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Newsflash

How will the Covid-19 outbreak affect entrance exams this year

Author

Mit Kotecha

Date

May 7, 2020

The nationwide lockdown due to the outbreak of COVID-19 has brought lives to a halt. Amidst many setbacks during this situation, the student community has been the worst hit. To be precise, students who were preparing to compete in entrance exams for higher education are among the sections more severely affected. Entrance exams for design schools, law schools, esteemed universities like JNU, DU, and BHU have been postponed. Popular courses like engineering and medicine are also facing the brunt with both NEET and  JEE Main being postponed. Read more about the new date announcement here. UPSC exams – the gateway to Government jobs have also been postponed until further notice. 

In these grim situations, students are wondering if their futures are at stake with no entrance exam taking place at the moment. Many students are also afraid of ‘losing or wasting a year’ due to the coronavirus setback. Such feelings are almost obvious and understandable to some extent. It is not just students; parents and teachers are equally worried about the lockdown impacting student’s exam preparation. Going digital seems to be the only tool of facilitation right now and it will not be surprising if the trend of exams getting online picks up. 

But students need not fret! No matter how dire the situation, there’s always a silver lining. Students can think of this time as a grace period – it’s more time to practice! By now, most students are well-prepared, and are adept with all the theoretical knowledge; they are ready to attempt whatever questions come their way. As the saying goes, ‘practice maketh a man perfect’; students just need to keep up their practice going and take tests frequently to be at pace with challenging problems. The best possible solution to this is an online exam software that administers online exams to test the student.  

Lockdown 2.0 may get increased to another stage and maybe another one after that; the country must stay in lockdown till we flatten the infection curve. Consequently, the chances of the lockdown impacting exam schedules further increase. So here’s how the pandemic wreaked by a deadly virus is going to impact some of the biggest entrance exams this year:

JEE Main

JEE Main is the one-shot for students to study at coveted engineering institutions in the country. JEE Main is the qualifying level for the subsequent JEE Advanced examination which seals the deal for many students. Before the lockdown set in, the JEE Main for the April session was supposed to take place in April. The result for the same was expected by April 30 after which the JEE Advanced exam would take place in May and the final list of qualified students would be out by the second/third week of June. 

With the entire timeline disrupted, the National Testing Agency (NTA) first postponed the JEE Main to May. However, with the lockdown getting extended, the date has now been moved to July 18-23. As a chain reaction, the dates for JEE Advanced have also been moved to the end of july. JEE Advanced organizing Chairman Sidharth Pandey said, this will result in postponing the counseling sessions and ultimately the semester would start by September at the earliest. Meanwhile, the authorities have allowed students to change their preferred cities for exams on their application forms in case they have migrated from their place of preference.

Teachers especially are devising new ways to ensure students are practicing enough assignments in a way that does not get mundane and also retains the interest of the student, for which most of the proactive and forward-looking teachers are opting for Online Exam Software.

NEET

Just like JEE, the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) has also launched a window to facilitate corrections in application forms when it comes to particulars like cities from where the candidate is to take the exam. The entrance exam for medical colleges has also suffered a blow. NEET was scheduled to take place on May 3 but has now been postponed to July 26. The administering authorities have said that a revised date will be announced after the Government eases the curbs. With so much time in hand, coaching teachers have been thinking about how to help students practice in lockdown. Many teachers have already taken the help of online exam software like MegaExams for smart and efficient and hassle-free tests which will keep students at their toes practicing. 

UPSC

The Union Public Service Commission entrance exams are following suit. Students were to originally sit for the exams on May 31. Now, UPSC has decided to indefinitely postpone the exams. Although no official statement has been made as of now, a formal announcement is expected after May 3 right when lockdown 2.0 is expiring. The Commission feels, even if lockdown measures are eased after May 3, inter-state travel will not be allowed; the logistical hassle will make conducting the exam cumbersome. Till then, UPSC candidates have been advised to take frequent mock tests. On being asked how to ensure students are taking mock tests, online exam software seems to be teachers’ new-found favorite tool.

Other entrances like SSC, CLAT, TET, UGC NET have also been postponed until further notice. Hence, all aspirants are busy honing their skills and getter better with frequent practice tests hosted by online exam software.