The IIT's Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) on Sunday threw a number of surprises, including a change in the question pattern, as nearly 400,000 students appeared for admission into the country's premier engineering institutes.
"In JEE 2009, the major changes were disappearance of assertion reasoning type of questions, subjective questions were back in the paper, and negative marking in (multiple) choice types," according to an analysis of the IIT-JEE 2009 examination by Career Launcher, a counselling firm.
"There was a qualitative shift in the kind of questions asked - these do not require a lot of rigorous problem solving, but rather a fairly good understanding of the concepts and the ability to comprehend and analyse," it added.
Saurabh Kumar, who is the National Academic Head of Career Launcher, said there was a change in the pattern that "was slightly difficult as compared to last year's paper."
"But change in pattern in IIT-JEE is nothing new," Kumar said.
"Overall, the number of questions were reduced from 135 last year to 117 this year," Kumar added.
"In all, there were 24 subjective questions. Mathematics was the most difficult followed by physics and chemistry," he said.
The paper evoked a mixed response from the students as well. While some termed it as very difficult, others said anyone with clear concepts would not have faced much difficulty.
"The main problem was negative marking and subjective questions that too so many. They were not expected at all. Overall, the paper was very difficult," Class XII student Arpit Gupta, who is a student of Bal Bhavan Public School, told IANS.
"Definitely, the diffculty level was high as compared to the last year. But the questions were concept based and required a clear understanding," said Rakshit Aggarwal, a student of Sachdeva Public School, Rohini.
But Aditya Bindal, a Class XII student of St.Xaviers School, said he "enjoyed" writing the exam.
"We were prepared for the pattern change. So, tackling it was not much of a difficulty. The questions were concept based. But I was a bit surprised with negative marking," Bindal said.