The Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) which is conducted every year for admissions in engineering colleges in India will be organized by National Testing Agency (NTA) this year.The NTA is an independent body which is dedicated to conducting entrance tests for higher education. The governing body recently announced a major change in the calculation of JEE marks and rank calculation. The move aims to benefit lakhs of students across the country. According to the recent notification released by NTA, apart from filling the online application form on jeemain.nic.in and nta.ac.in, the marks for the JEE Main exam scheduled in 2019 will be normalized and the ranks will be calculated on the basis of the percentile scoreand not raw marks achieved by a student. In the new procedure, the JEE exam will be held twice in a year and the rank of a candidate will be calculated once both the exams are conducted.
The new changes comeas a welcome move for the students as they will now have two attempts to crack the JEE mains exam. The best of both scores will be accepted as the candidate’s final result. The top-ranked candidate in the final ranking will be the 100 percentile. The tie-breaker between any percentile rank will be decided according to thehighest percentile in mathematics, physics and chemistry in that order. If scores are tied even after this,the percentile would be awarded up to seven decimal places. If there still persists a deadlock, then the older person will be ranked higher.
The percentile system and the process of ‘normalization’ is set to ensure fair play for the students who will take these exams on different dates. According to the notification issued by NTA, JEE Mains 2019 will be conducted in two shifts on 8 days and each shift will have a different set of question paper. This will ensure that the students who appeared for the same level of difficulty will be competing against each other. NTA has also not made it mandatory for students to write both the exams and thus to they can choose either one.The percentile system is currently being used in various national level exams such as CAT, GATE and undergraduate entrance test conducted by AIIMS.
The fact that JEE Main is one of the most crucial exam in a student’s life, the new changes are bound to benefit them. Every year due to unforeseen circumstances many deserving students are not able to perform well in the exam and in worse cases are not able to appear for the exam. Instances such as these will now be significantly decreased. The first session of JEE Mains will be conducted in January 2019 whereas the second session will be held in April 2019. The gap between both the exams will allow the students to analyze their performance in the first test and prepare accordingly for the second attempt.
The recent move is expected to bring a qualitative change in the examination process as all the test will be set in a scientific manner. The test items will be developed jointly by the subject matter experts and psychometricians. The agency has also clarified that there will be no changes in the question paper and syllabus. This is expected to lower a lot of pressure on the students who were worried and tensed about impact of these changes on their performance. NTA’s move to schedule the exam at least twice a year, will not only give an opportunity to the students to put their best foot forward but will also provide them an additional chance to appear for the exam without waiting for an another year.