Learning by rote or attending coaching classes will no longer guarantee admission to popular and premier engineering institutions in the country.
The Union human resource development (HRD) ministry will soon set up a National Authority for Testing (NAT) to conduct a new entrance examination — starting this October — that will replace the two-tier joint entrance examination (JEE) main and advanced tests for entry into engineering colleges.
The JEE is a national common entrance examination conducted to provide admissions to several engineering courses.
The focus now will be to standardise the test so that it can’t be cracked by coaching institutes or “teaching shops” and learning by rote — which bring down the standard because such practices fail to teach analytical and logical skills needed for scientific research.
The new system will test the logical and analytical abilities of students rather than knowledge on subjects. The first such test from October will screen students aspiring for admission to the 2017 session, sources said.
Under the new system, students will be able to write the test online four times a year. About 400,000 students will then be shortlisted for the joint entrance examination (JEE), which will follow the same pattern of the current advanced test and examine their knowledge of physics, chemistry and mathematics. The score will be used for admission to IITs and NITs.
The NAT will be constituted after approval from the Union cabinet and registered as an independent society under the HRD ministry.
The concept was given inprinciple approval by the ministry at a meeting last week, where contours of the authority were discussed.
“The NAT is a general aptitude score like SAT and will be used for JEE,” said a senior official.