GRE vs CAT: Know the Differences and Similarities between CAT vs GRE

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 13th, 2023

GRE and CAT are two of India’s most popular competitive MBA exams. Candidates who wish to appear for both CAT and GRE or are unable to decide which one is better must go through a detailed analysis of GRE vs CAT. Compare all the sections of both CAT vs GRE, such as exam pattern, syllabus, difficulty level and more, to make an informed decision.

The Common Admission Test, or CAT, is a computer-based entrance exam held once a year for entrance to MBA programs at top Indian business schools such as IIMs and others. Whereas Graduate Record Examinations, or GRE, is one of the world’s most comprehensive assessment examinations, it is accepted worldwide by several universities/colleges for graduate admission. Thousands of graduate programs accept GRE scores all over the world. In this article, BYJU’S Exam Prep experts have mentioned all the details related to CAT vs GRE to assist the candidates in their preparation.

Candidates who want to study at renowned colleges and business schools in India and abroad must take the GRE and CAT exams. These assessments put your ability and spontaneity to the test. With the GRE vs CAT difficulty level, CAT is a little more difficult. The CAT vs GRE syllabus is similar, but the verbal section of the GRE demands a lot of practice.

☛ See Also: CAT Exam


Go through the comparison of CAT vs GRE exam to get a better understanding of both exams.


Graduate Record Examinations (GRE)

Common Admission Test (CAT)


Students can take this exam to apply for Master’s or PhD programs in the United States and other countries.

Students who want to pursue an MBA program at an Indian institution take this exam.

Type of test

It’s a Computer Adaptive Test in which the complexity of the questions varies depending on the section.

This is not a Computer Adaptive Test, but it is an online exam.


Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning are the three sections.

It is consists of three sections: QA, DILR, and VARC.

Frequency of the exam

It is held several times a year, allowing students to take it whenever they are ready.

Because it is only held once a year, a large number of students apply. The mark is valid for one academic year.

Eligibility Details

There are no fixed eligibility criteria for taking GRE.

The student must have earned a bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 50% marks.

GRE vs CAT Eligibility

Compare the eligibility criteria for both GRE and CAT below.



There are no criteria for taking the GRE, such as age or educational background.

The student must have earned a bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 50% marks. (45% for reserved category.

At the test centre, students must show their original passports as identification. As a result, when registering, you must have a valid passport.

Candidates who have finished their bachelor’s degree or are in their last semester/year, even during the pandemic years (2020 & 2021), can submit a pass during their registration.

CAT vs GRE Syllabus

In many ways, the GRE vs CAT Syllabus are comparable; however, there are some differences in the exam format and the difficulty level.

The GRE is an Adaptive test. It is not question-wise adaptive but section-wise adaptive. However, CAT has a set of questions that is the same for everyone taking the same test slot. The GRE score is valid for five years, while the CAT score is only valid for one year.

Verbal Ability in GRE vs CAT

  • Few candidates find GRE is significantly more difficult than CAT in terms of verbal ability. The GRE includes multiple-choice questions as well as a vocabulary test that requires you to select words from a list.
  • Unlike CAT, the GRE verbal ability portion assesses your vocabulary and your ability to read at a high level.

Quantitative Aptitude in GRE vs CAT

  • Both exams cover arithmetic, geometry, trigonometry, and algebra as part of the quantitative section. The level of intensity, however, may differ. In comparison to the GRE, the CAT Quant part is far more challenging.
  • The format of the questions varies as well. Whereas the CAT uses multiple-choice questions with only one valid response, the GRE may ask students to enter in the correct answer.

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Data Interpretation in CAT

Data Interpretation evaluates a student’s ability to analyze and understand data. Bar graphs, line graphs, data tables, pie charts, and other statistical tools are used to answer questions.

Analytical Writing in GRE

This section is comparable to writing an opinion article. Candidates are given situations or subjects connected to current events, and they must write their opinions on them. Aspirants are also given arguments to solve, which they must do while evaluating all options. This section requires the candidate to think clearly, rationally, and intellectually.

GRE vs CAT Institutions

The GRE examination is valid for all master’s level courses offered at universities throughout the world, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe, Australia, and many more.

The number of Indian universities that accept the GRE is growing, with ISB leading the way. CAT, on the other hand, is accepted by a wide range of Indian universities, including IITs, Delhi University, and IIMs, several other state and private colleges.

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How to Prepare for GRE vs CAT Together?

  • Developing good fundamentals: Learn to read and write. Keep working on a problem until you’ve figured it out. Resist the urge to skip to the next phase and instead focus on the actual topic.
  • Memorize: Do not recall a formula without first knowing its significance. If you can build links between the formula and its theory, your brain will swiftly learn. Use lateral thinking to approach each topic from a fresh perspective and grasp the quantitative aptitude shortcuts to speed up the process.
  • Identify your strength: In Math practice, follow the order as each topic builds on the preceding one. You’ll be able to cover every topic with ease if you use a systematic approach. Determine the things you excel at and focus more on your areas of weakness. This type of exercise will help in your preparation.
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