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Online CAT: Expect version 2.0 this year

Just back home from his Common Aptitude Test coaching class, 22-year old Priyanshu Gadgil let out a tired laugh when asked about his preparations for the examination that the Indian Institutes of Management use to admit students. Charu Sudan Kasturi reports.

delhi Updated: Sep 18, 2010 01:32 IST
Charu Sudan Kasturi

Just back home from his Common Aptitude Test coaching class, 22-year old Priyanshu Gadgil let out a tired laugh when asked about his preparations for the examination that the Indian Institutes of Management use to admit students.

“I’ll be prepared in time. I just hope the CAT is prepared for us students,” he said.

It will be, assert organisers of the examination, as they work overtime to ensure glitches that ravaged the first few days of the computerised CAT last year are not repeated, and to allay concerns among stakeholders.

From a 10-day testing window, test service provider Prometric has decided to conduct the CAT over 20 days — October 27 to November 24 —to allow them to use half the number of computers.

Dependent on public infrast-ructure — computers owned by colleges and other institutions — Prometric will also begin sanitising hardware earlier, Soumitra Roy, managing director Prometric India said.

To minimise the probability of a student having to return home without taking the CAT because of glitches, the organisers will ensure extra terminals at each centre where students can be shifted.

“I can assure CAT-takers that this year, everything possible will be done to ensure candidates are adjusted the same day at another terminal and do not have to return for the test another day,” Roy told HT.

To avoid mistakes, Prometric will soon upload a practice CAT facility on the official test website — www.catiim.in. Students can familiarise themselves with all instructions and the structure of the computerised test before actually taking the CAT, organisers said.