In line with the all India medical entrance test – National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) – the Centre has started preparation for holding a single entrance test for engineering courses from next year, a news daily reported on Friday.
This new system however, according to the report, is yet to get a final nod from the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry and now only the next government is expected to approve it. The decision will be made after consulting stakeholders including all the IITs to arrive at a consensus on the issue.
The government believes that a single entrance test would make students focus on one exam instead of many exams. According to a senior official in the HRD ministry, this new system has been designed keeping in mind that the students will make more effort in preparing instead losing time travelling around the country to sit in many entrance exams. He further said that with the onset of the common entrance test, the most popular Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) or for state level engineering entrance exams will be scrapped.
The idea of single common entrance test for engineering institutes was first proposed in 2012 by then HRD minister Kapil Sibal. He had said candidates aspiring for IIT admissions and in other central institutes, such as National Institute of Technology (NIT) and Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), will have to sit for a common entrance test which will also take their higher secondary board results into consideration. However, Kapil Sibal’s decision to have a common entrance test could not take off because of opposition from IITs.
Currently, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), New Delhi conducts what is called Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) for IITs, NITs, IIITs, other centrally funded technical institutions besides institutions funded by participating state governments.
This year the results for JEE-Main that will allow 1.5 lakh students to appear for JEE-Advanced to get through IITs and Indian School of Mines (ISM), Dhanbad is expected on Saturday. Apart from the JEE, several states hold separate entrance tests for admission into the institutes run by them and private institution too conduct their entrance exams.