Factual topics are about practical things, which an
ordinary person is aware of in his day-to-day life.
Typically these are about socio-economic topics. These can
be current, i.e. they may have been in the news lately, or
could be unbound by time. A factual topic for discussion
gives a candidate a chance to prove that he is aware of and
sensitive to his environment.
E.g. The education policy of India, Tourism in India,
State of the aged in the nation.
Controversial topics are the ones that are argumentative in
nature. They are meant to generate controversy. In GDs where
these topics are given for discussion, the noise level is
usually high, there may be tempers flying. The idea behind
giving a topic like this is to see how much maturity the
candidate is displaying by keeping his temper in check, by
rationally and logically arguing his point of view without
getting personal and emotional.
E.g. Reservations should be removed, Women make
Abstract topics are about
intangible things. These topics are not given often for
discussion, but their possibility cannot be ruled out. These
topics test your lateral thinking and creativity.
E.g. A is an alphabet, Twinkle twinkle little star,
The number 10
Another variation is the use of a case instead of a topic.
The case study tries to simulate a real-life situation.
Information about the situation will be given to you and you
would be asked as a group to resolve the situation. In the
case study there are no incorrect answers or perfect
solutions. The objective in the case study is to get you to
think about the situation from various angles.
IIM A, IIM Indore and IIT SOM Mumbai have a case-based
discussion rather than topic-based discussion in their