CAT to offer level playing field

CAT to offer level playing field

IIMs mull changes to check dominance of engineering students

Although students with an engineering background form the majority of CAT-takers, Indian Instititutes of Management are planning to change the Common Admission Test format for a wider representation, said CAT 2012 convener SSS Kumar from IIM-Kozikode here on Monday.

“Efforts are on to have a relook at the CAT and bring some changes that will be helpful for people from other disciplines,” said Kumar, adding that the plans are at the initial stage. IIM-Kozhikode director Debashis Chatterjee said the aim is to have a broad-based talent pool across disciplines consisting of the best minds.

Kumar said this year 1.44 lakh CAT candidates are from engineering background. There has been some increase in the percentage of candidates coming from Agriculture (919 candidates), Architecture (974 candidates), Pharmaceutical Science (1,470) and Chartered Accountancy (47).

There is a drop in the number of candidates from Humanities background, from 3,780 in 2011 to 3,404 in 2012. There was some drop in the percentage of candidates from medical background.

The total number of candidates registered for CAT 2012 is 2,14,068 compared to 2,05,345 in CAT 2011 — a rise of 4.2 per cent.

This year, CAT saw an 8.6 per cent increase over the last year in the number of female candidates, and an increase of 2.6 per cent among male candidates. An increase in the number of candidates from the reserved category is also seen this year, with 17 per cent of the total from the Non-Creamy Other Backward Classes (NC-OBC), 5 per cent Scheduled Castes (SC) and 7.4 per cent Scheduled Tribes candidates. “The percentage indicates healthy growth in CAT takers in all sectors,” said Kumar.

A new trend that is seen this year is that 43 per cent of test-takers have up to three years of work experience. “Till last year, a majority of test-takers were either freshers or with work experience less than six months,” said Kumar.

The higher number of experienced candidates indicates that the economy is going to improve over the next two to three years, he added. CAT 2012 started on October 11 and will continue till November 6.

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