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All you NEED to know about JMET 09
IMS Learning Resources
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December 12, 2008

After two weeks of respite (though not in the real sense), post CAT and IIFT, the jitters are back!

The JMET or Joint Management Entrance Test, the first step towards seeking admission to the post-graduate programmes in management offered by the six IITs (Mumbai, Delhi [Images], Kanpur, Kharagpur, Chennai and Roorkee) and IISc Bangalore, is scheduled this Sunday (December 14). The test is conducted in around 37 centres across India.

The eligibility criterion clearly states that candidates with Bachelor's degree in any discipline of Engineering/ Technology or its equivalent or a Master's degree in any discipline from a recognised Institute/ University with at least 60 per cent marks for General & OBC category candidates and 55 per cent marks for SC/ST category candidates in aggregate or CGPA of 6.00 on a 10 point scale for General & OBC category candidates and 5.50 on a 10 point scale for SC/ST category candidates are eligible to apply. Therefore, the JMET is not for any student who has a Bachelor's degree. A candidate taking JMET knows that there is tough competition ahead.

This year, the JMET bulletin has specified that JMET 2009 will be a three-hour test, instead of the normal two-hour test that students have been taking for the past few years. The number of questions would also be reduced -- 120 questions in place of the 150 questions of previous years. There must be a number of apprehensions in your minds: Will the test be more difficult? Will the number of options remain same? Are they going to introduce any new variety of questions? And more.

At this stage, none of us knows how the actual test will be. A thought that must have crossed many of your minds is that if like CAT 2008, JMET gives more weightage to a particular section then how should it be tackled. The problem would be aggravated if that is the area you are not very comfortable in. But the JMET bulletin clearly states that for a candidate to qualify for JMET 2009, he/she should, not only, secure certain minimum marks in the test paper, but also, should necessarily obtain certain minimum marks in each of the four sections. Therefore, you cannot afford to leave one section. The comparative picture that we get from the bulletin is given below:







The table above shows the evident difference between JMET 2009 and JMET 2008 is in terms of questions and time allotted to each question.

In the current scenario, a test taker can spare 45 minutes in each section looking at the total 180 minutes time limit. So, at least time is not the constraint this year -- you get more time to solve fewer questions. Therefore, the focus shifts to accuracy, more so, when you have negative marking. Aren't you feeling a vague similarity with CAT? So, the strategies you had used while taking the CAT would come in handy for JMET too, of course, with some impromptu modifications.

Now let's focus on the types of questions. If we can analyse the test pattern of last year, we may get a fair idea about how we should prepare this year.

Quantitative Ability Section

This section of the JMET has always managed to retain its reputation of being one of the toughest QA sections of all the management entrance exams.

In JMET 2008, there were 40 questions and the arithmetic type of questions, involving the familiar topics of geometry, numbers and quadratic equations etc did not appear. Last year, the application-oriented questions involving mathematical concepts replaced the single questions based on topics from higher mathematics. Except a few single questions, almost all the questions appeared in the format of sets or "business caselets", with a heavy emphasis on not only the conceptual understanding of various topics but also on the practical application of those concepts in a real-time problem-solving.

A sense of discomfort would have plagued anyone and everyone trying to make sense of this section. The concepts involved were as varied as probability distributions, present value of investments/cash flows, linear programming, matrices, differential calculus, curve fitting etc.

Such structure not only hampered the attempts as well as accuracy but also lowered the cut-off. The time spent on these types of questions eats away the time to be spent on other questions of comparatively simpler formats.

This year the suggested pattern points that approximately 1.5 minutes can be allotted to each question. It also compels us to assume that application based questions that appeared last year may appear this year as well.

Verbal Communication Section

Let us see what JMET 2008 had in the Verbal Communication (that is the terminology used in the JMET for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension) section. The section was a mixed bag of questions that tested almost all the basic concepts pertaining to grammar and vocabulary that a student had been exposed to in school as well as college.

There were quite a few questions on grammar, on questions each on spelling and punctuation, one on direct-indirect speech, a couple of questions on active-passive voice, sentence combination, gist of a sentence, fill in the blanks, different types of analogies, and just about everything else!

One just could not afford to forget the basics learnt in school. That is where a thorough brushing up of concepts pertaining to the fundamentals of grammar would have helped a lot. Compared to CAT, the Reading Comprehension passages were short and readable. But in some cases, the options were quite close and negating one of the options was a mammoth task. Again the bell of familiarity rings!

Again use the skills that were honed during the preparatory classes of CAT RC. Some of the vocabulary questions used words that are not very commonly used in our day-to-day interactions. A good exposure to lists of difficult words would have proved helpful.

Data Interpretation Section

This section in JMET 2008 had 30 questions with five sets. This section was calculation-oriented, and herein was observed a change in rend from that of JMET 2007.

Among the five sets in last year's paper, two sets required observation and simple calculations. The sets requiring intensive calculation had direct questions based on the data. Overall the section was time consuming.

The best way to maximise the attempts could be to focus on attempting the two to three direct questions based on the set instead of focusing on completion of the set. This would also have helped in glancing at the entire section and picking up the easy sets. 

Logical Reasoning Section

JMET has a comparatively difficult logical reasoning section. In this section, one can find a good mix of verbal and analytical reasoning questions. It is known for throwing up surprises in the section especially with respect to verbal reasoning.

Last year, in analytical reasoning, questions were single ones as well as in sets. Commonly appearing concepts as that of linear arrangement, matrix arrangement, groups and conditionality etc. were present. The usual constructs like critical reasoning and jumbled sentences were present. Several critical reasoning questions were similar to logical reasoning in that they required a passing knowledge of mathematical concepts. The questions on syllogisms were presented in a different format where the premises were given as Fact 1 and Fact 2 and on had to mark the conclusion that followed from both.

Sparing time for this section could not only help increase the attempts but also help in maximising the score.

How Different is JMET from CAT?

IMS is an institute that trains candidates in various cometitive examinations like the CAT, XAT, JMET etc.

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