The Management aptitude test, more commonly known as the MAT is the largest test of its kind in the country. Over 600 different b-schools acknowledge and utilize the MAT to facilitate admissions into their MBA programs. Although the MAT has been administered since 1988 in India, only recently in 2003 did the test earn national level recognition after the government of India, Ministry of HRD approved it. The MAT is conducted the centre for management services which is an integral part of the All India Management Association (AIMA).
The purpose of the AIMA is to encourage and advocate the study of management in the country. They are supported by the Indian government and education industry. AIMA conducts the MAT four times annually, so that applicants from all over the country can take the test whenever it suits them. The MAT is by no means an easy test and requires thorough preparation if the applicant desires good results. A applicant must give himself/ herself a minimum of 6 months to prepare before appearing for the test.
Take a look at the current Format for the MAT below (with number of questions):-
Language comprehension – 40
Mathematical Skills – 40
Data Analysis and Sufficiency – 40
Intelligence and Critical Reasoning – 40
Indian and Global Environment – 40
Here are a few essential Tips to help Prepare for the MAT:
1) Take out time: This is the most obvious part of the formula to cracking the MAT or any other management level exam. Yet, time and again, we have noticed applicants rushing into preparations late with barely enough time to study. The key is plan in advance and allocate time daily for preparation. A lot of applicants have jobs that take the entire day, so it becomes even more important to manage time well. By spending as little as 2 hours daily on a consistent basis over a few month applicants can prepare adequately to take the test.
2) Take Sample tests: Do not wait till the ends to start taking sample test. Start from the very beginning. By taking the tests early, applicants can recognize their weaknesses and start to focus their attention on them. Since the test is in English and atleast 3/5th of it demands a good grasp of comprehension skills, it is important to allocate time for reading daily, whether its articles online or the newspaper.
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3) Read, Read, Read: This cannot be stressed enough. The more one reads the quicker one can learn to comprehend and assimilate information. One should also learn the art of speed reading, instead of reading out loud or focusing on each and every word in a sentence. Speed reading saves enormous amounts of time by helping once focus on the essential part of a sentence and paragraph. The skill of speed reading can be hugely beneficial in cracking the ‘Language comprehension’ and ‘Intelligence and Critical Reasoning’ sections.
4) Focus on expanding your Awareness: Start reading online business articles, subscribe to business, finance newsletters and blogs. Keep up to date with current affairs and learn about world new and politics. Your priority should be all news related to business, innovation, international relations as well as politics. Keep your eyes open and your ear to the ground everyday and you will fair extremely well.
5) Learn to Manage your time: Preparing for the MAT can teach you a lot if you take it seriously. You can learn the skill of time management, speed reading, keeping up with the news and learning from your mistakes; all crucial habits for success both in the exam and even more so in the real world. So gear up and give it your best shot. Good luck!