National Testing Agency not CBSE to conduct entrance exams

Topics Entrance Exams

On November 10, 2017, Friday, the Union cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, cleared a proposal for the creation of a National Testing Agency (NTA). An exclusive body, NTA will initially conduct entrance examinations currently being managed by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).

Setting up of NTA will reportedly benefit about four million students appearing in various entrance examinations.

According to an official communique, the NTA would, over time, also relieve the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and other agencies from the responsibility of conducting entrance tests and hence enabling them to focus on their core mandate.

Exams affected

CBSE currently conducts major higher education-related entrance tests apart from school exams at the Class X and Class XII level for CBSE-affiliated schools. The board also conducted five other tests including the National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) for students aspiring to join medical colleges, the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE-Main) for admission to the elite IITs, and the National Eligibility Test (NET) on behalf of the University Grants Commission (UGC) for selecting professors to teach in colleges and universities, the Central Teacher Eligibility Test (CTET) for appointment of teachers across states, and the entrance test for Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs).

From 2019 onwards, NEET, JEE-Main, NET, CTET and entrance test for JNVs will be held twice a year by NTA.

Advantage NTA

Under the NTA, the entrance examinations will be conducted online, at least twice a year. According to the statement, this will give the aspirants adequate opportunity to bring out their best. The agency is also set to bring in high reliability, and standardised difficulty level to assess the aptitude, intelligence and problem-solving abilities of the students.

In order to serve the requirements of the rural students, NTA would locate the centres at sub-district/district level and as far as possible would undertake hands-on training to the students.

About NTA

The proposal for a centralized testing agency was shared in the budget 2017-18 statement. The NTA will be created as a society registered under the Indian Societies Registration Act, 1860, and as an autonomous and self-sustaining premier testing organisation to conduct entrance tests for higher educational institutes. It will comprise an eminent educationist appointed by the ministry of human resource development as the chairman, a CEO who will be the director general and appointed by the Centre, and a board of governors including members from user institutions.

The director general will be assisted by nine verticals headed by academicians and experts.

The NTA will receive a one-time grant of Rs. 25 crore from the Centre to start its operation. Thereafter, it will function on a self-sustaining model.

Also read:

National testing agency, more autonomy to place institutes at par globally

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