JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) is conducted by the CBSE on the behalf of HRD Ministry and the qualified students are given admissions to engineering courses as per their merit. While JEE-Main remains a qualifying criteria for admissions in NITs, IIITs and government-funded technical institutions (GFTIs), JEE-Advanced is conducted for admissions in IITs in whch top 2 lakh students as per the JEE-Main merit participate. For admissions in engineering courses offered at other private and deemed institutions, over a hundred entrance exams are organized every year across the country. Even several states conduct their own state-level entrance tests to fill seats in respective government technical institutions.
In past few years, thousands of engineering colleges have mushroomed across the country owing to the popularity of technical education degree and better job prospects, but this has severely affected the quality of technical education in our country. This had also paved the way for capitation-driven colleges which can be assumed as merely teaching shops. To curb this menace, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), time-to-time, had inspected and slammed hefty fines over several colleges for not following its guidelines properly. In the latest development, the HRD Ministry is considering to scrap all the engineering entrance examinations and instead conduct a single national-level entrance exam, much like the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) was administered this year for all medical and dental admissions.
A senior HRD Ministry official said, “We are considering JEE (joint entrance examination) for admissions to all technical institutes. It is in a preliminary stage and being discussed.” “The ministry will hold consultations with the stakeholders, including the states,” he added. A standing committee of the IITs has also recommended that the JEE-Main can be replaced by an Engineering Aptitude Test. The Centre tried to introduce ‘one nation, one entrance’ for admission to engineering colleges in 2012 but the same could not be implemented then.
If one considers the developments around NEET and national-level common engineering entrance tests, almost everything has been same. The Centre tried to implement both entrance exams few years back, states opposed the move and the decision was taken back. The only difference between these two has been that the NEET was conducted once before (in 2013), while the common entrance exam for engineering admissions has never seen the light of the day. Considering the support of Hon’ Supreme Court regarding the re-implementation of NEET in 2016, the government has a solid advantage this time. But, one thing that the government should focus on the timely implementation of the same. It should avoid creating controversy like NEET when the test was announced just few days before the national-level entrance test AIPMT, leaving controversy aside, such decisions leave the students in the middle of nowhere.
Other major issue before implementing national-level common engineering entrance exam would be the singularity of Class 12th syllabus across all the states. But again, the same had been during NEET 2016 and if the government announces the decision of single entrance test well in time, the students would have enough time to prepare.
Currently, more than 100 entrance tests are conducted every year at state – institution levels, apart from this almost all the deemed universities organize their own entrance tests and separate counselling sessions. From a student’s point of view, he/she has to take at least 5-6 entrance exam to secure a seat in one of his/her desired course/institution. For that, he/she is required to fill up 5-6 application forms, pay exam fee for all of them, appear for the test 5-6 times and then participate in counselling separately for each entrance test he/she has given. This is utter wastage of time and money. This all can be saved if the government could reach a consensus on the implementation of a single engineering entrance test nationwide.
As of now, the entrance exam is only a proposal and as the ministry sources have revealed that the decision would only be taken after taking inputs from stakeholders, this could take some time as well. Stay connected with ExamsWatch.com for more updates.