Is ATMA tougher than MAT?

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Saumya Jain
Assistant Manager- Content
Updated on Aug 8, 2022 18:36 IST

Although there is not much difference between the two exams, the question- Is ATMA tougher than MAT, still remains a hot topic of discussion. In the article below you will find the differences and similarities between the two exams along with their exam pattern, syllabus, etc. 

Every year lakhs of students give various MBA entrance exams to get admission to the best MBA colleges in India. MBA entrance exams such as CAT, MAT, SNAP, ATMA, XAT, CMAT, etc. are gateways to the top management colleges in India and abroad. ATMA and MAT are popular among many aspirants as they both provide them with multiple opportunities to take the exam and improve their scores. Often students go through a phase as to which MBA entrance exam to take. ATMA and MAT are two of the easiest exams that students can appear for to get into some of the top management institutes. But the question remains- Is ATMA tougher than MAT? In this article, you will find the difference between the two exams in terms of exam pattern, syllabus, difficulty level, etc. to help you with the above question.


Both ATMA and MAT are management entrance exams conducted for admissions into various post-graduation courses. But, both the exams have unique features. For instance, ATMA has sectional timing which is not in the case of the MAT exam. Also, the ATMA exam has six sections in the ATMA question paper, whereas the MAT exam has only five. To determine which exam is the tougher, one needs to know the difference between the two exams.

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ATMA vs MAT: Differences and Similarities

Check out the table below to know the similarities and differences between ATMA and MAT:




Full form

AIMS Test for Management Admissions

Management Aptitude Test

Conducting body

Association of Indian Management Schools (AIMS)

All India Management Association - AIMA

Exam Frequency

4-5 times in a year

Multiple times a year


Graduate with 50 percent aggregate from a recognised university

Candidates who have completed a professional degree such as CACS or ICWA are also eligible to apply for the MAT exam

Exam mode



Exam fee

INR 1500

INR 1650 (single exam)

INR 2750 (both PBT and CBT mode exam)

Courses offered



Exam purpose

Admission into over 700 colleges

Admissions to 1206 MBA Colleges

Registration process



ATMA vs MAT: Exam Pattern

To understand if the ATMA exam is tougher than the MAT exam, one needs to understand the exam pattern of both exams.




Number of questions



Total marks



Exam duration

180 minutes

150 minutes

Negative marking

Yes. +1 marks for correct answer -0.25 mark for an incorrect answer

Yes. +1 mark for correct answer – 0.25 marks for an incorrect answer 

Number of choices in MCQs



Sectional time limit



There are 180 questions in the ATMA exam which are to be solved in 180 minutes whereas there are 200 questions in the MAT exam question paper which the candidates have to solve in 150 minutes. Hence in the ATMA exam, candidates will get one minute on average to solve each question but since the number of questions in MAT is more and the time allotted is less, MAT exam becomes a speed-based exam.

Also, since ATMA has a sectional time limit, it can be considered tougher than MAT by the way of execution. However, if the candidates prepare for ATMA keeping the sectional time-limit in mind, they can easily score well. 

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ATMA v/s MAT Syllabus

The syllabus of both these exams is not very different from each other, they are categorised differently, though. ATMA question paper has six sections based on three subjects, whereas the MAT question paper will have five sections. MAT has two extra subjects  -  Data Analysis & Efficiency and Indian and Global Environment. Look at the table below to know the syllabus of the two exams.





Verbal Skills-I

Language Comprehension


Analytical Skills-I

Data Analysis and Sufficiency


Quantitative Skills-I



Verbal Skills-II

Intelligence and Critical Reasoning


Analytical Skills-II

Indian and Global Environment


Quantitative Skills-II


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Our Advice

There are many MBA entrance exams and students stress themselves to crack the toughest ones such as CAT, XAT, SNAP, etc. ATMA and MAT are comparatively easier ones. Both the exams happen multiple times in a year, hence, students need not worry about not scoring well in the first attempt. 

Talking about the question, Is ATMA tougher than MAT? There cannot be a definite answer to this question as this will vary from individual to individual and their preparation strategy. There are many differences and many similarities between the two exams, however, candidates planning to appear for any of these two exams must solve ample of sample papers and take mock tests which will give them an insight into the type of questions and exam pattern of these two exams. Also, candidates while solving the sample papers will come across questions both easy and difficult which will help them make a strategy for attempting both the exams.

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About the Author
Saumya Jain
Assistant Manager- Content

With over 5 years of editorial experience, Saumya has been a writer at Shiksha for over three years. With a graduation degree in English literature from Delhi University, she loves to write and read non-fictional no... Read Full Bio



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