Doubts and confusion persist among students about option registration, even as the Centralised Allotment Process for professional courses began on July 5, writes G. MAHADEVAN.

Persistent doubts about the Centralised Allotment Process (CAP) for professional courses in the State were the predominant feature in the first phase of the allotment that got of to a start on July 5. As thousands of candidates registered lakhs of course-college options in the designated web site (cee.kerala.gov.in/keam), there were many of them who, even now, did not have a clear picture of the processes involved in CAP.

According to information gathered by The Hindu EducationPlus from various Option Facilitation Centres (OFC) and from the office of the Commissioner for Entrance Examinations (CEE), one of the main doubts raised by hundreds of candidates – at the OFCs and during telephone calls to the CEE’s office – was “should I give separate priority options for engineering and medical courses.”

In fact, there were many instances when the staff at the OFCs had to intervene and ask the students to delete the separate 1,2,3… markings they had entered for engineering and medical courses. The marking of options is an integrated process and students have to give only one option order regardless of which course or college they are indicating. Option one can be an engineering course and option two can be a BDS programme and so on. Further, if a student wishes to opt for different courses in the same college, he or she is free to do so.

Then, there were many students who, after setting a password forgot what they had entered into the computer. Such students should note that the password cannot be reset at the OFCs or at the helpdesks across the State. It can only be reset by the office of the CEE and for this the student has to contact the designated official for each district. The list of such officials can be had from the web site where the options are to be registered.

It is important to save the list of options submitted; there were many who, on the first two days, logged out of the web site without saving their option list. It is also important that the candidates take a printout of their option list each time they revise it. This serves as proof that the candidate gave a particular priority for a particular course or college. It is critical that the candidates ensure that they do not give the same priority number for more than one course-college combination. If the same number is given for more than one course-college combination, the software will have no way to figure out which course or college the candidate actually had in mind.

It is not at all compulsory that candidate revises his option list every day. However, it is a good idea for the candidate to check and re-check his option list each day to ensure that his priority markings are correct and that no unauthorised changes have been made to his option list. There is no limit to the number of times a candidate can revise his option list.

Even though the first trial allotment will only be held on July 10, the data for this trial allotment will be taken from the options submitted by candidates till the evening of July 8 (Tuesday). Therefore it is advisable to submit the options well before the evening of July 8.

Participation in the trial allotment will give the candidates a good idea of the eventual course and college they will get during the final allotment. Based on the trial allotment, the candidate can also effect meaningful revisions to his option list. All the same the trial allotments are not the actual allotments.

Dozens of calls were received by the office of the CEE from students saying that they had lost their admit cards. Such students should immediately remit Rs.100 and get a duplicate admit card.

Candidates wishing to get admission to MBBS and BDS courses should take special note that they will not receive admission for these courses if they do not have with them the admit card.