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Govt Waters Down Proposed Common Entrance Test For IITs - Common Entrance Test _____________________________________________________________________________________

By Ambrose - The Common Entrance Test proposed by Union HRD Minister Kapil Sibal may not see the light of day after all -- at least not in its initially envisioned format. Headlines Today has learnt that the government has agreed to water down its proposals that have created unrest among IITs. Sources say that the government has agreed to create a two-tier test system to safeguard the autonomy of India's premier engineering institutions. The Common Entrance Test would now act only as a filter, selecting approximately 50,000 students, who would then be eligible for an advance exam independently conducted by the IITs. Learn More About Common Entrance Test The final merit list for the IIT undergraduate admissions would be based purely on the performance of candidates in this advance exam, the format for which would be decided soon.

It is understood that the IIT advance exam would be held towards the end of May, once the results of the government's main exam have been announced.

In another change, the government has decided to stick to the existing practice of using board exam performance as only a cut-off. The earlier proposal had advocated the use of both -- the entrance scores and board exam marks -- to arrive at a final list of students. However, rather than an across the board cut-off of 60 per cent, the government has proposed to fine tune it based on top 20 percentiles of each board.

Sources confirmed that the new proposals have been e-mailed to all the IITs. To remind all readers: HRD came up with a proposal to restructure the selection process at the prestigious IITs and National Institutes of Technology (NIT) with an objective of making students realize the importance of school studies and also to reduce the burden of Coaching classes on the students as well as on the pockets of the parents. This was at least what was projected by the HRD minister Kapil Sibal. However the ntire exercise ran through several controversies throughout its discussiona nd implementation. Inspite of lot of objections from various fronts, Mr Kapil Sibal went on to announce that this common test will be implemented from 2013 onwards. There were lot of concerns about the practices followed during board exams and their evaluation process.

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