What Are the Important Topics for CAT? Quantitative Aptitude (QA)

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As per the CAT exam pattern, there are three sections- Quantitative Aptitude (QA), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR) and Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC). Each section of the test has a few important topics which a student must cover. Let us have a look at section wise topics of CAT.

There is no fixed syllabus for CAT but based on previous years’ pattern and questions, the syllabus can be divided into three sections:

There is no fixed syllabus for CAT but based on previous years’ pattern and questions, the syllabus can be divided into three sections

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

Quantitative Ability

Case lets and Tables

Synonyms, Antonyms (Vocabulary Based)

Number Systems

Bar Graphs and Column Graphs

Grammar or English Usage


Venn Diagrams

Correction in Sentence

Profit, Loss & Discount

Line Charts & Pie Chart

Fill in the blanks


Combination of two or more types linked to each other

Jumbled Paragraph and Close Passage

Speed, Time & Distance

Number and Letter Series

Analogies and Reverse Analogies

Time & Work

Calendars, Cubes and Clocks

Meaning/Usage Match

Simple & Compound Interest

Binary Logic

Verbal Reasoning

Ratio & Proportion

Seating Arrangement

Summary Questions



Reading Comprehension

Quadratic & Linear Equations


Facts Inferences Judgments

Complex Numbers



Logical Sequence

Binomial Theorem


Sequences & Series


Surds & Indices

Blood Relations


Probability, Permutation and Combination

Set Theory

Functions & Geometry

Mixtures & Allegations


Coordinate Geometry & Mensuration

Quantitative Aptitude (QA)

Some of the topics that the aspirants must focus under this section, and which are expected in the test, are:

  • Number System: Ensure that you are clear with the basic concepts of this topic.

  • Arithmetic: Though Arithmetic has a vast number of sub-topics, in the last 3 years, only a couple of questions have featured from this topic.

  • Algebra: Considering this has been one of the most dominant topics in CAT in the last three years, it makes a lot of sense to place extra emphasis on this topic.

  • Geometry: Another topic which has featured quite a lot in the last few years.

  • Permutation & Combination/Probability: This is another topic that contributes around one to two questions to the exam.

  • Miscellaneous Topics: This includes Set Theory, Trigonometry, and Logarithms

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DILR)

A few topics that you must cover in DI section and that you must prepare are:

  • Data Sufficiency

  • Bar Graph

  • Tables

  • Case-lets

  • Pi-charts

Logical Reasoning is all about understanding the trick hidden in the question. After you are done with your daily preparation, take out time for some brainstorming sessions, like solving crossword puzzles, Sudoku, riddles on blood relations, family tree etc. Some of the topics are:

Logical Reasoning Topics

Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VRC)

This section is divided into two parts, Reading Comprehension and English Usage. The Reading Comprehension area carries around five passages followed by three to five questions from each passage. The English Usage area includes questions on grammar, vocabulary etc. Following are the topics of English Usage to prepare for CAT.

  • Fact Inference Judgment

  • Fill in the blanks

  • Grammar

  • Para Completion

  • Para Jumble

  • Sentence Correction

  • Verbal Reasoning

  • Word Usage (Vocabulary)