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High Cut Offs - Delhi Univ divided over entrance exam

Published on : 05-Jun-2016 Powered by

It is the best of times, it is the worst of times. While students are celebrating the board exam results, the Delhi University authorities are faced with another challenge - in a classic case of ‘to be or not to be’ the university is divided over a proposed common entrance test for admissions to the undergraduate programmes.


Thanks to the high percentage secured in Class XII, the cut-offs to college admission are pushed to an unreasonable level yet again. During the last 10 years, the number of those scoring 90 per cent and above in CBSE exams has gone up from 8,111 in 2007 to 90,000 this year.


An entrance test is being talked about as one of the solutions to put a lid on the cut offs that touched as high as 95 per cent last year in high-demand subjects such as Economics, English and in the commerce stream in prestigious colleges of the Delhi University. The other options on table are normalisation of marks of different boards through a complicated process and then announcing the cut-offs.


The cut-offs in the science stream last year in sought-after colleges ranged between 94-97 per cent and it is feared to rise by 1-1.5 per cent this year. In BA Economics at Lady Sri Ram College, it went up to 98 per cent last year in the first list and 98.5 per cent in journalism.


Senior faculty of St Stephen’s College Nandita Narain, who is also the president of Delhi University Teachers’ Association, was more emphatic on holding an entrance test. She said St Stephens has already introduced a written entrance exam last year along with a personal interview for the under graduate courses. “It is time other colleges look into this,” she said. However, executive council member of the varsity, Abha Dev Habib and senior professor Aditya Narayan Mishra, are opposed to the idea of common entrance, as such a “venture” will undermine achievements of the toppers and put more burden on them.


Hemalatha Reddy, principal of Shri Venkateswara College said entrance test “could be an answer”, but it is for the varsity  to take a final call. Similarly, Suman Sharma, principal of Lady Shri Ram College said entrance test could be an option, but other solutions such as normalisation of marks should also be examined. Principal of Kiroli Mal College Dinesh Khattar said an entrance test will not only give a level playing field to students coming from different boards, but would assess the quality of students, irrespective of the marks secured. “However, it is my personal view, but we have to think on these lines as a possible solution,” he said.


However, the executive council of Delhi University is strongly opposed to the idea. “An entrance test would be a Herculean task when over three lakh students are applying for admissions every year. Besides, it would put extra pressure on them and give rise to the menace of coaching,” said Habib.


Principal speak


1. Is lenient marking at plus two level, a cause of concern for the principals?

2. Are 90 percenters who get admissions able to maintain their performance?

3. Is the evaluation system leading to enrolment of mediocre students and thus bringing down the quality? What is the solution?


Hemalatha Reddy

Principal, Shri Venkateswara College

1. The number of students getting above 90 per cent is worrying. Some boards are lenient and this causes pressures on students.

2. No. Due to objective papers in schools, students fail to write descriptive answers. So, their performance level drops.

3. CBSE is lenient. Realistic assessment of the students is needed. Common entrance tests can be the answer.


R P Rustagi

Principal, Shri Ram College of Commerce

1. We admit students depending on their marks. The HRD ministry and boards who are competing to give more marks, should worry.

2. Performance drops due to the way they are evaluated in their schools.

3. The quality is going down. Today, 60 per cent is nothing. The emphasis is more on marks than knowledge.


Dinesh Khattar

Principal, Kirori Mal College

1. Yes. More students means higher cut-off lists and seats are limited. Today, someone with 90 per cent has very dim chances of getting admission in DU.

2. Most of the students are from CBSE. Their performance drops in the first year.

3. A standardisation is needed as some boards practice lenient marking system.


Suman Sharma

Principal, Lady Shri Ram College

1. Yes. The evaluation system and changing pattern of question papers are to be blamed.

2. Subjective type questions are replaced with objective type. But students getting admission are a good crop of the best in the country.

3. Entrance tests can be a solution along with normalisation of marks. We also need more quality institutes to reduce burden on DU

(Indian Express)

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