Test-takers are by and large happy with IIFT 2015, one of the first MBA entrance tests, apart from the better-known Common Admission Test or CAT to be conducted this year. “The paper was easy. It required practice, speed and good grasp of general knowledge,” says Atul Singh, who wrote the test on November 22.
IIFT entrance test is conducted by the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade for admissions to MBA (international business), its flagship course.
“We have always emphasised on the importance of keeping a good balance and being well rounded, which is why IIFT is the only independent exam to maintain such a keen focus on sectional cut-offs. We are also proud to be the only B-school to emphasise that general knowledge is just as important as other sections. Our paper tests students not just on aptitude but also on their understanding of international affairs and important events. We find this gives the select few students finally admitted that extra international edge, which is why they are much coveted across industries” says Gaurav Gulati, senior administrative officer, academics, IIFT, Delhi.
So what are the next steps after the entrance exams? “After the results are announced, we send out detailed forms to all shortlisted students and invite them to an in-person interaction consisting of essay writing, GDPI. Year after year, our process is highly regarded for being very inclusive, fair and free of unnecessary stress,” Gulati adds.
The exam results are scheduled to be declared in third week of December, 2015.
GD/PI/essay writing each have weightage when a candidate’s final scores are tallied, so this section can in no way be neglected. The topic for group discussion is given by the panel and each student is asked to present his or her views first for about a minute before the open discussion. NIT Agartala graduate Siddharth Tripathi, who joined IIFT in 2015, says “this process allows the panel to judge a candidate on his knowledge of the topic initially.”
Talking about his GDPI experience at IIFT, Purvabh Surana, now in his second year, says, “Our interactions are very unique, where each panellist gets his or her own space to present his or her views, allowing them to bring their best to the table without worries.”
Pravesh Dubey from the class of 2015-17 says, “IIFT GD can go on for more than 30 minutes if the panel likes the discussion, as happened in my case when the GD went on for 45 minutes. This resulted in a well rounded discussion”.
A 99 percentiler from IIFT class of 2015, Ujjwal Kumar, says during his first GD the evaluating panel made him the group moderator and asked him play the role “which was unique in its own style”.
Something unusual happened during Ritesh Kumar’s GD session.“The IIFT GD panel asked students to come out with a topic for the GD discussion after a minute’s discussion among themselves”. This was done to test how candidates get along well with each other and how as a group they develop consensus, says Kumar, who is from the 2015-17 batch and an NIT Kurukshetra graduate.
This year, the IIFT test comprised 124 questions which had to be attempted in 120 minutes. The test was divided in four sections - general awareness; reading comprehension and verbal ability; quantitative ability; logical reasoning and data Interpretation.
“I started with logical reasoning, which was very easy for me. It took me half an hour to complete the section before I attempted around 10 verbal ability questions. This section was of moderate level. The general awareness part was a nightmare for most students this time. I found only three questions of which I was 100% sure and marked them and two more questions I thought I knew. Cut-off for this section is generally below two marks and I was hoping to clear the cut-off with my five correct attempts each containing 0.5 marks. I also attempted 12 easy quantitative ability questions and skipped those which I thought might take more time. The reading comprehension and data Interpretation parts were quite easy for me,” says Singh.
Logical reasoning was a doable section. But, data Interpretation was the most challenging section with multiple graphs in almost all sets. “As logical reasoning and data Interpretation sections were combined as a single section in the paper, I thought it was wise to attempt logical reasoning and clear the cut-off. The general awareness section, too, was quite tough”, says another candidate who took the test at Vile Parle centre, in Mumbai.