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XAT Exam Analysis 2021


What is XAT?

Xavier Aptitude Test is a national level MBA entrance exam conducted by XLRI, Jamshedpur every year, for more than 70 years now. Some of the top colleges that accept XAT scores are  XLRI Jamshedpur, Xavier Institute of Management (XIM) Bhubaneshwar, MICA, BITS Pilani, TAPMI, IMT Ghaziabad and 150 others. In terms of difficulty, XAT is considered to be the toughest of all MBA entrance exams, even tougher than CAT.

There is negative marking for every incorrect answer and a penalty of 0.10 marks after 8 unattempted questions. The part 2 of XAT, however, General Knowledge section does not have any penalty

XAT 2021 Analysis:

Xavier Aptitude Test (XAT 2021) Exam was conducted on 2nd January 2022 from 09:30 a.m. and 12:40 p.m. XAT Exam Paper Pattern was similar as the previous year. Only one additional section was introduced such as the Essay Writing. The section had 2 topics from that student had to select only 1 topic and write on it. The section had 2 topics among which one topic had to be chosen.

Exam SectionsNumber of questionsOverall Time Duration
Part-175 Total MCQ’s165 Minutes
Verbal and Logical Ability26No Sectional Time Limit
Decision Making21No Sectional Time Limit
Quantitative Ability &
Data Interpretation
28No Sectional Time Limit
Part-225 Total MCQ’s25 Minutes
General Knowledge
(No negative marks)
Total questions
(Part 1 + Part 2)

In the above Part 1 questions had negative marks of 0.25 for every incorrect answer attempted. In addition, there was a penalty of 0.1 mark for every unattempted question after 8 unattempted questions in a row. XAT Exam Analysis 2022 section wise is as given below:


XAT 2021 Analysis for Part-1

Verbal and Logical Ability Section (26 questions)

XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for the Verbal and Logical Ability section was similar to the previous year’s paper. There were total of 14 questions based on Reading Comprehension. The Verbal ability and Verbal Reasoning questions were a fair mix of grammar, vocabulary, and reasoning based questions such as Critical Reasoning, Correct or Incorrect statements and Parajumbles. The Reading Comprehension included passages and also poem based questions. 


AreaNo. of Q’sDoable Q’sLevel of
Verbal Ability/ Reasoning   
Grammatically incorrect
Fill in the blanks11Moderate
Jumbled Paragraphs21Moderate
Critical Reasoning42Difficult
Poem-based Inference11Moderate
Cloze Passage11Moderate
Reading Comprehension   
RC 1 – How lying differs
from bullshitting
RC 2 – A psychologically
 rich life can be a good life
RC 3 – Stupidity as a
cognitive failing
RC 4 – Publicness is as
 important to progress as sociability or privacy
RC 5 – Poem – Immigrant by Tabish Khair21Difficult

An overall attempts of about 12-14 questions in this particular section in about 50 to 60 minutes, with high accuracy would be considered a good attempt.


Decision Making (21 questions)

XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for the Decision Making section consisted of 21 questions but none of them was based on Quantitative and similar to that of the last years paper. This section had 7 sets and each set had 3 questions. Most of the questions were to test Ethical Dilemma. The sets were easy to read and also short in length. The selection of sets and questions to solve must be depended upon personal preferences and strengths.

Area/QuestionsNo. of Qs.Level of
Allotment of accommodation to scientists of 3 different seniority levels in a research institute3Moderate
Regarding an individual’s use of a vehicle (diesel-based) that is non-compliant with pollution
Regarding recruitment and
confirmation of faculty
members in an engineering
Running a dosa Stall in a
Regarding school fees payment by financially able parents
during the pandemic
Regarding an assignment
submission in a management
Regarding the concerns of
residents of an island village
about how a proposed new
 bridge connecting their island
to the mainland might impact
them, business and also ethics

An overall attempts of about 12-13 questions in this particular section in about 50 to 55 minutes, with high accuracy would be considered a good attempt.


Quantitative Ability and Data Interpretation (28 questions)

XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for the Quantitative Ability section had 4 sets of Data Interpretation and it consisted of 3 questions each. The questions were tricky and it was moderate in terms of the difficulty level. 2 sets of DI also was very calculation intensive. It also had 16 questions based on Quantitative Ability which are given as below.

TopicNo. of Q’sDoable Q’s
Modern Math42
Bar Graph32
Line Graph33

An overall attempts of about 16 to 17 questions in this particular section in about 55 to 60 minutes, with high accuracy would be considered a good attempt.


XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for Part 2

There was no break in between of both the parts of the Examination.

General Knowledge:

XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for the General Knowledge (GK) section consisted of 13 questions based on current affairs and 12 questions based on static GK. Overall, this section was of the same level of difficulty as per the previous year’s exam. Approximately 14 to 15 questions were based upon national events, 7-8 questions were based upon international events and rest on miscellaneous topics. The questions covered a wide range of sub-topics and gave no special advantage to students who like only one particular area of interest.

To maximize the score in this particular section, one should attempt minimum of 14-15 questions seriously. In addition since there was no negative marking in this section, all the remaining questions should also be attempted. 

Essay Writing:

XAT Exam Analysis 2021 for the Essay Writing was re-introduced in the XAT Exam. 2 topics were given and from that only 1 was to be answered. The total words need to write was of approximately 250-300 words.

The topics for the essay writing were as follows:

1. Capitalism and democracy follow different logics such as unequally distributed property rights on the one hand, debate, compromise and majority decision-making within democratic politics versus hierarchical decision-making. Therefore, Capitalism and democracy cannot co-exist.

2. In management we do not need people who did not experience setbacks. Such people are highly risk averse. Because B-schools mainly focus on stellar academic achievements during the admissions and the selected students turn out to be average managers.

Overall, XAT Exam Analysis 2021 was similar in the level of difficulty as compared to previous year XAT Exam 2021. The DM Section was on the similar terms with the last year and only few questions in DM section were difficult. The VALR section was slightly more challenging than the previous year XAT 2021.

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