It was a new experience for thousands of young students, who took the Combined Aptitude Test for English (CATE) on Wednesday. Although the test turned out to be a cakewalk for most, students said that the lack of top-notch colleges on the list of CATE affiliated institutions list lessened their enthusiasm.
The 100-mark paper carried a mix of objective and subjective (essay writing) questions which designed to test a student's interest in literature.
“It was all about studying one night before the examination,” said Jitesh Kaushik (17), a pass-out from Tagore International School.
Students also said Hindu College remained their preferred choice amongst all the CATE-affiliated colleges. This year the test is the single channel to secure a seat in English (Honours) at 12 DU colleges. Hindu College, Delhi College of Arts and Commerce, IP College and Kamla Nehru College are among them.
Parents toed the same line. “ It is a good concept, but if the University wants to implement a protocol, it shouldn’t do it half-heartedly. All colleges must come together on this common forum,” said Rupali Dhingra, mother of Arushi Dhingra, a CATE aspirant.
But the number of forms sold tell a different story.
“We sold around 8,500 forms for this test, which speaks volumes about the interest of the students,” said Professor Sumanyu Satpathy, Head of Department for English, Delhi University. “We expect other colleges will be joining this forum from next year.”
Sources also confirmed Daulat Ram College has already consented to be a part of CATE from 2010.