If a proposal by the HRD ministry is accepted by states, a single entrance examination will land an engineering aspirant in an IIT or any of the street corner technical colleges that have mushroomed across in the country, from 2013.
A countrywide common examination for admission to undergraduate programmes in engineering, as recommended by T Ramasami committee, was discussed at length in the IIT council meet on Wednesday.
A single test is something that students and parents want. On an average, an engineering aspirant takes three tests — IIT-JEE for IITs, AIEEE for NITs and the state test.
"The burden of multiplicity of competitive examinations is causing immense stress, financial and otherwise on parents and students .... The proposal ... will reduce dependency on coaching by aligning to Class 12 syllabus," HRD minister Kapil Sibal said.
Weightage will be given to a student's Class 12 board examinations scores after statistical normalisation of scores vis-à-vis performance of students from other boards — CBSE or state. Then a single national examination would be conducted to test aptitude and advanced domain knowledge.
Sibal said the proposal — to be finalised in a month — will be put before the Central Advisory Board for Education and after taking the states on board, it will be implemented from 2013-14 academic year.
States like Gujarat expressed are ready but have riders. "We are prepared to tune our +2 course with the National Curriculum Framework. But CET should include the IITs. We also want the CET to be conducted in Gujarati also," Hasmukh Adhia, principal secretary, higher education, Gujarat told HT.
But officials, academicians from Andhra Pradesh — hub of engineering education in the country — expressed doubts. "Do we use the same weighing machine for both gold and iron. The approach and orientation to IITs is different. CET will put a large bunch of students in same bracket making it difficult to decide who should enter which institute," a official said.