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XAT Paper Analysis

XAT (Xavier Aptitude Test) was successfully conducted on January 08, 2017 by XLRI (Xavier Labour Relations Institute), Jamshedpur. Candidates who wish to seek admission into MBA program need to appear for this test.

  • XAT Exam Pattern is announced by XLRI, Jamshedpur each year.
  • It comprises of 2 papers both of which are mandatory to clear.
  • Paper 1 comprises 72 questions from topics including Decision Making, Verbal and Logical Ability and Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation.
  • Paper 2 consists of 25 questions from General Knowledge and includes writing an essay.
  • Total time duration for XAT is 170 minutes.
  • XAT 2017 Exam witnessed a similar exam pattern as that of previous year’s.
  • Detailed paper analysis of XAT has been mentioned in the article to show questions fall under easy to difficult category.


XAT 2016 Paper Analysis

The structure for XAT 2016 did not witness much change and was similar to that of XAT 2015. Section-1 comprised 72 questions while section-2 comprised 25 questions. Awareness regarding basic sciences and current affairs is a must for the candidates to score well.

Verbal and Logical Ability

Verbal ability section was a bit on the tougher side in comparison to other sections in the exam. Questions based on reading comprehension were witnessed quite a lot. Comprehensions on philosophy of approximation and communication was asked with maximum number of questions from them. 

The weightage along with difficulty level of different topics of verbal and logical reasoning in XAT 2016 has been tabulated below:

Topic Number of Questions Difficulty
Reading comprehension 14 Difficult
Vocabulary 1 Moderate
Para-Jumble 2 Easy-Moderate
Para-completion 1 Easy
CR 7 Difficult
Pronunciation 1 Moderate

Decision Making and Analytical Reasoning

The difficulty level for decision making and analytical reasoning was similar to previous year’s paper. This section was scoring for the aspirants as it consisted of smaller passages.

Detailed analysis of questions of decision making and analytical reasoning has been tabulated below:

Topic Total Questions in XAT 2016 Difficulty level in XAT 2016
Situational 18 Moderate-Difficult
Mathematical + Analytical reasoning 5 3-Easy 2-Difficult

Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation

This section was comparatively easier as compared to XAT 2015. There were maximum correct attempts so the cut off was also high. Detailed analysis of this section has been mentioned below:

Topic Questions in XAT 2016 Difficulty level
P & L 2 Easy- Moderate
TSD, Work 2 Easy- Moderate
Number System 2 Easy- Moderate
Algebra 3 Easy- Moderate
Puzzles 1 Easy- Moderate
Geometry, Mensuration 8 Moderate –Difficult
Clocks 1 Moderate
Trigonometry 1 Easy
Functions 1 Easy
Set Theory 1 Moderate
DI- Table based 3 Difficult
DI-Combination 4 Difficult

XAT 2016 Part- B

General Awareness

Questions from Economy, Geography, Science and Technology were asked in this section. The knowledge of current affairs was tested mainly through Business Economics. Questions were statement based and some even had more than 1 correct answer. Difficulty level for this section was moderate.

Essay Writing

The topic for essay was ‘Technology and Nature are natural enemies’ in which candidates could share their own view point. Topics for essay for different years has been tabulated below:

XAT Essay Topic
XAT 2015 Listening is a dying art. We hardly listen to understand. We only listen to refuse reply
XAT 2014 The most beautiful thing can neither be seen nor be touched but can only be felt.
XAT 2013 Corruption is the root cause of economic slowdown in India

XAT 2015 Paper Analysis

Section-1 of XAT 2015 consisted of a total of 84 questions while section-2 consisted of 30 questions. Time duration was 140 minutes and 40 minutes for section-1 and section-2 respectively. Detailed analysis of XAT 2015 has been tabulated below for the reference of aspirants.


Section Name XAT 2015 No. of Questions XAT 2015 Optimal time per section XAT Difficulty Level Good Attempts
Part 1 Verbal Ability 28 30 Moderate-difficult 14
Quantitative Ability 33 65 Moderate- difficult 14
Decision making 23 45 Moderate-difficult 14
Total 84 140 42
Part 2 General Awareness 30 40 Easy-Moderate 15

Verbal and Logical Ability

Verbal and logical ability section in XAT 2015 did not have any grammar questions and was relatively tough.

  • This section had 5 Reading comprehension passages and a total of 17 questions in Reading Comprehension section.
  • 1 question from Vocabulary based cloze test, 1 question from sentence completion and 2 questions from Vocabulary were asked.
  • Para- Jumbles and Para- Completion had 2 questions each.
  • Critical Reasoning had 3 questions and 2 out of them were difficult. The 10 questions in the section were easy and could be attempted with almost 80% accuracy.

Decision Making and Analytical Reasoning

This section was also difficult just like verbal and logical ability. Although, the questions in this section were relatively easier as compared to those in XAT 2014. This section basically judges candidates rational thinking and problem-solving ability.

Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation

This section tests the efficiency and speed of the candidates. It had 25 questions in total.

  • The questions from Arithmetic were easy and that from Geometry and Algebra were difficult.
  • Problems on directions were also difficult to work with.
  • Table based questions required intensive calculation while graphical questions were easy in case of data interpretation. 3-5 questions could be done easily in 20-25 minutes.


XAT 2015 Part- B

General Awareness

The GK section was difficult in 2015 as compared to that of 2014.

  • 30 questions from GK were asked out of which 2 questions were from History and 6 from Geography.
  • 6 questions on Economy were difficult.
  • There were 7 questions based on Current Affairs and 4 questions on Sports.
  • The difficulty level of this section was moderate
  • Candidates who attempted 12-14 questions could easily score 8-10 marks.

Essay Writing

The topic for essay was ‘The most beautiful thing can neither be seen nor be touched but can only be felt.’




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