candidate is simply the percentage of candidates who scored less than the candidate in CAT. For example, if a total of 1000 candidates appeared for the exam and your rank is 1, your percentage would be calculated as follows.

Percentile = {(1000-1)/1000}x100 = 99.9 percentile

That example also serves to show that you can never get 100 percentile in CAT since 100 percent of the candidates can never score less than you in the exam. CAT percentile not only depends on your score but also on what other candidates scored in the examination. Hence, it cannot be completely in your control.

However, over the years, some correlation has been established between the CAT score of a candidate and his/her CAT percentile. CAT experts are quite closely able to predict what the percentile of a candidate would be based on their score in CAT. Check the following for more information.

What are CAT Scaled Scores/Marks?

The CAT exam is conducted across multiple sessions (two or three). The question papers for each session are slightly different from one another, and a scaled score is generated through the normalization process to assure fairness and equity in performance comparison. This scaled score could differ from the raw score in both directions.

What is CAT Composite Score?

The CAT composite score is calculated for shortlisting candidates for the Written Ability Test, Group Discussion, and Personal Interview rounds of IIMs. Each CAT candidate's composite score is determined by calculating each candidate's score based on a number of factors. The parameters for CAT 2022 composite score will include:

  • CAT 2022 score (scaled)
  • Class 10 marks/percentage
  • Class 12 marks/percentage
  • Graduation marks/percentage
  • Work Experience
  • Gender Diversity
  • Academic Diversity

The formula for calculating CAT Composite Score used by the IIMs is as follows:

CAT Composite Score

What is a Good Score in CAT?

Coming to the star of the show, a good score in CAT is actually an incomplete question. The actual question should be 'What is a good score in CAT for XYZ college?' Without mentioning what college you want to get admitted to, there is no value in any CAT score. Hence, a good score in CAT can be any score that lands you into your desired college.

This illustrates one very important point that every CAT aspirant should have in mind, i.e. setting a target is vital to CAT preparation, and you should always base your preparation strategy on that information.

Since each B-school has a distinct cutoff for shortlisting applicants for selection rounds, the definition of a good CAT score will vary from institute to institute. Consider IIMs as an example; in contrast to other B-schools like IIFT, IITs, FMS Delhi, and SPJIMR, which accept CAT scores below 95 percentile, IIMs require a minimum 95 percentile for admission.

In contrast to IIMs, tier-3 B-schools might accept applicants with slightly lower-than-average CAT scores. Look at the table below for the breakdown of the CAT percentile:

CAT 2022 Score vs Percentile

In order to understand what is good CAT percentile score, candidates must first know the CAT score vs percentile calculation. Check out the table below to know more:


Minimum score in VARC

Minimum score in DI-LR

Minimum score in QA

Overall Score

99.5 percentile





99 percentile





98 percentile





95 percentile





90 percentile





85 percentile





80 percentile





Therefore, a good score in CAT can be different for each candidate. However, since CAT is basically being taken for admission to IIMs, we should take a look at what is a good CAT score for gaining admission to IIMs. Check the following articles to figure out the colleges which accept different percentile ranges in CAT.

Also Read:List of Non-IIM MBA Colleges to Apply to Before & After CAT Exam

CAT Score for 99 Percentile & Above

The table below lists the number of good attempts in the CAT 2022 exam that must be made in order to score 99 percentile or above:

Section in CAT exam 2022

Good Attempts

Accuracy Level

Raw Score

Scaled Score

Expected Percentile Score in CAT 2022

Section-1: VARC






Section-2: DILR






Section-3: QA












CAT Score for 95-98 Percentile 

The table below lists the number of good attempts in the CAT 2022 exam that must be made in order to score between 95-98 percentile:

Section in CAT exam 2022

Good Attempts

Accuracy Level

Raw Score

Scaled Score

Expected percentile Score in CAT 2022

Section-1: VARC






Section-2: DILR






Section-3: QA












CAT Score for 90-94 Percentile

The table below lists the number of good attempts in the CAT 2022 exam that must be made in order to score between 90-94 percentile:

Section in CAT exam 2022

Good Attempts

Accuracy Level

Raw Score

Scaled Score

Expected percentile Score in CAT 2022

Section-1: VARC





90 - 94

Section-2: DILR





90 - 94

Section-3: QA





90 – 94






90 - 94

What is a Good Score in CAT for IIMs?

In order to answer this question, we need to see the number of seats in IIMs, the number of candidates appearing for CAT as well as the interest of CAT aspirants in a particular IIM. Roughly speaking, the total number of seats in IIMs is around 5,000 and the total number of aspirants appearing for CAT every year is around 2,00,000 (2 lakhs). Hence, you have to be in the top 5000 candidates to be eligible for admission. And the top 5,000 candidates come in the 97.50+ percentile bracket. However, practically speaking, you can get into an IIM such as IIM JammuIIM Amritsar, etc. even with a 90 percentile CAT score.

When it comes to old private colleges vs new IIMs, many of the candidates prefer to take admission into a prestigious institute such as ISB HyderabadXLRI Jamshedpur, or SIBM Pune. This can be attributed to the poor availability of infrastructure as well as a lack of alumni network at these newly-built IIMs. However, as time passes by and these IIMs are shifted to their own campuses and start building their alumni network, the CAT score required to get admission to these IIMs will also increase.

However, for the top IIMs often called BLACKIS (IIMB, IIML, IIMA, IIMC, IIMI, IIMK), a good score in CAT is 99+ percentile. To get admission in these top-ranking IIMs, it is crucial to be in the top bracket of CAT scorers. And since there are many factors such as work experience, academic performance, etc. that are given weightage in IIM selection criteria, even a 99 percentile score cannot guarantee admission. Candidates can check the CAT cutoff of each college to know if they are eligible for admission to that college or not.

Also Read:IIM Eligibility Cut Off vs IIM Call Cut Off - What's the Difference

Good CAT Score for Tier-I, II & III B-Schools

Each institute will have a different minimum CAT score requirement in order to be eligible for admission.  Other business schools that accept CAT scores are listed in the table below:


Minimum CAT score

Minimum Sectional Score

Tier I



Tier II



Tier III



CAT 2022 Cutoff

B-schools accepting CAT scores and IIMs will disclose their separate cutoffs based on CAT scores after the CAT 2022 result is announced. Candidates who achieve the minimum B-school cutoff requirements will be shortlisted for the institute-specific selection processes. The appropriate CAT score to pass the CAT 2022 cutoff will depend on a number of factors, including:

  1. The degree of difficulty of the question paper
  2. Participants in the CAT 2022 exam
  3. Availability of seats
  4. Institutional Reputation
  5. Past-year cutoff trends

Top MBA Colleges Accepting Good CAT Percentile

Given below are a few of the top IIMs and other MBA colleges that will shortlist you for the final selection round of the MBA admissions in 2023 based on your CAT percentile/score:

How to Get a Good Score in CAT?

Putting in targeted practice and study hours each and every day is the key to getting a good score in CAT. You have to adopt new strategies and work on increasing your speed and accuracy as well. If you are targeting to be among the top achievers, you should put in calculated efforts for the same. Given below are some CAT preparation guides created by our experts that you should check out.

If you have any queries, please write to us on the CollegeDekho Q&A Zone. Get help from our experts for admission in your dream MBA college. You can also fill out the Common Application Form (CAF) to target different colleges in one go.


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