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NEET, JEE to be held twice a year, says Javadekar

Union Minister of Human Resource Development Prakash Javadekar.   | Photo Credit: Rohit Jain Paras

The Joint Entrance Examination (Mains) [JEE-Mains] and the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) will now be conducted twice a year instead of just once, Union Minister of Human Resource Development Prakash Javadekar said on Saturday.

The former determines admission to the National Institutes of Technology, the Indian Institutes of Information Technology, etc., and also eligibility to appear for JEE (Advanced) for admission to the Indian Institutes of Technology, while the latter decides admissions to all medical colleges except AIIMS and JIPMER, Puducherry.

Candidates will be eligible for taking these examinations both times a year and their better score will be considered for admission. The IITs will continue to conduct the JEE (Advanced), however, and this is likely to be held just once a year.

Mr Javadekar also announced that the National Testing Agency (NTA) would take over the conduct of these examinations, taking away a significant burden from the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which conducts a host of exams now.

The NTA will start conducting the JEE (Mains), NEET, UGC NET, CMAT and GPAT examinations from this year itself, with all examinations being computer-based, though not online.

Encryption to ensure foolproof JEE, NEET

Following Mr. Javadekar’s announcement, a senior official elaborated on the methods to ensure foolproof testing.

Speaking to The Hindu, he said the papers would first be downloaded at the test centres just before the exam and then the Internet would be disconnected. The papers would be distributed to all candidates through a local server. After the exam, the papers would be uploaded to central servers. There would be encryption and, thus, no possibility of foul play, the official added.

Student-friendly

The two tests — JEE (Mains) and NEET — would be equated using psychometric methods, standardisation techniques and best of the equated scores would be used for the admissions.

The Minister said the exams would be more secure and on a par with international norms. There would be no issues of leakage and it would be more student- friendly, open, scientific and leak-proof, he stressed.

“There would be no examiners and the answers would be fed into the system. So, a candidate would know her raw score immediately. The result would come out after some days to address any possible complaints,” the official said.

Asked whether this would put rural students at a disadvantage in a country where 60% of the rural youth did not have access to computers or the Internet, Mr. Javadekar said students writing these exams already had exposure to computers and laptops.

He also said students who did not have a computer or laptop at home could practise at authorised centres from the coming August.

This year, about 8.5 lakh students appeared for the JEE (Mains) in offline mode and about two lakh took it online. “The computer-based test will make tampering almost impossible. But it will put rural students at a disadvantage for a few years. If schools consider holding some Class-11 exams mandatorily online, students will catch up faster,” former CBSE Chairman Ashok Ganguly told The Hindu.

In existing languages

All the examinations, Mr. Javadekar said, would be held in all the existing languages with no change in syllabus of examination patterns.

However, these will be held on a number of days, with multiple question papers with equal level of difficulty, and a candidate can choose which date to appear for the exam.

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Printable version | May 14, 2021 11:30:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/neet-jee-to-be-held-twice-a-year-says-javadekar/article24359217.ece

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