National Testing Agency Current Affairs
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Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) has announced that two of India’s most popular competitive exams, Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) (Main) and National Eligibility and Entrance Test (NEET), will now be held twice a year and over multiple days. Both exams will be conducted by newly formed National Testing Agency (NTA). It will also conduct National Eligibility Test (NET).
All these exams were earlier conducted by Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). Henceforth, JEE (Main) for undergraduate admission into various engineering colleges will be held twice a year in January and April. NEET for admission into medical and dental courses will be held in February and May. NET to determine eligibility for post of assistant professor or award of junior research fellowship will be held in December.
NTA will conduct these exams will be held over many days and students will have option to choose date. Moreover, if student appearing for JEE (Main) and NEET both times in a year, best of his/ her two scores will be taken into account. All tests will be computer-based and practice modules will be made available on NTA website.
For conducing these exams, NTA will create network of test centres and students will be able to use them free of charge. These exams will be conducted more securely, at par with international norms and there will be no issues of leakage and it will be more student-friendly, open, scientific.
By holding these competitive professional career exams twice a year, students will not lose one year because there will be two examinations before admission. This will give students more choice and reduce stress due to single exam conducted on one single day in year. This will give more chances to students, thereby giving adequate opportunity to bring out his/her best.
The Union Cabinet approved in November 2017 approved setting up of the NTA as an autonomous body to conduct examinations for entrance to higher educational institutions. Apart from above three exams, NTA will also conduct Common Management Admission Test (CMAT) and Graduate Pharmacy Aptitude Test (GPAT). JEE (Advanced) exam conducted for IITs entrance will be not conducted by NTA.
Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) has announced that National Testing Agency (NTA) will train paper setters to set better question papers and provide better model answers. NTA was set up to relieve Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and other educational regulator bodies from burden of conducting multiple examinations.
NTA is expected to conduct some of the examinations that CBSE has been conducting till now. It will take over all examinations from the CBSE (except the 10th and 12th board examinations) from 2019 in phased manner. It will be also conducting prestigious Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) for admission to engineering colleges like IITs and NITs and National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to all medical and dental colleges in the country (except AIIMS and JIPMER, Puducherry).
National Testing Agency (NTA)
NTA was approved by Union cabinet in November 2017 as an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organization to conduct entrance examinations for higher educational institutions in India. It is registered as society under Indian Societies Registration Act, 1860. It mandates is to conduct entrance tests entrusted to it by any department or ministry and put in place a robust system for conducting of examinations.
It is also mandated to bring high reliability and standardised difficulty level for assessing aptitude, intelligence and problem-solving abilities of students. It will relieve CBSE, AICTE and other bodies of responsibility of conducting entrance examinations. It is chaired by eminent educationist appointed by Ministry of HRD. Its CEO will be Director General (DG) appointed by Government. Besides, it has Board of Governors comprising members from user institutions.