Centre in no mood to bow to IITs

Centre in no mood to bow to IITs

The government appears unlikely to bow to pressure from a section of IIT faculty and alumni to drop its proposal for a joint entrance examination for admission to centrally-funded engineering colleges, including 15 premier technical institutes.

Sticking to the “unanimous” decision taken by the Council of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and other centrally-funded technical institutions, the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry is moving fast with preparations to hold the maiden joint entrance test in 2013.

The Ministry is likely to write to the Joint Admission Board (JAB) of IITs, which is functioning from IIT-Delhi, on Wednesday to finalise the “nature, modalities and timings” of the JEE-Advance test, government sources said. The IIT Council, National Institutes of Technology (NITs) and Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIIT) have unanimously decided to hold the test in two parts, JEE-Main and JEE-Advance. 

The JAB has been given “complete control” over the JEE-Advance test in matters like paper setting, evaluation and preparation of the merit list as the ranking of candidates for admission to undergraduate programmes in IITs would be based “entirely” on the performance in the JEE-Advance.

“It is up to the JAB to decide whether the JEE-Advance should be conducted the same day as JEE Main or on different days,” sources said.

According to the IIT council decision, the Class XII Board marks, normalised on percentile basis through an appropriate formula, plus the marks obtained in the JEE-Main examination, with equal weightage, would be used by IITs for screening candidates.

Candidates screened through this process will be allowed to take JEE-Advance.  For all other centrally-funded institutions, there would be 40 per cent weightage for performance in Class XII Board marks normalised on percentile basis through a formula, 30 per cent weightage for performance in JEE-Main and 30 per cent weightage for JEE-Advance.

The JEE-Main test will be multiple choice, objective type paper, whereas the nature and modalities of the JEE-Advance will be determined by the JAB.

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) will provide the administrative and logistic support for the conduct of JEE-Main examination across the country and only administrative support for the JEE-Advance.

 “The JAB has to decide how much control it would like to have over the conduct of JEE-Advance and to what extent it would like to have administrative support from the CBSE,” government sources said, clarifying the decision of the Council.

Those students who have appeared in the Class XII Board examinations in 2012 and wish to improve upon their performance can appear again for the Board examinations in 2013. “The CBSE and State Boards would make appropriate arrangements to facilitate this through a special dispensation,” an HRD Ministry official said referring to the IIT Council’s decision.

As part of the preparation for the joint entrance test, a process for co-ordination between Council of Boards of School Education in India (COBSE) for implementation of the core curriculum in Science and Mathematics across the CBSE, ICSE and State Boards has also been initiated. “A meeting of COBSE is likely to be held in the last week of this month,” sources said.

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