Times of India :: 12 April 2012
IITs object to common entrance test roll-out from next yr, seek further talks
Himanshi Dhawan, TNN | Apr 12, 2012
NEW DELHI: The government's plan to introduce the common entrance test (CET) for engineering from 2013 hit a roadblock on Wednesday, with the faculty representatives of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) asking for the proposal to be put on hold till there are further discussions.
When asked about the meeting, HRD minister Kapil Sibal only said that it went off well.
The minister and senior HRD officials met with IIT directors and chairpersons and representatives of the All India IIT Faculty Federation (AIIFF) on Wednesday for the first time after the tech institutes expressed concerns about the new system that is expected to be implemented from next year.
The federation passed a unanimous resolution that was given to the HRD minister expressing ``grave concern'' that a new test for admission to IIT was being ``thrust'' upon them without allowing enough time for discussion or critical review and acceptance in IIT Senate. The resolution also said that implementation of the changes in the existing entrance tests should be kept on hold until reports are obtained, consolidated and accepted by the Senate.
AIIFF representatives said that the meeting was a ``fruitful'' one and more discussions were likely on the issue.
Significantly, the decision has the approval of IIT Council that comprises of IIT directors and is binding on the institutes. However opposition from the AIIFF could put the ministry's plans could be put in serious jeopardy and even delay the 2013 roll-out.
The CET aims to serve as a single national entrance exam for admission to engineering and science courses in centrally funded institutions such as the 15 IITs, 30 NITs and a host of other technical institutes.
One of the significant objections was to the proposed weightage given to class XII marks. The new system will give class XII marks at least 40% weightage, while the test score will make up the remaining 60%. So far, the Class XII results have no bearing on the IIT-JEE score and rank.
IIT Senate feels since the assessment system varies across school boards, the knowledge of students cannot be reflected on the same scale and such weightage would not be a true assessment. Faculty representatives also feel that changes will dilute the IIT brand.
The other objections relate to both parts of the test carrying objective-type questions, and the plan to hold them on the same day.