Guesswork, the unkindest cut | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Guesswork, the unkindest cut

Last year, cut-off marks for several colleges that are not exactly considered A grade shot up, reports Anuradha Mukherjee.

delhi Updated: Jun 01, 2007 05:25 IST

So you are worried about high cut-off marks in Delhi University colleges this year? Some attribute it to good overall results, others predict an increase in commerce courses, given their popularity. Good results or not, the truth is that DU cut-off marks rise every year and it has very little to do with the percentage that students score or the number of seats a particular college provides.

Last year, cut-off marks for several colleges that are not exactly considered A grade shot up — but it turned out that there were no takers for these institutions among top scorers and most of their seats went empty in the first and even second round.

The official reason given out by some colleges is that the centralised common form means everybody applies everywhere — regardless of the marks they score.

This, in turn can inflate the cut-off marks for colleges that are not so sought after.

DU dean students’ welfare S.K. Vij says that as per the official procedure, colleges should look at the number of students and the number of seats they offer before arriving at a cut-off marks for a course. “If they decide on 89 as cut-off marks for a course, they have to give admission to everybody who reaches that score. But in practice, everybody applies in the maximum number of colleges because the common form makes the process really easy. The toppers apply in colleges they may not join finally, but this actually cranks up the cut-off marks. A lot of colleges also decide their cut-off based on their historical experience,” says Vij.

Most colleges, in fact, decide the cut-off marks through a guesstimate based on their record of admission and percentage band of students who chose their college in the past. Ramjas College principal Rajendra Prasad says his college decides its cut-off by experience.

“St Stephen’s leads the way for other colleges. If their cut-off goes up, the cut-off marks for all the A grade campus colleges goes up. Students who do not get into St Stephen’s get distributed among campus colleges,” says Prasad.

And then there is the inevitable competition factor which principals and officials alike accept. “Colleges sometimes compete with each other. They keep an eye on their competitors’ cut-off marks and crank up their own accordingly,” adds Vij. So the final word is do not worry and just keep an eye on the available seats in every college.

Even if you think you have not made it as per the cut-off list, visit the college once and check if admissions are still on. Who knows, you may strike gold.