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New university entrance exam to be based on Class 12 course, needs no coaching, says NTA chief

NTA Director Vineet Joshi says mandatory CUET will use ‘model syllabus’, comprising questions from NCERT and state boards. Not even questions from Class XI will be used.

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New Delhi: Questions in the Central University Entrance Test (CUET) for undergraduate admission to colleges under central universities will only be based on Class 12 syllabus and will use the “model syllabus”, comprising of questions from both National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) and state boards, ThePrint has learnt.

The National Testing Agency (NTA) is the body in-charge of conducting exams and setting the question papers for CUET, mandatory for college admissions from the 2022-23 academic year. While an official notification on examination pattern is yet to be released, allaying fears of students, NTA Director General Vineet Joshi told ThePrint Thursday that the questions will test the basic knowledge level of students, whatever they have learnt in class 12 (and not even pertain to the syllabus for class 11), and will need no extra preparation by students.

No encouragement to coaching

“We do not want to give encouragement to the coaching culture, students should not go for coaching classes to clear the CUET exam. Whatever will be a part of the question papers will be based on books of the NCERT and state board syllabus,” Joshi said.

He added: “There is a misconception that we will only use NCERT books to form the question papers… that is not true, we are looking at other board syllabi as well for the question papers.”

A separate team of question paper setters and researchers is working on the CUET papers and the agency will set papers for 58 subjects in 13 languages. “We understand that this is a completely different work and we are treating it like that. It is not going to be like JEE and NEET,” Joshi added.

Another NTA officer told ThePrint that the CUET question papers will also offer students a lot of choice, so as to make it relevant for candidates from different boards. “Even in multiple choice questions we will give a lot of choices, like out of 60 questions students will have to attempt only 50,” the officer said.

Application on single portal

Explaining how the exam will work, the officer quoted above explained that students will have to apply on a single portal and they can select as many universities as they want to on that portal. The duration of the exam that students write will depend on the university and the criteria that the university has set.

“Say, for example, BHU is offering a course for which there is a 75 minute exam, a student opting for BHU will have to take that. If on the other hand, a DU entrance paper requires two hours, student will have to take that,” the officer explained.

The NTA is currently collecting information from various universities on the number of seats they have on offer for various programmes, so that the same can be displayed on the CUET portal. The portal is expected to go live by April, by which time students will also be able to register for their choice of university.

The University Grants Commission announced Tuesday that Class 12 examination scores will no longer matter for admission to college, as it will be decided on the basis of the CUET exam results from 2022-23 onwards.

(Edited by Poulomi Banerjee)

Also read: 40% in Class 12, then common test with choice of 17 domain subjects — new DU entrance criteria


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