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Important Quant topics for CAT
April 11 2024

Important Quant topics for CAT

CAT is one of the toughest exams in India. As lakhs of candidates compete for the small no. of seats in Best B-schools of India. So to secure your seat in one of the top B-school you have to prepare strategically. Aspiring management candidates can prepare for all India's most competitive management entrance exams by carefully devising the study plan and proper knowledge of the syllabus. The CAT syllabus Exam is divided into three major sections - Quantitative Ability (QA), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR), and Verbal & Reading Comprehension (VARC). In this article, we will know more about the important quant for CAT topics.

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The questions and time duration for each section is given below:

  • Verbal & Reading Comprehension (VARC) with 24 questions 40 minutes and a weightage of 72 marks 
  • Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI & LR) with 20 questions 40 minutes and a weightage of 60 marks 
  • Quantitative Ability (QA) with 22 questions  40 minutes and a weightage of 66 marks 

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The questions can be MCQs or subjective. Though the syllabus for quant CAT is vast it can be generalized into these topics. 



CAT Quantitative Ability Syllabus 

  • Number System: Be clear with the basic concepts of this topic.
  • Arithmetic: Arithmetic has a vast number of sub-topics.
  • Algebra: This has been one of the most dominant topics in CAT so place extra emphasis on this topic.
  • Geometry: This topic has covered portion in recent years.
  • Permutation & Combination/Probability: It covers one to two questions to the exam.
  • Miscellaneous Topics: This includes Set Theory, Trigonometry, and Logarithms

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1.Number System Syllabus for CAT

Given below are some of the topics that you should cover in Number System:

  • Basics of Numbers
  • Properties of Numbers
  • Divisibility Rules
  • Divisibility and Factors
  • Highest Common Factor and Lowest Common Multiple
  • Finding Out the Last Digit
  • Finding Out Last Two Digits
  • Number of trailing zeroes
  • Finding out Remainders based on
    • Basic divisibility rules
    • Binomial Theorem
    • Simplifying the Dividend (Single and/or Multiple Divisors)
    • Fermat’s Theorem
    • Euler’s Theorem
    • Pattern Recognition and cyclicity of remainders
    • Wilson’s Theorem
  • Base Systems
    • Conversion of Bases
    • Addition / subtraction / multiplication in different bases

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2. Arithmetic Syllabus for CAT

  • Averages
  • Mean Median Mode
  • Percentages
  • Ratio and Proportion
  • Simple and Compound Interest
  • Profit and Loss
  • Mixtures and Allegations
  • Time and Work
  • Time Speed and Distance

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3. Algebra Syllabus for CAT

  • Basics Algebraic Formulae
  • Linear Equations
    • Problems on ages
    • Number of integer solutions
  • Quadratic Equations
    • Finding out roots
    • Maxima and Minima
  • Higher Degree Equations
    • Descartes Rule of Signs
  • Inequalities
  • Logarithm
  • Functions
    • Modifications of graphs
    • The smallest value in a maximum function

Also read: Speed calculation techniques for CAT

4. Geometry Syllabus for CAT

  • Lines and Angles
  • Triangles – Basic Concepts
    • Area, Angles
    • Similar Triangles
  • Polygons
  • Circles
  • Solids / Mensuration – 3D Geometry
  • Coordinate Geometry
  • Trigonometry

5. Modern Maths Syllabus for CAT

  • Sequence and Series
  • Binomial Theorem
  • Set Theory
  • Permutation and Combination
  • Probability


For each topic in the Quant section, you must break the process into three steps:

  1. Learn the theory from first principles.
  2. Do lots of practice.
  3. Handle tougher questions by revisiting the theory.

Some tips and tricks for Quant for CAT preparation are:


  • Before starting the preparation for quant topics first go through the Vedic Maths. It will help in making your calculation faster. Also, you can learn the shortcuts which you can apply afterward while solving questions for the quant topics.
  • Start with the basics. First, go through the basics of all topics. It is very important to have a clear understanding of the basics to use topics as your strength.
  • To increase your calculation speed memorize square and cubes of numbers till 25. Learn the fractions and decimal converts of numbers till 30. Learn multiplication and division techniques. Try to use them while solving quant problems. This way using these shortcuts will come in your habit. Also, avoid the use of Calculators while solving and practicing quant problems.


  • Once done with the basics the next thing which you are required to do is practice. Start giving mocks so that you will work under the time limit. Try giving topic wise tests. So that you come to know about your weak and strong areas. Once you identify your weak and strong areas try solving advance questions for your strong topics. As it will strengthen your stronger areas. For weak areas go through the basics again to clear your understandings on it.
  • Make a timetable for all topics of quants and assign days to each topic. For instance, you gave the first four days to the number system then for these four days try all types of questions in the number system. Solve all questions from previous year quant paper to get an idea of what and how are the questions asked in the exam.
  • For the questions, you can solve easily. Just don't solve it rather just look for some other way by which it can be solved faster or more easily. Try to look at the questions from another perspective and find a logical way to solve it.
  • Attempt all Non-MCQ questions in the exam as it doesn't have any negative marking.

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I hope you find this article useful and you are motivated to kick start your preparation for Quant Section of CAT. This is not the full syllabus of CAT as the syllabus for CAT is very vast. To crack this section you are required to have a clear understanding of the concepts as this section is an important section in the exam. The topics are very broad so students are required to be well prepared to solve the questions from the topics and also the questions which are related to it. Also, CAT always surprises the Candidates with some new questions so a better and planned preparation will reduce these risks of shocks for the Candidate.
I hope this article helps you with your preparations.

Keep going and All the very best!

Related links:

Quant Preparation for Non-Engineers

How to increase accuracy in CAT?

IIM-A interview experiences and their tips

CAT Preparation: The Do’s and Don’ts

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Rahul Singh

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