CLAT 2020 New Exam Pattern

In its 13th edition of CLAT, the consortium in a press conference held on 21st November, 2019 announced some major changes in the CLAT 2020 paper pattern. The changes are brought in with the view to improve the quality of students entering the National Law Universities.

We can look at the changes under two categories –



Facts –

  • CLAT 2020 will be held on 10th May, 2020. The consortium maintains that the 13th edition of Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) would be held in the usual manner, i.e 2nd Sunday of May, 2020.
  • CLAT 2020 will be offline. With respect to the mode of examination, the exam would be in the offline mode, same as 2019. Following the number of issues and problems with conducting the exam in online mode, CLAT 2019 was held in offline mode and the same would be continuing for CLAT 2020 as well.

Paper Pattern –

  • Reduction in the number of questions from 200 to 120-150 – As stated by Prof. Faizan Mustafa (who has been heading the NLU Consortium as its President), “asking students to answer 200 questions in 120 minutes is not right as it puts students under lot of mental stress”. Therefore there will be a reduction in the number of questions from 200 to 120-150. The exact number of questions is however unknown at this time.
  • Comprehension based Questions – The consortium has informed that comprehension based questions will be asked from Quantitative Techniques, English, Current Affairs, Deductive Reasoning and Logical Reasoning.
  • Static GK – No questions from the static GK portion will be asked. Questions, only from the current affairs section will be asked and for this, the students only need to read newspapers.
  • No Legal GK – CLAT is no more a test of memory. It is a test of aptitude and for this very reason, there won’t be any questions from Legal Knowledge. Earlier also there have been papers with zero questions from the Legal Knowledge section. Example – 2018 CLAT paper. A similar pattern is expected in 2020 as well.
  • Data Interpretation – Hardcore mathematics questions like Time and Work will not be asked. Instead, students will be tested on Data Interpretation questions. Maths, already known as the big bad of CLAT could now be one of the easiest section of CLAT.
  • Deductive Reasoning – There has been a huge buzz amongst the students as to what is deductive reasoning? Will there be any legal section in CLAT or not? Just to clarify to all such students, the legal reasoning section i.e. the principle-fact based questions is basically your deductive reasoning. The only change is, no prior legal knowledge is required. There will be a legal section, but that too would be in the form of reasoning based questions. As stated by Prof. Faizan Mustafa, it is the job of NLUs to teach law. Students taking admissions in NLUs could not be expected to know the law.
  • No Vocabulary – As stated earlier, since CLAT is no more a test of memory, there won’t be any direct questions pertaining to vocabulary, synonyms etc.

All of the above mentioned changes have been brought in with a view to improve the quality of students entering the National Law Universities. As stated by Prof. Faizan Mustafa, “The idea is to get better students to National Law Universities who have competence in reading texts and demonstrate skills in inferential reasoning."

To get a clear idea of the changes, watch the videos mentioned below –


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