The time of the year has come when India’s creative marketing & advertising enthusiasts gear themselves up to get into MICA, India’s Mecca for Marketing.
Just like the Bschool, MICA’s entrance exam is also one of a kind. One will be pleasantly surprised by the slightly different kind of questions in MICAT as compared to the other management entrance tests.
In this article we will go through the general information on MICAT, the syllabus, way of preparation and more!
MICAT is the exam aspirants have to take if they wish to apply for the PGDM -C or PGDM program at Mudra Institutions of Communications, Ahmedabad.
MICA conducts MICAT two times in the academic year. Students can choose to appear for whichever one they want or both of the exams as well. In the latter case, the higher marks between the two exams would be considered.
This year, MICAT 1 is scheduled on 5th December and MICAT 2 on 30th January 2021. The scores for MICAT 1 will be out before the application for MICAT 2 opens giving you plenty of time to choose to apply for the second exam if you wish to.
For a detailed timeline check their official website or click here.
MICA is the School of Ideas which explains how they evaluate a student’s performance. Hence choosing students who have a healthy balance of logical thinking and creative thinking. They also believe in recruiting a diverse set of students outside the boundaries of the typical definition of diversity like work experience, gender, high school marks, UG degree etc. This is why they have a psychometric test that tests the student’s approach to thinking and decision making.
While the table below is the typical breakup of questions in MICAT, I thoroughly recommend you to go through the instructions on the day of the test just in case.
|No of Questions||Marking Scheme||Time||Note|
|Psychometric||36||–||25 Mins||First section which is a qualifier section, hence must complete all questions|
|Verbal Ability||25||+1, -0.25||1 Hour 45 Mins||Objective questions, Can shift between sections, Level of difficulty is easy to medium|
|Descriptive||4||–||35 Mins||Soft word limit for all 4 questions|
How to ace each section
There are only two important things to remember if you want to sail through this section.
Mark the answers to ALL the questions and remain honest to yourself.
The psychometric section is designed to make psychological profiles based on your responses. The more consistent your responses are towards a particular psychological profile, the higher the chance you have at cracking this exam.
Remember, they are not profiling respondents to choose which profile to recruit, they are doing so to ensure that they choose their future students who have clarity in being self aware of themselves and the way they work.
I’m sure there would be many CAT gurus who would recommend you multiple hacks and tips to work around this section, but take it from a seasoned MICAT test taker and the opinion of her fellow MICAN peers, the only hack to apply is to be true to yourself.
Mark the options or rank yourself with a number that comes naturally to you. Do not think from the perspective of what you think MICA wants, the less the thinking, the better the chance you have.
Here I’d also like to remind you that you may not get a lot of time to think considering that there is very less time to do so, this may endanger you to not completing all your questions which would definitely lead to your elimination.
The only preparation I recommend for this section is to give a couple of psychometric tests, preferably the ones which provide you analysis of your responses. This is to get you acquainted with the format expected and to also get in touch with yourself and your thinking process.
You know who you are, use this test to let MICA know so too!
If you have prepared for other Bschool Entrance Exams, I’m glad to let you know that this is quite similar in terms of pattern of questions; Reading Comprehensions, Sentence arrangements & corrections,Syntax, Grammar concepts, Antonyms, Synonyms etc.
It is relatively easier than other Bschool exams. Your current preparation and solving 2-3 sample question papers should suffice.
There will be a significant number of easy, but calculation heavy DI questions as a part of this section. Apart from this MICAT also tests the concepts of arithmetic, algebra, trigonometry, geometry, probability, number system, mensuration, time & work etc. The pattern and syllabus remains similar to that of popular exams like SNAP, NMAT, CAT etc. The level of difficulty, barring a few questions, remains easy.
Apart from topics of history, geography, politics, literature, science, sports, business, indian constitution, MICAT focuses heavily on testing the student’s knowledge in the area of advertising, media, marketing and business brands and their media. It is the Mecca of Marketing, after all!
I would suggest you look at Afaqs and Brand Equity a couple of weeks to a month before the exam to get recent information about the advertising, media and marketing industry. If you are very serious about your preparation and feel like you may not cross the cut off for GA, invest in one of the many online resources available.
Don’t sweat it too much, I guarantee you’ll recognize some of the nostalgic ads with a smile on your face!
Divergent- Convergent Thinking
This section is a little different from other Bschool exams. It is solely made to understand your logical sense of analysis and thinking. Practice sample questions on visual reasoning, data sufficiency, sequence and series, word Association and statement-assumption. To get an actual taste of the type of questions, you can go through the sample papers provided by MICA, here.
Aah, the most famous part of the exam.
This section has 4 questions, with three questions revolving around your opinion around a single topic and another question which is a micro story writing one.
Let me explain with an example,
The single topic questions go like this;
“To be happy we must not be too concerned with others”
Q1 Provide 5 arguments in support of the above statement
Q2 Present 5 arguments against the above statement
Q3 Having given your arguments on both sides of the statement, “To be happy we must not be too concerned with others” present your own views in about 200 words in response to a request from a leading newspaper editor. Please note that you have to take one viewpoint for your response, i.e., either for or against. No marks will be given for expressing your views on both sides of the argument.
This has been the pattern for years now and is made solely to check your clarity of thought and how structured you can present them in your words.
For questions like Q1 and Q2 try to present facts that support your answer.
For eg; With India being ranked 144 in the UN’s world happiness report and popular culture revolving around much Indian Auntie and uncles love snooping about, the two seem connected in context of the above statement.
Try to provide less personal opinions and instead focus on psychological discoveries, proof of the statement in mass media and other factual evidence.
For Q3, apart from facts you can also put in your opinions and anecdotes from your personal experience. Just make sure that it is not all opinions and has some tangible credible information. Feel free to reuse the arguments from the responses to the previous questions.
The fourth question will consist of four random pictures which you will have to make a story out of. It is imperative that you use all the images. You may choose the amount of attention you want to give to each picture but make sure that you are referring to all of them at least once. The key here is to stay away from the obvious story and think of something crazy, creative and out of the box. Remember to not overthink it though, because you have very less time for the descriptive section. Try to include characters and personification elements.
For this section try to avoid flowery vocabulary. Stick to simple sentences with easy to understand words and correct grammar. This is not a test of your knowledge of the english language, it is a test of your creativity and storytelling skills.
To prepare for this section, if you have not been typing on your desktop for sometime, it may be a little difficult to get used to writing on a keyboard. Nothing to worry about, a week or two would be more than enough to get you familiar with the clicking of keys.Try to read from multiple sources as much as you can, so that you have enough facts to use for your questions. Use the facts you have learnt while preparing for other exams like SNAP, XAT too.
To stimulate your creative senses, choose four objects in your room randomly and make a story connecting them. Have fun with it, that’s the best way to prepare for this section!
If you have been diligently preparing for other exams, are extremely self aware and consider yourself a creative person, MICAT does not need much preparation.
What it needs however is basic knowledge of marketing, media & advertising and the confidence in your ideas & opinions.
The best way to give this exam is to remember to have fun with it and enjoy the process!
BTW fun fact: I had given both MICAT1 & 2, without preparing for the former and preparing a lot for the latter. I got selected by my MICAT 1 score. 🙂