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IIM Lucknow Drops GD from Admission
July 21 2024

IIM Lucknow Drops Group Discussion from Admission Process

The Indian Institute of Management Lucknow (IIM-L) has made a significant change to its admission process by dropping the Group Discussion (GD) component. This decision has stirred various reactions among aspirants and education experts. Here’s an in-depth look at the rationale behind this move and its potential implications.


The Rationale Behind the Change

  1. Evolving Selection Criteria: IIM Lucknow's decision to eliminate the GD component reflects a broader trend in management education towards more holistic evaluation methods. The institute aims to focus on assessing candidates' comprehensive profiles rather than just their ability to articulate in a group setting.

  2. Assessment Challenges: Group Discussions, while beneficial in assessing communication skills and group dynamics, often face challenges such as dominance by a few participants, lack of substantial content, and sometimes an environment that does not accurately reflect real-world scenarios. These limitations can lead to a less accurate evaluation of a candidate's potential.

  3. Inclusivity and Fairness: By removing the GD component, IIM Lucknow aims to create a more inclusive and fair selection process. Candidates who may be introverted or less assertive in a group setting now have an equal opportunity to showcase their strengths through other assessment methods.

New Admission Process

With the GD component dropped, IIM Lucknow's admission process will now heavily rely on the following elements:

  1. Personal Interview (PI): The PI will gain greater significance, allowing evaluators to delve deeper into a candidate's personality, motivations, leadership potential, and suitability for the rigorous management program. This one-on-one interaction can provide a more comprehensive understanding of the candidate's abilities.

  2. Written Ability Test (WAT): The WAT will continue to be an essential part of the evaluation. This test assesses candidates on their ability to think critically, organize their thoughts coherently, and express themselves effectively in writing. It also serves as an indicator of the candidate's potential to handle the academic demands of the program.

  3. Academic Performance and Work Experience: Academic records and work experience will remain crucial components of the selection process. Consistent academic performance and relevant work experience reflect a candidate's discipline, commitment, and practical knowledge, which are essential for success in a management program.

  4. CAT Scores: The Common Admission Test (CAT) scores will continue to play a pivotal role in the initial shortlisting of candidates. High CAT scores demonstrate a candidate's aptitude in areas such as quantitative ability, data interpretation, logical reasoning, and verbal ability.

Implications for Aspirants

  1. Preparation Strategy: Aspirants will need to adjust their preparation strategies accordingly. With increased emphasis on personal interviews, candidates should focus on honing their interpersonal skills, building a strong personal narrative, and staying updated on current affairs and industry trends.

  2. Enhanced Focus on Written Skills: The Written Ability Test gains more importance, necessitating regular practice in essay writing, structured thinking, and clear expression. Candidates should work on improving their writing skills to perform well in the WAT.

  3. Holistic Profile Building: Candidates should focus on building a well-rounded profile that includes strong academic records, relevant work experience, and extracurricular achievements. This comprehensive approach will enhance their overall application and make them more competitive.


The decision by IIM Lucknow to drop the Group Discussion component from its admission process marks a significant shift in the institute's approach to candidate evaluation. By focusing more on personal interviews, written ability tests, academic performance, and work experience, the institute aims to create a more inclusive, fair, and effective selection process. Aspirants must adapt their preparation strategies to align with these changes and present a well-rounded, compelling application to secure admission to one of India's premier management institutes.

Anisha Mukhija

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