‘Most students will appear for the test at a later date after initial feedback’
A handful of aspirants and virtually deserted labs best describe the first sessions of the Common Admission Test (CAT) that began on Thursday.
The test, which determines admission into the finest business schools in the country, will be held in a number of sessions on various days till November 6.
An employee of an IT firm who took the test on the first day said the exam centre which had four computer labs saw just six aspirants against a capacity of 160. “Two of us faced problems when there was a power failure during the test. But the supply was restored after ten minutes,” he said.
This year, nearly 9,700 candidates from the city, 15 per cent more than last year, have registered for the test.
A total of 2,14,068 candidates have registered for the test nationwide. “Most students will appear for the test at a later date after initial feedback on the conduct of the exam. They don’t want to rush,” said S. Balasubramanian, director, Vistamind.
The test is conducted in 61 centres across 36 cities on 21 days. In Chennai, the centres are Saveetha Engineering College in Sriperumbudur, Sri Venkateswara College Of Engineering And Technology in Thirupachur and Vel Tech Dr. R.R. And Dr. S.R. Technical University in Avadi.
This year’s CAT, conducted by Indian Institute Management-Kozhikode, will help students qualify for various courses at 13 IIMs and other top business schools across the country.
The duration of each exam is 140 minutes; students get 70 minutes per section. Prometric, an online testing services company, is conducting the computer-based exams on behalf of the IIMs for the fourth time.
Pooja Menon, a literature student who took the test on the second day, said the registration process was quite streamlined and simple although the waiting time was long.
“Everybody was frisked, finger-printed and photographed. This is my first CAT attempt and I found the procedure rather time-consuming,” she said.
Another candidate who took the test in Thirupachur said there was a 15-minute lag on the computer he used, but it was set right by Prometric officials.
“The frisking before the test, however, takes a while. It is best to carry as few items as possible, besides the ID proof and admit card. Avoid phones, bags, watches, pens and pencils,” he said.