From 2013, give only 1 test for MBA

Mumbai: To cut down the multiple entrance exams for admission to management courses across the country, the All-India Council for Technical Education, the umbrella body for professional courses, has decided to conduct a common admission test from 2012-13. No longer will lakhs of students be forced to sit for over a dozen exams for admission to the highly aspirational MBA and its poorer cousin __ the postgraduate diploma in management.

The decision to hold a Common Management Admission Test (CMAT) was taken at the most recent AICTE executive council meeting. While the CMAT will be one of the entrance exams to be held in 2012, the Council wants all its colleges and institutes to admit students based on their CMAT scores from 2013. “Almost every college was conducting an entrance exam. Moreover, each state government has its own entrance tests, and private associations too have their own exams. In principle, the CMAT will be a test for all AICTE-approved institutes, and it will reduce the stress and financial burden on students,” said AICTE chairman S S Mantha.

However,the Indian Institutes of Management, which are independent and autonomous B-schools, will continue to conduct the CAT (common admission test). The deemed universities of country will also hold their individual entrance tests. But admission to 4,000 colleges that offer an MBA and another 500 which run diploma programmes will take place on the basis of the CMAT.

“We still have to work out the modalities of conducting the CMAT. But having so many exams, all of varied difficulty levels, also raises concerns among the quality of students who enter this professional course,” added Mantha. It is for the first time that the AICTE has spoken of holding an entrance exam; to date, it has been an approvalseeking body for new institutes wanting to expand student intake.

The Management Aptitude Test, which is taken by 3.85 lakh students every year, is currently the largest B-school entrance test. Hari Krishna Maram, governing council member of AIMA which holds the MAT, said “I welcome the idea of a single entrance exam for management courses. The government has been talking about it for quite sometime now but the idea hasn’t taken off. I do not know if a single exam will work since different universities have different admission schedules. MAT on the other hand is conducted four times in a year and this helps students to take the exam whenever they are free.”


A NEW CHAPTER

•AICTE has decided to hold a Common Management Admission Test for MBA and PG diploma in management courses

•Although CMAT will be held in 2012 too, from 2013 all admissions will be based on CMAT scores

•But IIMs and deemed universities can hold their own tests
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