New Delhi: Stage has been set for single NEET-like examination for entrance to engineering colleges from the academic year 2018-19, with the HRD ministry asking the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to spell out suitable norms for holding such an exercise.
The AICTE, which oversees aspects related to technical education in the country, had discussed at a recent meeting a proposal for having a single entrance test for engineering colleges for undergraduate courses, according to PTI.
The HRD ministry has told the AICTE that the proposal is in line with the government's policy and it could incorporate suitable regulations to enable the holding of such a test, sources said.
It is learnt that the coveted IITs, for which a nationwide competitive examination is held, may also be brought in under the ambit of the new test.
The ministry has taken this decision to bring in greater transparency, maintain high standards and also try to ensure that students are saved the burden of taking too many tests, the sources said.
The ministry is also in favour of seeking constructive suggestions from states and Deemed Universities for the successful holding of such a test, they added.
It has also been decided that the single entrance test would be conducted multiple times every year and it will be designed in a way that the linguistic diversity of the country is taken into consideration, the sources said.
There already exists a common NEET exam for admission to medical colleges but there are diverse exams for entrance to engineering colleges.
The development comes about ten days after Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while present general budget proposed to set up a "National Testing Agency" which according to him will free CBSE, AICTE and other premier institutions from these administrative responsibilities.
"We propose to establish a National Testing Agency as an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organisation to conduct all entrance examinations for higher education institutions. This would free CBSE, AICTE and other premier institutions from these administrative responsibilities so that they can focus more on academics", he said.