Why IIT-Kanpur is wrong

June 11th, 2012

I fail to understand the problem IIT alumni associations and IIT faculty have, over the ‘one-nation-one-test’ proposal of the MHRD.

How on earth will changes in IIT-JEE dilute the quality of IITs?

In my opinion, this is one of the most sensible decisions taken by the MHRD in the past decade.

The whole idea of the test is to facilitate better school education, ease the pressure of writing multiple tests for students and also to some extent, discourage the coaching culture among students.

But clearly the alumni association and faculty federation have not understood this. Besides, if the directors of IITs have agreed, I see no reason why the faculty federation should be opposing it.

And the latest move by IIT-Kanpur to hold its own examination is nothing but an attempt to creating an elite society!

What is the point in coming up with the idea of a single national test when every institute wants to hold its own test?

I think the new proposal to conduct two exams JEE mains and JEE advanced is a good way to assess students. Besides, students will be able to concentrate on their school education also considering weightage will be given to marks gained in school.

IIT coaching centres however, have already begun incorporating the school syllabus in their curriculum.

Not only that, the syllabus which schools finish in one year, these coaching institutes will be finishing in flat three months!

So it’s anyone’s guess how much will these students actually absorb.

It is appalling to see how these associations are not facilitating a change that will be good for students. Not every student has the finances to buy forms for 10 different tests. Not everyone can seek coaching from institutes to crack the test.

At this point I can’t help but remember the comment made by Infosys Technologies founder, N R Narayana Murthy last year.

“Thanks to coaching classes, the quality of students entering IITs has gone lower and lower. Save the top 20 per cent who crack the tough IIT entrance exam and can stand among the best anywhere in the world, the quality of the remaining 80 per cent of students leaves much to be desired,” Murthy had said.

Are IITs really looking at improving the quality of students they want to have?

If the IITs have their way, coaching institutes may now begin promoting classes in the name of specific IITs. And probably have some faculty members from these IITs on board to add weight to their claims.

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