The Union budget today proposed a single agency to hold all entrance examinations for higher education in India but the Indian Institutes of Technology hoped for an exception in their case. Every year the IITs hold the Joint Entrance Examination to admit candidates for their engineering programs.
The creation of a National Testing Agency will free the CBSE, AICTE and other bodies from the responsibility of conducting exams and administration so that they can focus more on academics.
However, the Central and state universities, being autonomous, will retain the discretion to conduct their own entrance tests for admissions. The proposed agency would be responsible for holding the national-level entrance exams for engineering, medical and management admissions and teacher selection tests.
The Indian institutes of technology hold their own entrance test Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Advanced for BTech admissions, Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) for MTech admissions and the Joint Admission Test (JAM) for MSc admissions.
As JEE advance and GATE are well-established examinations, IITs hope they will not be handed over to the new testing agency. JEE is conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
Other than JEE, CBSE also conducts the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for undergraduate MBBS and BDS admissions, National Eligibility Test (NET) for would-be college and university teachers, and the Central Teacher Eligibility Test for school teacher jobs.
The government had proposed to make the JEE Main a single engineering entrance test for all the 3,500 engineering colleges except the IITs from next year that would be conducted by the proposed agency.
Common Management Admission Test (CMAT) conducted by AICTE would also be transferred to the proposed agency. Several countries have independent agencies that conduct entrance tests for admission to higher education programs.
In America, the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is conducted by Education Testing Service for undergraduate admissions and the Graduate Management Admission Council conducts the Graduate Management Aptitude Test (GMAT) for admission to management courses.
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