CMI is one of the best institutes in India to study data science. MSc data science at CMI is now gaining popularity among students all over India. Each year a lot of candidates are appearing for these exams and competition is growing each year.

With the right strategy, anyone can clear this exam. However, there are many books to study the topics asked in the CMI entrance exam, here I share the preparation strategy that let me clear this exam easily. 

This post covers a complete strategy on how to clear this entrance exam along with the resources which will help you to the complete CMI MSc data science syllabus.

I have already an article on what is CMI MSc data science course all about, covering all key points about the course structure, fee structure, hostel facility, and placement.

You might have gone through the syllabus for this exam. Here is an overview of that. I will focus on the strategy for each section.

The entrance examination will primarily check the mathematical aptitude and the ability to logically interpret data. Candidates should be familiar with the following topics: 

School Level Mathematics: Arithmetic and geometric progressions; arithmetic, geometric and harmonic mean; polynomials, matrices (basic operations, inverse, transpose), determinants, solving linear equations, prime numbers, and divisibility, GCD, LCM, modular arithmetic, logarithms, basic properties of functions (domain, range, injective, bijective, surjective), elementary calculus (differentiation, maxima-minima, integration, and its applications) 

Discrete Mathematics: Sets and relations, combinations and permutations, elementary counting techniques, pigeonhole principle 

• Probability Theory: Elementary probability theory, conditional probability, and Bayes theorem

Logic: Boolean logic and truth tables 

Programming: Ability to read and interpret algorithms written in simple pseudocode

If you will go through the previous year’s question paper, you will find that the questions are not based on some high-level mathematics formula but they want you to solve questions using formulas you already know about. So, my first advice is to focus on the basic working of any concepts.

For Section School Level Mathematics you can go through any intermediate level book. However, I used Objective mathematics by RD Sharma.

You should start studying from basics, try to solve questions that let you know how to apply any formula to solve a question. Even if your mathematics is not too strong, by following this approach you can gradually improve your interest in problem-solving.

You must maintain a formula diary, in which you must write all-important formulas related to any chapter and while solving any question you come across any short tricks, then note it down. Revise these formulas daily. For solving any question, give yourself enough time to think and teach yourself how to approach any question given you know basic formulas.

To study topics like GCD, LCM, modular arithmetic, and logarithms, you can go through any online YouTube channel. They will give you basic ideas behind it. I used this book by Dr. R S Aggarwal. Read-only relevant chapters and don’t forget to note down tricks that are used to solve these questions. Revise daily.

For discrete mathematics, I used this book. Study only relevant chapters and don’t forget to attempt exercise questions. You can read permutation and combination for RD Sharma. However, this book also has some nice questions in exercise.

For probability theory apart from topics from RD Sharma, study distributions like binomial, normal, Poisson, geometric, hypergeometric, exponential distribution and solve basic questions related to the application of these distributions. I used this book given below.


Coming to the logical part, you can use a book by M. Morris Mano. Read-only a few chapters from the beginning. You will find pdf of all these books online. There is also a youtube channel that teaches topics from logic gates and truth tables. 

YouTube link: here

Now the last section is programming. I only read Let Us C by Yashwant Kanetkar. It is really a good book for beginners who don’t have any knowledge of programming. It teaches you concepts of programming from very basics. You should read topics like function, loops, array, and string with great attention as these are the topics from which questions are mainly framed.


If you follow these tips, you will definitely be able to crack the CMI entrance exam. Be honest with yourself and follow these tips:

1. Maintain a formula diary.

2. Revise formulas daily.

3. Practice some questions every day.

4. Focus on how to explain any question better as the subjective part is also there

5. Don’t forget to do some multiple correct questions from each section

6. Meanwhile, try to attempt questions asked in previous year papers

7. Stick to the syllabus, don’t deviate

8. Maintain a record of how much time left and planned everything accordingly

Remember, planning is everything. With planning, I was able to clear ISI MS QMS, CMI MSc data science, IIT JAM Mathematical statistics, and BHU MSc computer science exams. You all can do it too. Focus and plan. You will find your way.

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4. Self Discipline Tips for Students

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The comment section is always there if you have any suggestions or doubts regarding this exam.

Past year papers here




Hello sir, can you please tell me how is the placement scenario in Data Science course? I get to know CMI is a research institute and focus only on theory and research.



Hi Sayak, I asked on of my friend at CMI, he told the avg package this year was 16lpa around



Hello Sir, Could you plz share the number of students appearing for CMI Data science exam and how many finally get selected . Thank you..



Hi Abhishek, it is hard to estimate but many students sit for this exams from diverse background. last year they selected 64 candidates



How did you prepare for logical part?



Actually I had digital logic in my semester so I read there but I used the book I have described above.


What is the cutoff in general for Data science entrance?



Hi, as I have told they don't declare any cutoff, so it's hard to say.



Do they have an interview for msc data science post the entrance test?



No interview



How much time did it take you for preparation and what was your graduation ?



Hi Lavanya, I was doing BSc in computer science. I just read RD Sharma for Permutation,combination, probability, definite integral, function and AP,GP. After ISI MS QMS i just practices CMI previous year papers and revised above topics.

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