Biometric test debuts in India for CAT candidates | india | Hindustan Times
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Biometric test debuts in India for CAT candidates

If you are about to appear for the first online Common Admission Test between 28 November and 7 December, be prepared for a biometric test preceding the exam, reports Mou Chakraborty.

india Updated: Nov 04, 2009 16:51 IST
Mou Chakraborty

Biometric tests

Candidates have to bring:
Admit card
A photo ID card like voter card, PAN card, passport, college ID, employer’s ID etc
SC/ST certificate

To ensure security
Candidates to reach two hours before the exam.

Candidates can’t carry anything inside test room.

A rough paper, pencil and rubber will be provided at the venue.

Exam process would be videotaped from three sides
There will be invigilators
Candidates can’t leave test room until test is over

If you are about to appear for the first online Common Admission Test (CAT) between 28 November and 7 December, be prepared for a biometric test preceding the exam.

For the first time students in India will be subjected to biometric tests to authenticate their identity. Close circuit televisions will also be monitoring candidates during the exam.

Fingerprints, face, hand and palm geometry and iris may be among the body parts that would be tested.

This year CAT will be held online across 32 cities through 105 centres. As many as 2,41,582 candidates have registered.

During its nearly three-decade existence CAT has been a pen and paper exam and held on a single day. According to the authorities, the stringent identity checks are required as an imposter may hop from one center to another taking advantage of the 10-day format.

However, a candidate needs to appear for one day only. It is to overcome the paucity of suitable test centers that the test needs to be conducted over 10 days, twice each day, thus requiring 20 sets of question papers.

The IIMs have outsourced the task of conducting online CAT to Prometric Testing Pvt Ltd, the India subsidiary of US-based testing company Prometric Inc.

“At the time of the test, biometric identification and picture of candidate will be taken in addition to checking a photo-identity proof. Any violation of the process will result in disqualification,” said Satish Deodhar, faculty member of IIM Ahmedabad IIM(A) and convenor of a panel overseeing the launch of the online test.

For the biometric tests the students would need to reach the centers two-hours prior to the exam.

If the exam begins at 10 am the students will have to get in by 8 am. Anybody coming at 8.30 am will not be allowed to take the test.

Once the students enter the testing center they will have to show the admit card and will have to bring another photo identity card.

Once the identity is checked a photograph of the candidate will be taken, which will then be projected on the screen of the computer on which the students will take the test.

“The IIMs and Prometric will retain these information and once the students turn up for admission the information would be cross checked through another biometric test. Most online competitive exams in the world follow this model,” said a faculty member of IIM(A).

“The test centers and the computers will be sealed at least three days prior to the exam,” Subrata Mitra, chairman of admissions at IIM Calcutta and a member of the CAT group.

The candidates won’t be allowed to go to the toilet during the 135-minute exam. If someone finishes early, he too has to sit through the entire duration.

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