With fewer candidates opting for the Common Admission Test (CAT) – the entrance exam for admissions to Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and other B-schools – and the government’s plan to open six more IIMs, the chance of an aspirant securing a seat in the coveted colleges has increased, said experts.
According to officials at the ministry of human resource development (MHRD), the six proposed IIMs will have a capacity of 60 to 100 seats each.
This year, around 1.68 lakh students appeared for CAT, a drop from last year’s 1.70 lakh.
However, the number of seats till last year was 3,335, while for the academic year 2015-17, the number is set to be around 3,700.
This means a candidate this year has a 2.2% chance of landing a seat at one of the IIMs. Last year, aspirant had a 1.96% chance of an IIM entry.
“The number of seats at the IIMs is rising, even as fewer aspirants answer CAT. So, logically, students have a better chance of gaining admission into IIMs this year,” said P Rameshan, director, IIM Rohtak.
Academicians, however, are not thrilled with the numbers, as it indicates a decreasing interest in MBA.
“While this is good news for aspirants, it reflects as a negative trend in management education,” said a professor at IIM Indore.
However, some experts point out that of the proposed IIMs, only the one in Maharashtra has received the complete go-ahead.
“Only one new IIM has been notified yet, which means only a rise of 50 or so seats. However, students stand a better chance, because B-schools that accept CAT scores are increasing capacity,” said Himanshu Rai, dean, MISB Bocconi and former convenor for CAT 2010.
According to Rai, the increase in seats is likely to benefit students more than the fall in number of CAT aspirants.